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Done Dating, Finished Flirting: Celibate for Life Is A True Calling For Some Singles Is Your Destiny to Commit to Marry?
I Did attempt to make this more palitable, see some of my other trial titles:
- Title No. 2: Celibacy is The Gift that Just Keep on Giving
Or maybe this one…
- Title No. 3: Let Freedom Reign
How about my last attempt …
- Title No. 4: Celibacy, it’s not just for the Pope anymore.
Instead I settled on "Don’t Hate Me Because I’m Celibate" as it speaks more to the controversy that can ensue from a life lived alone.
Matthew 19:12 (Worldwide English New Testament)
- Some men cannot marry because they were born that way. Some were made that way by men. Others said, "I will not marry, for the sake of the kingdom of heaven." `Anyone who can do this, should do it.'
Celibacy is a difficult topic to approach. By definition it means ‘”the state of being single or unmarried, especially in the case of one bound by vows not to marry”.
Why is it so difficult to appreciate? Simply put, it goes against the grain and fabric of our society. Nearly every television commercial plays upon the innate desire to be in intimate relationship with others. Retail markets make their living from the institution of marriage. Cities and Countries thrive from honeymooners in love. Entire months and seasons dedicated to love, lovers, and their subsequent weddings.
A single person who is unmoved by a passionate desire to be passionately in love with another passion seeking ‘significant other’ just seems wrong! In some people’s eyes, the celibate person is abnormal. Something must be amiss with an individual who does not desire to marry or have children, right? Everyone wants or needs somebody, right? They must be emotionally damaged, right?
Lady Gaga is What? CELIBATE?
No, that is wrong. In fact the Bible explains there are individuals who are actually gifted with the ability to remain celibate. This supernatural ability is a blessing reserved for those who God hand picks. They are able to enjoy or endure their singleness like a celebration of life. Their ability to remain pure, whole and satisfied brings them true joy and passionate Christian service.
The single person content to remain that way may not be appreciated for this special God breathed gift. Their sexuality may even be called into question. A few have been rejected for certain assignments in some churches. I have personally heard it said that only ‘married couples should pastor a church. Usually the reason given is that a single person may be tempted into sexual sin; while a married couple's relationship is a shield against such behaviors. This of course is certainly not true. Many married persons succumb to sexual immorality regardless of their covenant and commitment.
The celibate person may experience rejection due to their perpetual single status. Married friends and family often pair off as couples. Soon many become parents nurturing their bustling families. It just does not ‘feel’ right for a loving wife or husband to see their spouse go off to fellowship with single friends. If we peel away the layers we might find the reason includes the fear that the so called ‘carefree’ life of the single person threatens that commitment to marriage. It is almost as if the demeanor of a single person seems slightly arrogant or smug. Their ability to remain single seems to say to couples; “you are weak”. Or even “You were unable to operate in the self control; forced to 'marry rather than burn'.
1 Corinthians 7: 1-2
- "Now for the matters you wrote about: It is good for a man not to marry But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband." (I Corthians 7:1)
Let’s consider the fact that single people in general, and celibate people specifically, are more available to assist with helps and service in ministries when married couples with children cannot. This can include single parents as well. They are able to assists the general body and spend addition time in fellowship with other Christians. Why? Because their time is decided and scheduled based upon their own needs, not those of a spouse. The celibate man or woman is a blessing to the entire Kingdom, just as the married couple is.
It is a beautiful thing to see churches that support their single men and women in addition to married couples and family groups. It is important that churches accommodate individuals who are satisfied living a single or celibate life. It is also important that the Church not be divided by race, socio-economic lines, even by special gifts and abilities. This call to unity should also include a coming together of married and single people alike; and like Paul stated in Corinthians, every Gift from God should be used for the building of His Kingdom; Including Celibacy.
Here's hoping the gift of celibacy will find its way out of the pages of the Bible and into the lives of some who are called to this gift. Let freedom reign! Celibacy...it's not just for the Pope anymore! Let those who have ears hear... (Matt 19:12).