In the church today, especially in black churches, being a single woman without children is a rarity. When you are younger you are applauded for your attempt at purity as God defines it. As you age, however, questions are raised. If you are a minister, the amount of questions are astronomical. People may not ask you directly, but you can sense people talking about you and your marital status. The one thing I find to be worse than the pity from church folk is the suspicion, especially from young wives. Young married women tend to have many troubles as they are learning to be wives, mothers, or all of the above. They can be insecure. Who do they make their greatest enemy? The single, “sexy”, female minister.
Now, I’d be horribly misinformed if I didn’t believe the drama that makes a juicy church non-fiction novel was real. I recognize the fact that it’s a possibilty. I’ve seen and have had to dodge advances from married church men personally. What concerns me is the way we handle the situations. The ugly looks, the whispering, passive-aggressive actions…very much so not like Christ. If you think someone wants your husband just ask the suspected woman. Get her side of the story.
My personal situation as a single woman doesn’t make me desperate. True, I get lonely but marriage (or a makeshift romantic soirée) is not the salve for loneliness. I’m not feigning for a relationship so bad that I’ll settle for “used goods”, for the lack of a better term. There are a handful of us who are waiting. We believe (or at least try) that God can provide a spouse. So we [patiently] wait for God to cause His plans to succeed in our lives. We can admire and support families as ministers without wishing the wive would disappear so we can immediately take her spot in the family portrait. God says what’s for me is for me. I don’t want what He’s allocated to someone else.
Being in ministry is a serious calling, one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. God holds us accountable for the lives He places in ours. Honoring vows isn’t just for the betrothed- it is for God’s children to respect and honor as well. When it comes to marriages, I have decided to pray for them, not try to mangle any for personal gain. One day I will be married. I should and do concern myself with sowing good seed so when my harvest is ready I will reap good fruit. So married couples, you don’t have to always be afraid because singleness doesn’t always mean available. At least not here. For me, singleness means being solely committed to God and doing that which is pleasing in His sight until He decides to share me with someone else. It doesn’t mean I use my authority to dismantle holy unions so I can have someone lying next to me at night.