Your daily dose of true beauty advice…
We have each received a variety of gifts. First Corinthians 7:7 says that as a single woman, I have received the charisma of singleness. First Corinthians 12:4-10 lists other gifts that I may also receive. I may yet one day receive the gift of marriage. However, two things are important to remember about any spiritual gift:
- “All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills” (1 Cor. 12:11);
- “To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good” (1 Cor. 12:7).
Let’s look at the first point. God apportions gifts as He sees fit in His infinite and sovereign wisdom. Here Paul is returning again to the point he raised in chapter 7. God gives us our assignment, and He calls us to the task. Here now we see that He apportions gifts to each of us to accomplish these purposes.
Do you see God’s will at work here? Ultimately, we are single because that’s God’s will for us right now. That’s it. It’s not because we are too old, too fat, too skinny, too tall, too short, too quiet, too loud, too smart, too simple, too demanding, or too anything else. It’s not wholly because of past failures or sin tendencies. It’s not because we’re of one race when many of the men around us are of another. It’s not because the men we know lean toward passive temperaments. It’s not because there are more women than men in our singles group. It’s not because our church doesn’t even have a singles group. Though perhaps these things seem like valid reasons, they don’t trump God’s will. One look at the marriages we know or the ones announced in the newspaper will assure us that these factors are present in many people’s lives, and they still got married. We are single today because God apportioned us this gift today.
One more thought: I’ve often heard married people say to singles that we won’t get married until we’re content in our singleness, but I humbly submit this is error. I’m sure that it is offered by well-meaning couples who want to see their single friends happy and content in God’s provision, but it creates a works-based mentality to receiving gifts, which can lead to condemnation. The Lord doesn’t require that we attain a particular state before He grants a gift. We can’t earn any particular spiritual gift any more than we can earn our own salvation. It’s all of grace. However, we should humbly listen to our friends and receive their input about cultivating contentment; we just shouldn’t attach it to the expectation of a blessing.
~Carolyn McCulley in Did I Kiss Marriage Goodbye?