Monday, September 12, 2011

Ideas are Noisy: Possible New Project Idea

It's not a Sunday, Wednesday, nor Friday, yet I am blogging.  I have something to say.

There's been an idea bouncing around in my head for awhile.  It keeps bouncing--boing! boing! boing!  I'm not ready to act on it, I don't think.  I've got a lot of stuff I need to do, and I'm really sick of starting projects that I never finish.  So I'm not trying to get anyone too excited about anything...yet. 

But I'd like to request prayer and maybe even some preliminary thoughts on this idea that I'm thinking about.  I'd like to delve a little into the scary scary world of nonfiction.  The idea that's been boinging around in my head is about the role of single adults in the church. 

I've jotted down a few things, but really, there are so many directions this project could go.  I'm not sure if I'm ready to do much more than just let the idea bounce around some more, but I wonder if anyone has any thoughts on the subject.

I don't know how much honest literature exists out there about real-life single adults who are striving to find a place in the church.  I certainly haven't seen much--if any.  I'm not talking about some seventeen step program to finding the perfect godly mate, nor am I talking about a new way of doing "singles ministry."  My ideas are more about bridging the supposed differences between married adults and single adults.  Sometimes I get the impression that churches invent imaginary barriers between single people and married people. 

Possible ways of addressing this whole topic would include discussing misconceptions some married people seem to have about single people (ie. the "call to singleness," the idea that something is wrong with single people, the idea that single people are selfish), ways that married people can realistically help single people feel more included, but mostly I'd like to honestly address singles about how they can get involved without feeling as though there has to be an active "singles ministry."  Maybe there's not a great need for this, and if there isn't, then I shouldn't write about it.  But I, personally, have seen some need.  That's why the idea keeps bouncing around, just loudly enough so I don't forget it.

I'm asking for prayer and comments, if you have any.  There are a lot of different ways this idea could bounce, and I"m trying to keep an open mind.  Do you think there's a need for such a project, or has this idea been done to death?  If there is a need for it, why?  Are there any other things you think should be addressed, any other issues you think could be explored?  Are you a single person with examples of problems/issues/etc. you would like to share about your involvement with the church or with married people?  Are you a married person who has something to say about ministry and singlehood or things that you discovered after you got married?  What about kids?  What about single parents?  What about divorced singles?  Really, if this idea is going to become anything more, I know I'm going to need help.  I'm going to need more experiences than just the ones bouncing around with the half-baked ideas in my head.  So I would appreciate anything you have to say. 

And I greatly desire your prayers for this and all of my other creative endeavors.


  1. I'm really impressed, Ruth. I have NEVER heard of this kind of idea before. Like you said, it's always been about how to find a mate or how to be single without dying of lust for a relationship and/or wrinkles or how to do singles ministry differently. I hope you go for this. I, for one, always felt like older married women in the church were always trying to hook me up with someone or otherwise get all up in my bidness. Honestly, I was okay with being single. I enjoyed hanging out with my friends and making stupid videos and not having to worry about embarrassing my boyfriend or husband. That was awesome, because Tom would have totally been embarrassed by me if we'd been together then. And I can totally relate to what you said about being made to feel like being single is wrong. They say you shouldn't enjoy being single you should want to be married and then they say woah now you're desperate and lusting and that's wrong. Like most things in Christianity, the balanced point of view is not the one that's being presented.

  2. Also, and this is just a take it or leave it thought, but you could do sections on the different aspects of singleness you mentioned, with different people helping you write each blurb or whatever. One on being a single adult, one for single parents, one from the point of view of a married person looking back, one for a divorcee, and on.

  3. Married for almost 6 years with a 4 year old son. When I was single I hung out with the other singles because I felt we had the most in common. Once I was married my wife and I were/are on a mission to find a Godly couple to spend time with. I don't think of it as an "invisible barrier", but a way that we seek out what is most in common to our current set up. We stand to offer more to another couple with a child or thoughts to have a child. We also find that we learn more from someone that is in the same place in their life and we more easily understand/connect with what they are saying.

    After reading your blog it did get me thinking though. It is too easy when in a relationship to go to church with the "couple glasses" on and not see everyone else.

    Maybe there should be a couple of months that (those who would like) mix Sunday school classes. Have half the married group and half the single group swap with one another. Take it a step further and have a session that an older group swaps with half of a younger group, etc.

    This would not be a singles ministry but a way to bring more unity to a church.

    Christopher Wernham (facebook)