Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Singleness- A Gift or a Curse?

This has been a topic of conversation in my singles ABF class the last few weeks. Our pastor just finished up a series called Homefront Alliance- and as the name suggests it was geared toward married couples/families. So, where did that leave us (the singles)? Well, as it turned out- there were so many lessons that were applicable to where we are in our current states.

I'll be honest, never, in all of my years did I think I would be 35 and still single- with no option of anything beyond that in sight. In my previous limited thinking- I KNEW that if I followed God, did what he asked me to do, and lived a life for Him then I would be married in a timely manner. Guess what, God's timing is obviously not my timing. So, through this singleness I have worked through several emotions/thoughts and now look at it through completely different eyes- hopefully God's eyes.

1.) The gift of singleness- one thing you hear over and over in the church is the gift of marriage. If marriage is a gift- so is singleness. We were told that the Greek word for gift is charisma- which literally translated means any special grace conferred by God on an individual. It's also been written this way: Charisma meaning "gift," "of/from/favored by God/divine.

So, what does that mean for me? That I have been given grace for the place where I am. In my case- in my singleness.

2.) Contentment- this is not an easy thing to come by and for me- contentment simply means resting in HIM and knowing that He is my rock. If I build my foundation on Him (the wise man building on the rock comes to mind) then I will stand strong and protected against the storm. If I build my foundation on the sand then I will crumble when the storms come.

3.)Blessings- so many blessings have come out of me being single. I have been able to travel when I want to, go on mission trips that were lengthy with no thought to family left behind (and by family I mean husband and kids as those I traveled with thought of), ability to work my schedule to help a friend in need, etc.

I'll end with a quote from a book I have been reading. It's called The Woman of Mystery by Hayley DiMarco

"When you are waiting for love to come your way, you have the opportunity to prepare yourself not only physically and mentally but also spiritually. Paul talks about how much easier it is to serve God when you're single than it is when you have the cares of a marriage to deal with (see 1 Corinthians 7:32-34). Your single years offer a world of spiritual opportunities, and what you do with that time will affect your future marriage. If you neglect your spiritual growth and instead obsess over finding love, you will end up squandering precious time that could have been invested into your spirit."


Bill (cycleguy) said...

Well, my oldest daughter, I read this when you first posted it but didn't comment because we had talked and you knew how I felt. but after your post on my blog I thought it would be good to just add this: singleness is not a curse! If that is the case there are a lot of cursed people in the Christian world. Lisa Harper. Rebecca St. James. Kathy Troccoli. Luci Swindoll. Ancient believers. No where does it say in the Scripture that a single person is a second class citizen. I defy that young "pot-stirrer" to find one. He won't. I know you had your heart set at an early age of being married and being a mom. Neither has come to be (glad you got the order right). LOL God has blessed you with so much that a married person couldn't possibly experience. Be blessed honey. I love you much.

Ike said...

Isaiah 56:1-7

Thus says the Lord: “Keep justice, and do righteousness, for soon my salvation will come, and my deliverance be revealed. 2 Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who holds it fast, who keeps the Sabbath, not profaning it, and keeps his hand from doing any evil.” 3 Let not the foreigner who has joined himself to the Lord say, “The Lord will surely separate me from his people”; and let not the eunuch say, “Behold, I am a dry tree.” 4 For thus says the Lord: “To the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths, who choose the things that please me and hold fast my covenant, 5 I will give in my house and within my walls a monument and a name better than sons and daughters; I will give them an everlasting name that shall not be cut off. 6 “And the foreigners who join themselves to the Lord, to minister to him, to love the name of the Lord, and to be his servants, everyone who keeps the Sabbath and does not profane it, and holds fast my covenant— 7 these I will bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer; their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.”

God promises spectacular blessings and gives an extraordinary calling to those who remain single in Christ. The blessings are better than the blessings of marriage and children, and the calling is uniquely fitted to display truth about Jesus Christ that shines more clearly through singleness than through marriage and childrearing. To be single in Christ is not a falling short of God’s best, but a path of Christ-exalting obedience that many are called to walk.

Tami said...

I guess I should have been more explicit- I do NOT look at it as a curse- I definitely look at it as a gift.

That said- Dad- I did have my heart set on it but I also know that at the time I was not delighting myself as I should have. Do I fall short of that at times- yes I do but I also know that the closer I draw to him the more my desires align with his.

Ike- thank you so much for the encouragement. :)

Dusty Rayburn said...

Your dad sent me this way via his post today...

As I read your musings on singleness, I could not help but think about Tommy Nelson's study on the Song of Solomon.
At one point during the video series, Tommy states that first and foremost, we should be pursuing a love relationship with God not with man. He continues by saying we need to give all of our efforts toward running towards and with God. As we run, in God's time, if it is His will, He will bring someone along to run beside us.

Contrary to our culture's thinking, and as you stated in your post: Singleness is not a curse and marriage is not the source of our fulfillment.

Sorry for rambling on.My wife and I were late comers to marriage and I remember all of the pressures and sympathies I received because I was still single in my early 30's.

Anonymous said...

What a great, to-the-point way to describe the blessing of singleness. Thank you Tami. I hope more people can see and walk in this gift, learning to be content in every situation because we really can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. I love how you've stated this here. Thank you. (I was sent over by your dad as well). :)

Tami said...

Dusty- You know- I have seen that series (it's been a while though) it might be time for it again. May have to borrow it from church to go through it. Thanks for the encouragement.

Jason- today was a rough day (with my job- something happened first thing that made it a very "off" day) and your post encouraged me greatly!