To the Single Woman in Ministry

Dear Single Woman in Ministry,

I see you.
You may feel unseen sometimes, but I see you.
You may feel alone sometimes too. I get it.
We don’t have a plethora of people to look up to do we? All the Christine Caines and Beth Moores of the world are married.
Heck, my mom, my pastors’ wives, church workers I look up to — all married.

There is a plethora of wonderful Christian women in the spotlight to look up to and learn from… but it’s a struggle to find many single ones.

There’s nothing wrong with being single, of course, but sometimes it feels like there is, doesn’t it?
When your research for women’s ministry topics continue to circle back to relationships. When one more well-meaning person tries to set you up with a stranger. When a young guy walks into church and you feel all eyes turn to you with eyebrows raised, silently asking, “This one? Will this be the one for you?”
It can be irritating. It can be disheartening.

It can be lonely.

It can be.
But I sincerely hope and pray you don’t sit in those emotions.

Because being a single woman in ministry is a precious, incredible gift.
For one, being a woman in 2018 is awesome in itself. In the midst of ever-growing concern over women’s rights, we are not only allowed but encouraged to be strong and independent. We can apply for the job and travel to the city and change the tire.
(I mean, I can’t change the tire. That doesn’t sound fun at all. But you can if you want to…) And yet, in strength and independence, we are still wildly free to feel deeply, love softly, and live whimsically.

You do you, girl, because by golly, you can.

Being a single woman in ministry has even more benefits:
Not every person in your church is married. There are children, teenagers, and young adults living in singleness. There are people divorced, widowed, or never married to begin with. Even people happily wed will need to know how to pour into their single friends or children at some point.

Marriage is not a given, but singleness is.

Being single does not lessen your credibility. It does not mean God will use you less. In fact, you have an incredible opportunity to be a voice for your single sisters and brothers.

One of my favorite local Christian leaders was single into her late thirties.
As someone walking that same journey, single women readily respected her, her story, and her zeal for life in Christ in spite of not having a husband. Now married, this woman loves her husband and still has an amazing ministry — yet part of her mourns for the specific type of impact she was able to make as a single woman.

In a Christian culture saturated with married people pouring into single people, your voice as a confident, Jesus-following, purpose-filled single woman is invaluable.

Single Woman in Ministry, your voice is important to equip and empower the women around you to step into God’s purpose for their lives. Perhaps their story will involve marriage — but marriage was never the end-goal, was it? It’s a beautiful gift, but it’s not why God created us. Our purpose will always be to love, serve, and disciple. You can speak inspiration, purpose, and freedom into the single people walking beside you.
Walk confidently, live boldly, and empower courageously as you serve in your ministries. I can’t even begin to imagine all the good God has planned.

In Him, you are loved.
In Him, you are enough.
Through Him, we’ll change the world.

Love, Emilie

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