Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Two Wrong Attitudes | Single People are People Too


Travis said...

The last time I read that passage it struck me that it is an extremely anti-cultural sentiment. Consider a culture with a tradition of arranged marriages. Now consider that a marriage is possibly the last hope a family has to improve its status in life. Now imagine that you're a young single believer in a non-believing family in this culture. You're under the pressure to obey and elevate your family's status with your marriage yet still somehow follow God with whole-hearted devotion in your single years (or single life). The value of singleness in the Biblical worldview would be hard explain or understand with these cultural backdrops.

David said...

Stephen, it sounds as though you've had some negative experience as a single in church. Hopefully the attitudes about singleness you've encountered are not as predominant in the body as a whole as you seem to feel they are.
I can only speak from my experience in our church. We have had singles in our church that were single for many years and I don't believe any looked down upon them in any way, much less because they were single. I know they longed to be married, but were content with where God had them.
We also have some that are single because of divorce, but they are active and minister in the body like any who desire to (married or otherwise).
I'm sorry if you've experienced feeling the two attitudes you noted in your article. Jesus did not make those differentiations and He was definitely a single in the church.

Chris Krycho said...

Travis, that's insightful. I hadn't thought of that, but it's true: intentional singleness then was even more unusual then than it is now. (I emphasize intentional because the flipside of the coin Stephen's writing about is just how many young singles are just goofing around. As I wrote a while back, however, I continue to suspect that a great deal of that is because of the low expectations the church offers.

David, unfortunately, from what I have seen, heard in talking with others, and read, the unfortunate reality is that what Stephen describes is not just common. It's normal (a horrifying reality).

Anonymous said...

I am single and I agree with your post. I am seeking the Lord with my whole heart and though I greatly desire a husband and a family of my own, I am striving to walk in undivided devotion to the Lord. I have yet to be a part of a body that seeks to incorporate all areas of life effectively. There is always a great divide somewhere. People who may strongly disagree with your post are either not single and cannot remember when they were or they are a part of a body that is indeed one body. Praise the Lord for that!

Again, thank you for bringing awareness to this issue.

Pillar on the Rock said...


Thanks for joining the discussion. It’s always great to have new voices offering comments!

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Again, thanks for offering your perspective. We look forward to interacting more with you in the future!

Stephen Carradini said...

@Travis: I hadn't thought about that either. Do you think that anti-cultural sentiment is a good thing, a bad thing, or a neutral thing? Should we be anti-cultural in this particular way, or in other ways, or in general?

@David: I have had some negative experiences, but I am currently in a church that supports and encourages me as a single. I wrote about one of my very positive experiences in the last point of my original post. Also, I applaud and commend your church for helping singles to feel content with God's call on their lives! That is an incredibly difficult part of life for any single. Thank you for caring for the singles in your church in that way.

@Anonymous: You're welcome. Keep fighting the good fight. God is not a trickster or a scam artist; he is working all for our good - even if it's hard to see sometimes. Also, I agree thoroughly with all the sentiments in the last two sentences of your first paragraph, both in lament and praise.

Jaimie Krycho said...

Stephen, thanks for the post! I'm curious if you have some more ideas (in addition to the one you experienced in housing the group of missionaries) about how the church can better involve singles in full, meaningful ministry, and minister TO them. I do think it's hard for non-single people to tackle a problem that they don't remember experiencing (or never experienced).

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