A Single Christian, Not a Christian Single

walkI’ve noticed that practically everything, from our job to our citizenship to a thorn in the side, has an easier time sliding to the forefront of our minds than does our identity in Christ.

Take singleness. You’ll find no suggestion on this blog that singleness isn’t hard for some people. And you could ask ten singles why it’s hard and get ten different reasons. For some, it’s just the loneliness; for others, it’s marginalization by the church, missing out on invites, being seen only for your marital status and not for you. Though singleness is a productive season in God’s eyes, there’s no doubt it has its thorns.

Gradually, over the course of time, you might find that singleness is hanging over your soul. It’s become your identity. You honestly don’t think of much else.

No doubt singleness is influential. It filters into all the details of your life as surely as marriage does (it’s like sand – it gets everywhere), and that matters to God. But once it becomes a bigger deal than your identity in Christ, when the latter just doesn’t seem to matter as much, it is possible that we’ve left joy and truth behind? No season of our lives should usurp our identity in Christ.

It’s even better to be noticed by God than to be noticed by a human.

It’s even better to celebrate Christmas than to have people to spend it with.

It’s even better to be mature in the faith than to be doing the things church people consider “grown-up stuff.”

It’s even better to take God’s word to the nations alone than to raise a family without ever telling anyone about Jesus.

It’s even better to have your name in the Book of Life than in a wedding guestbook.

It’s even better to be given by God “a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one else knows” (Rev 2:17) than to change your last name.

It’s even better to get invites to the Lamb’s wedding feast than to get invites from other married couples because you have kids, too.

It’s even better to be made acceptable by Jesus’ blood than to be accepted by people – though rejection still hurts.

It’s even better to get God’s unbreakable promises than human vows that will be neglected weekly (such as “to honor and cherish”).

And when we sigh and struggle just to care about God’s delight in us, we find how long we’ve spent outside the influence of Christ’s identity for us.

I don’t mean to guilt. Let us find God’s grace. I believe he cares very much about our heart’s desires and, for many of us, is still turning the cranks on his plan to fulfill them.

But remember – it is only out of our identity in Christ that we can do our part to fulfill God’s plan anyway. It’s only out of our identity in Christ that we will catch the notice of a true disciple, become a good spouse and parent, or live out our other kingdom purposes in the meantime.

“Single” works better as an adjective. The cross and empty tomb are our nouns.

Take back your joy and your status as “more than a conqueror” in God’s love. While we wait for our human families of our own, let us celebrate being invited into God’s. For when we thank him for it, meditate upon it, and celebrate it, it will take a turn overshadowing all else.


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28 thoughts on “A Single Christian, Not a Christian Single

  1. So true… I feel this is what our culture does so sneakily… defining us by things we should never be defined as. I’ve seen people describe themselves with very strange things… illness, sin, etc. and it’s the first thing they think about I suppose. What a lie that all is. Makes me think of “hi, I’m so and so and I’m an alchoholic…” We are defined (thankfully) by Christ first and foremost. Oh if people could only understand that! Great post!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Such a great post, that applies to everyone! As you say “I’ve noticed that practically everything, from our job to our citizenship to a thorn in the side, has an easier time sliding to the forefront of our minds than does our identity in Christ.”

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I hope the church can do better in caring for our singles. Love the idea of single Christians rather than Christian singles.

    Singleness provides great ministry opportunity. And we should show our appreciation and high regard for those in that place.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. This reminds me of something I read a few days ago. Dating isn’t a godly thing; it’s something the devil placed in the world to rush relationships so that people are encouraged to marry before they’re ready. Only God knows when we are ready, and it isn’t for us to worry when or who. We are to focus on God and the plans He wants us to currently work on. When the time is right, He’ll open the eyes of the two and bring them together. It took me a while to overcome the bitter bite of loneliness and focus on what God wanted me to focus on. Thank you for sharing. I hope it helps someone who is going through it. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    • I don’t necessarily agree with this theology for everyone. There are some who have this conviction, and I’d say they’re free to avoid dating without criticism from the rest of us.

      But the truth is, no prohibition of dating exists in the Bible. Nor does it contradict the wisdom teachings in the Bible (when done right). As such, I prefer not to place hard and fast spiritual endorsements on what is essentially a human teaching. But that’s just me.


  5. As much as I understand I am at the age now where I’m becoming more undesirable . .. late 30s. Strong in my faith just not love life.

    Liked by 2 people

    • No child of God is undesirable. Perhaps there are fewer options at the age we’re at, in human terms, but does not God love to come through just when circumstances seem insurmountable?


  6. Great post! I have been wanting to write on this topic but wasn’t sure how to go about it. You’ve done a good job at tackling a hard topic in today’s society and the way we think.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. AMEN! God doesn’t play favorites. He remembers all who call on his name, and he remembers they who don’t know his name. I think we can take a page on the subject from Paul who wrote about this very thing. His tone was the same in regards to the advantages of when you are single — you are more free to focus on causes of ministry and other things that help advance the heart kingdom of Christ. Well written!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I’ve always thought I would be ready to look for a partner in life the moment that becomes less important than my relationship with God. The moment you reach that perspective on life, you make better decisions

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Wow. I am so thankful to have this view now. It was a struggle and looking back see all the stress as silly, but it was real and In that have learned so much about my God and how much He loves and cares about me and wants the best for me.

    This was so good.

    Liked by 1 person

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