Welcome to Class 85 of “The Ramp” to the Highway of Success course for young women. I am Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society, working in partnership with the Martin Luther King Senior Institute for Young Men & Young Women. The Institute aims to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Sr., commonly referred to as “Daddy King”, whom God used to raise the great leader, Martin Luther King Jr. Our purpose is to guide young men and young women, and help them get on the path to becoming kings and queens for the glory of God.
I am your instructor for this course and the author of the ESSENCE Magazine bestselling book “Letters to Young Black Men” and the national bestselling book “Letters to Young Black Women.” My wife, Meriqua Whyte, and my eldest daughter, Daniella Whyte, co-authored “Letters to Young Black Women” with me. My daughter (who has two bachelor’s degrees in psychology and religion and a master’s degree in human services counseling—executive leadership and a second master’s degree in developmental psychology) and her mother, developed the Study Guide. We are using Letters to Young Black Women and its study guide to guide you through this course. This course is for all young women, but especially for young black women and young women of color who oftentimes face disadvantages that others do not. The goal of this class is to help you operate from a position of strength and power based upon the Word of God so you can be victorious in life. My prayer is that this class will empower you to win against your enemies: the devil, sorry men, and even yourself.
Today, we will begin our study, “THE CASE FOR NEVER GETTING MARRIED” (Letter Twenty-Eight).
— First, Let’s Pray —
Allow me to begin with a quote from Elisabeth Elliot and a quote from John Piper. First, Elisabeth Elliot said: “My most earnest of all pleas to singles is abandonment of the self, surrender to Christ of all unfulfilled longings, an unequivocal willingness to receive whatever God assigns, and a determination to practice the sacrificial principle of Isaiah 58:10-11. Life becomes not only far simpler, but surprisingly joyful and free.”
John Piper said: “Today singleness is cherished by many because it brings maximum freedom for self-realization. You pull your own strings. No one cramps your style. But Paul cherished his singleness because it put him utterly at the disposal of the Lord Jesus …. The contemporary mood promotes singleness (but not chastity) because it frees from slavery. Paul promotes singleness (and chastity) because it frees for slavery—namely slavery to Christ. …God promises spectacular blessings to those of you who remain single in Christ, and He gives you and extraordinary calling for your life. To be single in Christ is, therefore, not a falling short of God’s best, but a path of Christ-exalting, covenant-keeping obedience that many are called to walk.”
Now, please pull out your text and your digital study guide or follow along on the screen. First, I will read a portion of the corresponding letter from the book, Letters to Young Black Women. Then we will proceed with this lesson:
Dear Daughters & YBW:
“Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.”
—I Corinthians 7:1
This is not going to sit well with many of my traditional friends, but as I mentioned before, if I were a young black woman in today’s world, I wouldn’t think much at all about getting married. But, alas, I am not a girl, so I really do not know what it is that drives a woman to a man.
Granted, there was a time when women were considered “old maids” if they were not married by a certain age, but that is not the case today. Does Condoleezza Rice look like an “old maid” to you? Now, this is just me; I have my questions and doubts about a young man who is 30 or 40 years of age who doesn’t have a girlfriend, and who is not, and has never been married; but I don’t give a second thought about a single woman of that age who has never been married. In fact, if she is maintaining herself with class, dignity, and ease, as it appears Condoleezza Rice is doing, I consider her wise, because if I were a woman, I wouldn’t give these weak, irresponsible, and effeminate men of today the time of day.
Here is the case for never getting married:
1. The Bible makes it very clear that if one is able to contain himself or herself sexually, it is better to stay single. First Corinthians 7:8,9 says: “I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.”
2. If you stay single, you can do more for the Lord. First Corinthians 7:34 says: “The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit.”
3. If you stay single, you have the freedom to do more of what you like to do, whereas if you get married, you have to focus more on the needs of your family: “She that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband” (I Corinthians 7:34b).
In fact, DON’T GET MARRIED IF YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DO THE FOLLOWING:
1. Get your pleasure, and fulfillment out of helping your husband, nurturing your children, and caring for others. Put your husband and children before yourself.
2. Submit to your husband’s leadership. The Bible says in Ephesians 5:22: “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.”
3. Obey your husband. Ephesians 5:24 says: “Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.”
4. Love your husband, and be willing to have sex with him as often as he wants to. The Bible says in I Corinthians 7:4: “The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.”
5. Love your children, and spend lots of time with them including changing nasty diapers.
6. Wait, perhaps, for years to get praised and rewarded for the sacrifices that you made. The Bible says in Proverbs 31:25 that, “She shall rejoice in time to come.”
You can get married or not get married — the choice is yours — but if I were a woman in this day and time, I would strongly consider,
P.T. (Power Thoughts):
“Marriage is like twirling a baton, turning handsprings, or eating with chopsticks; it looks so easy till you try it.” —Helen Rowland
“The exercise that really changes your life is walking down the aisle.” —Mary Ellen Pinkham
“I wish someone would have told me that, just because I’m a girl, I don’t have to get married.” —Marlo Thomas
“We must stop trying to make things happen the way we want them to happen and get to the place where we want to please God more than ourselves.” —Joyce Meyer
“Everything in our lives happens for a purpose and that purpose is to prepare us.” —Spencer W. Kimball
BIBLE GEM: “But she is happier if she so abide, after my judgment: and I think also that I have the Spirit of God.” —I Corinthians 7:40
TALK TO GOD: Holy Father, I pray that if it be in Your will for me to stay single and to serve You with everything that I have, I pray that You would give me the grace to do it. I know that You created marriage and that You also created those to wholly devote their time and attention to You. I leave Your plans for my life up to You. In Jesus’ precious name. Amen.
BOOK: Sassy, Single, and Satisfied: Secrets to Loving the Life You’re Living, by Michelle McKinney Hammond
CHECK IT OUT: www.bfmmm.com
You may have heard the saying, “You don’t attract what you want. You attract what you are.” Young ladies, simply desiring a Christian husband is not enough. If you want a godly man to be your husband, be a godly woman. If you want a faithful man to be your husband, be a virtuous woman. If you want a man of purpose to be your husband, be a woman of purpose. If you live by low standards, don’t expect to attract people—certainly not a mate—of high standards. Before wondering ‘Where’s my Boaz?’, become a Ruth. If you want to meet an Isaac, make sure you are a Rebekah. Outside of extraordinary circumstances, you will draw into your life circle people who align with your values based on how you carry yourself. Of course, this approach is not altogether foolproof, meaning it does not 100% ensure that you will meet and marry a godly, successful man. Many good girls and first-class women have been messed over by guys who, on the surface, seemed to be on par with their love for the Lord, outward success, etc, but who were secretly living a double life. Once the woman is deceived into marrying him, the fairytale falls apart. So, make sure that you regularly pray to God for guidance before making a decision on who to marry if this is the desire of your heart. And trust Him when he speaks.
Here are more points to consider on this subject from Holding Hands and Holding Hearts by Richard and Sharon Phillips: “A Christian woman is to seek a man who is: 1. Regular at church… A believing man who often cannot make time to faithfully attend and to be a contributing member of a church is not a likely candidate for the obligations and challenges of marriage. 2. A man of the Word of God, a man of prayer, and a man who delights in worship. 3. A man after God’s own heart. 4. [A possessor of] specific character traits [such as] industry… integrity…self-control…[and] kindness. …A redeemed woman is one who has entered into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through faith. Her sins are forgiven, and she knows God’s love. She fears the Lord realizing that blessing for her comes through obedience to His Word. His commands are not burdensome to her and her heart is not set on worldly treasures. She attends regular worship and approaches her life with prayer. She enjoys healthy fellowship with other believers and bears observable fruit in ministry to others. She answers God’s calling in her life while single, not waiting for marriage to give her happiness or purpose. …Take a look, then, at what you are presenting to men and ask what kind of man you will attract. If you are relying on charm and outward beauty, setting them forth in your dress and flirtatious conduct, then realize that it is only the foolish man who will fall into your trap. Especially if you are loud or contentious, realize that the Bible specifically warns men against falling for you. The godly man, the man who will make a loving and faithful husband, sees you and turns away. How much better for you to trust the Lord and cultivate those spiritual beauties that are calculated to draw a man of godly character and real wisdom and, better still, that are certain to make you precious in the sight of our loving Lord and God. …What matters most is not finding the one right person but becoming the person that God wants you to be. Before judging the man or woman you are with – scrutinizing and appraising every attribute and characteristic, as if you were buying a horse – you ought instead to scrutinize your own heart. Here are some questions to ask before an engagement to marriage:
1. What would it mean for me to love him or her in accordance with the Bible’s teaching?
2. Am I willing to commit myself to anyone “for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health?”
3. Can I be steadfast in fidelity and servant-hearted in ministry?
4. Is God leading our lives in similar directions?
5. Do we have similar goals and ideas about children?
The issue is not whether you can find someone worthy of your love, but whether you are ready to give a love that is worthy of marriage.”
Take some time now to honestly evaluate who you are as a woman and what you are advertising to the world with your conduct in anticipation of marrying a good and godly man.
In the next class, we will begin our study, “THE KIND OF MAN YOU SHOULD NOT MARRY.”
Now, like many of you, I grew up in a very religious and church-going family, and during that time, I often heard the phrase “Being Saved.” Now, much of what church people said “being saved” was back then especially, in my community, is wrong according to the Bible. I wrote an article about it titled “On ‘Being Saved’ in Black America” which is available for you to read free of charge on our website, gospellightsociety.com. Right now, I want to share with you very briefly what the Bible says “being saved” really is.
First, understand that you need to be saved because you are a sinner. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, understand that a horrible punishment — eternal Hell — awaits those who are not saved. In Matthew 25:41, Jesus Christ said that God will say to those who are not saved, “depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”
Third, realize that God loves you very much and wants to save you from Hell. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you want to be saved from Hell and be guaranteed a home in Heaven, simply believe in Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose from the dead for your sins, and then call upon Him in prayer and ask Him to save your soul. And believe me, He will.
Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That is the most important decision you will ever make.
God bless you and keep you until we meet for our next class.