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-SINGLE And Satisfied

SINGLE And Satisfied


Picture FrameAnd don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there. God, not your marital status, defines your life” (1 Cor. 7:17 The MESSAGE). What a powerful statement by the apostle Paul, about being content and making the most of life, no matter what your marital status. If you are a single person who is struggling to find and live in that place of peace and enthusiasm, then read on. Sometimes contentment has to be learned (Phil. 4:11), and this article may help that process by highlighting some of the positives of singleness. Categories Of Singleness “Some, from birth seemingly, never give marriage a thought. Others never get asked or accepted. And some decide not to get married for Kingdom reasons” (Mt. 19:12). As outlined in this passage, you are either single by design, single by circumstance, or single by choice. The “single by design” group members are a rare breed, and probably do not need to read this article, as it is not an issue for them – they are already “wired” to be single, and there is little or no tension associated with that. The “single by choice” group members are usually fairly content with their situation too, as they have had a certain amount of control and have chosen singleness as the preferred option. They may still have moments of regret or doubt, however, depending on the depth of their conviction and the level of pressure they perceive about not conforming to “the norm.” The “single by circumstance” group members are the ones that face the real challenge of learning to be content, because circumstances have prevented them from attaining their preference to be married. Members of this group need to understand that God is in control, that singleness is a gift, and that unique opportunities exist in singleness.

God Is In Control
“If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing Himself to the worst by sending His own Son, is there anything else He wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us?” (Rom. 8:31).

God loves you deeply, has your life in control, and knows what is best for you. Don’t you think that He who sacrificed His Son for you out of love, and then raised Him to life again with His power, has the thoughtfulness and ability to make “Mr/Miss Right” walk through the door today if that was the best thing for you? The tension on our end comes from not having the same thoughts as God about what is best for us. Our goal is often happiness, whereas His higher goal is development of our character. He sees the bigger picture and knows the purposes of our lives. We need to trust Him.

Singleness Is A Gift
“God gives the gift of the single life to some, the gift of the married life to others” (1 Cor. 7:7).

Singleness is a gift in its own right – not an affliction or a punishment. As a child, I remember being bitterly disappointed at Christmas when I got a doll’s house while my brothers got a “rocker” (an adrenaline-pumping backyard toy). Do you sometimes feel like that when you see your married friends? You think, “I want what they’ve got.” It is the old “grass looking greener on the other side of the fence” scenario. The Bible is clear: “Do not wish you were some place else, and do not covet other people’s gifts/situations.” Focus on the benefits of your own situation – singleness can be very green. Applying the parable of the talents in Matthew 25, pining after the married lifestyle is like burying the gift you have been given. Instead you should make the most of it and invest it wisely – singleness can be a time of massive potential.

Opportunities Of Singleness
“When you’re unmarried, you’re free to concentrate on simply pleasing the Master … The time and energy that married people spend on caring for and nurturing each other, the unmarried can spend in becoming whole and holy instruments of God” (1 Cor. 7:32-34).

Singleness is an opportunity for personal development – working towards wholeness. Practically speaking, most people will end up getting married. What a bonus for your future partner if you spend your single years developing your character, learning to deal with hurts and disappointments, establishing a firm faith in God and a lifestyle of service, and setting good habits and patterns of behavior. Use your time of singleness, not to look for the right person, but to become the right person. It will benefit you too, as it is a fairly well established fact that likes attract. Do you want someone who is kind, considerate, motivated, committed? Then become like that yourself. Of course, others around you in your journey will benefit from your development and growth too.

In contrast to a married person, and especially one with children, single people have a lot more time and energy to use their gifts as instruments of God outside of that family unit. It is the people that so clearly see this opportunity that may consciously decide not to marry, “for Kingdom reasons”(Mt. 19:12). Paul was one. His outstanding contribution to furthering the Kingdom of God would never have been achieved had he a spouse and family responsibilities. Consider also the contribution to the world by the focused lives of Isaiah, John the Baptist, and of course, Jesus Himself. In fact, remembering that Jesus was single should establish that singleness is not some kind of inferior state or sign of a short-coming!

Final Thought
If you are single, cherish your gift and recognize the benefits. There may be moments of loneliness or frustration, but work on developing an underlying, more powerful sense of accepting God’s will and learning to be content. Make the most of your freedom and opportunity – to develop yourself, serve God and others, and enjoy life.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Leanne Rhodes-Robinson is a young single who manages a computer-based mathematics tutoring center in Tauranga, New Zealand. She serves the Lord in various ways, including camps and children’s work, and in her local church where she works mainly with teenagers. She is also involved in the Bible-In-Schools program in her community.

With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA. Website: www.gtpress.org

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