Your One-Time-Around Life

I heard a speaker this past weekend at a women’s retreat use the phrase “your one-time-around life.” The words made an impact on me and I have thought about them several times in the last few days. At age 47 I am  solidly in what could be considered mid-life.  I am finding this a unique position from which to look forward and from which to look back.

Sometimes God clearly shows us where we took a wrong turn. With hindsight I can tell you exactly when I made the choice to read a series of books that led me down the rabbit hole of pornography. I looked at this series several times over several months knowing they were not the right choice for me. But I continued to go back to that used bookstore and pick them up, read the jacket copy and consider them. No harm in looking or so I thought. But each visit weakened my resolve and each time found me rationalizing the eventual purchase of these books.

With hindsight I wish I had shared the temptation with a friend who could have prayed for me and held me accountable. I wish I could have clearly seen the deception for what it was and made a different choice.  I wish I had taken a different route to school each day so that it would not be so easy to stop at the bookstore. I wish I could have clearly seen the gaping hole that was right in front of me.

But I didn’t.

And as a result I ended up wasting part of my one-time-around life with an addiction to pornography that damaged my relationship with Christ, my family, my friends and myself. But in God’s economy nothing is wasted. On the other side of my addiction I had a choice. And that choice was whether or not I was going to allow God to be glorified through my experience.

Philippians 2:13 says, “For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purposes.” God can use all of our broken, dark places for his purposes when we choose to let him.

In the book of Esther scripture tells us that God placed her in her royal position “for such a time as this.” We are not here by mistake. Ask yourself today - what does God want you to do with your one-time-around life?