An excellent post from the Village Church on what’s wrong with preachers telling ‘singles’ to grow up and get married.
But singleness is not synonymous with immaturity, and singleness is not inherently problematic. While many singles are immature, the correlation is not direct. Many married men and women are just as immature. By and large I agree with the pastors attempting to engage the culture of “extended adolescence.” I simply disagree with their choice of language. “Grow up and get married” is too simplistic and dangerous.
First off, it sounds too easy. Anyone who wants to be married can simply do so at will?
Isn’t a spouse a gift from the Lord?
Isn’t God sovereign in the distribution of His gifts?
As a 32-year-old single male shepherding in the midst of a large church filled with singles, I know firsthand the sting of such half-truths. Some people are single because they are lazy, fearful, lustful or proud. But some singles are simply single because God, in His infinite wisdom, sovereignty and grace has not granted them a spouse. Singleness is not a curse. If singleness were the universal consequence for our sins, marriage rates would plummet to zero. Marriage is a gift, and all of God’s gifts are graciously undeserved. There are many married men and women mired in sin, and there are many singles pursuing deep holiness.
There is no direct correlation between sin and singleness.
Read the whole post here.
All too often I think we respond to bad news with blame. Especially blame directed at God. I recently was asked by someone ‘Why does God kick us while we’re down?” This kind of reaction to bad news highlights to me how much we blame God and yet fail to give him thanks for the good things we have.
In the midst of considering what the right response is, I saw this video from Matt Chandler, recorded 2 days prior to surgery to remove a tumor from his right frontal lobe.
The line that strikes me the most is this one
There’s this part of me that’s so grateful that the Lord counted me worthy for this and there’s this part of me that goes “okay” because now in an area where it’s not a big win I get to show that He’s enough and I get to praise Him and exalt Him and make much of Him in this.
Today after receiving a pathology report confirming the tumor was malignant Matt tweeted this
why not me? Why not you?
I thank God for Matt and his wife and children. I thank Matt for being an example to Christians around the world of how to respond to bad news and how to keep praising and making much of Jesus. And I thank Matt and his church for being an example to non-Christians around the world that Jesus IS enough.
I hope that you would join many in praying that God will continue to use the Chandlers and The Village Church to exalt Christ for years to come.
Read Matt’s health updates here. In his video Matt refers to Hebrews 11. Read it here.
2 great sermons from Paul Matthies at The Village Church
If you are single or married you should listen :-)
Here is a quote from part 1 – probably the best advice I’ve ever heard that you need to know when your talking to your single friends –
Every time married people tell singles, “just learn to be content and then you’ll get a spouse,” you are attaching the expectation of a blessing. And all we do every day as singles is worry about giving it up so that we can finally get it. And you put us in this terrible spin cycle of, “God I just want to surrender it to you. I don’t want it anymore. [feeling his right side for ribs] Shoot, my rib’s still here.” That’s what happens. And all we do as singles is spend all our time trying to give it up so we can get it. And it’s just a walking paradox. Because we think we can fool God and tell Him, “I’m done. I can be single the rest of my life……where are you? I’ve given it up.” Our desires are still the same. Married people, don’t tell us that, put us out, we’re on fire! That’s what you’re called to do. Encourage us in our singleness. Encourage us that it’s a good gift. Remind us of why God has given us this blessing. But don’t say, “as soon as you learn to be content…expect to get it.” Because that’s a works based mentality and we serve a gracious God not a God who functions by works.