God’s Big Message at Christmas: You Are Not Alone, by Chris Field (Churches Need To Reach Out More to the Singles In Their Communities)

God’s Big Message at Christmas: You Are Not Alone, by Chris Field (Churches Need To Reach Out More to the Singles In Their Communities)

I have mixed feelings about posting a link to this (way below).

I know if you are literally alone – if you are a never married, divorced, or widowed adult, and you either don’t have children, or you are not on good terms with your biological family (or many of them are deceased or out of state), that it may be hard to feel positive about the message below.

Snowman
Snowman

I  know it can be difficult to hear Christians writing “you’re not alone, God is with you” if you are, as I said, literally, physically alone in your apartment or home.

It would be nice to have an actual, breathing human sitting across from you, rather than have to rest in the idea that there’s this God in Heaven who cares about you, and have to take that on faith.

I do think Christians (churches especially) need to step up to the plate more and make more of an effort to include those adults who live alone, who aren’t married, who don’t have a nuclear family of their own…

Rather than doing things like over-focusing on nuclear families, and closing churches down on Christmas Day (yes, some churches have been known to (Link):  withhold services on Christmas Day, because they assume every one is at home watching their biological child and spouse opening presents under the tree).

Never mind that some sites say that (Link): half or over half of the American population is now single – singles out-number married couples, and that stat won’t be changing any time soon, all the focus on Nuclear Families is excluding about half the American population.

So, what are you members of churches out there doing to reach out to the lonely and single in your areas?

Churches, you can stop it any time now with slobbering all over the married- with- children couples already. The “Nuclear Family” has received the “lion’s share” of affection and attention from churches and Christian culture for far too long now.

Time to start acknowledging the single and childless among you.

Churches have been losing in attendance in the last so many years – if they want to increase attendance, it might help if they start focusing on single adults.

(Link):  God’s Big Message at Christmas: You Are Not Alone, by Chris Field

Dec 25, 2021

Loneliness a terrible thing.

And as is often pointed out, at no time is loneliness more poignantly felt by scores of people than at Christmas.

If there’s an upside to the whole COVID fiasco, it’s that many of us had the opportunity last Christmas to experience a little bit of what that’s like. Millions of people had to stay separated from family — and we quickly realized that it’s not so great.

And it should have served as a wake-up call for those who call themselves followers of Jesus.

Continue reading “God’s Big Message at Christmas: You Are Not Alone, by Chris Field (Churches Need To Reach Out More to the Singles In Their Communities)”

Christmas Morning House Fire Leaves Father and Two Children Dead, Wife and Oldest Child Injured

Christmas Morning House Fire Leaves Father and Two Children Dead, Wife and Oldest Child Injured

My condolences to this family.

One reason I’m posting this is that it goes to show that even if you do marry (if you’re a single adult who’d like to marry), it’s still no guarantee that being married with children is a permanent passport to Happiness.

A lot of Christians (especially the Nuclear Family obsessed) and to a degree, Hollywood (at least until the last few years), have been conveying this message for years and years that you can only obtain happiness, purpose, meaning or identity if you marry (and have children).

But what if you marry, and your spouse turns out to be abusive, self absorbed, or he or she develops cancer, dementia, or dies in a car accident or by some other means?

I had wanted to be married (I’ve pretty much made peace with being single in the meantime), but then I see news stories like this, and I wouldn’t want to be in this woman’s place, of having to navigate the deaths of a spouse and children, and now she has to parent the one remaining child by herself.

You can get married but then have it taken away in the blink of an eye by a car accident, house fire, heart attack, or god knows what else. This doesn’t mean that I’m anti-marriage, but I do want to keep a realistic perspective of it.

Aw, I see in the news story that two family pets (dogs) also died because of this fire – usually animals and people die from smoke inhalation, or they pass out from that, so they’re not alive to feel the flames, at least.

At any rate, this woman managed to get married, but now her husband and some children are gone, due to this house fire. She is single again.

(Link): Christmas Morning House Fire Leaves Father and Two Children Dead, Wife and Oldest Child Injured

The mother and oldest child were able to escape the flames
By Andrew Mark Miller | Fox News
Dec 25, 2021

A Dad and two of his sons have died after a house fire tore through their home on Christmas morning.

Authorities say the fire started at the home of the King family at 1:22 am Saturday in Quakertown, Pennsylvania and killed Eric King and his two young sons, Liam and Patrick, according to Fox 29 Philadelphia.

Eric King’s wife Kristin and the couple’s oldest son Brady were able to escape the flames while the rest of the family was trapped inside.

Continue reading “Christmas Morning House Fire Leaves Father and Two Children Dead, Wife and Oldest Child Injured”

Fewer Americans See Their Romantic Partners As a Source of Life’s Meaning

Fewer Americans See Their Romantic Partners As a Source of Life’s Meaning

This doesn’t bother me, and it is as it should be.

There’s nothing wrong with marriage or wanting to be married, but, too often times, secular culture, many religions, and in particular, Christian gender complementarians, have made far too much out of marriage, to the degree all these groups make women who never marry, or who marry only past their mid-30s, or who are divorced, feel like they are big, worthless losers.

Some secular conservatives and Christians even run around on their podcasts, tweets, and blogs saying as such – that single or childless adults are selfish or losers.

Complementarians especially are pretty bad about this, because they tend to define “womanhood” as, and to tie a woman’s worth and purpose, to if she marries and has children .

While I am not a supporter of the far left’s anti-nuclear family views, I also don’t agree with how so many Christians have gone the opposite and equally damaging route by advising women that their value or identity resides only in being a wife and a mother – something the Bible does not teach, by the way, but actually says that being single is better than being married (see 1 Cor. 7).

Christians often seem to forget that Jesus of Nazareth never married and never had children – yet Christians shame or exclude adults today who don’t marry and/or who do not have children.

(Link):  Fewer Americans See Their Romantic Partners As a Source of Life’s Meaning

  • Pew research found 9% of Americans saw their partner as a source of meaning, down from 20% in 2017.
  • Dating during a pandemic is hard, and couples had to confront unhappy relationships in quarantine.
  • Paired with the declining birth rate, it seems Americans are finding fulfillment on their own terms.

Some people spend a lifetime looking for their soul mate. But more Americans are finding life’s meaning in other things.

A new report from Pew Research Center that surveyed more than 2,500 Americans found that 9% of respondents cited their spouse or romantic partner as a source of meaning in life.

That’s quite a drop from 2017, when 20% said the same.

Continue reading “Fewer Americans See Their Romantic Partners As a Source of Life’s Meaning”

The Hidden Costs of Living Alone

The Hidden Costs of Living Alone by Joe Pinsker

(Link): The Hidden Costs of Living Alone

In ways both large and small, American society still assumes that the default adult has a partner and that the default household contains multiple people.

By Joe Pinsker
October 20, 2021

If you were to look under the roofs of American homes at random, it wouldn’t take long to find someone who lives alone. By the Census Bureau’s latest count, there are about 36 million solo dwellers, and together they make up 28 percent of U.S. households.

Even though this percentage has been climbing steadily for decades, these people are still living in a society that is tilted against them. In the domains of work, housing, shopping, and health care, much of American life is a little—and in some cases, a lot—easier if you have a partner or live with family members or housemates. The number of people who are inconvenienced by that fact grows every year.

Continue reading “The Hidden Costs of Living Alone”

Fewer Americans Think Marriage is Needed To Create Strong Families, New Poll Suggest

Fewer Americans Think Marriage is Needed To Create Strong Families, New Poll Suggest

If you’re a Christian – you must recognize that 1 Cor 7 specifies that it is better to remain single than to marry, and no, that wasn’t merely a concession to a specific historical situation.

The Bible doesn’t teach that “marriage makes society better” or will repair a culture or nation. Christians who keep promoting that view are, from a theological perspective, in error.

As to the portions of this article where people interviewed claimed that marriage makes people happier (and I won’t be copying those portions to my post below) – wrong! That is a claim that’s been refuted before.

(Link): Fewer Americans Think Marriage is Needed To Create Strong Families, New Poll Suggest 

By Nicole Alcindor, CP Reporter

Higher percentages of Americans view marriage as being “old-fashioned” as just over half believe that marriage is needed to create strong families, according to an annual nationwide survey released on Tuesday.

Continue reading “Fewer Americans Think Marriage is Needed To Create Strong Families, New Poll Suggest”

Rise in Singles, Who Face Economic Costs, Worry Researchers

Rise in Singles, Who Face Economic Costs, Worry Researchers

(Link): Rise in Singles, Who Face Economic Costs, Worry Researchers

by Mike Schneider
Oct 5, 2021

…A new study from Pew Research Center released Tuesday underscores the economic advantages of being married, especially as the share of single people in the U.S. has grown over the past three decades.

The flip side, of course, is that it’s harder to be single, researchers say, since the unpartnered population earns less and has less education. Unpartnered men, in particular, are less likely to be employed.

The share of the U.S. population not living with a romantic partner during prime working years has grown from 29% to 38% from 1990 to 2019.

Continue reading “Rise in Singles, Who Face Economic Costs, Worry Researchers”

Twice-Divorced Lady Suggests That God Told Her He’d Send Her Husband Number Three and She Got Married a Third Time – I Actually Don’t Find This Story Uplifting

Twice-Divorced Lady Suggests That God Told Her He’d Send Her Husband Number Three and She Got Married a Third Time – I Actually Don’t Find This Story Uplifting

The woman who wrote this story for this publication (link is way, way below – she talks about having been twice divorced and was depending on God to send her spouse number three), seems like a genuinely wonderful person, and I am truly sorry she had a broken heart or two.

I am happy for her that her third marriage is working.

However… I stopped finding stories like this uplifting or inspirational years ago. I think they are untrue for most people. I think they’re misleading and give a sense of false hope to singles who’d like to marry.

Here is a link to the woman’s story, with a few excerpts, then I’ll say a few more words under it:

(Link): She Turned to God for Help Finding Mr. Right

After two failed marriages, this mother of two decided to have faith that He would bring her the right partner.

by 

[She opens her story by saying she was crying in her bathroom]

I held up my bare fin­ger, the one that had once boasted a gorgeous dia­mond ring. Divorced. For the second time. I was a woman of accomplish­ment, a school principal. Mother to two beautiful girls. Yet I was a magnet for men who were not what they seemed. Why couldn’t I get marriage right?

Continue reading “Twice-Divorced Lady Suggests That God Told Her He’d Send Her Husband Number Three and She Got Married a Third Time – I Actually Don’t Find This Story Uplifting”

Celebrating Milestones in the Lives of Single Adults – by Anna Broadway

Celebrating Milestones in the Lives of Single Adults – by Anna Broadway

A few years ago, I did a blog post or two with similar content – pointing out how churches keep on ignoring or minimizing singles by ignoring them and their accomplishments while forcing everyone to acknowledge (generally during Sunday morning church services) the milestones of married parents (e.g., announcing pregnancies, Mother’s Day celebrations, etc).

There’s nothing like that for single adults. And it’s tiresome when you’re a single.

It’s tiresome to walk into a church regularly and see the pastor or whomever in the church acknowledge marriages, new births, etc. (and this is usually done during church services where you’re part of a captive audience, and it’s done from the pulpit, so you don’t have a choice but to listen to it), but they never congratulate the adult singles in the adult singles’ lives for their milestones (e.g., gaining another college degree, buying a first home alone, getting a job promotion, etc).

Most churches unfairly only recognize marriages and “baby-making” – it’s absolutely infuriating.

(Link): It’s the Summer of Weddings. Here Are Other Milestones We Can Celebrate.

Excerpts:

by Anna Broadway
June 14, 2021

The church has a unique opportunity to recognize markers of spiritual growth in our communities.

…But watching the joyous announcements and photos of this season triggered an internal battle over my status as a single woman and my “success” in adult life. As I learned from (Link): 17 months of researching Christian singleness around the world, many cultures deem marriage a mark of maturity into adulthood, a view that too often sidelines single people.

The Bible takes a different view of maturity: one based on a relationship with Christ rather than with another person. The apostle Paul, for example, called believers to develop certain qualities rather than hit certain life markers. That ought to have significant implications for what and how we celebrate.

Continue reading “Celebrating Milestones in the Lives of Single Adults – by Anna Broadway”

Covid Singles Are Supposedly Lonely and Miserable. But Some Of Us Are Thriving Instead, by B. DePaulo

Covid Singles Are Supposedly Lonely and Miserable. But Some Of Us Are Thriving Instead, by B. DePaulo

(Link): Covid Singles Are Supposedly Lonely and Miserable. But Some Of us Are Thriving Instead, by B. DePaulo

Excerpts:

I’m single. I always have been. I also live alone. Because of the pandemic, I have not stepped foot in a restaurant or even a grocery store for nearly a year.

Apparently, I am supposed to be suffering. At the (Link): Washington Post, a story about the consequences of being “cooped up with our families for nearly a year” paraphrased an economist reassuring families that “the steepest consequences … will fall on the folks who are stuck at home alone.”

…I fully acknowledge that for some single people, the pandemic has been a miserable experience (as it also has for many couples and families).

But I am not one of them.

Continue reading “Covid Singles Are Supposedly Lonely and Miserable. But Some Of Us Are Thriving Instead, by B. DePaulo”

Married to the Job: How a Long-Hours Working Culture Keeps People Single and Lonely  by S. Jaffee

Married to the Job: How a Long-Hours Working Culture Keeps People Single and Lonely by S. Jaffee

The following was true even prior to the advent of smart phones and Covid. I had one full time job in the early 2000s where my commute was a 45 minute drive either way – by the time I got home from my job, I was exhausted.

I had no energy to put on a fresh coat of make-up and meet men to date them at local restaurants. I just wanted to get into my PJs, scrub off the make-up, watch two hours of TV, then go to sleep.

(Link): Married to the Job: how a Long-

Excerpts:

Demanding bosses, impossible workloads, 24/7 email – no wonder many employees feel they have no time outside work to find love

….But recently she [a never married woman named Laura Hancock] had a moment of realisation. “I can’t afford my rent, I have no savings, I have no partner, I have no family. I’m 38 and most of my friends have families; they’re buying houses,” she says. “There is a lot of grief around that. I feel like I’ve just landed on Earth, like a hard crash on to the ground, and am looking around and feeling quite lonely.”

Hancock is one of the many people in recent years to recognise that they have devoted themselves to their work and neglected everything else that might give their life meaning.

Continue reading “Married to the Job: How a Long-Hours Working Culture Keeps People Single and Lonely  by S. Jaffee”

Christian Singles Aren’t Waiting for Marriage to Become Parents by Kara Bettis

Christian Singles Aren’t Waiting for Marriage to Become Parent

The following was published by Christianity Today in March 2021, but it’s actually kind of old news; if one reads “Quitting Church” by Julia Duin, she already noted in that book that a lot of single Christian women who wanted to be mothers were turning to sperm banks and so on, because the Christian husband promised to them by Christians never appeared.

So these unmarried women decided to go ahead with motherhood alone. And that information was published in that “Quitting Church” book, which I believe was published around 2008?

Many Christian churches and denominations have a real problem with adult singles, in that they are not doing squat to help singles who’d like to marry to actually get married – all most Christians and churches do in this regard is offer platitudes, shaming, or patronizing advice that doesn’t work…

Or, many Christians love to COMPLAIN about singles being single – rather than, you know, actually DOING SOMETHING to fix the situation (for those that would like to be married, not all singles do).

(Link): Christian Singles Aren’t Waiting for Marriage to Become Parents

As more unmarried women and men foster and adopt, how can the church provide what some nontraditional families cannot?

Continue reading “Christian Singles Aren’t Waiting for Marriage to Become Parents by Kara Bettis”

Is There a Stigma to Being Single? by Wendy L. Patrick

Is There a Stigma to Being Single? by Wendy L. Patrick

(Link): Is There a Stigma to Being Single? by Wendy L. Patrick

Excerpts:

March 4, 2021

Even in modern times, singles are plagued by discrimination.

    • In many countries, there are now more singles than couples, but people continue to view marriage as a symbol of status and success.
    • Singles face discrimination, prejudice and financial challenges as they often earn less and pay more for social benefits, healthcare and income taxes, according to research. 
    • Many people enjoy being single, which has advantages, such as freeing up time for meaningful pursuits. 

….The Rise of Singleness

Alexandra N. Fisher and John K. Sakaluk (2020) note that within the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and many Scandinavian countries, there are more singles than couples (married or common-law). 

They view this as a trend attributable to the fact that people tend to date longer, marry later in life, divorce more frequently, and often value career over relationships. 

Continue reading “Is There a Stigma to Being Single? by Wendy L. Patrick”