Earlier this year, I wrote a blog post on being a responsible single. I didn't publish it however for a few reasons. In the last few weeks I have thought about turning it into a series that would be more effective and now I'm doing just that. This is the introduction, and since I'm afraid my thoughts may be easily misinterpreted, I want to clarify what this is and isn't.
In the church today, there are many different opinions about what a woman's role is. Some churches have no problem with women pursuing post-secondary education, a career, having a family later in later and committing their children to be raised and taught mostly by other people. Others believe that a woman's place is strictly in the home, serving her husband and raising and teaching her children herself. Whatever pattern is adopted by churches, whether verbally or quietly, really affects the way young women spend their single years.
I think young women in the church often face a lot of confusion and lack direction during their single years. Many desire to get married and have a family and follow Pattern B, but they don't know when that will happen and they are unsure how to spend the in-between time after they have finished their secondary education. Unfortunately what ends up happening is that girls spend their time idle, discontent, lacking responsibility, waiting for the day they're swept away by a man and have a home of their own, and I don't see this to be healthy.
Many Christians like to talk about the "Proverbs 31 Woman". I hear a lot of
single girls express a desire to be like this woman. But I believe some
very important points are overlooked at times. The woman described in
the chapter is an industrious entrepreneur who makes informed financial
decisions and her husband trusts in her completely with their living.
He knows he is never going to suffer lack with her running their home
(Pr. 31:11). She is not an idle woman, but works hard with willing hands
(Pr. 31:13,27). She takes care of her household, feeding and clothing
them, and reaches out to the poor (Pr. 31:15,20-22). She considers a
field and buys it (Pr. 31:16). She produces and sells her own
merchandise (Pr. 31:1824). Her children and husband praise her (Pr.
31:28,29). Yes, she's a keeper of the home, but that is certainly not
all she does. She's a capable, intelligent, financially responsible
woman who uses her skills and talents to run her own business in
addition to her home.
If this is what we as young women aspire to be, how do we work towards that? How do we be fruitful while we wait, so that one day each of us can be that kind of woman?
What I desire to do in this series is not tell you what a godly woman, or a "Proverbs 31 Woman" should look like today. I don't want to tell you how you're supposed to live. What I want to do is share with you some things I have done and am doing during my single years to take responsibility for myself and that I would encourage others to do. I admit there are some things I haven't done well and some things I would do differently if I had another chance, so I likely won't go deeply into those issues. I'll leave it to others to speak to those issues.
I will devote each blog post to a separate topic. My hope is that you will take these as practical suggestions and encouragement. I also recognize that there may be some negative sides to some of the suggestions I have, and I hope I can address those honestly and look at both sides with fairness. In the end, even if you don't agree with all my thoughts, my hope is that you would be inspired to make the most of their single years, be active and intentional about it, and have an increased amount of responsibility.
Next Post: Manage a Household