Wednesday, November 4, 2009
The Blessing of Being Single
Sophie and Shirley, two elderly widows in a Florida adult community, are curious about the latest arrival in their building -- a quiet, nice looking gentleman who keeps to himself.
Shirley says," Sophie, you know I'm shy. Why don't you go over to him at the pool and find out a little about him. He looks so lonely."
Sophie agrees, and later that day at the pool, she walks up to him and says, "Excuse me, mister. I hope I'm not prying, but my friend and I were wondering why you looked so lonely."
"Of course I'm lonely, he says, "I've spent the past 20 years in prison."
"You're kidding! What for?"
"For killing my third wife. I strangled her."
"What happened to your second wife?"
"I shot her."
"And, if I may ask, your first wife?"
"We had a fight and she fell off a building."
"Oh my," says Sophie. Then turning to her friend on the other side of the pool, she yells, "Yoo hoo, Shirley. He's single!"
It worries me when I see single people overly anxious to find a mate. Perhaps, though, we have contributed to the situation by treating singleness like it's some sort of disease. Singles often comment that they feel out of place at church (activities tend to be family-oriented) and feel they are sometimes regarded as less important than married people. While marriage is a God-ordained institution, I think we do a disservice by suggesting that singles are somehow "incomplete" until they find that "certain someone."
The truth is, while Paul held marriage in high regard (Eph. 5), he preferred being single and recommended it to Christians at Corinth in the difficult situation they were facing (I Cor. 7). Single Christians have the opportunity to serve God in ways that married Christians would have difficulty doing. Of course, the opposite is also true.
So what is the lesson to be learned? Whatever situation you find yourself in, seek to serve God with all your heart. If you are single, use your singleness to serve God as best as you can. And if you're married, use your married status to do the same.
"But as God has distributed to each one, as the Lord has called each one, so let him walk.....keeping the commandments of God is what matters." (I Cor. 7:17,19b)