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I definitely think that celibacy is a gift from God. And I surely thought I had this gift after I got saved at age 16. I was through with women and studied like crazy through 5 years of college (3 of those years were at Arizona Bible College in Phoenix) and through 4 years of seminary, Dallas Theological Seminary, in Dallas, Texas. I am not saying it was easy, but I thought I might as well give it my all, as I wanted to be the best Christian possible, following St. Paul's example and advice that he gave in 1 Corinthians 7. At that time, I thought I could find 3 reasons in 1 Corinthians 7 to remain celibate. Those reasons included the time being short (1 Cor 7:29) and freedom from concern (1 Co 7:32). But then I met my wife-to-be "for the second time." She claims she had introduced herself to me years before. Then, it seems, God withdrew the gift of celibacy for me! And there is/was joy in serving Jesus as a single person. Ryan Griffith put it this way: "What’s crystal clear is that Paul isn’t some masochistic killjoy wishing that others would join him in his pain of unrequited sexuality. He doesn’t seem to view singleness or celibacy as any hindrance to joy. Who, after all, talks more about joy than this (single) apostle? Paul has a friend in every town. His letters are ebullient; full of the joy of a man whose life in Christ is also is full of meaningful relationships. He has no wife, but countless (spiritual) children. Despite his countless sufferings, he’d choose to live another day for the joy of the church than to be in the presence of Christ (Philippians 1:24-26). His life of singleness is not a bleak winter waiting for the spring of marriage. Paul not only sees singleness as legitimate but as “beautiful” (kalon, 1 Corinthians 7:8)."
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