In 2015, a pizzeria named Memories Pizza in Indiana, was owned by a Christian family. When word got out that they would stick to their religious beliefs by not catering same-sex marriages, it opened up a tide of retributive backlash on social media. As a result, the family received death threats in addition to other forms of harassment. A coach from a nearby school named Jess Dooley posted a tweet asking who would help her burn down the pizzeria. The O’Connors were forced to close their restaurant for fear of their safety. They even had difficulty maintaining other employment because of the backlash. Fortunately, the Blaze set up a gofundme account that raised $800,000 to support the family, since they had no means of income. You can read about it here.
This is the climate we live in today. Regardless of your views on the LGBT community, it is clear that the respect of different ideas and values is erased behind the anonymity of technology. In the West, we are supposed to be sophisticated, enlightened, and respectful of others’ views. That was the ideal we thought set us apart as a result of progressing through the 20th century. The growing trend in American culture is to unquestioningly accept all points of view, all agendas. To oppose that view is no longer allowed. Peaceful disagreement is no longer the norm. There is a derisive attitude we have for people who view things differently than we do. Media and technology has amplified that. Our Western world is no longer a rational society. Both the left and the right have slipped into harsh antagonism and vitriol toward differing views. Those who prefer to have meaningful discussion and debate about diverging ideas are crowded out by the voices yelling from either side. The American social atmosphere no longer resounds the words of the Lord, “Come, Let us reason together.” It now sounds more like the description of the Pharisees, “Do as I say and not as I do.”
So how do Christians maintain their voice in such a hostile environment? We are called to a place of loving people and living holy lives. What Christians will be able to do this effectively? Especially, when the fallout leads to death threats and social ostracizing? In a world that is more like Babylon than the Promised Land, who is best suited to stand up and speak the voice of truth? Singles.
Singles Have Nothing to Threaten
One of the biggest ways to force critics into silence is to attack or threaten their families. One of the reasons the O’Connors in the above situation were forced into a difficult situation was because they were a family. Not only would the owner be threatened, so will their spouse and children. Since protecting the family is one of the main priorities for a parent, it is often enough to silence them from speaking about their faith.
Not so for singles. They are positioned well to stand up against critics. For those invested in the kingdom of heaven, the worst someone can do to them is kill them. The only fallout is what is against them as an individual. In essence, in terms of familial responsibility, they are free. They can speak out against entire tides of opposition because they can’t really be touched through familial channels.
Singles Are Readily Mobile
One of the great advantages of singles is that they can go anywhere, anytime at a moment’s notice. Singles are mobile. They have the ability to use their voice in many locations. They can also more easily disappear if they needed to. Singles have a distinct advantage in speaking to the tides of culture because they disseminate their words more readily. Where families are less mobile, they make for easy targets. Singles, on the other hand are harder to pin down. Especially if they don’t want to be.
Singles Can Effectively Criticize the Hedonism of Our World.
Christian singles have a powerful voice when it comes to criticizing the pleasures of the flesh. The sedation our world is kept in through various stimuli is powerful in keeping people from really engaging in critical thought. Singles who make pursuits against the Hedonism of our world stand to have a powerful voice in addressing it. They aren’t driven by sexual pleasures, drunkenness, drugs, and such. They are driven by eternal goals and rewards and can easily speak to the false notions of a world gone dull. A Christian Single’s lifestyle in itself speaks to the futility of our society. Their stand for eternal principles could be just the inspiration others need to change.
In the end, Singles are positioned to be among the best prophetic voices of our time. They can speak and live in ways that are contrary to the hostility of the world, speaking the truth and life of God wherever they go. In the end, the fallout for them will be far less than for a man or woman trying to support a family through a business. There are other means for Christian families to make their way in this Babylonian world, but Christian singles are in a unique position to challenge the West in their ways.