Tuesday, September 15, 2009

singleness and the old maid

I really like this article on singleness

I took this out of a blog I found interesting and pursued it back to the original article. I lifted a few paragraphs.

Even though I had somewhat attended church before salvation I was starting to justify sexual immorality something that is no big deal. Single woman greatly outnumber single men in church so why not.. that kind of thing. It would make my family happy for me to be with someone. They would not mind me living with someone. I had gotten really sick of the stories from church about the aunt that got married in her 70's. Be content... all that other crap.. Besides in Minnesota.. no ones Ever confronts anyone in church..who would know?
I know marriage is not the end all. I have had many friends get divorce. But still.. I am so tired of being out of place in society...

Pursuing Marriage Is The Only Way To Get Married

According to the National Marriage Survey, 86 percent of singles want to marry. So it is unhelpful to mentor such Christian singles with platitudes like "God is all you need," or "just focus on Christ," or "the church is your family."

These truisms, taken alone, are of course indisputable. God is our all-sufficient, all-satisfying Creator who withholds no good thing from those who walk uprightly (Ps. 84:11). The church is indeed the antitype to which biological families merely point (Eph. 3:14-15, Matt. 12:49-50), hence the Scriptural language of the "household of faith" (e.g. Gal. 6:10).

But the problem with using these phrases in isolation is that we end up overlooking the fact that God uses means to bring about His intended ends. "He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord" (Prov. 18:22) — but he finds her (no fancy Greek here — the he refers to the groom, not to God).

Only with regard to getting married do we sometimes ignore or overlook our responsibility to act. We all know that we don't get college degrees by "waiting on the Lord." We generally don't get jobs that way either: "Unemployed? Just be content and He'll provide." We don't even get dinner that way. "You want a hamburger? Be careful not to idolize beef."

Holding Truths In Tension

So how do we pass between Scylla and Charybdis in addressing singles on the topic of marriage? We must simultaneously hold several truths in tension: An essential aspect of loving singles is being open to helping them in the process toward marriage, while recognizing:

* our relationship with Christ is more important than our marital state
* some singles are uniquely gifted to remain single for greater kingdom effectiveness
* many singles struggle profoundly with loneliness, lust, fornication, and the like, and welcome (or should welcome) loving, gracious, and balanced input on the process toward marriage from Christians who care about their souls and their bodies
* for most, marriage will be a means of profound sanctification, and they ought to responsibly (and diligently) move in this direction even as they embrace other adult responsibilities
* just as God ordains the ends, He ordains the means. The means may include overcoming your fear and telling a girl how you feel.7 They may include giving a guy a chance, even though you grew up seeing your parents go through a divorce, and you've closed your heart like a shell.

In community with God's people, singles can discern their calling and (where appropriate) pursue marriage honorably. May God bless and help us all — single or married — as we strive to live for His glory.

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