Skip to main content

Taking the "Sin" out of being Single

No, being single is not a sin. That's not what this is about. Also, if you expect this to be a rant about how our culture devalues those who find themselves single well into their adult lives, you are wrong. Similarly, you will be disappointed if you are looking for someone to commiserate with regarding being single. However, I hope you will keep reading because what I want to do is make you think about being single in a different way.

Let me get this out of the way. I am single and unless I am going to be a centenarian, I am past middle age. There are some things that I am going to avoid like the plague while rambling here about singleness. I am not going to bash marriage. This isn't about being bitter because I am single. Am I happy being single? Sometimes. In fact, there are many days I am pretty relieved by it. However, this isn't a rant about learning to be happy in your singleness either. I want to avoid the appearance that being single is fun or the best life. There are many people who are single and it is agonizing for them. I generally loathe Pollyanna types anyway. Singleness is difficult and has many pitfalls. What I do want to write about one pitfall you may not have considered. Selfishness.

I think marriage is probably the greatest tool God uses outside of Himself to conform believers to His image. Marriage is a sacred thing. It is a good thing. It is perfectly acceptable to want to be married. Keeping our balance as believers is crucial and Christ is always the fulcrum. Those who have been hurt terribly and disdain the very idea of marriage and those who make marriage their idol are equally guilty of losing their balance before God. How do we know if we've lost our balance? I ask myself these questions. "Am I willing to sin to get it" and "Am I willing to sin if I don't get it."

Yesterday was a bad day for me because lots of bitterness and resentment came flooding out of me. I was ticked because God hasn't given me what I want and I behaved like a petulant child. If I am to be brutally honest, I liked it. Imagine that! The sovereign God of the universe isn't jumping to fulfill my desires. Apparently He isn't aware that it is all about me. It can be about Him some other time--like when He's made me happy. Yup, I was in a full on, foot stomping, fist shaking, arrogant tirade against the God I claimed to love and serve. Worse yet, I wasn't the least bit embarrassed by my behavior let alone repentant. And then it happened... a brother in Christ told me to straighten up and quit complaining about God's providence. He pulled out the big guns and made reference to Titus 2, reminding me of my responsibility to act as a role model.


His exhortation was effective for a couple of reasons. First of all he exhorted me with truth from the Word. Secondly, he knows me. He knows some of the trials I have faced and he knows that I know better. This wasn't some stranger trying to slap me and tell me "Get over yourself!" Or worse yet, someone who wanted to pat me on the head and tell me I had every right to be mad while spouting some nonsense about my self-esteem. He gave me the truth right between the eyes and it brought me to repentance and made me think.

How did a woman who knows better allow herself to pitch a fit and pout before Almighty God? What had gone so terribly wrong in my heart that I thought being mad at Him was a good idea? You may be asking what does any of this have to do with being single? Simply this: Living singly helped me cultivate an "it's all about me" mindset. Being single means I don't have to compromise with anyone in my home. I get to decide what I will eat, how high the heat should be turned on, what I will watch on TV, what color to paint the walls, where I can leave my things. It is a subtle trap. I fell in and don't even notice. Iron sharpens iron because of friction and in my home, it's about me. I do not have opposition in the form of another person with different likes and dislikes. My kids are grown. My space is mine. I have built a Rosemarie friendly environment. I claim to serve God and yet I am living like it really is all about me! I let my guard down and what crept in was a self-indulgent, self-focused, self-pleasing life style that is contrary to the way God has declared I should live my life. (Phil 2:3-5)

I was angry with God because I forgot my place as the pot and His place as the Potter. (Isaiah 29:16 Romans 9:21) It's a tendency we all have and will continue to have as long as there is sin. Do you know that there are more warnings in the Word for us to guard our hearts and minds against our own flesh than anything else? Our sinful natures scream to be out from under His authority and to be our own authorities. Living life as a single man or woman can magnify this tendency exponentially if we let it.


Popular posts from this blog

Procrastination- Propaganda- Profundity

When I am studying something that bothers me, I do just about anything I can to stall. In doing so I stumble upon a lot of odd information. I love history and any student of history will tell you that most everything we are familiar with has had an odd beginning. Sometimes there will be different odd stories regarding the genesis of a myth, folkway or idiom. Somewhere in the mix the truth can be found. You just have to look.

While I lived in Australia I went to a visit a little town on the Murray River called Echuca. Echuca has a wonderful history and boasts the largest collection of paddle steamers in the world. It also has a coach house and carriage museum. It was during my visit to the carriage museum that I was told the origin of the expression to 'drop off to sleep.' According the docent, the carriage cheap seats were the ones outside and on the back. You had a platform to sit on and a rope or rail to hang onto for dear life. During a long trip a poor unfortun…

Sleep Snorkel Surprise

Summer colds. Blech! Is there anything more annoying that being too hot and having your nose run like Bridalveil Fall? Probably but nothing comes to mind right now. My nose is red and raw from all the sneezing and blowing and I have been using Puff's. Imagine if I had some generic sandpaper tissue instead? I could probably die from the pain. Death by runny nose rough tissue rhinoplasty.
I went to bed very early last night because I was feeling miserable. I have sleep apnea and therefore sleep with a bipap machine that keeps from crumping in my sleep. Now, I love my little bipap machine. I got it after my near death experience a few years ago when the nurses in the ICU turned me in to the doctor because I never slept. Once I was released from the hospital they sent me for a sleep study. I had to do it twice because they wait for you to fall to sleep and monitor your breathing in order to decide if you need a machine. Generally they try different types of machines and differe…

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome / Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder FAS/FASD and the Need for Biblical Counseling Material

On January 31, 2008, I wrote a post on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FAS/FASD).  That was nearly six years ago. A lot has happened in our world during those six years. I honestly expected to find some biblical counseling information on FAS/FASD.  Unfortunately, among those who are foremost in providing resources for biblical counselors; those who publish scholarly articles in the Journal of Biblical Counseling; provide resources for NANC, and write books that help us look at the problems in our lives through a biblical lens,  there has yet to be an article, sermon or book written specifically on how to help someone with FAS/FASD.  I am hoping using their information will lead them to this article and they will consider changing this. We need material on FAS/FASD from a biblical perspective.

Recently I have been contacted by a couple of different people who stumbled upon my blog looking for biblical counseling resources specific to parenting children with…