Summary: Success and Singleness are not two words most people easily put together. For most, the state of singleness is only ever supposed to be a temporary, necessary stage of life. Some might even go as far as to see as a 'necessary evil.' Too frequently to b
“SUCCESS IN SINGLENESS”
4th in Series: Searching For Success
Rev. Todd G. Leupold, Perth Bible Church, January 31, 2010 AM
Success and Singleness are not two words most people easily put together. For most, the state of singleness is only ever supposed to be a temporary, necessary stage of life. Some might even go as far as to see as a 'necessary evil.' Too frequently to be single is seen by others and/or the single person as a curse to be endured only until it can be broken. Everywhere we turn, society screams loud and clear: “You're still single – well, isn't it about time you do whatever it takes to 'fix' that?!”
By the way, before you decide to assume this morning's message isn't for you and tune me out, consider that the state of singleness is not just for the never-married. In fact, many of us who are married will yet find ourselves single again. For some, it may be through the pain of divorce. For others it may be through the pain of a spouse's severe disability or death. ALL of us need to hear and ponder this message.
All of my life, even from a young child, I just wanted to get married and have a family. Every semi-interesting girl was evaluated for future-mate potential. Nevertheless, I didn't marry until I was 27 AND I had first finally come to turns with being single. I can still remember the thoughts, fears and hurts that could at times haunt me: “I'm only half a person,” “I'm not really part of society,” “Something must be terribly wrong with me,” “My entire life is on hold and in limbo, because I don't want to make any long-term or permanent plans until I get married,” “If only I was married, people would respect me more,” “Most, if not all, my problems are related to my singleness,” “If I just had a soul-mate, I'd be happy – my problems would melt away.”
But, are these things true? Sure, they certainly feel true, but are they really? ABSOLUTELY NOT! Consider:
Sue Kolinsky: “I'm 33, single . . . Don't you think it's a generalization you should be married at 33? That's like looking at somebody who's 70 and saying, hey, when are you gonna break your hip? All your friends are breaking their hip-what are you waiting for?”
John Fetterman, rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Madison, WI, told of an elderly woman who died. Having never married, she requested no male pallbearers. In her handwritten instructions for her memorial service, she wrote, “They wouldn't take me out while I was alive; I don't want them to take me out when I'm dead.”
Someone else once quipped, “Two can live as cheaply as one, but it's worth the difference to stay single.”
From a biblical perspective, Fred Hartley wrote: “Jesus was never married, and he was normal. Paul was not married, and he was normal. John the Baptist was single, and he was normal. History is full of normal men and women who were never married. We need to understand that one is a whole number.”
SCRIPTURE: 1 CORINTHIANS 7:24-38
THE CHALLENGE: BE COMPLETE AS YOU ARE (vv. 24-27)
What does it really mean to be single? Too often our struggles start and even end with the misunderstanding that single means 'not married;' that it is defined by the negative.
In truth, to be a single person is to be a whole, complete, separate and unique individual.
Biblically, it is the single person who is whole & complete and the married person is only 'a half!'
Genesis 2:22-24 Then the LORD God made the rib He had taken from the man into a woman and brought her to the man. And the man said: This one, at last, is bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh; this one will be called woman, for she was taken from man. This is why a man leaves his father and mother and bonds with his wife, and they become one flesh.
Matthew 19:6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, man must not separate."
ALL who would believe in the Lord Jesus Christ are called to sanctify ourselves before Him. This means to bring our thoughts and lives into submission and alignment with His. To be conformed into His image of character and purpose. To be set apart for a special use and purpose that He has created each one to fulfill. To, in the meantime, prepare and form oneself to that purpose.
Romans 8:28-30 We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose. For those He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brothers. And those He predestined, He also called; and those He called, He also justified; and those He justified, He also glorified.