Older Christian Singles and Celibacy (There Are No Consequences for Sexual Sin)

Older Christian Singles and Celibacy (There Are No Consequences for Sexual Sin)

(click on the “more” link to read the rest of the post)

I am including in this post an URL to an interview with a Christian author regarding a book she wrote about Christian singleness and celibacy.

I will only be quoting portions of the interview, which I am chalking up to “fair use.”

If you want to read the rest, I would advise you to visit their site:

(Link): Every Older Singles’ Battle – Christianitytoday.com Article

I wanted to preface the quoted material by making a few comments.

For all my life, I fully agreed with and abided by the Bible’s teaching about sex being for marriage only. I thought, when I was in my 20s, and even into my mid-30s, that I would be married by the time I was 35. That did not happen.

My views on sex may be changing slightly now that I find myself over 40 and still unmarried.

I still believe that the Bible is clear that sex if for marriage only. I am not going to sit here and try to explain away biblical passages that tell readers sex is for marriage only, as I saw one 25 year old, liberal Christian female do on her blog.

To paraphrase this other female blogger, she said that the Bible is “not clear at all that sex outside of marriage is sinful or wrong.” I disagree. The Bible is pretty clear about the topic.

My stance, however, is that I think it’s unfair and unrealistic (I’m not sure what word to use to describe this) to expect any Christian over the age of 30 to remain perpetually chaste, regardless of the Bible’s teaching on the matter.
Continue reading “Older Christian Singles and Celibacy (There Are No Consequences for Sexual Sin)”

Standing Alone – single or never married Christians over 35 years old

This material is from Standing Alone by Cristina Foor

There are more singles in the United States than the entire populations of France and The Netherlands combined. But the church, for the most part, ignores their needs.
A large segment of our culture walks past the doors of our churches every Sunday, almost entirely unnoticed. Many of these passers-by will, at one point, find their way into our sanctuaries. But all too often they will end up feeling as if they are still invisible.

Why? Because the church typically ignores this particular group of men and women–singles.

Some 98 million Americans today are single, according to the U.S. Census Bureau (Current Population Survey, March 2000). That’s close to half of our population age 15 and older. That’s more than the entire populations of France and The Netherlands combined. And this trend toward singleness in our society seems to be on the rise.

Whether it is by choice, by the death of a spouse or by the unforeseen end of a marriage, the fact remains that more and more men and women are becoming single. Mirroring society at large, it is estimated that more than one-half of the church population is now single, too. Ministry to this group has become imperative.

A strong singles ministry can strengthen a church’s overall ministry effectiveness. That being the case, the lack of ministry to single adults must simply constitute denial of this large and growing population.

If churches want to remain relevant and meet the needs of people in our present culture, it is essential for them to develop an effective singles ministry. The issues and challenges peculiar to singles must be acknowledged and addressed.

In order to reach this harvest field, however, the church needs to understand this group and its many dynamics. Singles should never be viewed as people to be pitied or prayed for, as if their singleness were a weakness to be overcome.

As Carolyn A. Koons and Michael J. Anthony stated in Single Adult Passages: Uncharted Territory, the mind-set in many churches today must be altered if a successful ministry for singles is to take place.

Much of the time singles live on the fringes of church life because they feel the church doesn’t understand or care about their particular needs. Singles’ needs differ greatly from the needs of those who are married. With the demise of the traditional family unit in our country, and in an attempt to re-establish lost family values, many churches have focused their attention on those areas while ignoring those who are not currently in families.

The church must shed its indifference toward singles and realize that couples are not better than singles, only different. In many churches, there seems to be little, if any, recognition that singleness inherently presents unique challenges and issues that need to be addressed. In addition, there has been very little real movement toward specific training for this ministry area.
Continue reading “Standing Alone – single or never married Christians over 35 years old”

Women Do Not Need ‘Reasons’ for Being Single or Childless

Women Do Not Need ‘Reasons’ for Being Single or Childless

theatlanticwire.com/national/2012/06/women-do-not-need-reasons-being-single-or-childless/53174/

by Jen Doll, June 5, 2012

There are a couple of articles circulating today that have this writer feeling ranty, not because of the articles themselves, per se, but because of what they indicate about the world in which women currently live. The first of these posts is on Jezebel. It’s written by Samhita Mukhopadhyay, executive editor of Feministing, and it’s titled “Ten Very Good Reasons You Aren’t Married Yet.” The second is a piece in Slate responding to a(n unsurprising) Katie Roiphe piece saying that the decision not to have kids is still taboo. In this new article, titled “I Don’t Want to Have Children: I’m not even sure I have a biological clock,” Soraya Roberts explains how she feels about not having kids or even knowing she wants to at the ripe old age of 32, and Double X invites readers to share their own tales of why they have happily decided not to have babies.

All well and good, right? Women should feel free not to have babies, or not to get married, as they see fit. That’s the mark of a progressive society! Except, if that’s the case, why do we have to keep talking, talking, talking about it? And why do these kinds of articles pop up again and again for women, who need (someone has decided) to remind themselves repeatedly of why their decision is OK, even good. Really, really, it is! We promise! Thus, on a platter for your unmarried, child-free self are another set of reasons why; print them out, stick them to your sad-sack single-lady fridge, keep them handy for when that neighbor across the Thanksgiving table asks your mom what’s wrong with you that you’re not married and having kids already. Because it would be too much to say, simply, that’s not what I’m doing. Or to refuse to acknowledge the question.

Therein lies the problem with these articles. Why do women feel the need to explain themselves (womansplain?) over and over again when questions about marriage or having children come up? Why this incessant need to announce to the world, especially if they are writers, “I did this right, even if I did it differently! I may be a total weirdo, but my choice is valid, too!” Who’s the last childless, unmarried dude who has done that?
Continue reading “Women Do Not Need ‘Reasons’ for Being Single or Childless”

Single Dads By Choice: More Men Going It Alone

Single Dads By Choice: More Men Going It Alone
npr.org/2012/06/19/154860588/single-dads-by-choice-more-men-going-it-alone?ft=1&f=1001

June 19, 2012

B.J. Holt always wanted to be a dad. As he approached 40, with no life partner in sight, he felt a version of the ticking biological clock.

“The ‘having the children thing’ started to overwhelm the desire to have the relationship first,” Holt says. “They sort of switched on me.”
Continue reading “Single Dads By Choice: More Men Going It Alone”

It’s not complementarianism; it’s patriarchy

This was a good page (it touches on sexism in the church – also known as gender complementarianism):

Esther and Vashti: The Real Story

I share many of the views and observations as what’s described on this blog page:

It’s not complementarianism; it’s patriarchy

And someone on that page linked to this:

Top Ten Reasons Why Men Should Not Be Ordained

Continue reading “It’s not complementarianism; it’s patriarchy”

Pastor Creflo Dollar Arrested

Creflo Dollar is one of those tele-evangelists I have never liked or trusted. In the past, I have caught a few of his shows, but he’s one of those prosperity hucksters, and something seemed terribly dishonest about him, so any time his show comes on now, I automatically turn the channel. His show appears on TBN and other Christian networks.

I just saw on the news that he’s been arrested for hitting his fifteen year old daughter. I’m not surprised.

Creflo Dollar arrested for allegedly assaulting 15-year-old daughter
Continue reading “Pastor Creflo Dollar Arrested”

Another Obnoxious ‘ Why You’re Not Married Yet ‘ Article

This is a follow up to the first obnoxious editorial:

(Link): Why You’re Still Not Married by Tracy McMillian

I read both pages (though it’s been a long time since I read part 1), and none of the reasons she cites apply to me. The woman who wrote this, McMillian, admits that she has been divorced three times – she may know something about getting married, but staying married? No, not at all. I think it better never to have married than to have married and divorced.

I think a lot of singles beat themselves up wondering why they could never marry, and that’s a shame, because I think for most of us who wanted marriage but it didn’t happen, that we don’t have any huge flaws or anything inherently wrong with us.

I cannot understand why so many people, Christian and secular (and yes, some Christians are guilty of this sort of thinking), assume that never-married people over 35 have something wrong with them; it’s a terribly offensive, hurtful, and untrue assumption.

There’s also a matter for Christian female singles that Christian females out number Christian males, so there are not enough single men to go around for single women, and that is something that Christian women have no control over.

Sometimes the right person just does not come along, and it’s as simple as that.

Here are excerpts from Why You’re Still Not Married by Tracy McMillian:

—–

  • [The reasons the author gave single women who are not yet married in part 1 include]:
  • 1) You’re a Bitch,
  • 2) You’re Shallow
  • 3) You’re a Slut,
  • 4) You’re a Liar,
  • 5) You’re Selfish, and
  • 6) You’re Not Good Enough
  • 7. You’re a Mess. You overdrink. You overeat. You overspend. You under-earn.
  • 8. You’re Crazy. Crazy is where you LOVE INTENSITY. You want life to bring the exclamation points!!!!!!! Normal people, and relationships? Big, noisy YAWN. You think of yourself more like Angelina Jolie when she was with Billy Bob.
  • 9. You’re a Dude. It’s not that you love the Cardinals, have short hair, or or make more money than most guys. It’s that, when it comes to relationships, you want to hunt them down and kill them. You call guys, you text guys, you ask guys out.
  • 10. You’re Godless. Remember how I said that marriage is a spiritual path? Well, we’re there. The point where I suggest something totally radical and punk-rock as a way of transforming whatever it is you have going on (or don’t have going on) in the area of relationships. And here it is: I want you to get a god.

You can read a response to McMillian’s obnoxious editorial here (by another author)  -and see more links at the bottom of this post, under “Related Posts”:

(Link): A Long Time Single Responds to a ‘Why You’re Not Married’ Article

—————-
Related posts this blog:

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

(Link): Unmarried / Single People Are Supposedly Bitter & Have Too Much Baggage – and that’s why you’re still single they say

(Link): The Study of Why Men Stay Single: What No One Is Telling You by B. DePaulo

(Link):  Christian Blogger About Divorce, Pastor Andrew Webb, Thinks All To Most Mid-Life Never – Married or Single – Again Adults Are Mal-Adjusted, Ugly Losers Who Have Too Much Baggage

(Link):   Really, It’s Okay To Be Single – In order to protect marriage, we should be careful not to denigrate singleness – by Peter Chin

(Link): A Liberation Theology for Single People by Christena

(Link):  The Rise of Delayed Marriage and Female Friendship – article from The Atlantic

(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):  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) (article is from 2015)

(Link): Slut? Selfish? Sad? No, just a single woman (editorial)

(Link): Myths About Never Married Adults Over Age 40

(Link): A Long Time Single Responds to a ‘Why You’re Not Married’ Article

(Link):  The best age to marry is when you meet the right person 

(Link):  Christians Advise Singles To Follow Certain Dating Advice But Then Shame, Criticize, or Punish Singles When That Advice Does Not Work

(Link):  Decent Secular Relationship Advice: How to Pick Your Life Partner

(Link):   Over 10 Million Men of Prime Working Age Are Unemployed in the US and Experts Think It’s Causing Declining Marriage Rates

(Link):  All The Single Ladies by Rebecca Traister  – Various Links to Reviews or Commentary About the Book and Its Issues

Link): College Women, Don’t Listen to Marriage Concern Trolls

(Link): True Love Waits . . . and Waits . . . and Waits – editorial about delayed marriage and related issues

(Link):  Woman Marries First Time at Age 50 – A 700 Club Episode

(Link):  Single and 40: Dealing with Disappointment by L. Bishop

(Link):  Woman Marries First Time at Age 50 – A 700 Club Episode

(Link):   It’s Not Your Imagination, Single Women: There Literally Aren’t Enough Men Out There – Re: Man Shortage – Follow Up Interview 

(Link):  The Cruel, Capricious God of Naive Christians, Concerning Singleness and Marriage – If Only You Had Waited Five More Minutes!

(Link): Stop Telling Women Their Most Valuable Asset Is Their Youth (From Time)

Five Myths About Marriage – Myth #5

Five Myths About Marriage

Source:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-marriage/2012/05/25/gJQAofiMqU_story_1.html

Excerpt (Myth # 5)

Married couples are the building blocks of community life.

All that time couples invest in their children comes at the expense of being involved in the world beyond the family’s front door. Sociologists Naomi Gerstel and Natalia Sarkisian report that married women and men are less likely to visit and give practical assistance to their extended families than are the unmarried. Men without wives are much more likely to call their parents than their married peers.

Economically as well as emotionally, modern marriage has become like an affluent gated community. It has become harder for low-income Americans to enter and sustain. But for the educated, two-income families whose divorce rates have been falling and who spend more time with their children than they used to, marriage brings more relative advantages than in the past.

The notion that marriage is an impediment to commitments to the larger community is a long-standing one — and one reason early Christians did not place the institution at the top of their moral hierarchy, complaining that married couples cared more about pleasing each other than doing the Lord’s work. It wasn’t until 1215 that marriage became a sacrament.

Assumptions People Make About Singles – Taking Advantage of Singles

From Single and Off the Fast Track: It’s Not Just Working Parents Who Step Back to Reclaim a Life

Excerpts:

….But the benefits only go so far. Heavy workloads keep many employees from using them. And for men and women alike, some managers still assume singles don’t have anything to do but work and pile on extra duties and projects, according to research by Wendy Casper, an associate professor of management at the University of Texas at Arlington.

When Craig Ellwanger’s former bosses hired him as an ad-sales representative in 2006, they were glad he was single with no kids, Mr. Ellwanger says. They told him in the interview, “We’re going to ship you all over the place. Don’t get too attached to any place or anyone.” He spent half his time on the road, living in hotels or company apartments. Dating was difficult; his schedule “was definitely very taxing” for his girlfriend. “It was pretty much a long-distance relationship,” he says. They married briefly then divorced, partly, Mr. Ellwanger says, because his job was so consuming that he couldn’t separate the stresses from home life.

Americans Just Want to Be Single?

An article from Psychology Today

Americans Just Want to Be Single?

A few quotes (the reader comments on the page were also interesting):

Between ages 25 and 34, married people are in the minority
Published on September 30, 2010
by Bella DePaulo, Ph.D.

….The most irresponsible explanation

Sadly, the one explanation with no data whatsoever to back it was published in the New York Times. The paper quoted Joel Greiner, who said that economic considerations were not the real issue: “It is more a fear of intimacy and fear of marriage.”

Who’s Joel Greiner? He’s “the director of counseling for the Journey, an interdenominational church in the St. Louis area.” Couples in his congregation tell him they are living together while they save money, but he’s decided they’re just scared. That’s right – he is not citing scientific research. He’s not even pointing to what the people in his congregation have told him, except to say that he doesn’t believe it. This is what the New York Times uses to perpetuate its singlism. Singles are just scared of intimacy. Some guy said so.

(For previous discussions of this non-issue, check out Times reporter thinks single women fear intimacy; I’m afraid he’s wrong, and How to make even good findings sound bad.)

The explanation no publication suggested

So let’s see, is there any other possible reason why more and more Americans are living single? Has it occurred to any scholars or reporters that it is increasingly possible to live a full, complete, and meaningful life as a single person, and so a growing number of Americans are opting to do so? No! Apparently, the thought never occurred to them.

For that, you’d have to go to, say, someone whose thoughts about single life are not prefabricated. Take David, for example. He sent me one of these stories with a note about the low rate of marriage: “Why can’t it be because people simply prefer being single?”

Double Standard by Some Non Christian Childfree

I wrote about childfree people in a previous entry. I myself am childfree, but I’m also a social conservative, conservative Christian, and a Republican, unlike most CF (child free people) who seem to be left wing and atheist – and who are hostile towards people such as myself.

One glaring double standard I see on CF (child free) blogs and forums are CF Non Christians who complain about mothers who breastfeed. (I agree that breastfeeding should be done in private and not in public.)

Many CF seem to believe there is something sexual about nude breasts, even in the context of breastfeeding; maybe to an extent they are correct about that. (For example see posts in this thread about Time magazine’s breastfeeding cover at Bratfree Forum).

Here are a few quotes from that CF forum thread regarding the Time magazine breastfeeding story:

by loavesstillsuck

THE HORROR! The look of the self-satisfied moos [mothers] standing their with their adult children (well, practically) sucking on their udders. . . . . . . glaring into the camera lens as if to say “I dare you to think of me sexually with a kid sucking off of me!”

BLEAH! There is no word appropriate enough, save for BLEAAAAAAH and VOMMITTTT.

by gwddee

Yeah I noted the ‘lighten up” twit. What the f*uck? Yep, keep defending that pedophile [mother in photo breastfeeding son], assh*le.

by rudegubmintworker

Why can’t the mom pump her breast and give the brat her boob milk from a cup? Because she gets physical and/or sexual satisfaction from it, loves using it to control the brat. Whether she wants to admit it or not.

When I was almost age 4 (like this kid SUPPOSEDLY is) I was in pre-kindergarten and could already read (and had been formula fed). I can’t imagine leaving school where I read, drew numbers and stick figures to go suck on Mom’s tit. Not to mention – some kids even back in the seventies at age 3 and 4 were skilled in the art of teasing other kids. What happens of other kids get wind of the fact Suckley still nurses? He’ll become the victim of bullying.

There are many, many other similar quotes to those above at that site and at other CF sites, who are equating breastfeeding (or the photo of such on the Time cover) to pedophilia.

Many CF, though, do not believe there should be any or many limits on sexuality in other areas, and they don’t seem to spot their own hypocrisy in this.

Many of the Non Christian CF mock and ridicule Christians or conservatives who teach and believe sex should be for marriage only, teens should not be having sex, and that homosexuality is unnatural and sinful.

Continue reading “Double Standard by Some Non Christian Childfree”

Childfree Christians / Childfree childless

(click “more” to read the entire post)

I’ve visited a few blogs and discussion boards for people who are “childfree.”

Most childfree people bristle at being referred to as “childless,” since most of them never wanted to have kids and intentionally took steps to avoid having any, such as undergoing sterilization procedures.

The term “childless” signifies to them that they wanted kids but could not have them, as well as other unwanted connotations, so they dislike the term.

Before I discuss my views on these childfree sites, here is my background and views as they pertain to kids and other topics I see regularly brought up on childfree forums and blogs:

I do not have any children. I have never had children. I have never married. I wanted to be married and would still like to be married.

I’ve never felt totally comfortable with the idea of becoming pregnant and having a baby, but I was never totally opposed to having one of my own.

I do not hate children, but I don’t like most of them. Most children are irritating and too loud. Most teens are obnoxious and idiotic. I don’t think 99% of infants are cute.

I am pro-life; I do not support abortion, nor do I support homosexuality or the legalization of homosexual marriage.

I am a social conservative and a Republican.

Here are my experiences of visiting childfree blogs and forums…

While I can relate to many of the problems and situations described at some of these sites, such as The Childfree Life discussion board or Bratfree Forum, I am dismayed or put off by some of the comments and attitudes I see by some members.

There is quite a bit of profanity on those particular boards and on others like them;  there are jokes about killing or maiming kids/babies (implied); rude or cruel comments about people who did nothing to deserve it; many generalizations or gross misrepresentations or misunderstandings of conservative Christians.

Continue reading “Childfree Christians / Childfree childless”

Therapists and Whiners / Constant Complainers

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

I have two views on this topic – should you tell a constant whiner to put a cork in it, or indulge them?

On the one hand, it can get very annoying being around someone who whines (complains) constantly. I have a couple of internet friends who do this, two family members, and I’ve had a few coworkers guilty of regular whining.

With one family member in particular, I had to shut her down. After two years of listening to her endless, vicious complaining (it wasn’t even normal complaining, but very mean, negative complaining) mostly about her job and boyfriend.

To make matters worse this person chose to dump all her anger and issues on me in the same time frame I was in deep grieving for someone dear I had just lost that we were both related to.

I tried being supportive and listening to her endless whining and her vicious rants, but it was having a negative impact on me. I am prone to depression anyway, and with the grieving as well, I could not possibly handle listening to her hate-filled phone calls anymore on top of everything else.

So I told her I was not going to listen to her complain anymore about her job and other problems. I had to do it to save my sanity.

On the other hand, I like to talk to someone when I am going through a terrible time.

When I am depressed or angry, it makes me feel better to talk through my views and feelings. It helps me if someone just sits and listens as I discuss what I am feeling.

The sad thing is, most people refuse to perform this service for me, even though I do it for them.

Continue reading “Therapists and Whiners / Constant Complainers”

Nice Guys – the bitter single men who complain women don’t like nice men

This was a page on Buzzfeed; it contains adult language.

I too get tired of seeing bitter guys on blogs complain about how they’re so nice but women don’t want them – they say women (ALL women) only want mean, rude, jerks (which isn’t true of course).

I did not write the following material, it was all written by other people, but I am in agreement with most of it.
—————————–
From Buzzfeed:
The Not-So-Nice “Nice Guys” Of Online Dating
buzzfeed.com/annals/the-not-so-nice-nice-guys-of-online-dating

Author: Ouiser Boudreaux

BuzzFeed Contributor

Nice Guys are an internet standard. To hear them tell it, they are very mistreated! They show up on blogs to complain about how women don’t appreciate Nice Guys like themselves, because even though the Nice Guy is so very nice, women are too self-involved to see the Real Him. The Nice Guy believes he is held back by his intense Niceness.

The truth is, Nice Guys aren’t actually nice guys. They’re entitled jerks who think that if they’re nice to you, you’re obligated to spread. And if you don’t, you’re fodder for the Nice Guy’s extensive complaint box.
Continue reading “Nice Guys – the bitter single men who complain women don’t like nice men”

This Person Got Married ?

I sometimes wonder about people I see on TV or in magazines or on the web who are married… yet I’m still not.

I see people who are (to be blunt, sorry) physically unattractive in the extreme, really weird (not in a quirky, lovable way), or who are morbidly obese – and they’re married.

Meanwhile, I’m thin, college educated, intelligent, attractive, and still single.

Not that all these married people I am referring to are catches.

Here are some news stories which touch upon the subject (or are related):

Susanne Eman, 800-Pound Bride, Fitted For World’s Biggest Wedding Gown (VIDEO)
huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/07/800-pound-bride-susanne-eman_n_1498377.html

800-pound Bride Susanne Eman Fitted For Largest Wedding Dress

Why Do Hot Guys Date Ugly Girls?

5 Famous Guys Who Slid Way Down the Food Chain to Cheat
thesmokingjacket.com/humor/5-famous-guys-who-slid-way-down-the-food-chain-to-cheat

I’m sure the woman in the photo below is a perfectly nice person, and her groom there isn’t my idea of attractive, but it goes to show you even an obese woman can get a husband, while meanwhile, here I am, jogging five days a week to stay in shape (society tells me a man won’t want to look my way twice if I have a weight problem), and I’m still single. I really don’t understand the world.

Wedding Photo
Wedding photo of overweight bride with average weight groom


Christian Singles Never Marrieds – it’s okay to get your needs met

Christian Cliche’ (and it’s un-biblical) “Go to church to serve not be served”

Christian Singles Never Marrieds – it’s okay to get your needs met

(click the “more” or “continue reading” link to read the rest of the post)

Oh geeze, no. I totally am fed up and irritated by these kinds of views (this comes from Crosswalk’s site, (Link): “The Great Disappearing Singles Ministry“):

However, like many other things churches in North America do that aren’t prescribed in Scripture, maybe singles ministry should be how you serve your church, not how the church serves you.

This goes back to a concept I touched in (Link): a previous post.

Obviously, the Bible calls Christians to help other people and not be selfish, but there is nothing wrong or unscriptural about trying to get your own needs met.

A lot of Christians have this warped perspective that the Bible teaches they are to help only non-saved people or certain categories, such as widows, orphans, etc. However, the Bible advises Christians to help other Christians before trying to reach the unsaved (or homeless, widows, etc).

If the reason I choose a church is based on the lack of, or quality of, a singles ministry, that’s within my rights.
Continue reading “Christian Singles Never Marrieds – it’s okay to get your needs met”

Responding to the Cliche’ Jesus Is All You Need – Christian never married lonely single

From The Toughest Questions Singles Ask

3. If God is all I really need, why do I still yearn for something more?

While it’s certainly true Jesus is the ultimate source through which all our needs, relational and otherwise, are met, he meets those needs in diverse ways. Sometimes he does so directly, but often he does so indirectly through people and circumstances.

Many Scriptures—such as Genesis 2:18 and Ecclesiastes 4:9-12—point to the necessity of human companionship. In the Epistles alone there are more than 50 references to “one another”: “love one another” (1 Thessalonians 4:9); “forgive one another” (Ephesians 4:32); “serve one another” (Galatians 5:13). God places great value on our relationships. While our relationship with God is primary, we need each other, too.

Unfortunately, a lot of false guilt can stem from a failure to grasp this truth. Here’s what can happen. Let’s say someone counsels “Mary” to find total relational satisfaction in Jesus. She earnestly tries, but because God designed us for relationship, she fails. She then begins to wonder what’s wrong with her, why she can’t get close enough to God to satisfy her unmet relational needs. Now she’s left with a false belief that her relationship with God is flawed. So poor Mary feels like a failure at human relationships (presumably because she isn’t married) and a failure at her relationship with God. We need to work hard to set singles free from this unhealthy, untruthful cycle.

Article: My Savior My Spouse? – Is God or Jesus Your Husband Isaiah 54:5

Article: My Savior My Spouse? – Is God or Jesus Your Husband Isaiah 54:5

I agree with the author of this. I find it annoying when people try to cheer me up about my never married status by telling me “Jesus is your husband.” Oh please.

My Savior My Spouse? (Isaiah 54:5)

by Camerin Courtney

If you’re one of those singles who finds comfort in Isaiah 54:5—”For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is His name … “—you should probably stop reading this column and go reread that passage instead. I’ll catch you next time around.

But if you’re one of those singles who reads that verse with equal parts confusion and consternation, read on, kindred. You’re in good company.

Maybe part of what “bothers” me about this verse is the timing of when it’s quoted to those of us without a spouse—usually right after we’ve expressed loneliness, a desire to be married someday (perhaps someday soon), or sadness over the end of a relationship.

The quoters mean to be encouraging, I know, and sometimes this verse does offer a needed reminder that God is always with us; he’s a relationship constant in a world of frequent moves, shifting friendships, painful divorce. And he offers not just any relationship, mind you, but intimate relationship.

God desires the kind of close interaction with us that sparks comparison to that of a husband and wife. He’s not a distant, cold, ambivalent God; he’s an up-close, hands-on, how-was-your-day, cares-about-the-details kind of God. At least when we let him be that kind of God. And yes, sometimes hearing this verse reminds me of all these wonderful truths.

But most days, when this verse is directed specifically at singles, it can be guilt inducing. You feel lonely? Just cling to Jesus. You want a husband? Jesus already is your husband. Isn’t he enough for you?

Well, yes … and no. Yes, Jesus is my foundation, my savior, my hope. He’s the friend I chat with when my eyes first open in the morning, when I’m in the shower, when I’m driving to meet a friend for coffee, when I’m washing dishes in my pj’s.

Continue reading “Article: My Savior My Spouse? – Is God or Jesus Your Husband Isaiah 54:5”

Singleness and Scripture – responding to Christian myths about singleness

Written by a 40 year old women who’s never been married, has no kids:

Singleness and Scripture

by Lisa Harper

Although being single in America no longer is atypical (the latest US census reveals more single/divorced/widowed women than married ones), in the Christian subculture, singleness often seems an anomaly. I can’t count how many times church people have awkwardly asked me, “Do you have any children?” or “Where’s your husband?”

My favorite answer is, “My future husband’s lost and won’t stop to ask for directions.”

The quip usually prompts giggles and diverts attention from my lackluster dating life.

Sometimes I wonder if myths about Christians and singleness contribute to making women without a diamond ring on their left hand feel like misfits.

Let’s look at some of the faulty theology surrounding singleness, and get the Bible’s actual take on the subject.
Continue reading “Singleness and Scripture – responding to Christian myths about singleness”

Article by J. Watts: The Scandal of Singleness – singles never married christian

Excellent piece by Jackson Watts (I omitted the footnotes; you can visit the link “The Scandal of Singleness” to view them); click the “more” link to read the rest:

(Link): The Scandal of Singleness

Sometimes others know us better than we know ourselves. Though the world sees through a darkened lens, occasionally it observes something in Christians worth considering. Recently, a New York Times has done just that in exploring the bias in evangelicalism against hiring unmarried pastors [1].

Erik Eckholm recounts the case of one experienced pastor unable to find work after searching since 2009. According to Eckholm, most evangelical churches will never seriously consider a single pastor for fear that (a) he cannot relate well to married couples, or (b) his sexual orientation is in question. While it would be easy to target search committees for their myopia, the data shows that this bias extends throughout many evangelical denominations.

This trend represents the concerns of Christians about the state of marriage in America. Many publications have noted the fact that unmarried adults are now the largest demographic in America. According to the last census, nearly 50% of American adults are unmarried—the most in history. It is in this vein that evangelical theologian Al Mohler responds to Eckholm’s findings: “Both the logic of Scripture and the centrality of marriage in society,” he said, justify “the strong inclination of congregations to hire a man who is not only married but faithfully married” [2].

So, is this bias against singles, especially in ministry, justified? Is the privileged status of marriage over singleness Scriptural? Is singleness as scandalous as some imply? I contend that the church’s witness is hindered insomuch as it ignores or belittles faithful expressions of singleness in the church.

Continue reading “Article by J. Watts: The Scandal of Singleness – singles never married christian”