700 Club’s Christian Host Pat Robertson Says that Singleness Is Terrible, Marriage Superior, and Singles Will End Up Miserable – Segment Also Supported Other Myths of Singleness Vs Marriage

700 Club’s Christian Host Pat Robertson Says that Singleness Is Terrible, Marriage Superior, and Singles Will End Up Miserable – Segment Also Supported Other Myths of Singleness Vs Marriage

In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul wrote that it is better to stay single than it is to marry. Jesus Christ himself never married.

The Bible does not extol marriage or pro-creation above singleness and being childless or child-free.

In spite of all that, today’s (December 20, 2016) episode of the Christian show The 700 Club, host Pat Robertson spoke poorly of singleness and said marriage is preferable or better than singleness.

On today’s episode of the Christian show The 700 Club, there was a segment about how millennials are reluctant to get married.

The show interviewed a few millennials, who are conservative Christians, about marriage.

One of these young ladies interviewed said, “It’s [marriage] is the most important thing.”

I would assume that young woman probably wants to marry some day. So did I when I was her age, but it never happened.

I am now in my 40s and have never married because the right guy never came into my life. I am single against my will, not because I choose to be.

Just because you want to be married does not mean you will marry. This is one fact these early-marriage advocates and other marriage-promoters never consider.

By the way, no-where does the Bible say that “marriage is the most important thing [in life].” I have no idea where that woman is getting that notion from, unless it’s being shoved down her throat by her conservative Christian church.

After the interview clips were shown, host Pat Robertson opined about how great marriage is, and in the process, he ran down singleness and singles.

Continue reading “700 Club’s Christian Host Pat Robertson Says that Singleness Is Terrible, Marriage Superior, and Singles Will End Up Miserable – Segment Also Supported Other Myths of Singleness Vs Marriage”

Memes Against Marriage Pressure – A Group of Single Adults That Also Supports Celibacy

Memes Against Marriage Pressure – A Group of Single Adults That Also Supports Celibacy

(Link):  Memes Against Marriage Pressure

  • By Christine Franciska
  • BBC Indonesian Service
  • Marriage is seen as inevitable in Indonesian culture, with friends and family often putting pressure on young people to find a partner and settle down.
  • But one group of young people is fighting back, using social media to celebrate singlehood with laughter.
  • Jakarta Lonely Council (or Dewan Kesepian Jakarta) – a play on the name of a well-known independent art body Jakarta Art Council – has become a kind of Facebook haven for single people.
  • The group’s most popular posts are when they alter quotes from famous and prominent people to make memes related to single status, loneliness, and the feeling of longing for your ex.
  • “The compulsion of dating on Saturday night is a bourgeois conspiracy,” says one post. Another declares 14 February as Single Pride Day with the phrase: “Single, but proud.”
  • ‘Celibate for purpose’
  • One of the founders said the page was created two years ago for fun, because the members love making memes and wanted to laugh themselves.
  • “When we created the page, most of us were single. But now, one of us got married. How cruel is that?” said one of Jakarta Lonely Council’s initiator, who wanted to keep their identity anonymous.
  • The creators, mostly young people, come from different professions; one is a researcher, a writer, and a lecturer. They use “celibate for purpose” in many posts, to emphasise that being alone or single is a choice and there is nothing wrong with it.
  • Continue reading “Memes Against Marriage Pressure – A Group of Single Adults That Also Supports Celibacy”

    Salvation Army Bans Duggar / Quivering Cult’s ‘Retreat’ (Called ‘Get Them Married’) that Promoted Arranged Marriages for Teen Girls – Quivering Advocates Are Anti-Adult Singleness and Anti-Celibacy

    Salvation Army Bans Duggar / Quivering Cult’s ‘Retreat’ (Called ‘Get Them Married’) that Promoted Arranged Marriages for Teen Girls – Quivering Advocates Are Anti-Adult Singleness and Anti-Celibacy 

    Before I present you with the links to the news reports about this story (which are much farther down the page), I wanted to make some introductory comments in general, and a few specific comments refuting a few points from a pro-Quivering page about celibacy.

    In regards to the specific news story I am blogging about today, this Quivering group is completely overlooking Apostle Paul’s comments in (Link): 1 Corinthians 7 that it is better for people to remain single than it is to marry – and Paul does not say that this teaching is in regards only to “a few,” or only a “minority” of people.

    The Bible nowhere states that marriage is “a norm,” or that God expects or wants all, or most, people to marry.

    It just so happens that in other cultures thousands of years ago, most people did happen to marry – one should not deduce from this cultural situation that God supported it or wanted it to be so. It just was what it was.

    If the Bible said that all or most ancient Jews painted their bodies green once a year and balanced weasels on their heads while jumping up and down on a watermelon one week out of a year, one should not assume from this that

    • 1. God created that cultural practice and/or that
    • 2. God wanted Americans in the year 2016 to practice these things as well.

    The Quivering group’s position on marriage, celibacy, and singleness is unbiblical, not to mention disturbing.

    According to this article (linked to much farther below), the Quivering group was going to call this event, (where they set up marriages for little girls to marry), “Get Them Married.”

    Why not have an event called, per 1 Corinthians 7, “It Is Better To Stay Unmarried”?

    Am I opposed to marriage? No.

    Is the God of the Bible against marriage? No.

    But the Bible does not say that being married is better or more holy for girls, women, or culture, than being single, but a lot of Christian groups, and these wacky Christian cults, insist otherwise.

    Christians need to do a better job of recognizing adult singleness and celibacy as legitimate, godly, biblical lifestyles and choices for all persons (and not only meant for a small minority of people who were supposedly “gifted” with it), instead of promoting marriage and natalism as the only legitimate avenues or as ways of fixing culture, the nation, or as pleasing God.

    Continue reading “Salvation Army Bans Duggar / Quivering Cult’s ‘Retreat’ (Called ‘Get Them Married’) that Promoted Arranged Marriages for Teen Girls – Quivering Advocates Are Anti-Adult Singleness and Anti-Celibacy”

    The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans

    The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans

    I think conservative writer Ann Coulter’s editorial about Christians who shuffle off to assist ebola patients in Africa – which got her all sorts of vitriol by both left and right wingers, Christians and Non Christians – has been proven right.

    I first wrote about that in another post or two:

    (Link): Ann Coulter’s Article Hits Home — Literally, by S. Harris – And: further thoughts on U.S. Christian Priorities and Reverse Racism

    (Link): Strawman Argument: “You’re Creating a False Dichotomy” – No, I’m Not (Re: Coulter editorial and U.S. Christians aiding foreigners)

    After American, caucasian movie actor Robin Williams died from suicide a few days ago, on the one hand, there was, yes, a lot of sympathy and sadness expressed for him and his family online in the days that followed, as it should be.

    But there were also some very insulting, unsympathetic views published, and at that, based on William’s skin color or his mental health problems, not only by guys like Bill McNorris and Christian Matt Walsh, but by atheist writer P Z Myers.

    As far as I can tell, the Bible does not adhere to the concept of “privilege” as believed by liberals. The American progressives harping on “privilege” causes them to refuse to show care and concern for the groups they believe to be in power.

    Jesus Christ taught that people’s sins comes from their hearts (from within), not from their environment, and he did not endorse the view that because you or your group has been systematically mistreated or oppressed at the hands of another group, that this excuses your sin, or makes it acceptable for you to hate your oppressor, or for you to refuse to show compassion to that group.

    In Jesus’ day, ancient Israel was ruled first and foremost by the ancient Romans, and on a lesser level, by the religious ruling class (the priests and Pharisees).

    A lot of American liberals will say it’s impossible for an American woman to be considered sexist, or for female dislike of men to be considered sexist, because men in American society hold all the power. They will say that because whites held all the power in the USA, that one cannot consider a black person’s prejudices against whites a form of racism.

    Then we also get into the identity politics and hate crime laws, where liberals believe that someone should receive a harsher, or specific charge of hate, for, say, mugging someone in a certain group that they consider unprivileged.

    For example, a crime that is motivated by hatred of skin color, where a white guy punches a black guy in the face, is supposed to be worse than, say, a white guy punching another white guy. A guy murdering someone who happens to be homosexual is supposed to be a hate crime, but the same act is not considered a hate crime if a homosexual or heterosexual murders a heterosexual guy.

    I have never understood these positions, because, for one reason of a few, it doesn’t square with the Bible.

    Jesus never once taught the Jews of his day that it’s okay for them to hate the Romans, nor did he excuse their dislike of the Romans, on the premise that the Romans held all the “privilege” or “power.”

    Continue reading “The Marginalization of the Average Joe and Practice of Selective Compassion by Christian and Secular Americans”

    Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

    Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

    Don’t Let Someone Who Gave Up On Their Dreams Talk You Out Of Yours

    In a couple of posts in the past (such as (Link): this one), I discussed the disheartening trend I see in Christian books, articles, interviews, or blogs by (1.) other never-married adult Christians who are over age of 35 or 40 (or, (2.) on occasion by married Christians who condescendingly lecture adult singles on these issues).

    These (I am speaking of group 1 above) are adults who had hoped to marry, but they remain single into their late 30s or beyond.

    (There is also another group, Christians who are over 40 years of age, who are thrilled and totally at peace at having never married and never really cared either way if they ever married or not. They are guilty of what I write about in this post, too.

    Hell, I sometimes see single Christians below the age of 35 who are guilty of this, but their views stem more from being naive about life.)

    The never-married Christians, who are past the age of 35 or 40, who have given up on ever getting married themselves then turn around in their interviews, articles, and books and shame other post-age-35 singles from pursuing marriage.

    I kid you not. They will guilt trip you if you still hope to marry some day, and you are past 35 years old.

    They have given up hope of ever getting married themselves, so they go about trying to convince other singles to give up, too. They will try to shame you out of pursuing your dream. They will tell you that at 40, you are too old to be on dating sites and still expecting marriage.

    They believe you should only think of “eternity,” or, they will argue, you should be consumed in this life only with thoughts about Jesus or with how to serve Jesus in the here and now.

    They will shame you by telling you that it’s selfish, immature, un-christian, or self-centered (or a combination of all those things) to go after an earthly pursuit such as marriage, even though Jesus did not preach a “pie in the sky” theology, but said he came so that you may have life more abundantly – that means NOW, not after you’re dead.

    Many Christians believe in a theology of CODEPENDENCY and ASCETICISM, both of which are condemned in the Bible (see for example Colossians 2:16-22). It is okay to seek after your own personal happiness in the here and now. People who tell you otherwise are peddling false doctrine.

    Don't Give Up On Your Dreams
    Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

    If you are over 35, have never been married, and would still like to be, don’t let anyone else dissuade you from pursuing marriage, especially the ones who once held the dream but have given up.
    ———————-
    Related posts:

    (Link): Radical Christianity – New Trend That Guilt Trips American Christians For Living Average Lives

    (Link): Christian Singles Never Marrieds – it’s okay to get your needs met

    (Link): Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

    (Link): Singleness is Not A Gift

    (Link): Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?

    (Link): Gift of Singleness Gift of Celibacy Unbiblical – Those Terms and Teachings Contribute to Fornication / Editorial About Sex Surrogates

    This applies to marriage, too:
    (Link): Hypocrisy in Christian Culture – Those who idolize parenting chide infertiles for trying to have kids
    ———————————-

    Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke – An Essay that Hits and Misses

    Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke

    I offer this link with a caveat or four.

    Before I get to the link itself, here are a few of my problems with it (with additional critique below the link and excerpts from it).

    This essay comes from a site sponsored by a bunch of people, “The Gospel Coalition,” a phrase which sounds so darn “biblical,” but I sharply disagree with them (not all their views are ‘biblical’).

    The Gospel Coalition is comprised, for example, of Neo Calvinists (or they support Neo Cal preachers and doctrine; I am not sure if every last writer at their site is a Neo Cal).

    Further, they are gender complementarian (also known as “biblical womanhood and biblical manhood.” As taught by these people, their views of gender roles are not biblical.

    If you’d like to see a contrary conservative, biblical Christian view about gender and gender roles, please read the material at (Link): Christians For Biblical Equality.)

    There are some aspects of this writing that seem to be an even-handed essay telling Christians to be careful about not making too much out of “family” and “marriage” to the point either or both become idols, but there are still one or two aspects of this that I still disagree with and will comment on that below the long excerpt.

    (Link): Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke

    Starke begins his editorial discussing how marriage today is in trouble, divorce is on the rise, and so on.

    Excerpts:

      by J Starke

      …. But with every response [by Christians to issues in secular culture such as rising divorce rates], there’s always the danger of over-correction.

      It’s not that I think some evangelicals have become too conservative or too traditional. I worry that they’ve simply adopted traditional cultural and societal norms, instead of biblical norms.

      Zechariah

      … The two birth announcements in the Gospel of Luke to Zechariah and Mary reveal how a society’s “traditional” family values may not line up with God’s.

      Zechariah, the priest married to a barren woman, and Mary both heard miraculous announcements about impending childbirth.

      Yet while Zechariah responded with skepticism and doubt, Mary responded with faith and wonder.

      So why would Zechariah, a priest, doubt an angel of the Lord? He knew the story of Abraham and Sarah, so the idea of an older, barren woman giving birth wouldn’t be ridiculous to him.

      But consider Zechariah and Elizabeth’s situation. Some of you may know the pain of not being able to have children.

      It’s the feeling of 10, 20, even 30 years deeply desiring children with hopes unfulfilled.

      Zechariah and Elizabeth also suffered shame. Luke 1:24-25 reveals Elizabeth’s heart. She said, “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”

      By reproach she meant the shame that comes from known barrenness. Maybe some of you have experienced this reproach from more conservative societies, where family is held in such a high regard.

      If you’re nearing your 40s with no children and maybe not even married, you start to receive questions like, “When are you going to get yourself a husband?” “When are we going to start seeing some little ones around here?” You hear the whispers. Every baby shower brings guilt and shame.

      Zechariah and Elizabeth also dealt with questions about whether they did something wrong to deserve barrenness.

      Was there some hidden sin? Worse, Zechariah was a religious leader, a priest!

      Can you imagine how this public shame undermined his position, his authority?

      So for Zechariah, pain and sorrow turned to shame and disgrace. He held on tightly to the cultural idol of family. This idol filled his heart so that there was no room for the truth of God’s promise, even if he heard it from an angel. The good news of a coming son did not inspire joy but unbelief. It’s too late. We’re too old.

      … But there’s another wrong view. A society can make the family the most important thing. It can become an idol, something that fundamentally defines us. We regard anyone who never marries or cannot have children as somehow subhuman. They must have done something wrong to upset God.

      …By contrast, the Bible actually teaches a radically subversive message about the family. God, we often discover, is the cause of barrenness in women.

      Stories of family dynamics rarely flatter. You’ll never find a Leave it to Beaver household in the Bible. Rather, we see constant distress, rivalry, and jealousy.

      Usually this dynamic doesn’t result from undervaluing children. No, we see it when children become the most important thing! Not only that, Jesus also has some deeply alarming things to say about the family, sounding almost cold and uncaring—see Mark 3:31-35 and Luke 14:26.

      And finally, it’s difficult to make family the most central thing for Christians when the two most prominent figures in the New Testament, Jesus and the apostle Paul, were both single. Actually, Christianity made singleness a legitimate way of life for the first time in any culture or religion.

      Christ and the Church

      Before you thumb your noses at traditional values on marriage and family, remember this: When God wanted to paint a picture of his great love for he church and cost of his death, he cited marriage between a husband and wife. God in Jesus Christ is the faithful and sacrificial husband for his bride, the church.

      ….While the family cannot be so important that it invades the space in our heart that only God should occupy, we see that even from Creation, God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society. Zechariah, however, warns us not to make family the ultimate thing. He turned it into a false god, leaving no room for the truth of the real God.

      … But their [Christians’] convictions should come from the Bible, not simply the norms of traditional societies.

    I commend this author for pointing out that some Christians have turned marriage and family into idols, but I feel he gets a few things wrong and makes a few comments that are insensitive to certain types of people.

    Here are some additional problems I have with this paper, as outlined below.

    Starke starts out sounding sympathetic to barren or single adults who desire marriage and/or children. Starke writes,

      ..Zechariah and Elizabeth also dealt with questions about whether they did something wrong to deserve barrenness.

      Was there some hidden sin? Worse, Zechariah was a religious leader, a priest! Can you imagine how this public shame undermined his position, his authority?

    I don’t recall the Bible explicitly saying that this couple was shamed and blamed for being without children, but Starke assumes this was so.

    If we grant Starke that point:

    When I first read this essay, I assumed Starke “felt” for Zack and Liz (Zechariah and Elizabeth) and how terrible it must have been for this couple to have supposedly been shamed or insulted over their childlessness.

    Instead of rebuking the judgmental pro-family types for shaming “Zack and Liz” for being without children, which is what Starke should be doing, Starke instead shames and blames Zack and Liz themselves for supposedly having had made “the family” into an idol (though the biblical text does not say this).

    I have more to say about this below this next excerpt.

    Starke wrote:

      So for Zechariah, pain and sorrow turned to shame and disgrace. He held on tightly to the cultural idol of family. This idol filled his heart so that there was no room for the truth of God’s promise, even if he heard it from an angel.

    There is nothing wrong with Zechariah, or with anyone, wanting to have a spouse or a child.

    Simply wanting or desiring something that the Bible does not condemn does not mean one is idolizing it, yet Christians constantly make this leap.

    I find this attitude by Stark fairly insensitive.

    I have observed for many years now that among Christians who idolize marriage and family, it is made an idol by those who are already married, who are already parents, who tell the never-married and the infertile they are not as good, godly, mature, and worthy as marrieds and parents (hence my one stop threads on (Link): marriage and (Link): parenthood).

    It’s the already married and those who are already parents who have turned marriage and parenthood into idols, not the childless and not the singles.

    How cruel it is when the majority of Christian culture sets both things up -marriage and parenthood- as idols to be prized and then shames, rebukes, or blames an unmarried person for wanting a spouse, for seeking a spouse, or for an infertile couple to seek medical care to become pregnant.

    Christian singles are told by Christians that they are not as mature, godly, or responsible as married couples are, but if they still desire marriage or attempt to get married – by using dating sites, for example – they are told they are “idolizing” marriage.

    It’s a highly hypocritical move that Christians foist on other Christians, but they do it constantly.

    I’ve written of it before in pages such as:

    When Starke advises Christians not to turn marriage and family into idols, who exactly is he warning?

    Because it sounds to me as though Starke is, in this essay, further shaming and blaming singles or infertiles who hanker after spouse and children, when he should be solely directing his criticisms at the overall Christian culture, which is maintained and controlled by people who are, 99% of the time, married with children.

    Most churches will not even consider permitting un-married adults into positions of leadership, teaching, or preaching. Churches are heavily biased against singles and childless individuals or couples.

    Singles should not be shamed for wanting or seeking marriage, and childless people should not be shamed for seeking to have children, especially not in a culture, Christian culture, that keeps cramming the idea down everyone’s throats that marriage and parenthood are more “godly” than singlehood or the state of childlessness, and how marriage and family is so important and fundamental for American society.

    Wanting to be married is not “idolatry.” I have discussed that in a few posts before, such as in one by Mark Driscoll (I believe it was this post, (Link): More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll (“Two Mistakes Singles Make”), or, it may have been in this post: (Link): Mark Driscoll on Single Christian Women Who Desire Marriage – the positives and negatives of his piece ), and this one:

    It also seems to me that the author dances around the stereotype that singles who hate being single and long for marriage are “bitter” which in turn is a component of “singles shaming.”

    I’d say most of us older singles are not “bitter” about it, but have either come to terms with it, or feel sad about it at times, or both.

    You can largely come to accept your single status but occasionally feel sad about it.

    You can also point out how wrong Christians are to idolize marriage and treat adult singles like trash, but that does not make one “bitter” – it’s offering a much needed critique of Christian culture.

    (Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re SingleStarke writes,

      While the family cannot be so important that it invades the space in our heart that only God should occupy, we see that even from Creation, God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society”

    “God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society?” He did? Really? Please provide book, chapter, and verse for that, because I don’t see anywhere in the Bible that declares this.

    That belief that God intends “family” to be for the “maturing” of society, or to act as its backbone, is not even mentioned in the book of Genesis, which describes God creating the first married couple, Adam and Eve, and Adam and Eve having their first son.

    That God allegedly uses marriage for anything (beyond anything other than for continuation of the human species and as one illustration of Jesus’ relationship to the church) -as a building block of culture, to sanctify people, to mature people and such- are merely assumptions Christians make repeatedly, with no biblical basis.

    I’ve written about this issue before, like in this post:

    Starke says,

      Before you thumb your noses at traditional values on marriage and family, remember this: When God wanted to paint a picture of his great love for he church and cost of his death, he cited marriage between a husband and wife. God in Jesus Christ is the faithful and sacrificial husband for his bride, the church.

    I also wonder who these comments are aimed at. Who does he think may be “thumbing her nose at” marriage?

    I am over 40 years of age and still would like to be married. I am not “anti marriage.”

    I am very disturbed and angered at how highly other Christians elevate marriage, to the point marriage, and the 1950s nuclear family unit, is turned into a “golden calf” they worship.

    Continue reading “Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke – An Essay that Hits and Misses”

    Heartless, Simplistic, Crap-tastic Christian Advice by Carolyn Mahaney – for singles who desire marriage / and Re Girl Talk Blog

    Heartless, Simplistic, Crap-tastic Christian Advice by Carolyn Mahaney – for singles who desire marriage

    Remember my post of a few days ago, this one:
    (Link): Hypocrisy in Christian Culture – Those who idolize parenting chide infertiles for trying to have kids

    This post is the of the same sort, only you can substitute “singles who desire marriage” for the “infertile people who desire to have children” angle.

    Most of conservative Christianity declares that a woman’s only or greatest calling in life is to be a wife and mother.

    Many women naturally want to get married even without that propaganda.

    So, what do Christians do when a Christian women has arrived at age 35 or 40 or older and still has no ring on her left finger?

    Well, by golly, recite a few Bible verses about jealousy at her and tell her to stop “envying” women who do have marriage and children.

    Because, you know, if you want marriage badly, they are saying, you are supposedly “making an idol” out of it.

    These hypocritical messages from Christians who strongly push traditional marriage to begin with are so deceitful: they hammer Christian adults to desire, want, and strive for marriage, but if marriage does not happen, they then condescendingly lecture them to “stop envying those women who do have spouses.”

    How cruel. Does Satan himself write their blog posts for them?

    Does the church make marriage into an idol? Yep, it sure does. That does not mean it is idolatry for an unmarried person to still desire to get married herself, however.

    Singles who desire marriage should not be guilted or shamed for wanting marriage, or be told they “want it too much” or are “making it into an idol.”

    Here is the stupid post that got me riled up:
    (Link): When Someone Else Gets What We Want by Nicole Whitacre and Carolyn Mahaney, Contributors, Sept 2010 – on Crosswalk

    The same post is also located here, on a different site:
    (Link): (Part 1) When Someone Else Gets What We Want by Nicole Whitacre and Carolyn Mahaney, Contributors, Sept 2006 – on Girl Talk blog

    (Part 2) Battle Plan for Fighting Envy by Carolyn Mahaney, Sept 2006 – on Girl Talk blog

    Mahaney, by the way, is a member of, or contributor to, the dreadful CBMW (gender complementarian group) and is apparently married to C J Mahaney, who stands accused by many families of his church system who say he knew of child sexual abuse committed by various church staff for years and did nothing to stop it. There are many articles online about that; just google the guy’s name if you want to read about the abuse cases and lawsuit.

    Anyway. Here are excerpts from this crap-tastic editorial, shaming single Christian women for wanting to be married (a goal in life these same idiots say women should have to start with) – and there are more observations by me below these long excerpts:

    “When Someone Else Gets What We Want” by Nicole Whitacre and Carolyn Mahaney, Contributors, Sept 2010

      Nicole: What do we do with a good, yet unfulfilled longing that won’t go away? First, we thank God that by His mercy we desire one of His good gifts.

      However, we must also regulate our desires. We must not love or long for one of God’s good gifts more than we love or long for God Himself. If we do, then we have essentially made an idol out of this good desire and we are worshipping it instead of God.

      As teacher David Powlison paraphrases the eminent John Calvin: “The evil in our desires often lies not in what we want but that we want it too much.”

      One sure indicator as to whether or not a good desire has morphed into an idol is how we respond when someone else gets the very thing that we want but don’t have. When a close friend—who was perfectly happy to be single—up and gets married, and we are, literally, left behind. Or when, as is the case for a friend of mine, we know five other girls who are pregnant and we are not.

      And what about the woman who gets married younger than us, whose job is more glamorous than ours, whose house is bigger than ours, whose marriage is better than ours, whose life is easier than ours, whose children are more well-behaved than ours, whose popularity is brighter than ours, whose intelligence is greater than ours? Need I go on?

      Envy is a sin common to women. But do we always see it for the rancid evil that it is? Several months ago, I found myself envying another woman’s happiness. My husband encouraged me to study the topic of envy, and gave me some material to read. In the course of my study, the following string of thoughts by Cornelius Plantinga hit me straight between the eyes. Buckle your seat belt, for these are hard, yet necessary words.

      …. How do we get there? Mom will share a biblical strategy for overcoming envy.

      A Battle Plan for Fighting Envy

      Carolyn: “So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up to salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good….Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul (1 Peter 2:1-3, 11; emphasis mine).

      …Here is a simple (not easy mind you) yet effective strategy for going on the offensive against envy:

      1. Pray daily for the person we are tempted to envy. Persistent envy can be overcome with persistent prayer. We will find it is very difficult to go on envying someone for whom we are regularly asking God to bless and prosper.

      [remove remainder of suggestions; you can click the link above if you wish to read the rest of the list]

      Originally posted May 15, 2007

      This article was adapted from “Girl Talk” – a blog kept by Carolyn and her three daughters for women in all seasons of life.
      Carolyn Mahaney is a wife, mother, homemaker, and the author of Feminine Appeal: Seven Virtues of a Godly Wife and Mother, Girl Talk: Mother-Daughter Conversations on Biblical Womanhood and Shopping for Time: How To Do It All and Not Be Overwhelmed (written with her daughters). During her more than 30 years as a pastor’s wife, Carolyn has spoken to women in many churches and conferences, including those of Sovereign Grace Ministries, which her husband, C.J., leads. C.J. and Carolyn have three married daughters and one sixteen-year-old son, Chad.

    Er, no. You can’t create this intense longing for marriage among young Christian women, pressure them to think marriage is the only acceptable route for them and God’s only design for them, as these ‘gender complementarian’ women and other Christians do, but then give these condescending, simplistic little lectures peppered with little Bible verses in an editorial, telling them they are idolizing marriage: you guys are responsible in large measure for making marriage an idol to start with.

    You can take your condescending, insensitive- to- single adults, polly-anna, cloying editorial and cram it where the sun don’t shine.

    I love it. You have all these lonely, disappointed wounded Christian single women who had so hoped to marry out there, and rather than cheer them up, you scold them by assuming they are guilty of “envy” and of “idolizing marriage” and are now shaming them and scolding them.

    Un. Freaking. Believe. Able.

    Also, after having skimmed over several of their other blogs posts at the “Girl Talk” blog under the “singles” category, a lot of those other blog posts also made me want to vomit with their polly-anna, simplistic advice, and other reasons (which I shall not go into here and now).

    You’ll notice too, that only in the realms of marriage and perhaps child bearing, do Christians trot out the “you want it too much” line.

    I have never seen a Christian use this rhetoric to shame another Christian who wants a new job, new college degree, new car, new hair cut, new shirt… it’s often applied only to marriage and having a kid. If you say you want a husband, they will say, “You want a husband too much!”

    If, however, I say, “I sure wish God would heal me of my allergies,” you will get an “Amen, I hope so too, let me pray for your healing!,” rather than an, “Oh gosh, you are wanting a healing too much. Stop making an idol out of sickness and healing!”

    Christians do remain in a state of cognitive discord on marriage, and they keep maintaining a nice set of double standards or hypocritical ones about it.

    These married Christians (and some the annoying super spiritual Christian singles, see (Link): this link) cannot make up their frigging minds:

      #1. Either marriage is great and all of us should aspire to it,

      ~ OR ~

      #2. We should all seek to stay single because wanting marriage is idolatry and means we are guilty of envy.

    Make up your damn minds about this already, Christian community! Stop expecting Christian singles to adhere to both points #1 and #2.
    ———————————————
    Related posts this blog:

    (Link): Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?

    (Link): Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

    (Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single

    (Link): Salvation By Marriage Alone – The Over Emphasis Upon Marriage by Conservative Christians Evangelicals Southern Baptists

    Marriage Is Not Always So Great

    Marriage Is Not Always So Great

    Before I get to the main point of this post (which is that marriage is not the heavenly state of nirvana many Christian marrieds make it out to be), I want to say that married Christian people, or any married couple, need to walk a fine line here, because there are two sides of the same coin to this, and both annoy that hell out of me as a never- married woman who desires marriage.

    I would like to get married.

    I was in a committed serious relationship years ago, so I am well aware that a relationship is not always wonderful. My ex was a pain in the ass. I am glad to be rid of him.

    I don’t need condescending little sermon-ettes from married friends who say when I cry, “I’d like to get married! Why can’t I?,” and they reply, “Marriage sometimes sucks! My husband can be a real selfish jerk at times, and we sometimes argue, and hubby forgot my birthday this year. Trust me you ain’t missing nothing.”

    Look, when a single woman tells you she is lonely or wants a relationship, she doesn’t need you to try to make marriage sound less great with horror stories of your own marriage to make her think her singleness isn’t so bad.

    What your unmarried friend is looking for is sympathy and understanding, so pat her hand and say, “I’m sorry. I know it hurts to be alone when you want a relationship.”

    Also, say to her, “Hey, I know a great single guy! Let me fix you up with him this Friday!” -That is, take steps to actually help your single buddy get a man of her own.

    That is the kind of thing we singles want to hear, not stupid garbage like, “marriage ain’t so great, you know.” (Or the usual, “Jesus is all you need! Be content! Serve others! The Lord is your husband!”)

    On the other hand, Christian married people (and Non-Christian marrieds) can make singles feel awful by going on and on about how great married life is.

    Here is a story about some guy who counsels married couples whose marriages are in trouble.

    As you can see from this, marriage is not an endless font of happiness, as some marrieds make it sound.

    (Link): What To Do When Your Spouse Wants Out

      Every day our team talks with people who wish to salvage their troubled marriages.

      For most of them, their mates do not have the same desire. Sometimes the other spouse is “madly in love” with someone else and wants a divorce.

      Other times the other person has felt controlled and dominated for so long that all they can think of is getting away as far and fast as possible.

      The reasons vary, but most often, the situation with those who call is that he or she desperately wishes to save the marriage but the other partner does not.

      Do Not Control

      If you try to keep your marriage together by demanding, dominating, or dictating, you will fail.

      No one wants to be controlled.

      If a major reason your spouse wants out of your marriage is that you have exhibited controlling behaviors, this is your wakeup call. Stop now and demonstrate that you will treat her with utmost respect and equality. Quit forcing your opinions.

      Quit the habit of haranguing until your mate yields to your point of view. Never again, tell your spouse what he/she feels…or should feel. Allow your partner to be, think, and feel even when you do not like it.

      If you think (or know) that your mate is unfaithful, tracking or following will backfire when you are caught.

      Clinging causes the other person to pull away, collapsing helps them leave faster, and controlling disgusts them with you. None of these helps your cause if you wish to save your marriage.

    ——————-
    Related posts this blog

    (Link): Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

    (Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single

    (Link): Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?

    (Link): Married Christians Who Were Arrested for Rape, Attempted Murder, or Other Crimes – more examples

    (Link): Stop Telling Your Single Friends to Try Dating Sites – Please.

    (Link): Married Christian Expert on Child Spirituality Pleads Guilty To Possessing Child Porn

    (Link): Link Roundup 1 – Abusive Mothers, Christians Shaming Singles For Desiring Marriage, Family Fixation

    (Link): There is No Such Thing as a Gift of Singleness or Gift of Celibacy or A Calling To Either One

    (Link): How Christians and Churches Can Be of Help to Older (as in over the age of 25 – 30) Singles (copy)

    (Link): Mormons and Christians Make Family, Marriage, Having Children Into Idols

    (Link): Five Things Single Women Hate to Hear

    (Link): Author of Marital Self-Help Books Murders Wife

    (Link): New Study Released: Cheaters: More American Married Women Admit to Adultery (links)

    (Link): Married Woman Has Affair With Married Man While Her Own Husband Deals With Cancer Stricken Parents

    (Link): Married Christian Preacher and Mistress Try to Kill Wife – Married Christians not more stable, mature, or godly than Singles

    (Link): Cheating Married Christian Women and Lessons I Take Away – and Being a Virgin Does Not Guarantee God will Send You a Spouse

    (Link): Lousy 40 Year Marriage – Husband Cheats on Wife for Decades

    (Link): The Church Needs A Different View of Sex and Singleness (copy)

    Link Roundup 1 – Abusive Mothers, Christians Shaming Singles For Desiring Marriage, Family Fixation

    Link Roundup 1 – Abusive Mothers, Christians Shaming Singles For Desiring Marriage, Family Idol Fixation

    Instead of breaking these topics into separate posts, here’s one big post covering two or three recurring topics that my blog here is all about.

    >> Topic 1. Conservative Christians think that unmarried and/or childless or child-free individuals are less mature, godly, or responsible than their married and/or parental counterparts. False. Another example of parents behaving badly:

    (Link): Mom arrested after 10-year-old son found in street drunk and naked

      A Florida mother was passed out from drinking while her 10-year-old son was found wandering their neighborhood naked and intoxicated. Local police officers arrested Nedra Byrd, 31, on neglect charges on Thursday night. Amanda Roesch, a neighbor who took the boy in dressed him, and put him to sleep, told reporters that she had walked over to the boy’s home.

    >> Topic 2. Christians who guilt trip or shame singles who want marriage, making us feel bad for wanting marriage, telling us we’ve turned marriage into an idol, and we “want marriage too much”

    (Link): Making Too Much of Marriage, from Christianity Today

    Okay, so, if I understand this right (see Mefferd links below), Christians are worried that Christian singles aren’t getting married, but when we say we would really like to be married, we are told we are “making too much of marriage.” Which the hell is it, Christian culture, speakers, and preacher? Do you want us singles married or not?

    If you married Christians (or you (Link): “shiny happy” single Christians) feel we singles who are not totally thrilled 100% of the time being single are “idolizing” marriage just by merely desiring it at all, then shut up with the blame and insults, such as, “you single Christians should WANT TO get married, but you do not get married because you are lazy, selfish, immature, irresponsible, or fat/ weird/ socially retarded and you must secretly HATE MARRIAGE and desire to be single FOREVER.”

    >> Topic 3. Fixation on Nuclear Family / Fixation on Gay Marriage, anything but Christian singles past 30 who desire marriage but marriage ain’t happening

    >> Topic Example 3. 1.

    The online paper, The Christian Post, was running yet ANOTHER editorial bemoaning the encroachment of homosexual marriage about a week ago:

    (Link): Is Your Church Ready for the Marriage Revolution?

      I have argued for years that our churches aren’t an embassy of biblical ethics in a land of sexual revolution. The embassy is aflame, and the sexual revolutionary flag is waving atop our consulate. We’ve surrendered on marriage in too many ways: on its permanence, on fidelity, and even too many times on its nature rooted in sexual complementarity. Just because we’re not marrying two grooms or two brides, yet, doesn’t mean we’re standing firm on marriage.

      And we’ll talk about practical matters your people will ask. Is it okay to attend a same-sex marriage since Jesus ate with tax-collectors? Should a Christian florist deliver flowers to such a wedding?

    >> Topic Example 3. 2

    I sent Janet Mefferd, radio host, an e-mail sometime in March or April of this year (2013), in response to one of her programs, where she and a guest were lamenting about the phenomenon of delayed marriage and declined birth rate.

    I explained to Mefferd what I’ve said on this blog before: it is a falsehood that most Christian singles are deliberately choosing to forgo marriage or are intentionally choosing to hold off marriage until their late 30s or later.

    See posts at this blog:
    (Link): Never Married Christians Over Age 35 who are childless Are More Ignored Than Divorced or Infertile People or Single Parents and
    (Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single

    I believe, if I recall correctly, that I also mentioned to Mefferd in my e-mail to her that this subject needs more attention from Christians, that Christians spend far too much time as it is “defending traditional marriage,” worrying about homosexual marriage, and just going on and on in general about marriage and parenting, and that this extraordinary amount of attention on marriage and parenting is very alienating and has negative repercussions on singles who desire marriage.

    It’s possible Mefferd did not see my e-mail I suppose; maybe she gets hundreds per day. My message was sent via her site’s e-mail submission form. But ever since I sent it, I’ve noticed in the one or two months since, she has done several more shows about homosexual marriage, traditional marriage, homosexuals wanting to join the Boy Scouts, about abortion, and so on.

    All this fixation on homosexuals and related matters is doing nothing to help the plight of mature (i.e., over age 30) Christian singles who want marriage. The church’s attention and energy can be better spent on other areas, such as actually helping people, rather than sitting around condemning secular culture.

    The church needs to be doing something concrete and constructive to help singles get paired up, for those who want marriage – “eHarmony” dating sites are NOT the cure-all, either. Churches need to be hosting more social events where singles can meet and mingle and that sort of thing. They need to be mentioning the topic of older (as in age 30 – 59) singles from the pulpit, on radio shows, and in magazines.

    Continue reading “Link Roundup 1 – Abusive Mothers, Christians Shaming Singles For Desiring Marriage, Family Fixation”

    The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me

    The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me: The Perpetually Sunny Happy Christian Single Who Is Totally Thrilled With Singleness; The Condescending Single Who Brays “Jesus is all you need, your earthly happiness doesn’t matter”; or the Single Who Is Too Spiritual About Singleness

    I. The Perpetually Sunny Happy Christian Single Who Is Totally Thrilled With Singleness And Doesn’t Understand Why You Can’t Be Too

    To clarify something: there are times when I feel relieved about being single, and there are other times it bothers me. I’m not wholly on one side of the fence or the other.

    I was just saying (Link): in a post yesterday I get very pissed off and annoyed over these sunny attitude, Rose-colored- glasses- wearing unmarried women (sometimes men, but it’s normally a woman) who go on and on in their editorials for Christian singles about how they are golly gee whiz happy-happy to be single, they love living for just Jesus by golly!, and they say they cannot wrap their heads around singles who think that singlehood sometimes sucks. They think everyone should be as happy-happy with singleness as they are.

    The fact is, some of us are not always happy with singleness 100% of the time, and your constant sunniness about it is unrealistic, irritating, doesn’t acknowledge the pain some of us go through at times, and by being so dang chipper about singleness, you’re sort of denying how most churches and denominations ignore or belittle singles.

    II. The Super Spiritual Christian Single Who Likes to Say Over and Over: “Jesus and My Bible is All I Need and To Want Anything Else is Inappropriate, Especially In Church” (Single Who Is Too Spiritual About Singleness)

    These are usually the ones who pipe up in blog comments in articles for singles who say church is for worship of the Lord and Bible devotions only, that’s all THEY want when they go to a church, they say they are deeply offended when “Brother Hank” or “Sister Sally” tries to play match- maker for them.

    And, they say, singles should not be using church to find a mate, because that’s turning church into a “meat market.” And remember, according to them, church is for worship and Bible reading and study only, nothing else.

    If you are the kind of single who wants to view church as a Bible study only, fine for you, but don’t sit there and lecture myself and Christian singles that it’s wrong for another Christian person to use church to meet a mate.

    There are other reasons for the creation of the church besides worship, Bible reading, the Great Commission, and helping African orphans.

    Continue reading “The Types of Christian Singles Who Annoy Me”

    Videos About Family Idolatry by Christians / Desiring Marriage is NOT Idolatry

    Videos About Family Idolatry by Christians / Desiring Marriage is NOT Idolatry

    If and when I find new video about Family Idolatry, I will likely amend this post to add the new links at the bottom rather than make a new post.

    I was looking for some videos of pastors addressing the problem of the idolatry of family/ marriage/ procreation in American Christianity.

    So far, I’ve not found that many. Out of the 3 or 4 I’ve watched so far, they don’t frame the issue in a way I’d like to see.

    In the video with Tim Keller of Focus on the Family, he seems concerned only that Christian parents are doting on their kids too much; the same view was taken by some other pastor in another video.

    Another pastor (Norbit), in another video, mainly seems to take issue with spouses who place spouses above God. He rants about how Satan may use your devotion to your spouse to distract you from serving God and following God’s will.

    Norbit also goes into a strange tangent about how, in his view, some Christians use Jesus as a pagan might use a witch doctor. He chides them for looking to Jesus to get their needs met – which is an unbiblical view for him to espouse; we’re told repeatedly in the New Testament to look to God to get our needs met (financial, physical, or emotional). And I don’t completely get what the “witch doctor,” “church planting,” and “Hindu multiple gods” bits he gets into have to do with making a spouse into an idol.

    Contrary to what this Norbit guy says at one stage in the video, serving people is sometimes how one serves God. (Norbit says that Jesus conveyed to Mary that Jesus came only to serve God’s perfect plan and not to fulfill what humans wanted or needed. I disagree with him, depending on how he means it, for God tells Christians it is sometimes God’s will for Christians to meet the needs of other people.)

    All this criticism by these preachers of parents catering too much to their children, or of spouses doting too much on the needs of their spouses, is all very well and good, but what I’d like to see exposed is how exclusionairy and alienating family-, marriage-, child- centric Christian culture is for those of us who do not fit the “married with kids” status. But this point is almost never addressed.

    I am waiting for some pastor to say from the pulpit,

      “To all the never-married Christians over the age of 30, to the divorced, to those celibates struggling with same-sex attraction, to the widows and widowers, to those married couples childless or childfree, I apologize on behalf of all American Christians who have either excluded you, ignored your needs, or who have repeated and maintained negative stereotypes against those who are not married with children. I am so sorry. This exclusion needs to stop.”

    I had high hopes for one video by Bill White, but was annoyed with it.

    Bill White admits in his video to being a happily married man with two sons (and I believe one daughter? I listened to his video only one time in the wee hours of the morning while half-asleep, so I don’t recall all the details).

    Expecting White to scold Christians for ignoring the needs of, or stomping on the feelings of, never-married Christians or married couples without children, I was dismayed to see him telling infertile couples who desire children and never-marrieds who desire marriage that they are making an idol out of parenthood and marriage!

    Gee thanks, Pastor White! As if we never-marrieds don’t get criticized enough already as it is in the chruch. Thanks for adding to the mistreatment even more! Much appreciated /sarcasm.

    —- ANTI UNMARRIED STEREOTYPE

    By the way, this is a typical attitude (an anti-unmarried person stereotype) I see fostered by pastors and Christian authors often: they are under the misguided notion that each and every unmarried Christian who desires marriage is de facto, automatically “idolizing” marriage.

    It’s just ASSUMED that every woman who is single has turned desire for marriage into an idol. This simply is not true. But it’s also a problematic idea, because these pastors almost never quantify exactly how much desire borders on to “idolization.” Telling me that it’s a “heart attitude issue” doesn’t clarify things much, either.

    If I think about wanting to get married twice per month, is that idolization of marriage? Or is it ten times per month? Is it 50 times per month? Does it become idolization when I join a single dating site in a year? Or 20 sites? And who, other than God, can really determine when and where that line is?

    —- END Discussion of ANTI UNMARRIED STEREOTYPE

    I think White tried to qualify his views by saying that if your need to have a kid or spouse is all- consuming that it’s a distraction from serving God, it becomes idolatry.

    However, at no time do I recall White going out of his way to re-assure his audience that there is nothing selfish, idolatrous, or sinful about merely wanting to have a child or to be married.

    Continue reading “Videos About Family Idolatry by Christians / Desiring Marriage is NOT Idolatry”

    Bay-Bees – Have Lots of Them (Addendum)

    (Addendum to previous post):
    “Bay-Bees – Have them, have lots of them and NOW, no matter what!, say some Christians”

    I meant to include this in my previous post on this topic but forgot to (someone left me a response in that thread disagreeing with me, and I left her a response). Anyway….

    A woman wrote in to Pat Robertson’s show the other day, The 700 Club, to ask if she should permit her daughter to stay in the same bed as her boyfriend when they come over for a visit.

    Robertson then got into this tangent where he said, “Marriage is for making babies.”
    (Or, he might have said, “Marriage is for pro-creation.” I forget the exact wording of his remark, whether he used the term “babies” or “pro creation,” but he did say, “that [babies / pro creation] is the purpose of marriage.”

    I don’t recall any biblical passages stating that the sole reason for marriage is to have babies. (I don’t even remember any verses saying it’s the primary reason – but perhaps it’s in there, and I just forgot.)

    I think a lot of conservative Christians – the ones who have made idols out of marriage and having children, and the more extreme patriarchy- type lunatic “Quiverfull” groups – tend to stretch verses such as “be fruitful and multiply” to apply in situations where they do not, or are not, for all Christians for all times in all situations.

    I would dare say since God presented Eve to Adam after having said, “it is not good for man to be alone” that one primary reason for the existence of marriage is for companionship. Not baby-making, but for companionship.

    Sure, baby-making might be ONE reason for the creation of marriage by God, but it’s not the ONLY reason, as Robertson implied in his response.

    This bizarre obsession with marriage and cranking out babies is one reason why so many people, Christian and Non, feel so unwelcomed or alienated from churches, or why they stop going.

    People, including Christian people, who are childless, child-free, never-married, or widowed are frequently over-looked by most American Christianity.

    The never-married (over the age of 30), the child free, the childless, and the widowers – their needs are dismissed or never acknowledged to start with. They are not usually mentioned from the pulpit, or on mainstream Christian blogs, in magazines, or in most Christian books about relationships.

    Most attention by conservative Christians is spent hand-wringing over and worrying about the decline of marriage, the decline of the U.S. birth rate, complaining about the Democrats, or complaining about the legalization of homosexual marriage.

    As for the hand wringing about the decline of marriage by conservative Christians, it is highly hypocritical of them to do this.

    When older, never-married Christians ask for help from their Christian communities to get married (“please help me get a spouse! Introduce me to some great singles, or create more singles functions where we can meet and mingle”), they are scolded and lectured and get comments such as… THEY, the singles who desire marriage, are

    • “making an idol of marriage”
    • “be content in your singleness, it’s a gift!”

    • “we can’t turn the singles group into a meat market, it’s for Bible study ONLY”
    • “God may have called you to life long singleness”

    -and older unmarried Christians get other such un-helpful comments like those.

    Note to churches and preachers:
    If you want the marriage rate among Christians to sky rocket, get off your asses and start helping Christian singles, who are ages 30+, to meet other Christian singles so that they can date and then marry. Provide practical assistance in this area.

    Anyway, I don’t see any biblical grounds for thinking that making a baby is the sole, or primary, purpose of marriage.

    Want To But Can’t – The One Christian Demographic Being Continually Ignored by Christians Re: Marriage

    Want To But Can’t – The One Christian Demographic Being Continually Ignored by Christians | Re: Marriage Not Happening for Hetero-sexual Christians Over the Age of 30

    While conservative Christians keep on despairing that today’s American culture no longer resembles 1950s “Leave It To Beaver” families, the majority of them keep right on ignoring one significant group: unmarried Christians over the age of 30 who want to get married but who cannot find a Christian partner.

    About the only Christians who have taken note of this plight are those who are in the group themselves, such as myself.

    There are many Christians over the age of 30 who want to get married, but they cannot find a suitable partner at church, through friends, or on dating sites. And their petitions to God on this matter are not working. God remains silent and does not move.

    Meanwhile, we unmarried Christians [* please see March 2016 update at the bottom of this post], who want marriage but for whom it remains out of reach, stand by and see the never-ending avalanche of blog pages, magazine articles, and booklets printed, or radio shows broadcast, by mainstream evangelical groups bemoaning the fact that 20-somethings are putting off marriage until their late 20s, or that they are dropping out of church altogether, with a smaller amount of attention paid to topics such as divorce and how to keep a marriage together.

    But there is nothing from the Christian community, no attention, prayers, concern, or material, for those who cannot even get to the altar to begin with (with the exception of a small amount of Christian material which insults us and puts us down).

    I was reminded of all this again when skimming over parts of a book online. The book is “Church in an Age of Crisis,” by James Emery White.

    In a chapter about marriage (I don’t see any chapters on prolonged singleness among Christians – which is typical), he writes in a sidebar:

    — Begin Quote from Book —
    The Crumbling State of Marriage

    -[1] For the first time since the US began tallying marriages, more Americans of prime marrying age have stayed single rather than tied the knot

    -[2] Proportion of married adults of all ages was 52 percent in 2009, down from 72.2 percent in 1960 – the lowest percentage since the US began tracking in 1880

    -[3] Cohabitation in the US has nearly doubled since 1990

    — End Quote from Book —

    As for point 1, (“more Americans of prime marrying age have stayed single rather than tied the knot”), how many of those singles want to stay single? How many of them have intentionally chosen to stay single into their 30s and older? Why is this distinction almost never made?

    How many of those singles are like me, who always desired and expected to marry, but it just never happened? Why do these worried and pearl-clutching conservative Christians always seem to assume that those of us Christians who have remained single past the age of 30 or 40 have deliberately chosen to remain so?

    (Please click “read more” to read the rest of this post.)
    Continue reading “Want To But Can’t – The One Christian Demographic Being Continually Ignored by Christians Re: Marriage”

    Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

    (Please click the “more” link to read the entire post)

    I have touched on this issue before in prior posts (see the section, “Pray For The Right Car, but Not the Right Spouse?” on (Link): this blog page), and it’s somewhat related to the idea of one having faith in God to provide one with a spouse.

    While there are plenty of Christians, both pastors and lay persons, who will reaffirm the belief that one should pray and depend on God to provide her with a spouse, there seems to be an equally large and vocal group of people who insist, no, a Christian should use her own abilities and reasoning to obtain marriage.
    Continue reading “Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?”

    Singleness Is Not A Gift

    Singleness Is Not A Gift

    I really do not believe that singleness is a gift.

    I think if God actually grants someone with that so-called “gift,” then that individual will not be bothered in the least not to be married. (Edit: I no longer even believe the Bible teaches the concept “gift of singleness.” See links below for more, under “Related posts this blog”)

    However, I am in my late thirties, never married, and it bothers me very much. I always wanted to be married, and I would still like to be married, so I seriously doubt that I have the “gift of singleness.”

    I am so tired of hearing cliches and oft-worn phrases directed at singles such as “singleness is a gift.”

    I can most assuredly tell you that no, it is not a gift. It’s a curse. It’s lonely. It’s terrible. It’s embarrassing.

    Prolonged singleness is especially difficult in a culture where most people do get married, and where people, especially Christians, assume everyone over age 35 is married (or has been at least at one time).

    I did not “choose” to be single, by the way. I am not a man-hating feminist. I was never obsessed with my career.

    While doing a web search for the phrase “singleness is not a gift” I did find a few blog pages or comments I could relate to, a few of which I will paste in below.
    Continue reading “Singleness Is Not A Gift”

    Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?

    (Please click the “more” link below to read the rest of the post.)

    Recently at a Christian site, I once again ran across the annoying assumption or implication that desiring marriage is idolatry.

    I was reading through a Christian site the other day, bible.org, and decided to skim through their Q&A (Question and Answer) section pertaining to marriage.

    Someone wrote in to the site to say that she had a never-married 33 year old female friend who was feeling rather hopeless about the situation. (Her question can be viewed here.)

    This friend wanted to know what she could say to cheer this friend up.

    I’m sure the Christian fellow who responded, Bob Deffinbaugh, meant well, but one idea he tossed out there was to say, essentially, that the 33 year old woman had better be certain that she desired God above all else.

    Deffinbaugh seemed to imply that if the 33 year old was desiring marriage at all (or perhaps he meant to convey if she was desiring marriage more than she was desiring God), that God would never send her a spouse.

    I have to disagree with this assessment for a few reasons.

    Continue reading “Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?”

    List of Christian Singlehood Annoyances, Part 1

    Please click the “more” link below to read the entire post.

    There are some things I find annoying about being a single Christian person, and I thought I’d write about some of them. I may edit this post in the future as more cross my mind.

    Most singles can probably relate to most of this list, but some are specific to me and my views, tastes, preferences, and experiences.

    Continue reading “List of Christian Singlehood Annoyances, Part 1”