New Man

Want to receive New Man by email? Sign up here
Man on the beach
(© Felixcasio | Stock Free Images)

I’ll shoot straight. I am married, but I remember what it was like to be single. I remember thinking about how it seemed like such a curse.

I hated Valentine’s Day. It seemed as though the entire country was going out of its way to remind me that I couldn’t get a date. However, my time single was also an incredible opportunity for ministry.

Some of the greatest ministers in Christian history were single. Paul was single when he wrote his letters (though he had almost certainly been married at one point). John Chrysostom impacted the Greek Orthodox church in ways that are still being felt 1600 years after his death.

Augustine never married, and he set the course for western Christianity at about the same time as John. More recently, Martin Luther didn’t marry until he had been ministering for years. John Calvin was single most of his ministry (he married a widow to provide for her). C.S. Lewis married Joy Gresham for similar reasons as Calvin’s.

In today’s society, the singer Carmen chose bachelorhood to devote himself to ministry. And our founder and Messiah, Jesus Christ, was single in a culture that had no word for “bachelor.”

Being single gives you much more flexibility in ministry than being married. Think about a missions trip. If you are married, you have to plan for your wife to go with you. Or make plans not to be gone too long. Are the kids going? If so, what if junior falls and bruises his noggin? Broken arm? He ate the plant the native specifically pointed out to you as dangerous? If you don’t take the kids, where will they stay for the trip? Can grandma remain sane long enough?

As a single person going on a missions trip, you only have to plan for yourself. You will likely be part of a group, but you are still only making arrangements for yourself. If the group wants to stay longer, then you only have to worry about your own circumstances back home. Only your boss has to be talked into it, not your wife’s boss, too.

These advantages also apply to local ministry. You don’t have to worry nearly as much about the places you are going. If a better ministry opportunity comes up in another state, you are the only one who has to pull up stakes. No need to worry about getting into the right neighborhood for school. You can buy the cheap, economy car with great mileage instead of the minivan that drinks gas like the town drunk drinks cheap whiskey in those spaghetti westerns you like so much (or sci-fi in my case).

Paul writes that the single person can be wholly devoted to the Lord, while the married person must worry about his or her spouse (1 Cor 7:32-34). This is true.

And let’s not forget that you don’t have to worry about remembering birthdays and anniversaries. You don’t have to explain why the ending of Phantom of the Opera makes you cry.

Yes, being single has advantages, but the single life isn’t for everyone. Just as there are advantages, there are stresses that come with being single, but you already know about those.

If God has called you to marry, marry when the time is right. Until then, make the most of serving single. And watch another sci-fi flick for me.

Frank Luke and his wife are associate pastors in Iowa. They hold MDivs from Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in Springfield, Mo.

Best Magazine Deal. Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Charisma, SpiritLed Woman and Ministry Today, all for $24. YES - I want this deal!

3 Reasons Why you should read Life in the Spirit. 1) Get to know the Holy Spirit. 2) Learn to enter God's presence 3) Hear God's voice clearly! Click Here to draw closer to God!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Pastor Jim Garlow in a file photo shown praying.

    Conservative Christian Leaders Gather in DC, Calling Trump's Election an Answer to Prayer

    "Although the news media is predicting protests, what I'm seeing is that everyone is abuzz ...

  • Donald Trump certainly needs your prayers.

    Why You Must Pray for Donald Trump

    Here are eight ways I plan to intercede for President Trump regularly.

  • Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    Inner Healing Is the Fruit of the Spirit

    I have been puzzled about the subject of inner healing for some time.

  • Here's a prophetic word for Washington, D.C.

    Prophecy: The Lord Is Raising Up Daniels in DC

    I believe we're on the precipice of a Third Great Awakening the Lord spoke to my heart about in ...

  • 2017 is the year that swords will clash.

    Prophetic Word: 2017 Will Bring a Clashing of Heaven and Hell

    "This is a time to cross over and not pull back."

  • Bishop Eddie Long died at 63.

    Bishop Eddie Long Dead at 63

    "Although his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate ...

  • Roadblock

    6 Roadblocks That Will Stop Your Spiritual Growth

    God wants you to grow in your faith, but many of us get stuck along the way.

  • The devil will try to silence you in any way he can. Don't give him the satisfaction.

    Satan's 2 Most Potent Lies to Render You Ineffective

    There's something in you so powerful that Satan doesn't want it out. Kyle Winkler reveals ...

  • Watch for these danger signals for choosing poorly.

    4 Signs You're Making a Bad Decision

    Avoid distraction and disappointment by testing your choices with these 4 principles.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit