Never-Married Adult Man Named Stephen Asks Christian Host Why God Has Not Answered His 3-Decades Long Prayers To Send Him A Wife
On the November 2, 2018 episode of “The 700 Club,” some guy named Stephen wrote in with a question about singleness and marriage, and host Gordon Robertson answered it.
I will discuss the letter from Stephen more below.
First, I wanted to say…
Within the past 2 – 3 weeks, 700 Club has been running more than their usual number of questions from viewers about singleness and asking why hasn’t God sent them a spouse, such as this one:
I have watched this 700 Club show daily since around 2005, and sporadically prior to that, for years (my mother used to watch this show when I was a kid in the 1970s, so I’ve seen plenty of it).
Well, in most episodes, 700 Club rarely, rarely addresses adult singleness. They mostly feature married couples who are having affairs or financial problems.
They rarely address singleness, unless they have a 30- or 40 -something female co-host who is single.
Back when Wendy was single, she would have the show periodically do series on adult singleness. When Kristi Watts was a co-host, she was single (she had been divorced for years after her spouse left her), and she would have the show occasionally do segments on adult singleness.
If not for those adult singles, I have the feeling 700 Club would never, ever address the issue.
So, I’m not sure why 700 Club is now airing more and more of these questions from single adults asking why God has not sent them a spouse, or other single-adult related concerns. I guess it’s good they are addressing this, though, since most Christian churches and TV shows ignore singles and the declining marriage rate.
Today, Gordon Robertson, who is the sometime- host of this show (it’s usually hosted by his father Pat) fielded a question from (if I recall correctly) an older, never married man who was asking something like this:
“I’ve been praying and asking God to send me a wife for over two decades, but God has not sent me a wife. Why not?”
I take it that this guy must be in his 40s or 50s, based on the things he said in his question.
I have re-watched the video. Here is a transcript of the single guy’s letter:
(Dear 700 Club),
What do you do when it is obvious God is not answering your prayers? I am not sinning in any area as far as I know.
Yet for 11 years I have been praying for a specific healing.
Also, for over 30 years I have been praying and begging God for a wife, but I have received nothing but rejection from Christian women.
I have applied (Link): Matthew 6:33 the best I can, but year after year goes by with no changes in these circumstances.
In my opinion, (from what I remember of it) Gordon’s answer to the guy was not the greatest, and it was rather rote.
Gordon just essentially told the guy that so long as you’re single, “be the best version of you that you can be.”
Here is my advice for men like Stephen:
Stephen, first all all, I can relate to you though I’m a woman and not a man. I’m in the same position as you are.
I prayed to God for a spouse since I was age 11 (my church and my mom told me it was never too young to start petitioning God on that score), but I’m over 45 years of age now and am still single.
(I was engaged to a man while in my early 30s but had to break things off with him.)
I’ve found that most Christians (especially the ones who are already married) are incredibly ignorant and insensitive about what life is like for someone who is over age 30, wants marriage, but marriage did not happen (or has not happened yet) for that person.
Christians will often give single adults in our position cliches, platitudes, or shaming.
As I said in the last post or two on this blog, and what I’ve been saying on this blog for years now, if you are a single, adult Christian who desires marriage, you must consider doing the following:
- (this is especially true if you are a woman single, because Christian single women out-number single male Christians):
Ditch and reject the “Equally Yoked” teaching and be willing to marry a Non-Christian
- Stop praying and being passive about getting a spouse and, I’m sad to say (I don’t like this either, but I think it’s reality), start treating getting married like getting a job. What I mean by that is…
Start actively trying to make marriage happen by your own power and ability: stop waiting for marriage to “just happen” to you by accident, by luck, or by supernatural means.
Start pounding the pavement, “applying” for a spouse – ask friends to set you up, join and try dating sites (though don’t expect miracles via dating sites).
Get out of your house, socialize more, get out and meet more people, be willing to face more rejection by continuing to approach single women, flirting with them, and asking them on dates – do not expect God to send you a spouse, no matter how good and godly you are, no matter how much you pray.
I’m over age 45, under the age of 50, never married, had always wanted to be married, was a devout Christian from child-hood up until around my mid-40s (I’m somewhat deist now), prayed for years for God to send me a spouse, lived a squeaky clean life style (still do live a clean life style) – but God never sent me a spouse.
(I was brought up in Southern Baptists churches as a kid, teen, and young adult, and the failed, miserable, unrealistic teaching I got growing up on these matters is that no effort, or next to no effort, was required to get a husband:
I was taught that I should just pray about it, work on myself, be the best version of me I could be, trust God, and in due time, “Mr Right” would show up in my life.
Well, that approach DID NOT WORK. I also tried dating sites in my mid-to-late-30s, that did not work, either).
I exercise five days a week, eat only 1,200 calories per day, am height-weight proportionate (not a “fatty”), I am college-educated, I wear make-up regularly (even a little around the house), have been told through the years by various people that I look like a “brunette Marilyn Monroe,” and I am a pleasant person (yes, at times I go on rants on this blog, but I’m actually quite nice in person, this blog is my outlet to get my gripes out) – yet I’m still single.
I’m not saying I am perfect, because I have flaws and vulnerabilities like any person, but I don’t think my particular variety of short-comings (such as having an anxiety disorder, for example) makes me an unappealing marital candidate.
My take-away as a never-married, age late-40s woman, is that the usual dating advice doled out by Christians simply does not work.
If you want to get married, Stephen (and to men and women like Stephen out there), you’re going to have to work on it, and not depend on God, church, or Christians to help out.
The only help you should expect to get from Christians is to approach Christian friends one on one, privately, and ask them, “Look, I’d like to marry but dating sites haven’t worked, and singles mixers at the local church haven’t worked. Can you please fix me up with any eligible single adults you know?”
Other than that, I’d not expect Christians to assist you with the singleness issue.
Most Christians are more likely to shame and scold you for “not being content in your singleness,” or for not fully trusting on God to send you a spouse, etc.
(Some Christians think it’s a sign of weakness or sin to use dating web sites, for examples – while yet other Christians – usually married ones – act as though dating sites are a guarantee to get you a spouse – but they are not a guarantee).
The Possible Reasons For Your Prolonged Single Status
I hate to sound victim-blaming here (see more below), but.
I’m in the middle on this – usually, people will tell you that you’re still single because – and they will then fill in the blank with some victim blaming suggestions, like – you must be too fat, and that’s why you’re still single, or, you’re too ugly, you’re too X, or you’re not enough Z, and that is why you’re still single.
The reality is, you can be a smart, great, wonderful, kind person – even with a steady job, great sense of humor and other great qualities – and yet still remain single.
I’ve done posts before on this blog in years past about Hollywood celebrities who have admitted they are single, lonely, and would like to get married, but they cannot seem to meet anyone.
And this is coming from people, these famous people, who our culture tells us should have a million suitors chasing them down for dates or marriage proposals: these are sexy, thin, fun, nice, wealthy, famous movie actors and rock stars.
But yet, even these celebrities say that dating is hell, and they cannot seem to find “The One.”
So, just because you’re single, or have never married by age 35, 45, or older, does not necessarily mean that you’re horrible, ugly, fat, dumb, or what have you.
You may be a perfectly lovely person on the inside and out but there are just no singles in your area who you hit it off with. It’s a situation beyond your control.
On the other hand…
I have come across single adults in person or online who might be single because they are lacking, or possess some unattractive qualities that are turn-offs to other singles.
I once had an online friend (who is about 6 or 7 years younger than me) who admitted to me privately in an e-mail that she was about 5 foot 4 inches tall and weighed around 250 pounds.
She told me she was lonely and would dearly love to have a boyfriend, but she was aware of the fact that most men would not want to date an over-weight lady.
(Pause here: this woman’s biggest problem was not her weight, so far as I could tell, but her temper, her self absorbed nature, and constant foul moods and her hostility.
I was a good friend to this woman for years online, supported her over her years of perpetual crisis, but she treated me like garbage in return.
Her excess weight was only part of her problem. I ended up de-friending her, or she me, around January 2015.)
Several years ago, when I was in my late 30s, I went to an adult singles class at a local Baptist church.
There were about ten adults in the class, mostly men, some women.
None of the men were physically appealing. One guy in particular was obese, had big, frizzy hair and a big frizzy mustache.
I am somewhat shallow in that physical looks in a man are important to me. I do not want to date baldies or men with facial hair or men with big, frizzy hair.
This guy in the class also behaved in an odd manner… he would laugh aloud at times during the class, even when nobody said anything or what they did say was not funny.
Anyway. This may be something only you can assess about yourself, and you have to be honest.
There might be some women out there who would be fine with dating a bald dude, or a fat one, but most women, the reality is, want “Mr. Tall Dark And Handsome” who has a full head of hair.
So be honest with yourself.
If your two front teeth are knocked out, make a dental appointment and take care of that – you may increase your odds of getting dates.
If you are over-weight, jog five days a week (that’s what I do to keep my weight down, plus, it just puts me in a good mood).
Shower every day, and brush your teeth often – women don’t like bad body odor or bad breath, but a lot of men will actually skip hygiene.
You think because you don’t smell your stink that others cannot, but we can.
But as it turns out, women are much better at keeping up good dental hygiene than men — and they’ve noticed.
While studies say men are less likely to get regular dental exams, anecdotal evidence from advice columns, Reddit, and a new piece on GQ.com indicate that many men also don’t brush their teeth twice daily, with some even going multiple days without seeing a tube of toothpaste.
If you act weird, stop acting weird. Don’t sit there and just laugh aloud for no apparent reason in a Sunday school class filled with women, like that one fat guy did in that class I was in. it made him seem like he was a crack pot, and I do not date Crazy.
If you’re a man on a dating site, don’t put off-color, vulgar or any sex related content on your dating profile, and don’t mention anything about sex on your profile, or any where at any point in the early stages of getting to know a woman.
The sex stuff turns off most women.
We women don’t want or need to hear that you really really want sex, like sex.
We don’t need to read or hear about your sex fetishes and your sex preferences.
We don’t need to hear or read, for example, that your favorite sex act is a woman giving you a “rim job,” or whatever perverted sex trash you are into.
The vast majority of women want to date gentlemen.
Gentlemen do not discuss sex with us women on the phone, on dating profiles, e-mails or on dates.
The few number of trashy women who are into kinky sex acts and casual sex are on other, sex-related sites for that purpose, like adultery site “Ashley Madison.”
If you are on Match’s site, or eHarmony type dating sites (mainstream sites), refrain from sex talk. Just don’t do it.
(As for me personally, men, I don’t give a flaming rat’s ass in Hell that you are horny, prefer blow jobs, and want sex ten times a day. I don’t care about your wants and needs.)
So, just leave all the sex garbage off your dating profile, and don’t bring up sex stuff when you’re dating a woman.
(About the only time it would be acceptable for you, a man, to bring up sex stuff is if you’ve been dating the woman for a good long time and maybe you’ve already had sex with her, and at that point, it would be okay to bring up the topic of “can we have sex more often” or whatever. Outside of that, no.)
If you’re a man who is socially awkward, fat, weird, smelly (you don’t bathe enough), bald, flabby, or if you bring up sex talk early, or, if you are self absorbed, those may be some of the reasons you’re not getting dates with women – even Christian women.
Christian women, just like their secular counter-parts, also want to date and marry Mr. Handsome who is charming, smart, caring, funny, and who has a six figure income.
The church has sold you Christian men a snow job that all godly Christian women want in a husband is a daily- Bible- reading Do-Gooder who loves Jesus, which is wrong.
If all you have to bring to the table in a relationship is that you love Jesus and go to church once a week – but – you are also selfish, self-absorbed, weird, bald, fat, your teeth are all grey or missing and/or you’re socially weird – you’re likely to remain single.
Ditto for single Christian women: most single dudes aren’t going to want to marry a Bible reading, Jesus loving woman – who is also – bald, has grey teeth, and/or who is socially weird and/or who weighs 300 pounds.
Most of these men want to marry a woman who is physically attractive, smart, and capable.
I have come across the occasional adult single who wants a spouse, complains about not being able to get one, and sometimes their prolonged singleness appears to be due to the fact they have some kind of flaw they can address and fix, but they remain oblivious to those flaws, so it never gets fixed, and so they continue repelling the opposite sex.
I’ve also seen a sub-category of single Christian who KNOWS what their problem is, but they refuse to address it:
I’ve seen single Christian women in forums for singles admit they are 200 pounds over-weight, but, they whine and complain, it’s so unfair, shallow, and mean that single Christian men won’t date them.
Their attitude is, you men should look past their 50+ pounds of fat and look at the goodness of their hearts and choose to date them anyhow.
Do I think men, even Christian men, are often too nit-picky in women’s physical appearance? Yes. I think men need to lower their level of expectations in this area, especially since so many of you men who want to marry a hottie are yourself ugly as mud.
Having said that, though, I don’t think it’s altogether unfair or unreasonable for a man (or a woman) to want to marry someone who is at least average-looking, and somewhat thin.
You don’t have to look like a smokin’ hot, sexy, super model to get a partner, but for women (and men) who are 40, 50 or more pounds overweight: it’s mostly a no-go.
The reality is, you’re not likely to get spouse in that shape. You cannot honestly expect a person to look past the extra pounds to see your Jesus-loving, Bible reading heart and settle for your swell personality.
People looking past the weight to see the heart, and only caring about the heart, doesn’t happen often, outside of the few wacko marriages I’ve seen on the reality show “My 600 LB Life.”
Usually, the types of thin people who marry the obese are either, to put this as kindly as I can (based on what I’ve seen on this television show), are mentally challenged, or, they are highly codependent. (They usually (Link): don’t make healthy spouses.)
So, only you can really ascertain if you are still single because you’re over-weight, odd-looking, bald, not trying hard enough (you need to get out of the house more, stop expecting God to fix you up with a spouse), and only you can ascertain if you have an off-putting personality, or if your hygiene is poor and turning people off.
Or maybe, you look and smell okay, you have okay social skills, but there just aren’t many singles in your area.
There aren’t always easy answers on this.
I do think it’s a crock and false advertising that many Christians, and the Bible, tells Christians to pray to God for all their needs, trust in God, and God will send them a spouse, if they are praying for one – because that is not most people’s experience.
A lot of single adults have tried the “trust in the Lord for a spouse” approach and are still single in their 30s and older. Obviously, the “pray and wait” tactic isn’t working.
Too bad the internet was not around in the 1980s, so I could’ve seen posts like this one and begun to take action in my teen and 20 something years.
You can probably watch Gordon’s reply to the letter here, in (Link): this video on You Tube (it’s in the last 5 – 10 minutes of the show):
(Link): What Two Religions Tell Us About the Modern Dating Crisis (from TIME) (ie, Why Are Conservative Religious Women Not Marrying Even Though They Want to Be Married. Hint: It’s a Demographics Issue)
(Link): Single and 40: Dealing with Disappointment by L. Bishop