Earlier this week I was out for a walk, and passed a house that was notable for the shrieking coming from it. A man was sitting on a motorcycle in the driveway, and his wife was apparently screaming at him from just inside the garage door. She dialed it down when I walked past, so I didn't get the topic of the "discussion" ... just the tone.
Also this week, a friend had her court date, and her divorce will be final in two weeks.
Today I had lunch with another single friend about my age, and we were discussing how hard it would be to adjust to having another person in our lives ... what if we married someone who always had to have noise in the house, and the TV or radio was always on. What if it were someone who liked to spend money on useless luxuries. What if sports had to become a fixture of our weekends? What if ... what if ... what if ... What if God had allowed us to marry any of the men we were interested in when we were 20? Eeeek!
Then I was talking with a man at church who knew of a fellow who was marrying a woman he had known only a week and a half. The fellow was recently divorced and probably terrified of being alone.
Funny ... as I think about living alone for the past 20 years ... I don't find it at all fearful!
Thursday is my busiest day at work, and this past Thursday, I came home, tired, and stepped inside my condo, closed and locked the door, dropped my purse on the floor, and thought, "it feels so good to be alone."
I didn't have to talk. I didn't have to listen. I didn't have to drag myself back out to some social thing that night. I could just sit with my eyes closed and breathe, listening to the leaves outside my window blowing in the breeze.
Life is sweet.
Last night, I watched 20/20, (or started to ... I wanted to see a segment on a blind man who had gotten his sight back after 40 years ... but when they hadn't gotten to it after an hour, I gave up on them).
One of the segments I DID see while I was enduring the boring parts was on reparative therapy for gays. There are ministries out there (specifically Love in Action) which help those who don't want to live a homosexual life, or are struggling with other sexual addictions.
A good friend is a graduate of one of their programs, and it was a tremendous blessing to her, so I listened with interest as ABC maligned the program.
One of their points was that some of those who came from the program hadn't married ... as if the proof of their change was whether they were in a relationship. The world can't wrap their minds around the concept of celibacy. Sex is almost its own deity (as one who watched the commercials during this particular program might have gathered.)
The idea of writing a book has begun to percolate again. In fact, I'm thinking I'd like to write one jointly with the friend I mentioned above who was at Love in Action. There is a perspective that is not being shared, even in the Christian community, and needs to be.
And that is that singleness/celibacy is not simply a phase to be endured ... but rather an opportunity -- both for a closer fellowship with God, and for greater service to others.
God does not withhold something unless He has a greater gift to offer in its place.
People are missing that.
Please note that this post is in no way an endorsement of a celibate priesthood ... I think imposing something like that on an entire class of people is downright unbiblical. But if any Christian is single, we can say with certainty that ... right at that moment in time, he or she is called to be wholeheartedly seeking after God.
1 Corinthians 7:32 But I want you to be free from concern. One who is unmarried is concerned about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord;
33 but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how he may please his wife,
34 and his interests are divided. The woman who is unmarried, and the virgin, is concerned about the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and spirit; but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how she may please her husband.
35 This I say for your own benefit; not to put a restraint upon you, but to promote what is appropriate and to secure undistracted devotion to the Lord.
That's what I'm after ... "undistracted devotion to the Lord."