So, Paul concludes, skip the ceremony, literally, and enjoy “your undivided devotion to the Lord.” Most say, “More power to you, Paul . Maybe it’s abundantly clear that you need a helper to carry out God’s call on your life (or it’s abundantly clear to others that you do).Maybe you want to have kids and realized that you need help with that.Maybe you just have a deep, undeniable desire for a loving, committed companion. While it may seem like two categories at first, we soon discover in application that there are three: the single, the married, and the not-yet-married.After all, as any single person knows, a desire for marriage does not a marriage make.So, be mindful of the needs of others, especially those in the church, and consider contributing. Spend it wisely and liberally on the needs of others. Sure, save modestly for days when you’ll need more, but while you wait, look for ways to provide for others.
Paul may have been right about our freedom from spousal concerns, but in an i Phone, i Pad, i Pod, whatever i Want world, single people never have trouble finding their share of diversions.Far from the solution, Paul makes marriage out to be a kind of problematic Plan B of Christian life and ministry.Marry if you must, but be warned, following Jesus is not easier when you join yourself to another sinner in a fallen world.If you haven’t learned this yet, I doubt any of your spontaneous friends are married. You have the unbelievable freedom to say “yes” when married people can’t even ask the question.One of your greatest spiritual gifts as a single person is your “yes.” Yes to a random phone conversation. When the spouse doesn’t exist, you can’t hurt them with your selfless, impulsive decisions. ” and bless others, even when you don’t always feel like it.You’re all dressed up, having “every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:3), with literally everywhere to go.With God’s help and leading, you have the freedom to invest yourself, your time, your resources, your youth, and your flexibility in relationships, ministries, and causes that can bear unbelievable fruit.It will serve your future spouse immensely and make Jesus shine beautifully to those around you in the meantime.Just as you are free to say “yes” to more spontaneous things, you’re also able to say “yes” to things that require more of you than a married person can afford. Start a daily prayer meeting or some regular outreach. Organize a new Christ-centered community service project. You’d be surprised, with God’s Spirit in you and a resolve to spend your singleness well, how much you and your single friends are truly capable of, especially when you dream and work together. The idea is to spread yourself dangerously thin, so make decisions prayerfully and in community with people who love you and can tell you, “No.” My perception, however, is that most not-yet-married believers can afford to give or do more than they are.Look for ways Satan might be undermining your mission with short and simple pleasures.You may not need to eliminate it, but limit it and look for ways to welcome others into your life through it.In fact, if you’re like me, you crave diversion and tend to default there, whether it’s Sports Center, Downton Abbey, working out, fancy eating, endless blogging and blog reading, surveying social media, or conquering the latest game.We might call it resting, but too often it looks, smells, and sounds a lot like we’re wasting our singleness. If you deny the latter, you may need to put down the smartphone, controller, or treadmill.But God intends to use you, your faith, your time, and your singleness in radical ways right now, as you are.