Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Singleness, Part I

So I think I am going to blog my first two-parter on a topic that has very little to do with my life in China (ok, it plays a big part, but it would anywhere I lived...) Hoping to get some feedback on this mini-series...

There is a book that has been circulating around the Yichang women. A friend sent a friend from America. The book, Rethinking Singleness: Getting Serious About Getting Married by Debbie Manken, has created much conversation. I had no idea I had such strong opinions about singleness and marriage until I finished the book.

Here are some of the ideas Mrs. Manken presents... (Please note these are not my opinions... that will be the next blog...)

1. God created us for marriage. If we do not get married, we are denying our very nature.
2. Biblically, there are only 3 reasons why a person should not marry... born eunuchs, eunuchs caused by men, and those who have renounced marriage due to ministry. (Matt.19)
3. Missions is not justification for being single. If you are single on mission field then you have misapplied the sovereignty of God. There is no mission field today (VERY RARE anyways) that is too dangerous or would not permit a family/married couple doing ministry together.
4. Celibacy and singleness are not the same thing. If you remain single due to biblical reason #3, then you must have the gift of celibacy. (Basically, if you have any sexual desire you must marry.)
5. You should marry in your youth. If not you will not experience fullness of marriage.
6. Single women should not form friendships with males. If women provide things for men, they (men) will not realize that they are missing a wife. They need their "spouse-shaped void" to be filled and you could be stopping that from happening.
7. Historically, males married due to the push from society. Their aim in life was to have a family and provide for a family. Churches, families, etc. all helped couples get together and marry. Nowadays, males have been given too much freedom and little push so instead of getting married, they make excuses.
8. Dating provides too much access to the opposite sex.
9. To find a spouse, get an agent. There is nothing wrong with moving in with your parents and letting your father (or other male spiritual leader) help to find a spouse for you. Internet resources such as eharmony.com or bigchurch.com can also be agents.
10. While dating/courting put a 3 month limit on it. A ring or go separate ways. You should know after the third date whether the relationship is worth pursuing for 3 months.
11. If you are struggling or upset with being single, it is okay. There is no reason to cover it up with excuses like "this is God's will for my life", "God will send the right man along" and "because I am single, I can focus on doing ministry." The Church is wrong to say that singleness is okay.

While I was reading, I took lots of notes and journaled some. I hope I did a fair job of presenting the book's main ideas. Please once again note that these are not necessarily my opinions. Let me know what you think... Will post some more tomorrow...

1 comment:

  1. WOW....That is one crazy book, I could probably write a book in response...I'll call it "Rethinking Debbie Manken" :)
    I love you friend and am looking forward to part II!

    Tiff

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