Single for a reason

We’ve been talking a lot in church about how marriage is designed primarily to reflect the glorious covenant between Christ and the church.  Christ pursued His people, based on NOTHING we brought to the table.  Being picked by Him made us special.  We weren’t picked because we were special.

grace

That reality has profound implications on marriage.  If we embrace that truth it will change how we talk to our spouse, how we view sex, how we view parenting.

But it occurred to me the other day that it also should effect the way we view insecurity in singleness.

Think about it.

How many times a day do you hear/say/think things like this:

  • I don’t know why she’s single.  She’s amazing.
  • I can’t believe he’s with her.  She’s not even that pretty!
  • I wish I could lose weight.  If I could maybe I could get a date.
  • Of course no one is going to want her if she talks like that.

All of these thoughts are symptoms of a theologically inaccurate view of marriage.

These thoughts preach about a covenant where people are picked based on strengths and they are rejected based on flaws.  And that is not the Gospel.

In the same way that a husband who rejects his wife for her sin testifies something untrue about Christ and the Church, a single who believes their body will cost them marriage testifies something untrue about Christ and the Church.

Here’s the sneakiest thing of all: I think that I believe that God picked me based on nothing I bring to the table.  But I don’t.  The Bible shows me that my issues in the horizontal reveal symptoms of unbelief in the vertical.

My insecurity in singleness reveals something far more dire than an incomplete view of marriage.  It reveals that somewhere deep down I believe that people get picked based on something about them.

And that, my friends, is a rejection of the Gospel.

God picked me.  Not because of anything I did.  Not because of human will or exertion.  He picked me because He has mercy on me.

I’m not a catch because of my strengths, and I’m not rejected because of my weaknesses.

When I communicate to my friends, or my God that my body or weaknesses stand between me and being picked, I am acting out something about this great marriage I have with God.  I am communicating someting about what led me to be chosen by God.

I can say with my mouth all day long that I don’t believe that God picked me because I had a ‘hotter’ spiritual body, but how I view my insecurities in singleness indicates otherwise.

I want to use my singleness to teach me to learn this truth in the deepest parts of me.  I want to use every single scrap of insecurity to learn that it is only in the world’s economy that my ability to be picked is based on what I bring to the table.  God’s worldview is different; it’s better.

I want to live in singleness that reflects faith in the true New Covenant.  I want my singleness to be like a little play, acting out the truth that I believe in a Bridegroom who picks people based on nothing other than His sovereign good pleasure.

4 thoughts on “Single for a reason

  1. I appreciate your thoughts, but are we taking it too far? It seems whether we like it or not, whether it is fair, or biblical or not, people DO choose spouses based on quality and all the good reasons. As a single in mid-thirties, all those “wrong” reasonings you mentioned have entered my mind. But I think they may be more true than we want to admit. Perhaps unattractiveness is the means God uses to keep one single and reliant upon him. I don’t find scripture promising that singles are given a gift of service and everyone else gets a spouse. Please correct me where I’m wrong. I do not want to sound cynical but this hits home. Thank you!

    1. This is a very good point by Casey. And also, we are comparing God’s salvation of us. He’s God of course, he’s going to pick us out of his own love and grace. But I don’t see the connection between the Gospel and not being pursued for marriage.

  2. This post hit me deep. There are so many insecurities attached to being single. And you are right, these insecurities are a reflection of where our heart is with God. I believe that more that I believe in his grace and his love, my own heart will reflect that. Perhaps that is the greatest attractive thing any of us could have!

  3. This is why I become less insecure in my appearance even as my appearance becomes less physically attractive – because every year I learn more deeply what it means to be chosen by God – to be pursued and loved and cared for and provided for, not because of something I do, but because I am His.

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