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Letter Answering Department (900 Series)
What can I do when my unconverted mate objects to my studying and praying?
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What can I do when my unconverted mate objects to my studying and praying?
Worldwide Church of God 


Proclaim to the World the

BOX 111, Pasadena, California


Dear Friend:

   We are often asked, "What can I do when my unconverted mate objects to my studying and praying?"

   One of life's most important lessons is the proper use of TIME.

   Husbands are to provide for their own houses (I Tim. 5:8), and to love their wives (Eph. 5:25). Wives are told to submit themselves to their husbands (Eph. 5:22), and not to be idle (Prov. 31:27).

   All of these things require TIME. Solomon said, "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven" (Eccl. 3:1). There is a time to pray and to study.

   But, we must find the right time for prayer and study. We should find time to pray when unconverted members of the family are either away or preoccupied. We express love to them, not by running to the prayer closet every time they come into the house, but by spending time in sincere, earnest prayer when they aren't there. When they are home, that time can be used to show our love to them, to be an example of good Christian living. If we neglect the unconverted members of our family by spending excessive time in idle praying while they are home, we will only succeed in driving them further from God, and our prayers will have been in vain.

   If your mate remains at home all day, you should plan to arise early in the morning, praying before he is awake. Later, it would be a simple matter to spend just a few minutes even as little as five or ten in the bathroom if necessary, in private prayer.

   With wisdom and discretion, study and prayer can be handled so as to avoid any type of conflict. Do not study in one position at a table or desk hour after hour, ignoring your mate on the Sabbath! STUDY, yes! But study when he is reading the paper, or occupied with something else. Remember, it is probably only because your obvious preoccupation with study and prayer makes your mate feel guilty that he objects. Try to make it fit into the day as conveniently as possible, without calling special attention to it by flaunting your "righteousness" openly before him.

   Nearly always, problems of this type arise when one member is lacking in wisdom, and trying to appear OVERLY RIGHTEOUS as a sanctimonious, studious, "spiritual" person but from a wrong motive! If study and prayer is done in the attitude of self-righteousness, all the while thinking how "carnal," how "evil" your mate is for NOT studying and praying he will be immediately antagonized, and your study and prayer will have been in vain in the sight of God anyhow!

   Do spend enough time in fervent prayer. Prayer is needed to draw close to God and to grow in faith, but spend time in prayer when unconverted members of your family won't be constantly noticing it. Remember it is the kind of earnest prayer and Bible study that counts not idle time spent in prayer to be noticed by others.


Letter Number: 961

Publication Date: 1961
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