In the Eye of the Beheld


God couldn’t have filled a woman with more admirable traits than Cassie possessed. She cooked like Julia Child. Entertained others as well as Martha Stewart. She had a faith as big as Corrie Ten Boom’s. She lived every word from Elisabeth Elliot’s books on womanhood. In short, she would have made the perfect wife.

I suspect she’s still waiting for that gold ring, though.

You see, to call Cassie “pretty” would have confused Webster. No heads swiveled when she walked by. Young guys on Sunday never anxiously dropped the question, “Have you seen Cassie in church today?”

No, Cassie wasn’t blessed with the one thing so many men crave above all else: physical beauty.

Cassie loved me. I didn’t return “those feelings,” though. Sure, her dowry of other fabulous qualities overflowed, but I could never get past the fact that she wasn’t physically beautiful.

I lost track of her years ago.

Looking back, I probably had two or three other Cassies in my single days, girls whose hearts would have leapt if I asked them out.Β  Fact is, each was a better person than I could ever hope to be.

I turned 44 last week. In thinking over my life, I realized I’d done all those Cassies wrong. I love my wife immensely, don’t misunderstand me. I had my 25th high school reunion and I can say with confidence that despite all the gorgeous girls in my high school back in the early Eighties, at the reunion my wife eclipsed them all. I’m very fortunate to have married a physically beautiful woman.

But I still dealt poorly with Cassie. Only now do I realize that the one thing Cassie was missing in her life was a real flesh and blood Christian man to tell her she was beautiful.

Time has a way of giving us room to think. As I look around this country and witness the Girls Gone Wild culture that threatens to tear our social fabric apart, I can’t help but think that most of those girls are dying on the inside. Why? Because they simply don’t believe they’re beautiful because no man they respect has ever told them so.

I don’t know what dads are doing at home that they turn out these shattered girls. Either dad doesn’t tell his daughter she’s beautiful, or he doesn’t command enough respect for his word to mean anything. Melancholy girlAnd we all know the story: If a girl doesn’t get admiration from her closest male relatives, she’s going to search for it elsewhere. And elsewhere isn’t always a nice place.

Ultimately, in our churches, the fault lies with Christian men of all ages. I perpetually hear how men in the church are bored. Yet when our young people are getting mugged by the world, where are all those Christian men? If we’re supposed to be the image of Christ, what are we saying about Him by our silence?

I can’t imagine what it does for a young woman to hear from a Christian man she respects, “God made you beautiful.” I don’t think there’s enough of that candor in our churches today. I think a lot of young women are dying to hear that they’re beautiful, but for whatever reason they never hear it. Or they hear it from the wrong people.

It’s sad to me that we’ve fouled this up so badly. Whether we can ever redeem this lack in our churches without it seeming “weird” is a question I can’t answer. Perhaps the older men in the church could pull this off without it being judged inappropriate. I don’t know. All I do know is that young women today simply aren’t hearing it enough from the right people.

Cassie needed to hear she was beautiful. No, she’d never be confused for Miss America. But how did we ever get to a point that her other traits garnered her no accolades? If we looked in her eyes, could we not find the beauty of God?

No doubt Cassie stayed true to the Lord, even when the rest of us didn’t give her the time of day. Still, I’ve got to believe that plenty of young women not as devout as Cassie would have found a word or two said in their favor to be all they needed to keep from straying.

I’m not sure that we cherish our young Christian women as much as we should. Few of us men stand in the gap for them. We don’t pray for them and their families. We don’t keep a watch out for them. We don’t build them up as we should.

Is there a young woman in your church who gets overlooked? Someone needs to tell her she’s loved and appreciated. Someone needs to encourage her to use her gifts for the Lord.

Someone may even need to tell her she’s beautiful.

37 thoughts on “In the Eye of the Beheld

  1. Peyton

    The women of our congregation recently had a retreat, the title being “A Banquet with the King.” The final dinner was a formal banquet, and four of us men had the honor of escorting the retreatants to their seats at table. The women came through the door, one at a time, and had their picture taken, received a memento, and were met by an escort.
    I was struck by the beauty of every woman. Some were comely, some were not; some were young and cute, some were old and elegant; all carried beauty; some knew it, some didn’t believe it.
    At worship the next morning the retreat organizers reported to the congregation, and called us escorts forward. I told the congregation of the honor given us, and of seeing the beauty in every woman. I can’t say that my words changed anything, but I do know that several of the retreatants are working from a greater confidence now.
    Thanks, Dan, for bringing up this topic.

    • Peyton,

      Thanks for relaying that.

      I know that that all ages can benefit. I know that I feel perpetually 22-years old, so I’m sure when I’m 64, I’ll still feel that age. So yes, even older women need to hear it.

      I hope, though, that women don’t have to wait so long to hear it. If we can instill a self-recognition of beauty in them when they’re younger, it will have some staying power, I think.

  2. Dee

    There is a woman in my circle who is thirty and still unmarried despite the fact that her qualities and gifts make others pale in comparison. And she is drop dead gorgeous. I do know that she desires to be married and have a family of her own. What a prize she is! Why can’t some guys figure that out? She is from an amazing family, too. The only thing I can figure is that the good guys are intimidated by her. The guys who show interest all turn out to be jerks. Go figure!

    • Dee,

      From the other side, I can tell you that a lot of women who are drop-dead gorgeous and have no “gift of singleness” also have a list a mile long of the prerequisites for a husband. I know single women who love their list more than they love the dream of getting married. Their extreme choosiness lands them in trouble. Not only that, but their list is often warped, which blinds them. Sure, the jerk may fit her list to a T, but her list doesn’t include the very qualities that would have eliminated the jerk!

      Once, I heard of a Christian woman in her late thirties who refused to date men who weren’t virgins. Of course, divorced guys were off-limits, too. All I can say to that woman is “Good luck, Sister!”

      I knew a state representative of the Miss America pageant who lamented her lack of dates. She was a Christian, highly intelligent, and a generally pleasant person, but she was holding out for a mega-rich guy. As far as I know, she never met one. We hung out together, but she always let it be known that she wanted to date a Trump, Jr., so her list pretty much excluded every guy she knew. Too bad for her, but a perfect illustration of how the list gets in the way.

      I would also say that if your friend desires to get married, then her church needs to help pick up the slack. As I got older, I realized that I wasn’t the only judge of what makes a good spouse. Others, including my parents, often were a better judge of me than I was and could suggest good people for me to date.

      I would suggest that if the people around her aren’t helping her find a mate, they should. They may have to suggest people who don’t fit the list, though. Maybe it would help to know why she’s excluding some good guys and not the jerks.

      BTW, I know a single guy who lives up north who might be open to dating your friend. He’s a lot older (fifties), but he’s very intelligent, charming, and writes well. At that age, I don’t know if he’s open to starting a family, but who knows?

    • Dee-
      Men are not easily intimidated if we have our sites set on someone. Intimidation beyond a certain point generally has grounds for existence. Nothing is a deadlier riposte than “just friends” I’d imaging there are a lot of men who probably feel the same. But to be fair, men and women both have a tendancy towards lists, and many are the relationships that “might have been” had it not been for lists. And what defines “jerk” anyways? Hmm?

      And in response to what Dan wrote-
      I think one of the tragedies of life today is the prevalence of “Christian” online dating. This is one of the long list of issues that is an indicator of the health of the Christian Community. If someone has to go to the anonymity of the internet to find a partner, then our community is sick indeed.

      • Chris Stiles

        I wouldn’t say ‘sick’. I think the basic cause is that we haven’t really – in the church – come up with a way of dealing with the way in which people migrate frequently for jobs/family/schooling etc. When I say ‘deal’, I’m not suggesting that considering whether migration is necessary might not be part of the answer.

        I’m single – in the UK, which translates to very few people of my age in church – there’s one single woman in my church, unless I go up or down 10 years. I can see why some people in the same situation may resort to internet dating, however un-ideal it might be.

        • Chris,

          You are dead-on right: we need to find a way to stop migrating so much so we can develop stronger communities of faith.

          Communities should…
          …help people find local jobs.
          …help singles find mates.
          …help support families.
          …help ensure than no one goes wanting.

          I hope other people hear what you’re saying.

          • Chris Stiles

            One caveat – I come from an ethnic group where ‘helping singles find mates’ absorbed a lot of energy. Many of my peers have found it very difficult when close relatives started to push relationships based on an incomplete understanding of them as individuals.

            Help is fine – as another data point – but it has to come with humility and the willingness to allow the other person to confound our expectations.

        • Why would it be? It’s not necessarily the action that is evil, it’s the idea behind the action. Long before actions, ideas have consequences.

          To me the issue is the purpose and the role of dating. In a healthy community people of dating age are working, learning, and generally socializing in a group, where they get to know one anothers strengths and weaknesses, skills and abilities, likes and dislikes; All in a forum where it’s difficult to lie or deceive. Because single people today often don’t have that kind of community, they are creating relationships based on physical attraction, “top this” stories, and deception. The winners are those who can maintain a facade long enough “have a relationship.” It’s not healthy. As Chris mentioned, the Church has not reacted well to our increasingly transient society, and the result is people who are increasingly seeking companionship outside the Church, often with ideas about relationships that are not scripturally based. Worldly relationships do not begat Christ-centered families, and the Church suffers as a result.

  3. I guess we all need to hear that we are the “pearl of great price” and we are the treasure hidden in a field, and that God gave up His greatest treasure, all He owned, in order to purchase us. And we need to hear it from each other, constantly, daily. Imagine what we could do with that reality pressing us onward? Self-confidence is nothing compared with the confidence of God in us.

  4. Roberto

    Wow, am I speechless.
    Dan, this could be, IMHO the “post of the year” as far as I am concerned…
    As a father of three *gorgeous* girls, i could not agree more.
    Unfortunately I see exactly what you say, us, *guys* failing big time in telling to the women in our families, in our churches just that.
    I spoke many times with buddies at church, about family stuff, and over and over, the same pattern surfaced. Many dads have issues with daughters, as soon as the *teen* years approach, and they hit the “PANIC” button… Girls nowadays are bombarded with *visual* acceptance and as you said, if they do not find it at home, from their father, they WILL look for it elsewhere, and we dads, may not like where and with whom that happens.
    I will make sure every dad I know memorize your post.
    Thank, Dan.

    RG, father of three beautiful girls ( and they know that.)

  5. Can I say that I’m a little shocked that only one woman commented on this post? I fully anticipated that only a few men would, but all the female readers would be chiming in right and left.

    Not that I’m grousing about the comments! Just a little surprised that the men have dominated them.

    Ladies, am I off-base in this post?

    • No Dan, you’re right on and you made me cry. Which may be why not many women are commenting because this is such an emotional issue. I find it incredibly hard to hear ‘You’re beautiful” because it comes so rarely from anyone in my life, my dad especially.

      Chris, don’t know where you’re from in the UK, but to me it sounds like you’re in a pretty unusual situation. Most of my female single Christian friends across the UK, myself included, complain that their churches are full of single women, with very few men around. The one exception I’ve experienced so far was the church I went to in London, which when I joined I was pretty much the only single woman in my age group and in the past few years has evened out to a fairly equal balance. The glib answer would be try out another church in your area, but it’s never that simple. You need time to build friendships and occasionally turning up at another church to check out the talent just doesn’t do that.

      • Peyton

        Bekki (I looked it up — much prettier than Pigwotflies!), your site bears out the pathos in your comments, and I weep for you. My wife and I see so many people who have been abused as you have, by not receiving affirmation from parents. We also have failed and been failed, but have found that Jesus can redeem many a bad situation.

        Meanwhile, here is a Flying Pig, from the Cincinnati, Ohio, bicentennial:

      • Peyton

        Bekki (I looked it up — much prettier than Pigwotflies!), your site bears out the pathos in your comments, and I weep for you. My wife and I see so many people who have been abused as you have, by not receiving affirmation from parents. We also have failed and been failed, but have found that Jesus can redeem many a bad situation.

        Meanwhile, here is a Flying Pig, from the Cincinnati, Ohio, bicentennial: This glorious creature overlooks the Riverwalk
        in the great city of Cincinnati, Ohio.

  6. JH

    No, you’re not off base at all . . . the only thing that I’d add is that, when a girl / woman isn’t told that she’s beautiful, either she doesn’t try to look nice at all, or goes to the opposite extreme of showing every curve to try to prove the point that no-one’s told her. So those girls that don’t look so hot . . . some of that may be indicitive of the fact that they really need to hear someone tell them that God has made them beautiful. Not that that’s easy to believe; I don’t know if I believe people any better than I used to, though I have gotten better at not arguing with someone if they try to compliment me.

  7. pappadeas

    Dan-I feel that your post could have been written by Dr Phil. Is there a Biblical basis for this “need” in young girls to know that males find them lovely? I havent found one. The lack of self esteem or feelings of self worth are symptoms of a much greater problem-the Gospel is just not enough for some. Acceptance by God is not enough. A young lady who’s only refuge is in God will not have a weak will and will not be easily taken advantage of by the first creep who comes along with flattery. I know this post has a bit of an edge to it-this line of thinking in the church is a pet peeve of mine. Again, where is the Biblical basis?

    I do think your series on community was excellent(!!!), and I enjoy your blog.


    • Jim,

      The Bible doesn’t tell us to tell our children every day that we love them, does it? Or to hug them and kiss them? No. Do we do it anyway? Well, I do!

      A little child can be read the Bible every day and yet still die from a lack of parental love and care. God built more needs in us than just hearing His word. If you don’t eat or drink, you’ll die, no matter how many hours you spend reading the Scriptures.

      Many of the things we do in the Christian faith are based on the general ideas encapsulated in the Bible. I’m always hearing from some people that the word “love” isn’t mentioned in the Book of Acts, but there is no doubt that Jesus loved His disciples, they loved him, and they loved each other. You can’t read Acts and not see love on almost every page. It’s a silly thing to justify an unloving attitude toward others simply because the Book of Acts doesn’t have the word “love” explicitly stated on every page.

      The Bible is filled with verses talking about the tongue, how we bless and curse with the same tongue, and how the tongue can bring life or death. How can we not understand the deeper meaning behind those words?

      By speaking blessings into a person’s life, we speak life or death. By telling a woman she is beautiful, we speak life. Our failure to speak also sends her a message. Or we can explicitly state she’s ugly. Does that failure to speak or outright words of contempt reflect anything of Christ within us? No. But blessing another with words of encouragement does. I pity any wife who doesn’t regularly hear from her husband that she is beautiful. If you’re married, I certainly hope you’re not holding back those kinds of blessed words from your wife.

    • Peyton

      Jim, try Malachi 4:6 — “He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.” Also Psalm 144:13 and Matthew 7:9-11. And of course the entire Song of Songs.


  8. Philippa


    I have very mixed feelings about this post, frankly, because I’m the same age as you, 44, and have never been married. I’d like to be, by the way.

    Has any man told me I’m beautiful? Well, one did … a very long time ago.

    Maybe I am reading your post the wrong way, but if any man in my church (not that there are any eligible men) told me I was beautiful, I would immediately assume he was interested in going out with me. It’s an extremely personal thing to say to a woman, to say the least, and no man has any business saying such a thing unless he really does mean business. I don’t care how he means it †β€œ whether he’s referring to my deep inner spiritual beauty or whatever. To me it signals one thing: “I’m interested in you, and not just as a sister in Christ.

    Sorry for being snippy. πŸ™ This post has hit a nerve.

    But I like your blog, and I do appreciate the honesty of this post. πŸ™‚ Yeah, you men ARE a shallow lot. πŸ˜‰ We knew that. πŸ˜€

    Just kidding. πŸ™‚ And it’s not like there aren’t any shallow women!

    Let’s hope Cassie did find someone who was wowed by her wonderful qualities, eh?

    I’m still holding out for mine.

    PS. Unlike the rather unrealistic Christian lady you cite above, I would not necessarily expect any future husband of mine to be a virgin. In fact, in some ways, I would prefer him not to be. Virginity in someone in their 40s and 50s is not actually their strongest selling point †β€œ I’m not despising virginity, since I’m a virgin myself. I’m just saying it’s not the strongest selling point, is all. Obviously I would expect any future husband to be transparent with me about his past sexual history (pre-conversion!) but it wouldn’t put me off from marrying him. Not if he was living faithfully for Christ in the here and now!

    PPS. And yes, a godly and loving father will affirm his daughter’s womanhood.

  9. Steorling

    You know, I’ve tried three times to respond to this post…but I keep crying. I can’t answer for the other women who read your blog, but the question of how single women are treated in the church
    (particularly by our brothers) is so hurtful in some ways that we’d just rather not talk about it at all. I was and am much loved by my father and grandfather; they taught me what “unconditional’ means, but at some point “daddy” just can’t be your champion anymore.

    I’ve had several brothers in Christ that will always be dear to me, but not one in 36 years of life who cherished me beyond my role as confidante and sister…just female enough to help them with their girlfriend problems, but never to be considered actually a woman myself.

    The church’s answer to the “dating” question in my era was “men only” studies on the book “Dating with Integrity”…all that managed to do was push dating underground so that I was getting wedding invitations from couples I didn’t even know had sat a meal together…ever. (and this was in an active college ministry with 120 members!) The women, on their part, had the end of Proverbs drilled in to them until one girl once asked me why she’d “cloth her family in scarlet” of all things. lol

    To illustrate how much christian men don’t get it…I have a friend (of 16 years) that I call my heart’s brother. He knows me better than any person living and has sacrificed tremendously for me over the years….but that first year he told me I wasn’t “worthy” without the words “date” every crossing his lips (though he may not even realize how he did, he’s just glad he dodged a bullet) and I accepted that judgement and lived by it for a very long time. Just a few years ago (just before he met the girl he married) I went to his house and not three seconds after I went in the door he asked me, “What’s with the anklet?”. God had been working on me through my study and a lot of really bizzarely intertwined incidents and over months I had learned some words he’d spoken as the lover of my soul and wore the anklet to remind me. [Note, my brother was astute enough to know AT ONCE that it was significant…he knew me that well.] I was pretty embarrassed he’d noticed, actually, but I answered him. I told him it was to remind me of three things that God said….”He made me, he loves me, and I’m beautiful.” And at that moment, the brother who knew me better than anyone in the universe went completely silent and turned on the television. He didn’t say another word until he burned himself on the oven rack getting out dinner! lol

    I could tell you dozens of stories of how belittled and insignificant I feel at church and how at odds that is with what My Lord has been teaching me outside of it…and that’s what I think is most tragic. I am a virgin daughter of the Living God…bought at great price by the one who knows me and loves me best and he will NOT be amused if anyone ignores or hurts what he delights in. So my prince does not ride in shining armor, his robes are dipped in blood.

    To the church, I’m the unemployed, the unincluded, the extra “female” laying about in case of nuclear disaster or a sudden upsurge in divorce or widowers. I’m told to join the “singles” ministry to find a mate so I have purpose, told by my doctor to have surgery “because God didn’t make us to be alone”, and signed up for e-harmony by my ever-loving parents where even the “nice christian guys” reject my profile because it doesn’t have any “full body length photos” prefereably in a bikini!

    *sigh* Sorry, that last was a rant. I’m quite good at those when it comes to this topic, so next time you wonder why the women aren’t talking, maybe it’s just time to count your blessings. lol lol

    • francisco

      I don’t know what to say. It seems you’ve tried to take with humor some of the things that have happened to you. I have a few thoughts on the things you mentioned in your second to last paragraph.
      1. Some people are hesitant to join the “singles” ministry either because they do not see themselves as “singles” or because they fear that the whole thing becomes a meat market. My church does not have one since 2 years ago.
      2. No clue on whether your doctor is a believer or not. Marriage is supposed to be the norm yet those who have the gift of celibacy and marry not for the sake of the kingdom of God are rare and are not in sin. This book chapter has good questions to ponder. Hope it helps you – With One Voice Extract.pdf
      3. Internet dating? The comment on your “…”full body length photos” preferably in a bikini”” smells to sarcasm a little. My question to you is: what do you expect to find at e-harmony or sites like those? Holier-than-thou saints? Of course not you will say. Avoiding generalizations may help to cool down bitterness. Yet I don’t know where you are at. I am just saying.
      At the end, I’d like to recommend this blog. You can start browsing few of the old articles there beginning here.
      Remember that humility will never get overrated.

      Grace and Peace

      • Steorling

        The bikini thing, while sarcastic, is true. Let me explain. I despise the idea of ‘internet dating’, but my parent’s badgered me into trying e-harmony after going to the wedding of a couple who met there…so I did the whole ‘personality profile’ (which I was curious about anyway) but never paid for a subscription because, hey, I’m not an idiot. Anyway, if you take the survey, they try to hook you into the service by making ten matches at a time…and your stuff is always available to subscribers anyway. It took me three days to figure out how to get my profile off the dumb thing and in the mean time I did cruise a few profiles to see how “matching” worked according to them. (I’m a skeptic) Anyway, in those three days I recieved over 60 e-mails “ending communication” I hadn’t even started from men who were subscribers. Let me explain, if you end communication to an account, they can never speak to you and you can never speak to them. So, sixty e-mails all said the same thing…they had ended communication because I didn’t have a photo in my profile, a thing you can’t have until you subscribe. (What, they think I might be Jabba the Hutt in disguise?) Now, since they ended communication I was now able to see their profiles even though they weren’t my “ten lucky winners”. lol I was really curious about this, since I’d been really adamant on all the quiestionaire about wanting to only be matched with christians, and I cruised through the profiles. All described themselves (more or less) as “born-again” and “deeply commited to their walk in Christ” looking for that elusive Proverbs woman that would be their friend and confidante on life’s journey, yada, yada, yada. Lovely sounding Christ followers (in active ministry in many cases) and yet at least three of them had really caustic comments about women who wouldn’t put full body shots on their profiles being “teases” or “just messing with them”.

        Now, I understand what men of every age are ‘programmed’ to want…I’ve had enough “brothers” to know. (in fact, most of my friends are men) Men want something that looks like Pamela Anderson/Anna Nicole in their prime with all the appropriate poses and affectations in stock, who holds a really good job and is still a domestic and culinary goddes in her spare time. I don’t blame men for their programming (biological or other wise) but for how they treat the majority of women who do not fit this fantasy. It’s as much an epidemic amongst christian men as the public high school boys I work with all day long. In fact, I think it might be worse, because christian men have some strange idea that this is what God has in store for them because they are the Sons of God. At least high school boys are under the assumption that they’re going to have to do something to earn “the platinum package”. lol

        I hear single men complain all the time about how there just aren’t any “good girls” left, and they’re doing it in rooms filled with “good girls” they don’t even recognize as female. lol

        Try this one as example. I was in a singles bible study for a year and by the end there were 3 men and 11 women. Our host was a widower with a young son, a wonderful christian man I’ve known for years and who’s wife I knew pretty well back in college. He was going on and on about his son and said how much he’d like to be a father again, to more boys if he could…..and then he sighed sadly and said something like “but 20 somethings just aren’t interested in old guys like me.” This to a room full of thirtysomething women, half of whom were virgins and half of whom had been divorced by two-timing jerks who never paid child support. I was surprised he didn’t have his eyes clawed out, but instead every woman there just smiled understanding meekly and hid the thoughts they were having of “Hey, bub, what am I, chopped liver? You think menopause hits at 23?” Too many Christian men are just as clueless about what wounds women as their “worldly” counterparts. Calling me sister doesn’t cut it….protecting me from abuse, shielding my already raw wounds, staying alert and armed against the one who is out to destroy me with the lies he speaks to my very soul, that is what a brother does.

        • Steorling,

          I’m sorry that you’ve encountered some men who are too picky. While I think men have much shorter lists of essentials when it comes to picking a mate, physical appearance is ALWAYS going to be high on that list. For some reason, some women (especially single Christian women) don’t seem to get this.

          I’m not saying this is the way it should be in a perfect world, but it’s the way it is, nonetheless.

          Mark Driscoll, the pastor of Mars Hill in Seattle, caught a lot of flack for being brutally honest about this issue of appearance. I tend to side with Driscoll on this. We should all do our best to eat well, exercise, and take care of ourselves. If we’re overweight, we should lose it. We should try to maintain a neat appearance without going overboard.

          In regards to my post, I think that beauty can be found in many guises. I also think that young women who grow up being affirmed in their appearance and the other beautiful traits they possess are the people who ultimately attract the most mates. I’ve known women with physical deformities who had no problems finding mates because their parents reinforced that they were beautiful despite their afflictions.

          My wife was 32 when we got married. I was 33. I think both of us were worthy mates to anyone. Still, we lasted a bit longer than average in the singles scene. God makes all things beautiful in His time.

          I also know that I didn’t meet my wife until I dropped a few things from my list and left the rest up to God. When I gave up looking, I felt a lot better. I concentrated on pleasing God and not finding a mate. I let the little slights go. Women who wouldn’t give me the time of day no longer troubled me (jerks exist in both sexes, BTW.) It wasn’t long thereafter that I met my wife.

          Has the Church in America let singles down? Absolutely! I think we need to revamp the entire way we look at marriage and family within community. But that revamping must start young. Instilling a sense of their own beauty in young women is a good place to start.

          • francisco

            “But that revamping must start young.”

            You nail it there. Many thirty-something singles sneer from singles group because they feel somewhat trapped in a meat market. Either apathetic singles or i-gotta-hurry-up-to-get-my-mate-and-get-out-of-this-group singles make this scene even sadder. By saying this I don’t mean there is no hope for thirty-somethings (or even twenty-somethings!). What I say is that perhaps an aggresive discipleship focused on becoming the person God would want us to be with humility at its core (because pride always will try to get us down the path of despair and giving us more jerks we can handle) would prepare better the younger generations to tackle down the issue of prolonged singleness. Read the book I suggested if you get a chance.

            Grace and Peace

    • Peyton


      It struck me today that the women may not be posting because they are watching the “vanity meter” notching up! That said, I’ll add some of my vanity to it!

      40 years (and one day) of marriage have led me to believe that marriage is not, per se, wonderful. I am a drag on my wife’s life in Christ, and she in mine (see 1 Cor 7:32-35). Yet we bear a witness which the unmarried cannot know, that of the union betwixt Christ and his Church (Ephesians 4:31-33). The joy of marriage, or of celibacy, lies outside of ourselves.

      “To the church, I’m the unemployed …” Yeah, it’s judgemental on our part. We want to “fix” your “problem,” don’t we. But stay your course. Your Prince knows your name!


  10. Pingback: Lnks et al « The Blog Of Dysfunction
  11. As one of those girls who went looking “elsewhere” and found a mountain of trash that I wasn’t looking for… THANK YOU. I’m glad God forgave me and restored me. I tell my daughter often how precious she is to the Lord. So does her daddy. I hope that she never has to learn things the hard way like her mother did.

    My parents divorced when I was 2, by the way. A girl without her father is a desperate girl indeed. I would suggest that if you know a DIVORCED mother, please reach out to her and her kids!!!

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