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jane cade

March 08, 2014  10:32pm

I met the most amazing person over 12 months ago as i was walking in the park and i found out in september last year that he was a single member of the clergy. I dont attend church but one of my good freinds that does said, if you like him why dont you suggest going out for lunch as she had seen me come out of a violent marriage 18 years previous and as she said i had a spark and it was a good thing. We went out to lunch on a weekly basis and the chemisty was there, i let him do his thing and had the odd text through the day and dually returned them. He went away for new year and the texts slowed down, i didnt see him for the whole of january and in the first week of february he came over and said i cant see you anymore, i am to busy with church life and dont have the time to dedicate to a relationship. I was mortified. It seems as if someone has stopped him from going out socially with me. We are both single, i am an upstanding member of the community and a good person.

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brett anderson

August 15, 2013  11:20am

what a great article - i got married quite late and so i have a huge heart for singles and also have a bunch of older single friends and 'get' a lot of their frustration with how singleness is treated or not treated - good to see this positive directive look although not at the expense of what is good and healthy... i actually used Singleness as one of the topics on my Taboo Topics [topics rarely spoken of in church or even beyond] and have some amazing stories that were shared here - would dig to add yours if you are still single and would be up to it - http://brettfish.wordpress.com/2012/09/04/taboo-topics-singleness-intro

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Dan Thomas

July 24, 2013  5:01pm

While good to see that some people like and are ok with singleness, not all fall into that category. Paul was clear in I Cor 7:2-3 ... if they cannot contain, better to marry than be aflame with passion. We are created as sexual beings. The majority of people have no business repressing the urges and desires just so to present "I'm single & happy" ... no they are not. Inside they are miserable. Churches just don't get that most singles cannot stand being single. As singles leave in disgust that churches focus on marrieds, then as divorce eats away, membership will decline. Pastors seem to preface sermons with buzzwords like "Marrieds", "Husbands", "wives" ... singles are excluded. I no longer blame un-marrieds who leave the church. Why come weekly & have it rammed in their face to feel bad about being un-married? I am pursuing getting re-married and could care less what the church thinks. Sad, but then churches will welcome me with open arms.

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Crab Grass

April 13, 2013  10:12pm

Married people commit sexual sin (many Christian married couples admit to having affairs, using prostitutes, or looking at dirty photos on the internet), but married couples almost never get "sexual purity" lectures. I'm in my early 40s and still haven't had sex yet, because I've never married, yet most preachers assume all Christian singles my age have had sex (or are having sex), so we get hit with the "purity" sermons. It's annoying and condescending.

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Wendy Willmore

February 16, 2013  12:34am

Amen Anna. Thank-you for your writing. I would agree that there is great blessing in living in community as a single. As a 37 year old never married woman, I have lived both alone and in community, and find the former a much less healthy place. I also agree that singles ministry is largely neglected by the church. This is very unfortunate as we are a large and often poorly tapped resource for the church. I would advocate more churches cooperating to form communities where singles (and others?) can live, pray and minister together. This also frees up more resources to be used in ministry as anyone can tell you it is expensive to live alone. I know, this is monasticism without the vows. I can't tell you how many times I've seriously thought about becoming Catholic just so I could join a convent (I have resisted so far because of a few doctrinal issues and a reasonably mobile lifestyle.) Someone needs to start more ministries like this.

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Jim Ricker

February 15, 2013  7:47pm

Negatives are never a solution because a solution is always a positive. God doesn't say "STOP!" like Dr. Phil, He provides the way to be made BETTER than before which is being overfilled, not having something taken away. Taking away something is not the answer, it is the filling of the void already there that satisfies the soul. Repeating "don't eat the cake" over and over is not the answer.

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Chip Watkins

February 14, 2013  10:26pm

I was not engaged until I was 28, and though I wanted to be married, being single after college and during law school gave me significant opportunities to engage in ministry with high school and college students that I would not have been available for had I been married. Being single is not to be a period of sitting on a shelf, waiting for God to bring Mr. or Mrs. right into your life. By engaging in whatever ministry God has called you into while you are single, you will advance the Kingdom, and that ministry may (or may not) be the means God uses to introduce your to your future spouse.

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Tim Fall

February 14, 2013  2:59pm

Great line here, Anna: "But the race is run looking forward - no matter how badly you ran the last mile." That's a good observation for the married as well as the single people in the church. On remaining single and developing friendships with people of all ages, my Dad is an example of another way that can happen. My Mom died when Dad was only 50. He never remarried, but at the age of 89 he can point to tons of rich friendships with men and women of al ages over the past four decades. Cheers, Tim (timfall.wordpress.com)

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Rachel Stephan Simko

February 14, 2013  1:18pm

I totally agree that we need to have a shift in the conversation towards singles. Besides the whole "Don't" conversation, the church is also guilty of upholding marriage as if it's the pinnacle of everyone's life. Instead of saying, "WHEN you get married," we should be saying, "If," and also emphasizing the ways God can use us when we are single. And hey, as a side note: you won't necessarily have to give up communal living if you get married. My husband and I lived in community with other families for the first 2 1/2 years of our marriage. :) evenonesparrow.blogspot.com

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Hugh Wetmore

February 14, 2013  1:18pm

It is refreshing to have a single lady explore the advantages of singleness in a positive way that is wider than simply romantic relationship fixation. This brings about a Christian and Biblical balance. Balance is the key word. Because of the sinful nature of humanity, the temptations to immorality are so strong for most singles that negative prohibitions must be clearly in place, along with the positive angel which Anna emphasises. The OT and the NT are strong in their negative sexual prohibitions simply because the flesh is strong in its urging of sexual indulgence. Our modern hedonist culture needs the Christian message of self-control and abstinence outside of marriage simply because it is so rare in our permissive culture. But, yes, let's also portray the positives which Anna commends.

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