Many people naively think that marriage will solve all their problems. Here are some problems marriage won’t solve; (1) Loneliness, (2) Sexual temptation, (3) Satisfaction of one’s deepest emotional needs, (4) Elimination of life’s difficulties. Marriage alone does not hold two people together, but commitment does; commitment to Christ and to each other despite conflicts and problems. Wonderful as it is, marriage does not solve problems. Whether married or single, we must be content with our situation and focus on Christ, not humans, to solve our problems.
But what does the reality of marriage really entail? Does it promise you a release from loneliness? Does it grant you security? Does it provide you with comfort? The truth is, marriage promises you none of the above. It doesn’t ensure that you never feel lonely, it doesn’t guarantee security. In fact, marriage can take you to further realms of loneliness and insecurity. Insecurity, not only financially, but insecurity, emotionally. Marriage is not the prescription drug that will cure all your life’s ailments. It holds no magic power to remedy all your troubles. Don’t get me wrong, a strong happy marriage can bring great things to the table. But an expectancy to fill voids within yourself through marriage is a dangerous notion.
Marriage in reality is a shared path for two people who have their own paths in life. It doesn’t dictate that the other person caters to all your needs and all your desires, and vice versa. That mindset can be damaging to both parties. Because the truth is, no one can be the reason for your happiness. And if you think someone is, you’re walking a dicey path. Because at some point you will face disappointment at the hands of another, whether intentionally or unintentionally. And that disappointment will take you back to a place where you had expected marriage to never take you. So if singledom, doesn’t fulfill you, and neither does marriage, then what exactly will? We live in an idealistic world, where the ideal is that the answer to our problems lies somewhere other than within ourselves. So we look to places and people for comfort and reassurance. But the cure, we’re all searching for, is actually within us.
Paul urges all believers to make the most of their time before Christ’s return. Every person in every generation should have this sense of urgency about telling the Good News to others. Life is short no matter how long we live.
Paul urged the believers to stay as free as possible for the Lord. This means that we should not regard marriage, home, or financial security as the ultimate goal of life. As far as possible, we should live unhindered by cares of this world, not getting involved with mortgages, budgets, investments, or bills that will keep us from doing God’s work. A marriage man, as Paul points out (1 Corinthians 7:33), has to think about his earthly responsibilities; but he should be careful to keep them modest and manageable.
Some single people feel tremendous pressure to be married They think their lives can be complete only with a spouse. But Paul underlines one advantage of being single; the potential of a greater focus on Christ and his work. If you are unmarried, use your special opportunity to serve Christ wholeheartedly.
When Paul said the unmarried person does better, he was talking about the potential time available for service to God because the single person has fewer responsibilities related to raising a family. Singleness, however, does not insure service to God; that is up to the commitment of the individual.
Let’s be very realistic. Marriage is not the solution. Marriage is not the destination either. Marriage is the journey, the path you choose to take with your loved one. It too has highs and lows. It too can bring pain. It too can bring insecurities, just as those that are felt when we are single. Some days it will prove to be easy and some days it will prove to be difficult. So every day you have to work at it. Every day you give a part of yourself in its devotion. If you give it love, you receive love in return. If you neglect it, it will neglect you in return. And this is no different to the way in which we should treat ourselves. Give yourself love, give yourself strength, and give yourself everything that you need. Whether you are single or whether you are married. The answers lie within you.
REFERENCE: 1CORINTHIANS 7:28-38
Written by: Pius Isaac Kedem Sedofia