Church: Set Up Your Singles (from Christianity Today)

Article at CT:

(Link): Church: Set Up Your Singles (I do not see an author name on this page; I assume it was written by a woman, since it is in their woman’s section)

  • Community matchmaking can do better than online dating.

My comments about this article’s topic:

I no longer believe in “equally yoked” for Christian single women, for many reasons. This is a teaching that Christians say means a Christian should marry only another Christian.

My reasons for disputing this teaching:

One, Christian men are just as apt to being lying, abusive, or sexually deviant scum balls as Non Christians (examples here), and Two,  the reality for single women over age 30, we out-number single males that age in churches.

Single men simply do not attend church, and the few who do tend to be, in my experience, losers.

Single men who regularly attend churches tend to be obese, or, conversely stick thin; bald; socially awkward; painfully shy; refuse to ask women out on dates.

I think before church people try to play match- maker, they should get the permission of the single woman first. Some single women do NOT want church people fixing them up with men, some are fine with it – you should ask the woman first.

I was certainly taught when younger by both Christian parents that church was the place to snag a husband… but… out of the few male singles who do attend church, they are Losers – not the type women want to date, let alone marry.

However, this does not stop well- meaning, married Christians from playing Matchmaker, where the usual tact is for them to take a fat, loser, weird, smelly, basement dwelling, unemployed 48 year old, never-married man, and try to match him with an employed, smart, sexy, attractive 25 or 35 year old (or hell, they will even try pushing him off on to more age appropriate, smart, beautiful gals who don’t want him either).

I have read many testimonies like this the past several years, on the internet.

There are so many women who are are smart, funny, employed, and/or attractive, but the old busy body ladies at their church try to fix them up with some fat, ugly, poor, and/or weirdo who is like 20 or more years older than they are, and I have yet to find any woman who finds those traits compelling in a man.

I don’t think most women expect multi millionaire Brad Pitt clones, but to assume a normal, educated, attractive woman would want to date a fat, weird, ugly, or perpetually impoverished male is an insult.

So here we have this editorial, with this author arguing that churches should play matchmaker.

I at one time felt this way too. I’m not sure if I still do or not.

One problem you have with this attitude that churches should play match maker is that it’s mostly married people who run churches, and they are hypocritical, selfish jackholes.

Married Christian couples see nothing wrong with churches forever ministering to married people, with “family night pot lucks” or sermons about “five ways to have a great marriage” or holding weeknight marriage seminars in the church and other events aimed at married people, but God forbid an adult single begs the church to start catering to singles, holding seminars for singles and pot lucks for singles, or at least stop advertising the weekly pot luck as being “family night,” then the singles are told by the married people, “How dare you be selfish, you should come to church to serve not be served!”

Below you will see some excerpts, followed by more comments by me about it.

(Link): Church: Set Up Your Singles

Excerpts.

  • Our generation is staying single longer and delaying children more than any other generation in history, yet desperately discontent with solitude. A friend asked me recently, “If God said it is not good for man to be alone, but all he does is good, is my singleness actually good?” Sometimes the best answer to difficult questions is to just say, “I don’t know buthe is good,” and so I did.
  • In the Old Testament the norm for marriages was in the way of Isaac and Rebekah, Ruth and Boaz, even Adam and Eve—we read about a variety of methods employed, but in each, family was the gateway to union. All through the New Testament, though, Paul used inclusive familial language in regard to the church. He was saying, “Your spiritual family is your family now: mother one another, father one another, brother and sister one another. This is now the unit out of which you are birthed and raised and sent out.” Being fruitful and multiplying is no longer relegated to bearing natural children, but building disciples.
  • This new conception of family informs our approach to dating—and the surge in online dating among single people across the world.
  • Local churches are intended to be the incubator for future marriages, not online dating sites and hookup apps. Can God use the common grace of online matchmaking? Absolutely. Is it best? I would argue no.
  • …This is not a call for singles, but for the church. Surely if there is anything we can understand as a body, it is the angst of a bride whose groom has not yet come to take her away. We understand more clearly and dearly what it is like to long for the not-yet.
  • …We know not all are called to marriage, but often times the awkwardness of approaching the subject with someone keeps us from finding out what exactly our single friends desire.
  • …Help your unmarried brothers and sisters taste a glimpse of the eternal marriage by helping them get married.
  • …Keep your eyes and ears open for godly singles who might make good partners for your friends and then provide space for those meetings to happen.
  • …Be prayerful about setting up potential couples; don’t base the setup on what you assume they’d be attracted to, but on the godliness and maturity of the individuals. Attraction is a god of the unmarried these days and social media can be the temple of its worship, but it is a fleeting mistress and cannot sustain any marriage
  • …In the lack of help we often feel from wiser and more mature Christians, we are tempted to go outside the church to find spouses, settling for someone who is not godly or who would not be a good partner in ministry. We cannot blame our sin in that on the church, but we can plead that you care for our hearts in this way.

Elsewhere in this article, the author assumes the Bible verse which says, “It is not good for man to be alone” to be a teaching of God’s that says it is God’s intent for every human to be married or to find companionship ONLY in marriage….

I, too, used to misunderstand the “it’s not good for man to be alone” comment in the OT to refer to marriage, but it’s not.

As Christ taught in the NT, your spiritual family is supposed to comprise your new family – it is ideally to other believers in Jesus you should be able to turn for support and companionship, not a marital partner.

See this page at this blog:

“Who is my mother and who are my brothers?” – one of the most excellent Christian rebuttals I have seen against the Christian idolatry of marriage and natalism, and in support of adult singleness and celibacy – from CBE’s site

Marriage is not supposed to be the only form of companionship created by God to satisfy relational longing.

Where the author says,

  • In the Old Testament the norm for marriages was in the way of Isaac and Rebekah, Ruth and Boaz, even Adam and Eve—we read about a variety of methods employed, but in each, family was the gateway to union. All through the New Testament, though, Paul used inclusive familial language in regard to the church.

While I do think Christ, in the NT (New Testament) emphasizes the “family of believers” as opposed to biological family, I would hope the author of that CT page remembers that the OT (Old Testament) was written in, largely for, and by a different culture.

God did not necessarily approve of the OT Jewish way of living.

The ancient Jews were into polygamy (King David and Solomon had many wives and concubines, which was never God’s intent for marriage) and other nations of the Old Testament era surrounding Israel were supportive of slavery – but God neither condones polygamy or slavery for Americans living in the 21st century.

Ergo, I believe it’s dangerous for Christians to try to draw too many ideals or principles from the OT and apply them to contemporary Christians in the United States.

In other words, there is no command in the Bible from God that says, “Because the OT patriarchs had arranged marriages, or family members set up many marriages, Christians also ought to do the same.”

That the OT guys did practice arranged marriages, or that the families were involved, does not necessarily mean it’s a binding practice for American Christians.

The author says,

  •  He (Paul) was saying, “Your spiritual family is your family now: mother one another, father one another, brother and sister one another. This is now the unit out of which you are birthed and raised and sent out.” Being fruitful and multiplying is no longer relegated to bearing natural children, but building disciples.

That is true. However, the author then adds,

  • This new conception of family informs our approach to dating—and the surge in online dating among single people across the world.

Transferring the concept from OT “family” (literal family) to NT “family” doesn’t quite pass muster, though.

The author says,

  • We know not all are called to marriage, but often times the awkwardness of approaching the subject with someone keeps us from finding out what exactly our single friends desire.

There is no such thing as a “calling” to singlehood or to marriage. This fallacy pops up frequently, even among Christian singles themselves.

God does not choose who marries and who is single. God leaves it up TO YOU. If you want to get married, then get to it, go to bars and meet men, flirt, go join a dating site.

(Link): There is No Such Thing as a Gift of Singleness or Gift of Celibacy or Being Called to Either One

She says,

  • Help your unmarried brothers and sisters taste a glimpse of the eternal marriage by helping them get married.

Singles already “glimpse of the eternal marriage” because they are part of the Bride of Christ too, not just married people.

She says,

  • Be prayerful about setting up potential couples; don’t base the setup on what you assume they’d be attracted to, but on the godliness and maturity of the individuals. Attraction is a god of the unmarried these days and social media can be the temple of its worship, but it is a fleeting mistress and cannot sustain any marriage

Do some singles put far too much emphasis upon looks? Yes. But to jump to other extreme and insist looks don’t matter at all, and we should only consider “inner” qualities is a load of bunk, too….

And, it’s sexist. There is a double standard in American culture, including Christianity, where women are told to date ugly men, but men are not told to date ugly women.

Physically attractive women -such as myself-  are repeatedly fixed up with ugly, fat, balding men who are too old for us, and just too unappealing.

This has been true for me since I was in my 20 and continues today. Friends either fix you up with these ugly, weirdo men, or they point him out at a party and ask you to consider dating these losers.

Men are never to seldom asked or expected to date or marry beneath their physical attractiveness level, but are actually encouraged to seek out and chase after women out of their league, usually by other men.

She says,

  • In the lack of help we often feel from wiser and more mature Christians, we are tempted to go outside the church to find spouses, settling for someone who is not godly or who would not be a good partner in ministry. We cannot blame our sin in that on the church, but we can plead that you care for our hearts in this way.

I no longer believe it’s a sin for a Christian to marry a Non-Christian.

And, as a matter of practicality, the women out-number the men by 3 to 1 in evangelical churches, so Christian women will have no choice but to date Non-Christians and marry an atheist, Jew, or other Non Christian, if they hope to marry at all.

If Christians repeatedly insist on framing “don’t be unequally yoked” as a sin, prepare to see droves of Christian women, who hope to marry, remain needlessly single.

—————————–

Related:

(Link): Singleness Is Not a Gift

(Link):  Christian Teachings on Relationships: They’re One Reason Singles Are Remaining Single (even if they want to get married)

(Link): Statistics Show Single Adults Now Outnumber Married Adults in the United States (as of 2014)

(Link): The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me

(Link):  Christianity Should Be Able To Work Regardless of Culture, Childed or Marital Status / Article: Unlike in the 1950s, there is no ‘typical’ U.S. family today by B. Shulte

(Link):  Helping Christian Singles Meet Christian Singles (to date)

Link): False Christian Teaching: “Only A Few Are Called to Singleness and Celibacy”

(Link): Otherhood – An overlooked demographic – the Childless and Childfree Women and Singles Especially Women Who Had Hoped to Marry and Have Kids But Never Met Mr. Right (links)

(Link): Typical Incorrect Conservative Christian Assumption: If you want marriage bad enough, Mr. Right will magically appear

(Link):  Candice Watters and Boundless Blog Gets It Wrong / Christian prolonged singlehood singleness singles ignored

(Link): ‘Why Are You Single’ Lists That Do Not Pathologize Singles by Bella DePaulo

(Link): Another Too Long, Too Strict Suitor List by a Christian That Will Keep A Single Single Forever: “The Man Who Will Marry My Daughter” by Tony Miano

4 thoughts on “Church: Set Up Your Singles (from Christianity Today)”

  1. Dear CP, Thanks for your prompt and kind reply. Yes you have described almost perfectly where I am theologically also. That is too say what I still believe and what I don’t believe. Yes I too see the inconsistency and hypocrisy from people who claim to follow Christ. I am also tired of seeing people rewarded for wrong behavior, and the Church being seemingly okay with that. Especially when we singles who played by the rules get nothing. Whenever we express our desires we get shouted down or told to shut up and ” serve”. One pastor even told a friend of mine that it was okay for me to be single because ” nobody would marry a disabled person” unbelievable
    Well I rambled again. Thanks for listening.

    1. You’re not rambling at all. See, my replies are ten times longer than yours. 🙂
      (Not that I’m being wordy on purpose, it comes naturally.)

      Whoever told you that no woman would marry a disabled man is insensitive. That lady I told you about in the other post, who is in a wheelchair? She just got married about 4 or 5 months ago.

      You said,
      “I am also tired of seeing people rewarded for wrong behavior, and the Church being seemingly okay with that. Especially when we singles who played by the rules get nothing.”

      Oh yeah. It’s maddening, and it hurts. When I’ve tried bringing this up on other Christian blogs or forums, especially on topics pertaining to sexuality, where people are excusing fornication up the ying yang, I get smacked down for it.

      I’ve had Christians tell me that I’ve made “an idol” out of virginity or sexual purity.

      One guy compared me to the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son, you know, the one who told his dad, “I’ve followed all the rules, but you’ve so far not given me a party like you have with junior, here.”

      I really have not been able to get a good answer from these types of people why I should bother remaining chaste since there is apparently no reward or incentive to remain so, other than the usual (avoidance of unplanned pregnancy, no sexually transmitted diseases).

      One guy only remarked that my virginity at my age is “for the glory of God.” I’m sorry, but I no longer care about “God’s glory.” That answer does not even begin to seriously grapple with my crushed hopes of getting married one day (which entails having sex). Christians keep giving the most flippant, shallow, or unsatisfying answers to these issues.

      You might want to think about getting a copy of the book “Quitting Church” by Julia Duin. Or maybe not, reading stories in her book about how churches mistreat singles is depressing.

      She has one story in there by a never married 50 something guy. This guy has been going to church since he was a teen or in his 20s. In his 20s, he asked his church for help in getting a wife.

      Rather than help him, they yelled at him or mocked him. He then quit that church and joined another and I think another, it was the same story at every church. He asked the men’s group to pray that God send him a wife.

      One guy said to him, “I don’t think God wants you to have a wife,” another one basically told the guy he was not worthy to have a spouse, or something, so he refused to pray for the guy. I cannot believe how cruel these people were.

      It costs you NOTHING to pray for another person, and you’re not a mind reader…you have no way of knowing if God wants that guy to have a wife or not, so why not pray and let God decide?

      About singles not being rewarded in any way for following the rules, oh yeah, I’ve noticed. The rule breakers get all the rewards.

      It seems like the more you sin, the more Christians want to shower you with grace, help, money, whatever.

      I’ve discussed this before in other blog posts, such as (I think I have more posts like this, these are the only ones I can recall off the top of my head),

      (Link): To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan

      (Link): Stop Rewarding People For Their Failure – Christians Speaking Out of Both Sides of Their Mouths About Sexual Sin – Choices and Actions and How You Teach This Stuff Has Consequences – Allowing Sinners To Re-Define Biblical Terms and Standards

      (Link): The Bible Says Christians are to Help Other Christians First (not sex trafficked people, not orphans in Africa, not homeless crack addicts, etc)

      Have you ever thought of making your own blog and writing about your perspective about these issues, and about how the church ignores or mistreats disabled individuals? (I mean, you’re welcome to keep posting here if you like, too.)

      You can make a blog for free, like mine here. It doesn’t have to be on Word Press, if you don’t like WP, there are other free blog providers.

      These days, a lot of people are leaving church, and they are searching the internet to look up topics like these.

      If you just make sure to put the right keywords into any posts you make, such as “disabled” or “wheelchair” or “churches ignore the disabled” in your posts, you would likely attract people in the same situation.

      I know when I researched the topic of single, celibate (Christian) adults online, I found next to nothing, which is one reason I started discussing it more on my blog. Not only is there a lack of material on the internet, but there are not many books on these subjects.

      Most of the books I have seen by Christians on singleness/celibacy are the super sugary, naive, “I’m sure you’ll get married one day” type of books (which are usually aimed at 20 year olds).

      The situation with books for Christian singles is similar to the few blogs that exist and which I wrote about here:
      (Link): The Cloying Annoying Nauseating G-Rated Wholesome Saccharin Sweet Tone of Articles by Christians For Christian Singles

      You said, “Whenever we express our desires we get shouted down or told to shut up and ” serve””

      Oh yeah, or concerns are regularly shouted down.

      That might be tolerable EXCEPT we (adult, single, celibates) are ignored or mistreated, but churches fall all over themselves to minister to MARRIED people, kids, and certain groups (like homeless people or orphans).

      It’s so infuriating and discourage to see Christians trip all over themselves to help homeless people out, or married couples, but then they refuse to help adult singles.

  2. Deer CP,
    Like most of your comments here. Love your blog, read it daily. So sick of the church treating older celibate singles like garbage.
    I was fortunate that I found your wonderful blog at a time in my life when I really needed it. I am a never married celibate male in my 50’s who ran a good business for many years. My only meaningful
    Long term dating experience was with someone who turned out to be a dangerous sociopath. By the way, I am also were you are spiritually too. I no longer believe things that I once did. However since I am a lifelong wheelchair user, I hope that does not make a weirdo in your book. ( It does however make it very hard to get dates – especially in churches. Today’s church hates the disabled almost as much as It hates singles. ) Sorry that I rambled on. Take care. Thanks for all that you do.

    1. Hi, mikewchair2165 .

      Thanks for your comments.

      I’m glad you’ve gotten something out of the blog. I’m sorry your ex was a sociopath.

      No, I don’t think being in a wheelchair makes a person a weirdo. I did read posts on another blog by a woman who uses a wheelchair who says many churches are pretty negligent about meeting the needs of such folks.

      I’m not sure how to explain where I am with the Christian faith.

      At the core, I still believe that Jesus died and rose again, and there is an afterlife (a Heaven), and Jesus is the only way to get there, but so much of the rest of the Christian faith, at least how it has been taught to me, doesn’t seem to work.

      I have no idea why, if God is real and does exist, why he doesn’t answer prayers, or not consistently, or not for everyone, for example.

      I’m also just seeing a lot of inconsistency from Christians on a lot of issues, and I see a lot of self professing Christians who do not even attempt to live by the teachings of Jesus. If people who claim the name of Christ are not even going to try to live what he taught, I’m not seeing the purpose in being a Christian.

      Anyway, I am glad you’ve found some kind of comfort from the blog, but I don’t have any answers. I just blog mostly for myself, to rant or vent about things, or to post topics I find interesting or relevant to the blog.

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