“He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord..”
The purpose of this ministry is to provide a spiritually healthy and safe place where single adults can study the Word, fellowship and serve the Lord together during this season of singleness. The Lord, in His love, has given us wonderful tools to instruct and empower every Christian in every season and situation of life. He has given us His Word which is completely sufficient to instruct us in every area of our lives including specific principles on singleness. The Lord has also given every believer the gift of His Holy Spirit to guide and empower us to fulfill our purpose in every area and season of our lives.
The Singles ministry focuses on the study of God’s Word with the application to Godly living in general and specific application to singleness. Many opportunities are provided to make the most of this season to serve the Lord, as it says in 1 Corinthians 7, “without distraction”. We visit local convalescent homes twice a month, feed the homeless on skid row, visit the orphanage in Mexico, go street witnessing, and more. In addition to ministry opportunities we also have a variety of fun activities that seek to foster godly fellowship. These times are usually started and ended in prayer along with a devotion in God’s Word to keep our focus on Him, because even in fun we are called to bring glory to His name (1 Corinthians 6:20, Col 3:17).
What if I am a Single Parent?
All Single adults 26+ including single parents are welcome and we do provide children’s ministry. Many of the same biblical principles that apply to singles apply to single parents (i.e. courtship, service, primacy of the Lord and His Word) but others do not. The single is given the instruction in 1 Corinthians 7 to serve the Lord without the distraction of a spouse. Although single parents do not have a spouse, they do have the extremely important ministry of children which is second only to the ministry of their own relationship with the Lord. While it is important for the single parent to serve in ministry, they must always be cautious not to get distracted and neglect the ministry towards their children. Since there are many exhortations to singles to serve and make the most of this season to serve the Lord, the single parent must always prayerfully consider what to participate in to appropriately steward the ministries in their lives. You will find that many of the single parents take their children to serve with them. It is a great opportunity to disciple their children, show them the joy of serving God and spend time together (Deuteronomy 6:4-7, Ephesians 6:4). Since the task of parenting is so important, the singles ministry has a monthly study on parenting directed towards single parents along with a time for fellowship and encouragement. Additionally, Calvary Chapel of Downey has parenting classes on Tuesday nights in which they study some of the Biblical principles of parenting which apply to both traditional and single parents.
What about dating?
The Bible has many principles about interpersonal relationships that when applied to the opposite sex follows the model of what is known as courtship. The modern concept of what is called dating violates many of these principles. Along with personal preparation and spiritual maturity some other principles are:
Purpose (Genesis 2:24) – When God brings the opposite sex together it is for the purpose of marriage not hanging out to have fun. God is not a party pooper, there is a reason for this.
- Accountability (Genesis 2:24) – The man shall leave father and mother. Throughout the Bible and throughout most of history the parents or parental figures played a huge role in overseeing this process. They had the couple’s best interest in mind and ensured the focus on spiritual unity while establishing appropriate physical and emotional boundaries.
- Oneness (Genesis 2:24) – The two shall become one flesh. The one flesh relationship goes beyond physical. It is primarily spiritual, then emotional, and lastly physical after marriage. It is important to understand the three and their priority so there are appropriate boundaries in speech, contact and time spent together during each stage of a relationship.
- Commitment – Understanding the biblical principles of purpose, oneness and accountability in God’s design of a relationship then requires commitment to it on our part. Biblical love through servant-hood, humility, honesty and putting others’ needs before your own. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, Philippians 2:3-4, Genesis 2:18, Galatians 5:16-26
Dating on the other hand:
- Lacks commitment - A lack of understanding of God’s design in a relationship leads to a cavalier attitude by those dating to “just have fun and see what happens”. Emotional bonds are created and confusion sets in.
- Lacks purpose – There is no direction or stated purpose. No one knows where they stand in the relationship.
- Lacks accountability - No parent or parental figure to pray with, state boundaries and hold accountable to appropriate contact. Fosters emotional and sometimes physical oneness before their time which hinders spiritual unity and growth.
- Self loving - It is selfish. Most are lonely and just want company or are looking for someone to meet their needs instead of serving and meeting the needs of others.
What if I am separated but not yet divorced?
If you are not divorced then you are still married. Without getting too much into the subject of divorce, the Bible only allows (not requires) divorce under certain circumstances – adultery (Matthew 19:1-9) and if an unbelieving spouse abandons the marriage and seeks divorce (1 Corinthians 7:10-15). Even in those cases it does not seem to be God’s heart as He says in Malachi 2:16 that he hates divorce. Also, from passages such as Matthew 19 and Ephesians 5:25-33 you see the importance and value that God places on the marital relationship. Whether you are getting a divorce for biblical reasons or not, you should be seeking biblical guidance from a pastor and praying for the restoration of your marriage. If you are getting a divorce for unbiblical reasons, repent! In either case you do not want to be adopting a mindset of singleness so the Singles Ministry is not the place to be. We sometimes make special exceptions for parents that are separated in order to support them in their parenting role with other single parents. If you are a parent that is separated, please see Pastor Jason for direction and prayer.