Single Minded Singleness: Handling the Challenges & Rewards of Being Unmarried in Missions

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There are a lot of advantages and freedoms for serving alone in ministry, like super-focus on tasks without interruption, managing time schedule and work, budget/finances for money spending, housing/moving for living situations, building friendships/engaging in social activities for enhancing outreach, and traveling/planning/ decision-making. However, there are some challenges for long-term singleness in ministry, whether serving across town or across the border, which can be emotionally unsettling and may create inner dissatisfaction, even frequent frustration. Not knowing how to handle unfulfilled desires, unmet needs, aloneness-loneliness, etc., can rather hinder the sense of contentment and decrease the effectiveness of the personal servant. We all have an innate need to nurture and be nurtured, to care for other as well as to be cared for by others. People with low (or poor) social skills have a tendency to struggle further and alone. In this session we will highlight the joys-rewards and the challenges-struggles of singles on missions. We will define terminologies, correct misconceptions, encourage realistic expectations of self-others-life-God, rediscover a biblical paradigm for contented aloneness/singleness, and present practical suggestions or guidelines for Singles in Ministry: How to build healthy relationships with the opposite gender and how begin looking for partner-companion-mate via courtship. How to translate our frustration(s) into strengths and build a Koinonia around us (communion hub) that is mutually nurturing and empowering. How to cultivate single-mindedness, joy along the journey, and higher aspirations for the Kingdom while Cultivating Eternity in our Hearts, so that we know what God is doing from beginning to end. Finally, the presenter will share from his personal journey of 40 years of cross-cultural service and global ministry, who is still single-never married person.


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