Big Idea: God creates singles as a gift to the church, and they have a special calling which needs to be understood and cherished in the church. We need those who are single in order to complete God’s plan for the church.
I. God’s plan for singles
A. Avoiding heartache
B. The grass is not always greener...
C. The power of focused intentional living
II. The challenges
A. Loneliness – the challenge of belonging and community
C. Listening to our singles
III. A Call to change
A. Make room at the table.
B. Think of others first.
C. Singles invest in intergenerational impact.
1) What do you think is meant by “I think that in view of the present distress”? What is the present distress? Did that refer to unique historical circumstances that have long since past? Are those circumstances present today? If so, how would there be multiple generations if everyone remained single?
2) Have you noticed that it’s easy to idealize some condition or status that you are not in or don’t have? Do you have an experience where you thought the grass world be greener on the other side but maybe it wasn’t? Would you be willing to share your experience?
3) Do human relationships automatically reduce your spiritual focus? Have you seen relationships that pulled you away from God? Have you seen the opposite?
4) What was the loneliest time in your life? What did you learn through that?
5) Do you know what it’s like to be single in the church? Have you ever been in a culture where your marital status felt like a judgment? Can you see ways where church programing and structure assume you are married? How would that make you feel if you were single?
6) What is the appropriate role of affection toward a member of the opposite sex? Have you heard the Biblical vision of relating to members of the opposite sex in church as brothers or sisters? What amount of physical affection (hugs) is normal in your family of origin toward a sibling of the opposite gender? Is that same level of affection normal or appropriate for singles in the church? Have you ever in your life felt untouchable?
7) How could we as a church do a better job making singles feel more welcomed and valued?
8) How could singles gain great meaning from intergenerational investments?