Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Singleness

I can't really write about singleness with any authority, no more than I can write about being a woman.

Reasons to be single

1. You have had hurtful and abusive relationships and just can't face another one! This involves trust and letting your guard down you have done that so many times and it hasn't worked out, you have decided to remain single.

2.You don't want to be single you just can't find the right partner. This isn't being choosy this is just the way it is, especially if you are fishing in the christian pond.

You're fed up with people quoting trite little saying to help you "delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart" etc... Actually being single as a christian lady appears harder to me than being single as a christian man, there are definitely more females than men. Then you have to find a man with the Holy Hotness!! which is also difficult. At times like this would the church do well to revert back to polygamy? Obviously I jest, but at this point I can see why females decide to fish in the non-christian pond, especially if the body clock is ticking and you want to get on with producing babies.

3. You have chosen to be single, you feel that you can get by on your own, you're not hurt, you're not damaged you have just decided this is the way it is going to be. You don't fancy having babies, you have a fulfilled life and you enjoy your own company. You feel you can better fulfil your life purpose as a single person. Fair play.

The church and singleness

So much is offered for youth and couples, but not singles.
If you're single for too long people will inevitably question your sexuality!
Age doesn't help, in church, as in the rest of life, the older people get the more coupled up and family-fied they become. They then tend to spend time with similar people.
Singleness should not preclude you from any form of ministry, but church leadership teams to tend to look for couples!

I would also like to include this from Sheena "I would even say there's a stigma as a single woman, and the sense that a woman's life is in limbo and just treading water until her husband comes along. The most freeing experiences I've had in the community of Christ were the ones where my gifts and abilities were acknowledged and I was given the space to step up and use them freely." 


Singleness is not a curse if it's a choice, but I would imagine if it's not a choice singleness could at times equate to loneliness.

I know that there are intelligent vibrant, energetic, gifted people out there who are great fun to be with, who have depth and are really interesting. At times they are lonely, they don't want pity for their occasional bouts of loneliness, but those of us who aren't single do have to look out for them and remember this factor. 

None of this is meant in anyway to patronising. It's all about inclusivity, the community of Christ has to be inclusive.

6 comments:

Sheena said...

Thanks for sharing these thoughts. It's going on a limb a bit, I'm sure, but I totally agree with what you said. I just turned 36 and I'm in the "Haven't found the Holy Hotness yet" group.

Most of the time I've learned to be content by being thankful for the things I have in my life that wouldn't be part of my life if I were married and raising kids. But that's not to say I don't occasionally feel a bit down about not sharing my life with someone.

You are right about the church and singles. I would even say there's a stigma as a single woman, and the sense that a woman's life is in limbo and just treading water until her husband comes along. The most freeing experiences I've had in the community of Christ were the ones where my gifts and abilities were acknowledged and I was given the space to step up and use them freely.

So yeah...thanks for saying this. :o)

Nick Ashman said...

I'd also add that singleness offers freedom to follow God with little in the way of ties that might stop you going - family etc.

I am single for a number of reasons; some are positive other negative, but I try to use where I am to the best of my ability and I know there are many things I couldn't do if I was married. That being said there are many things I can't do as a single as well.

I think some of us might not be called to marriage, I know right now I'm in no kind of place to settle down. I'm 27.

belfastkate said...

If relationships are ever talked about in church, they are always talked about in the context of marriage/singleness. Surely being a church community means having a variety of relationships in your life, regardless of your marital status?

I guess when you are single in your late 20s/30s you get the opportunity to appreciate the benefit of different relationships - I have 2 spiritual mothers, friends who married with/without kids, friends with teenagers, friends who are single in their 30s, friends who are single and students. I'm becoming a fuller person for it.

Unfortunately, the message from our culture and from the church is about finding "the one". I think what we need to be searching for is "the 5", "the 8" or "the 12" (in non-polygamous ways ....)

It might take some of the pressure of a few marriages to, if people weren't looking to their other half to meet all their needs.

As Marcus puts it in About a Boy

" I don't think couples are the future. You need more than that. You need backup."


P.S.Can't wait to hear your thoughts on women ....

Mie said...

Awesome post! You so caught it! I wish Church and people would take singles more into account, and people with families not forget the single people. Someone once likened single people to widows in an article I read.(and what does Bible say about widows/widowers..?) Luckily there are SOME people who don't just associate with people similar to them. Anyway, thank you for this post!! Hats off!!

:)

Mimo, Finland

Poppy said...

"The Holy Hotness!" I must get this printed on a t-shirt immediately!

I'm single and in my 40's and I feel like I'm definitely starting to get those funny looks from people at church. I think most assume that I've been divorced. When they find out I've never been married, usually the next thing that comes out of their mout is the following question - "Why aren't you married?" I think some people think they're paying me a compliment. But can you read the subtle undertones in that question? They might as well be asking me "What's wrong with you?" "Why does no one want to marry you?"

Next comes the advice...These are some of my favorite un-solicited pieces of advice I've gotten about how to not be single anymore!

1. Are you putting yourself out there?!
2. As soon as you stop thinking about it, that's when it'll happen.

Great Post Brian!

Big Chris said...

again your finger is on the pulse, Man, He speaks through you doesn't he? great stuff :-)