- When SINGLENESS is Your Station
- Singleness, a Calling and a Unique OPPORTUNITY
You may not be married but you are not alone.
Only two men in history were truly alone: Adam before the creation of Eve, and Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins orbiting the back side of the moon in the command module while Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked the lunar surface. On the dark side of the moon Collins had no contact with his friends on the moon and no contact with people on earth. In the darkness of space, he was alone.
But single people are not alone! They have parents and siblings, cousins and friends, coworkers and community members.
Let’s consider some reflections that may help create a greater context for understanding the life of a single women.
Singleness as a calling
For some people, singleness is a calling.
I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord. (1 Corinthians 7:32-35)
Paul indicates there are advantages to the single life. Married people have responsibilities to their spouses and children that require much time. A single person can give undivided, unencumbered attention to serving Christ.
Paul does not wish to put any restraint on us. Marriage and singleness are different callings, each with its own challenges and benefits. If you find yourself single by circumstances, you may want to ask the Lord if this is His calling for you.
Employing a woman’s nature to leading
Women are needed as leaders in various arenas. They must be free to lead as women, not pressured to lead as men. Generally, women think more intuitively than men, are more skilled at integration, possess a more nurturing spirit. As we have written elsewhere, leadership is defined in the context of servanthood. For a community, organization or nation to flourish, both men and women must be at the table, with their distinctive leadership styles.
Follow your bent to nurturing vocations
The world has enough men to do male things. Some women are better weightlifters and kickboxers than some men, but we have enough testosterone in the world. You have nothing to prove in competing with men. As a woman, you are already equal to men in that you are imago Dei, made in God’s image.
Today a woman is free to do whatever she aspires to: start her own business; be the CEO of an international corporation, the pilot a commercial airliner, or the captain a navy ship; become president or prime minister of a nation. Especially in Western countries, women are free to pursue their dreams.
Yet, as an unknown author has reflected, “Our generation is becoming so busy trying to prove that women can do what men can do that women are losing their uniqueness. Women weren’t created to do everything a man can do. Women were created to do everything a man can’t do.”
The world needs what a woman is hard wired to do: intuit and nurture. The nurturing professions provide incredible opportunities for women to make an important contribution to the community. Teaching, nursing, counseling, speech and physical therapy, nutrition, social services … these are necessities in any community, and they build on a woman’s natural strengths.
Expanding your tent
Isaiah 54:1-2 speaks comfort to the woman unable to have children.
“Sing, O barren one, who did not bear;
break forth into singing and cry aloud,
you who have not been in labor!
For the children of the desolate one will be more
than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord.
“Enlarge the place of your tent,
and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;
do not hold back; lengthen your cords
and strengthen your stakes.”
“You’ll need a big tent,” God says to the woman without children. “You’ll need lots of room for the children you will nurture.”
My single sister, many are the children who need your nurture, that uniquely female gift of your maternal heart. Be there as an auntie for your nieces and nephews, for children of friends, for orphans. My dear friend, Debbie, is an example: an unmarried woman who adopted six children needing a home and a loving mom. May her tribe increase!
You may embrace motherless street kids, or children of prisoners. You may tutor children, or volunteer to work with children in VBS, summer camp, or Sunday School programs. Many needs and opportunities await you.
Single women to lead and serve in “missions” and ministry
In Romans 16:1-2, the Apostle Paul commends to the church, “Phoebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea … for she hath been a succorer of many, and of myself also” (KJV).
Here is another word that has lost its use and meaning in today’s world. The King James uses succorer to translate the Greek prostatis: “a woman set over others: a female guardian, protectoress, patroness, caring for the affairs of others and aiding them with her resources.”
Phoebe had a unique ability and succoring authority to nurture and care for others. Women are needed to lead and succor in mission and ministry settings: Crisis Pregnancy Centers, Food for the Hungry, and Salvation Army. They can engage with evangelistic and church-planting organizations such as YWAM, Cru and InterVarsity. They can join Protestant or Catholic religious orders or communities.
Singleness may be a calling, or it may be a matter of circumstances you did not seek. Either way, singleness can be a blessing to others and to yourself. If you are single, may God give you the wisdom and grace to live and serve abundantly in that station, until the situation in your life may be changed.
- Darrow Miller
Jack GutknechtAugust 15, 2019 - 9:05 am
Nice work, Darrow!
adminAugust 19, 2019 - 10:26 am
Jack GutknechtAugust 19, 2019 - 11:31 am
Your welcome, Darrow!