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Why Singleness Doesn’t Have to be a Curse
By Maylin Rowe
Singleness can feel more like a curse, when really it should be considered humanity’s default mode. From the creation story, it is plain that God’s intention for humanity is to be in community with one another. God says, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18, NIV).
However, too often marriage is considered to be the ultimate relationship to which everyone must strive. Like other facets of individual personalities and gifts though, relationships do not look the same from person to person.
Not everyone is meant to be married.
In 1 Corinthians 7, Paul suggests that marriage is not for everyone by saying, “Yet I wish that all men were even as I myself am. However, each man has his own gift from God, one in this manner, and another in that.” (v. 7, NIV). Marriage is not the be-all-end-all of human relationships. Like other relationships, it has its seasons; the good times and the bad. Expecting marriage to fulfill or complete a person is setting the relationship up for failure.
Placing all hope in another flawed person to fix one’s problems when the two become joined for life might end up being a bit of a disappointment. Marriage isn’t magic. And singleness isn’t a curse. It could be the stage of life where you learn about yourself or do selfish things and explore, but it is also the time to develop deep and meaningful friendships. You learn about your own spiritual gifts and how you want to serve and be involved in your community.
You learn about who you are in God’s eyes, and you learn to value the work He does in your life. You learn about the things you value in other people and in yourself. And if that becomes who you are for your whole life, there is nothing wrong with that. In fact, that should be every person’s goal. Sometimes it feels as if family or the church expects you to get married, but you and God know that there are other ways to be fulfilled in relationships.
Don’t settle for singleness, but embrace and enjoy it. And if God brings along a partner for you to minister with, embrace them too, in whatever capacity you feel is best. God provides not only a helper for Adam, but also a mate to continue the species. God provided what was best for Adam and will provide the best for you as well. Whether that is a lifelong companion in marriage, a ministry partner or just a friend, God sees that alone is not best, and gives us the community of the church to build one another up.