LGBTQ Adults are Single Adults

Table for One Ministries - Singles Ministry - Blog - LGBT Adults are Single Adults

It is Table for One Ministries’ intent to have an open dialog for the local church to discuss how to effectively and lovingly reach the homosexual/same-sex attraction community. The premise of this blog is the following: marriage is between one man and one woman, all homosexual activity is a sin, every person is worth reaching, and Christ died for all. With this base in place, this writing does not seek to argue the vast points that can sprout from within these statements, but to look beyond them to find an effective means to reach the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered (LGBTQ) community.

Single adult ministry is broken down into seven areas of singleness– never married, engaged, same-sex attraction, formerly married, widowed, single parents, and separated adults. Within these categories is a wide expanse of reasons for why adults find themselves categorized as single. Some adults are single because they never found the right person, their spouse left them by choice or by death, or those who choose to forgo a typical marriage relationship for co-habitation. However, there are those who feel an attraction to the same sex. By Biblical definition, homosexuals cannot be considered anything except a single adult. If a homosexual couple considers themselves married, even in a state where the government recognizes this action, the church with a Biblical definition of marriage cannot recognize this union, and therefore, within the church, they are considered single adults.

It is Table for One’s opinion that the church should be welcoming to all people of all backgrounds in order to reach the lost for Christ. That means that the church should and will have homosexuals coming to its building and it needs to find a group to connect them with others in their life stage. This is not just those who are openly homosexual, but those who struggle with the idea of same-sex attraction and fight to not act upon it.

A scenario such as this has played out in churches across America; a homosexual couple comes in the doors of a church and asks which Sunday School class they should attend. If the church directs them to a married adult class, that action validates the sin they are committing and actually enforces it with church resources. The church should not and cannot take this action unless it compromises its view of a Biblical relationship. However, by sending the same couple to a single adult class the church does not compromise its stance on a Biblical marriage while offering a place for them to attend. Will this action offend the couple in the scenario? Maybe, but for those that have chosen to come to a church with a Biblical stance on marriage, the church demonstrates a place for them to still attend.

This single adult class referred to above is not a group focused on the conversion of every homosexual that comes in the door, rather it should be a place where any sinner can enter to find fellowship, Biblical training and the Gospel presentation. For this model to work, the church must embrace the idea that the act of homosexuality is not grounds for church banishment. It is a plan of action to accept any person and give them the Biblical foundation for a life in Christ. Its discipleship plans and programs are the same regardless of the type of sinner in attendance.

The Emperor Has no Clothes: Bruce Jenner and Gender Dysphoria

https://tfoministries.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Copy-of-TFO-Table-for-One-Ministries-Ministry-for-Singles-and-Leaders-to-Singles-The-Emperor-Has-no-Clothes-Bruce-Jenner-and-Gender-Dysphoria.jpg

Something is wrong; horribly, disturbingly wrong. And it has to do with the way our culture celebrates a mental disorder. Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner has brought to the forefront a condition that is growing in notoriety in our culture today, Gender Dysphoria.

This public spectacle reminds me of the old fable, The Emperor’s New Clothes. In this story, the Emperor’s vanity has allowed him to be duped into believing that he is wearing magical clothing that can only be seen by those who are wise. He doesn’t see the clothes himself but is afraid to say so for fear of being labeled a fool. In fact, no one sees the clothes because they do not exist, but no one will speak up for the same fear. One day he parades through town with his new “clothes” until one little boy has the courage to speak up and tell him that he is in fact naked.

Back to Bruce Jenner. Those who suffer from Gender Dysphoria, also known as Gender Identity Disorder or G.I.D. for short, have strong feelings that they are the opposite gender of their biological reality. Often they choose to have their bodies altered to reflect what they feel to be their true identity. This is what Bruce has done and now his decision is celebrated and applauded by nearly every media outlet.

As a Christian I struggle with knowing how to react when the culture celebrates someone’s decision to chase their happiness through drugs, hormone therapy, and gender reassignment surgery. I want to know what I should do, what I should say. Should I just remain silent? Celebration and applause doesn’t feel right. If I speak about my misgivings will I be castigated in the court of public opinion? How do I speak words of hope and healing when I don’t understand what people like Bruce, or Caitlyn, if you prefer, are going through?

I begin with two truths from God’s Word. First, God created us male and female (Gen 1:27). Second, there was intention in how each of us was created (Psalm 139:13-16). We can, therefore, deduce that the gender we are born with is not a mistake. We are who we are because that is God’s will for us. If I decide not to follow God’s will for my life, God calls that rebellion. Now there is something I know a little something about (a lot, really).

G.I.D. is really just another symptom of the fall of man. I don’t mean to oversimplify such a complex issue as G.I.D. However, original sin makes us all want to be something different than what God wants for us. We are all prone to choose our own way. Sin has distorted our view of God, it has distorted our view of others, and it has distorted our view of ourselves.

So back to how I react when faced with the media storm surrounding Bruce Jenner. First, I react with love, love for a fellow human being who needs the love and mercy of a righteous and just God. Then I speak the truth in love. Bruce Jenner will not find peace in being someone other than who God has created him to be.

There is only one way to peace, hope, and joy in who you are created to be. It is found in Jesus. Placing my faith and trust in Him means that I trust that He created me just the way He wanted me. I am not too short, my skin is not too pale, and I am the gender He wants me to be. All feelings to the contrary are a rebellion of who God has created me to be and therefore sinful. All sin leads to death (Rom 3:23) and for anyone to encourage others to revel in their rebellion is not helpful; it is destructive and mean.

I just feel like someone has to speak the truth!

 

2013 Recap

bible study for single adults

What an exciting year it has been for Table for One Ministries!

Our first year of ministry saw great success in getting our name out there as a ministry to single adults. We have nearly 1,100 likes on Facebook, 2,200 followers on Twitter, 2,500 followers on Instagram, 2,600 followers on Pinterest and we see hits every day on our website from these outlets reading our blogs. Speaking of our website, we average over 500 views a day. Our top blog of 2014 was “Divorced not Damaged” by Christina Dunn with just over 500 reads followed by our Gospel presentation blog “Am I Alone?” and third was our blog “Not an Option.” We raised over $5,000 in tax-deductible giving and filed for a trademark for our ministry name.

Our goals for 2013 were to get our name out there, reach single adults, and establish a non-profit with high accountability. Thanks to the leadership of the nine members of our board of directors, we have met and exceeded these goals! For 2014, we are looking to produce discipleship focused curriculum targeted for single adults as well as schedule speaking engagements to share our values. We want to be a ministry that is reaching single adults and inspiring churches to start reaching single adults as well.

Will you help us get 2014 off to a good start? You have the opportunity to give a tax-deductible gift to Table for One Ministries before December 31st to help us get 2014 off to a great start. Your recurring or one time gift will propel our goals of publishing curriculum even sooner. We praise God for your support and look forward to sharing the stories of life change Table for One is bringing to singles and churches.

Let The Games Begin!

https://tfoministries.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Copy-of-TFO-Table-for-One-Ministries-Ministry-for-Singles-and-Leaders-to-Singles-Let-The-Games-Begin.jpg

Perhaps you have heard about this. The Game Show Network (GSN), buoyed by the success of “The American Bible Challenge,” has decided to develop another new game show with believers in mind. And so, they are developing “It Takes a Church,” a dating show where church members compete against each other to find the perfect mate for their single co-congregant. For the show, “a church will go on a mission to find love for one lucky, single parishioner…without them knowing! Each week, we’ll visit another church from across the country and surprise a single girl (or guy) with the news that she is about to be saved from the dating world. The congregation, Pastor, friends, and family will all contribute, but in the end our single will decide which suitor she is putting her faith in.”

There are so many things troubling about that description, I don’t know where to begin.

“A church will go on a mission…” Since when is it the MISSION of the church to marry me off?  Did I just really misunderstand Matthew 28?

“Lucky, single parishioner…” Not sure “lucky” is the word I would use.

“Without them knowing!” Really? That makes the person even MORE unlucky in my opinion. Granted, the person must at some point sign off on the whole deal, but that is NOT a surprise I would welcome… “Hey Susie-Q!  The church voted and decided you need our help and the assistance of a nationally televised game show if you are ever going to find love.”

“Our single will decide which suitor she is putting her faith in.”  Okay, I’m trying to remind myself that although the target audience is Christian, the show developers are not necessarily Christian themselves.  But still, this comment seems to perpetuate the idea that a single person can or should place their entire faith ANYWHERE but Jesus. I think single women, especially, hear (and sometimes buy into) the lie that if they will find a Godly husband, they can just follow him, while he follows God. Certainly, you put faith in anyone you are going to marry (if you can’t do that, don’t get married), but blindly following anyone besides God will not go well, and ultimately we are to place our faith in Christ.

I am hopeful about one thing with this game show, however. Won’t it be wonderful if it provides a platform for godly men and women to state their beliefs about God’s plan for marriage, or perhaps discuss the uncommon belief that sex was created for marriage only? God can be glorified in more venues and ways than I could ever imagine, so I pray he’ll be glorified in this, and maybe the prayers of some “lucky, single parishioner” will be answered.

UPDATE: “It takes a Church” is scheduled to premiere on June 5, 2014: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzbqyQrVT_A

Is Singleness Causing a Downfall of our Churches? Our Nation?

TFO - Table for One Ministries- Ministry for Singles and Leaders to Singles - Blog - Is Singleness Causing a Downfall of our Churches- Our Nation-

Singles are sometimes confronted with a litany of (inappropriate?) questions, such as “why hasn’t anyone married you yet?” As uncomfortable, and potentially insulting as those questions are, there is now the theory that singleness is contributing to the downfall of our nation.

That is among the points of Family Vision Films new faith-based documentary now in production called “UnMarried: the Rise of Singleness.” The film includes interviews with theologians, families, married adults and single adults as it seeks to understand why people are choosing “delayed marriage,” or “prolonged singleness.” The film seems to take a firm stand against singleness, operating under the belief that Christians should marry young, with the decision to marry being perhaps more important than the decision of who to marry. One article recently linked on their Facebook page lists ten reasons to marry and have children at a young age. UnMarried specifically approves of reason #3: “Because you will never really find the right person and if you do, you’re probably not the right person for them.”

In the “pre-trailer,” one interviewee states that singleness “is the fundamental problem of our social systems. It is a fundamental problem with our churches, a fundamental problem with education systems, and it will yield severe, severe, socio-economic problems in years to come…If we don’t address this issue, we’re done. There is no future for the family. There’s no future for the church. There is no future for our Nation.”

The filmmakers are using their Facebook page to conduct research for their film. They ask questions for their followers to respond to, post links to articles that address singleness and/or early marriage, and allow followers to voice their own queries. Their followers are on a spectrum from believing God will provide you with a spouse in his timing to believing it is a parents responsibility to find a spouse for their eighteen year-old (or younger) child.

Follow Table For One Ministries on our Facebook page as we repost some of the questions and links UnMarried is using for research and respond with your comments. We would like to have a healthy, Biblical discussion on the issues, myths, and outright insulting fallacies being stated today about the Christian single. Furthermore, we want to highlight some of the invalid and unbiblical arguments facing singles, particularly Christian singles, today.

 

Smartphones for Singles

TFO - Table for One Ministries- Ministry for Singles and Leaders to Singles - Blog - Smartphones for Singles

Thanks to the good folks at CNet, we now know that apparently singles prefer smart phone and couples prefer tablets. And you thought only looking for a ring was the way to see if someone was single or not? Our theory agrees with the article, which is that couples can justify the extra cost for a tablet since two people will be using it. As a single adult, one smartphone is typically enough tech gadget while at work and home. Another fact you can now share over a cup of coffee on your smartphone.

Article Link:
http://www.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57556099-93/singles-go-for-smartphones-while-couples-like-tablets/