Archive for June, 2015

GOD Loves the Single Too!- (For the Christian) Is There Life Apart from Marriage?

Posted in God loves the single on June 24, 2015 by xybatt

manalone     51% of the U. S. population is single. If you look at church budgets, ministry planning and focus you would believe this to be a false statement.

A recently divorced man stated, ” I am having a difficult time living in a single world. Everywhere I go I see couples.” Granted in this time and age, many “couples” are not legally married but the people involved still have someone to love and share their lives with. Not a spouse but a significant other, a partner, a companion. And regardless of faith or emotion, a person will still feel lonely. And, even now in 2015, most church activities are geared towards married couples. Holidays come and family is emphasized. TV laughs at marriage. The alternative lifestyles, living together without planning for marriage and one time hookups are what the world is living. It seems even harder for the committed Christian single to remain content and alone, especially after a divorce of death of a spouse. Honestly, when I first entered into singles ministry (unpaid volunteer of course) I was shocked that most of the singles in our churches had a sex life! Really! Some seemed surprised that I was actually celibate. One man was living with a woman and their child and looking for a Christian woman on the sly. I kid you not. And, from experience, I can attest to the challenges of being single and alone. One Christian sister told me that her preacher insinuated how peaceful she seemed when they bumped into each other at a restaurant. He was with his wife and kids and said that he “envied” her quiet time with a book and dinner. She “envied” that he had a family and she was sick and tired of time with a book.

So, what is the answer? Marriage isn’t the complete answer. Many married individuals are frustrated and unhappy. Marriage brings a different set of challenges. Add children and a lot of stress is present. Celibacy is a challenge. In Judges, we find a whole group of people that God had requested to keep a celibate life. The purpose of this celibacy was that they might devote their lives solely to the service of God and his people. Some today may practice a similar lifestyle for similar reasons. The married person always has the added responsibility of family.

God wants you to do his will. In Genesis 24, we find Rebekah awaiting the arrival of Isaac. She was willing to meet him and thankfully he was worth having! We see David awaiting the will of the Father but also impatient and choosing for himself. Mikal and Bathsheeba brought much grief but a good woman, Abigail brought peace. Remember, God knows all about you and cares about what you do. He understands your feelings. Hebrews 4:15, 16 says: “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way….” We have a god who cares about us in every detail and who wants to be involved in your every moment. He cares when you sit alone with a book waiting for your dinner or when you are stressed by the family. He cares when you lie awake at night alone. He knows how it feels to be rejected. He cares so much that the scriptures tell of his relentless desire to reconcile with us. He cares so much that he allowed Jesus to go to the cross for our sins.

Yes, there is a life apart from marriage.

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God Loves the Single Too! -What am I doing here?

Posted in God loves the single on June 15, 2015 by xybatt

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life” is a popular and significant slogan. Today, when I awoke, it was if I were born again, with new life and new opportunities. Then I showered and went to work……

You might ask yourself if this is the life you want to continue. Are you the person you intend to be? Is there a significant role for you as a single person in society? You have been created in the image of God, now what are you going to do with all this value he has placed on your being? You may be asking yourself these very questions. You might be at a crossroad where you are seeking directions, answers or a higher purpose. Or, you might be at a standstill. Other questions could be related to being too old, too young, too settled, too attached or too single.

What are you going to do with your life? Some of you will always be single. Some of you have the gift of contentment in being single and others are just single. It can be frustrating. Most of you will marry. The challenges will not stop with marriage and new concerns will creep in. There will always be something to overcome and also an opportunity to make a difference. Don’t you want to make a difference? An impact? You can! Jesus told us (in Matthew 17: 20) :if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, nothing will be impossible for you.”

There was a man in the “Old Testament” who parallels our need for God’s guidance. Remember Moses? Moses was living in the wilderness in a foreign country when he saw a burning bush. He identified that God had come calling and in Exodus 3:4 he stated “Here I am”. We can start with that statement. Turn our life over to God and see what he wants to do with us. Moses was used to challenge Pharoah and free millions of Israelites, then lead them across a wilderness to the promised land.

It all starts with a little faith. Evaluate your life. If you are content then thank God and serve him as a single. You may be content not married but want a different job or a better economic state. Explore your options. Do you need to go back to school? Do you need a budget? You could always start small and take a class to see if you are on the right track. Are you living where you need to be? How are your social skills? Are you emotionally and physically ready to meet someone new and consider dating that could lead to marriage? Use your single time to prepare to share more of your life, whether single or married.

Remember the woman with the bleeding disorder? She had hemorrhaged for 12 years and she had enough of that. She got dressed and went to find Jesus. Even though in a state of uncleanness, she reached out and touched the hem of his garment. Life changed immediately! It all started with a change of attitude and routine!

You are a person of value! You as a single person have been freed of some obligations for a purpose. Don’t bury your talents in the past or sit on them waiting for the future. Live for today and with the help of God make plans for your life.

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life”

 

God loves the Single Too! Are you valuable?

Posted in Uncategorized on June 4, 2015 by xybatt

“It’s not worth it. I can’t go on!”

“It’s all my fault and I can’t help it”

“He/She is better off without me!”

“My ex thinks I am worthless”

“I lost the only person who I can really love”

In many years of singles ministry and counseling, I have heard all of these statements. Men and women are living in an environment that screams to them that they don’t amount to much. A divorce tells you that you failed. A death of a loved one destroys your heart. Not finding your “soul mate” makes you wonder if you are worth having.

A self image of worth is a vital prelude to life. Some persons live the single life by choice but most live alone because of circumstance. Our feelings of self worth are formed early in life. Mom and Dad can build us up or tear us down. Our friends, classmates and associates either build us up or tear us down. Later life experiences are measures against what we learn when we are young. If we live in an environment of praise and have some measure of success, then our self esteem is enhanced. If we live with constant criticism, disappointment and failure, our ego is defeated.

” it is better to dwell on the corner of a housetop then to live with a contentious women…..” (same for men) Proverbs 21:9, 19

Our philosophy of life and religion effects our self worth. Some ideals of life and theology lend an atmosphere of growth, flexibility and esteem, while others tie down and frustrate by imposing rigid rules of behavior which impossible to live by. Jesus criticized the Pharisees for doing this. They had a rule for everything, even the amount of herbs to tithe but did not honor important matters: justice, mercy and faithfulness. It is unfortunate that the church often drags down the spirit of the seeker rather than boosting their morale.

In John 17:23, we are told by Jesus “you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me”. Romans 5:7 tells us that even though we are sinners, Jesus died for us. Do we have value? Yes, we do. Jesus said so….