29 November 2015

Singleness as good and bad

I've thought a lot about singleness over the years, and so I appreciate good articles about singleness. Dayna Vreeken at YALT recently wrote a good article honestly acknowledging both the good and bad of singleness. I especially appreciate how she stresses how being single is mixed: some things are hard but there is also much joy and good that also should be acknowledged. 

The following are some of the great points that she elaborates on:
It is time we acknowledge being single can, at times, be hard. This is not unique to being single, being married too contains annoyances and pain. But, it is often only acknowledged over coffee, beer, or ‘hallmark’ holidays in back corners of rooms. There is almost no room to truly mourn the pain or difficulty of singleness. So, let’s acknowledge it. . . . Singleness can be painful because often, people who are single expected their lives to go a bit differently. . . . many people pity those who are single rather than extending empathy, hospitality, and trying to truly understand what being single is like for each person. . . . Depending where you live, it is easier to fit in culturally and socially if you are married and/or have kids. . . . There is a notion in society that there is a relational, aka maturity, ladder. . .
It needs to be acknowledged wholeheartedly that being single can also be a beautiful, good, life-giving calling we have received from God.. . .  Being not married is a gift because life is always a gift—just like any other station in life, there is beauty in being a single person. . . One example of beauty is that being single breeds a necessary interdependence. Since I do not have one constant, ever-with-me partner in my life, I do not have the luxury/temptation of accidentally becoming immersed in one person and so, the older I get, the broader and deeper my community gets. . .
 Even if you're not single, I encourage you to read the article. It's a good reminder for those of us (especially in the church) who tend to think of marriage as the norm.

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