Living Single and Loving God
Whether we choose to remain single, or if things have just worked out that way, facing life alone does not mean you have to be lonely.
As Christian women and men, when we're single we’re still obligated to live under God’s guidelines. Being single is not a “green light” to engage in sinful living. All of us are made in the image of God to reflect the image of God. None of us were made to reflect the image of Satan. Therefore, being single should be seen as a special opportunity; an exceptional chance to live a life where our relationship with God is placed above all other relationships in our lives.
Single and Childless
I believe God gives single, childless women and men a special chance to live for Him. While being married and raising a family can also be a wonderful and blessed way to live your life for God, not everyone will be so blessed. That does not mean your life is any less important or any less worthwhile in the eyes of God.
Being married with children can bring much joy, but it also brings many responsibilities that single, childless women and men do not have to face. When not encumbered with the daily considerations of marriage and parenthood, it is possible to devote a dimension of your life to God that married people and parents often must lovingly give to/share with their mates and their children. As single Christians, not having these considerations can provide needed time to do exceptional work for God every day.
We can choose to be sad and lonely, or we can be a light of inspiration and hope for those whose lives we touch: Family members, friends, acquaintances, co-workers, and others. We don't have to live our lives feeling or being alone and separated from all other human beings. Remember that in Genesis, God created a mate for Adam because He desired for mankind to not be alone. So, as single people, male or female, God does not mean for us to be alone. Even though it is not a sin to be single (remember, Jesus Christ was a single man, according to the Bible), it is still not good to be alone. I believe single people should use their lives to become good examples of how life can be lived on purpose, fully and bountifully, in obedience to a loving God.
None of us, married or single, with or without children, should allow anything to come between us and our relationship with God. Whether we are married parents or single and childless, as Christians our primary relationship should be with our Creator. When any of us allow mortal beings to occupy a place in our lives that is higher than our relationship with God, problems usually arise in these relationships. This happens because God does not desire that we place any mortal being above Him. When we allow people to begin to feel our relationship with them is more important to us than our relationship with God, it usually leads to them feeling they hold an inordinate amount of power over us, and problems set in when they begin to try to wield that power.
Being Single Offers a Good Amount of Needed "Alone Time"
Singles who are living for God, who welcome interaction with others, should also value “alone time” spent in solitude and meditation. Alone time is needed so that we can compare how we're living our lives with what God's word says about how we're living our lives. By spending time reading the Bible and meditating on the word of God, we can adjust and readjust our thinking as needed, as we become inspired and enlightened by God’s word. God's word provides both knowledge and wisdom, and together, promotes understanding.
Also, even though God’s word doesn’t change, as human beings we change, and the world around us changes. Therefore, single or married with children, all Christians have a constant need to examine and reexamine how we’re living. The only way to do this is to hold the choices we’re making in our lives up against the light of God's word. If our choices cannot or do not hold up to what the word of God's says, then we know we need to make changes in our choices.
Singleness: A Special Chance for a Special Relationship with God
Single men and women who don't have children have a special chance to live a special life for God. If we are single and living according to God’s guidelines, it should be easy to place God first in our lives. With God being put first, before any and all other considerations, we can allow our lives to be living testimonials to His glory. That does not mean living a life of solitude. Just the opposite. It means we should seek out interaction with others so that we can fulfill our God-given purpose for being alive. In order to influence others as Christians, we have to be in the presence of other people. In order to demonstrate our walk with God, we have to invite other people to join us on our Christian journey. In order to become strengthened by the fellowship of God in other Christians, we must go and be among other people, in some way.
By seeking friendship with others who believe in living life while being obedient to the word of God, singles are able to not only broaden and deepen their understanding of God and Christianity, we are also able to feel connected to life and to other people who are also striving and struggling to live life according to God's guidelines. This is not to say we won't encounter problems in our relationships with others. Any time anything involves flesh-focused human beings, there will be problems. Christians are human beings just like all other human beings. We should never go into any relationship expecting there to be no problems. But, as Christians, we should understand that we live to glorify God in all we do, in all our relationships with others. That means we should work to bring the light of God to every relationship, every gathering, and every situation that becomes part of our life experience. That means doing God’s work while living single, and allowing God to work through us.
Our friendships and interactions with others should provide opportunities for us to demonstrate the love of God. We should offer to listen to someone who needs to be heard, provide advice and counsel when and where we can, and help others in ways God has enabled us to help. We should be open and welcoming of opportunities where we can allow others to see the light and the love of God shining through us, in all we do.
© 2013 Sallie B Middlebrook PhD