A conversation on singleness
Singleness and dating are topics we often don’t talk about in church. To help spark more of these conversations, we got together a panel of people to share their thoughts.
Our hope is that this film will spark conversations, so we suggest you watch it with a group of friends or with your Connect Group over dinner!
Our goal is to build connection and community across our church, and in all our different life stages. We believe that the more we understand one another, the more we can love and support each other, and reflect God’s love as we grow closer together in unity.
Below you’ll find a list of discussion questions and some guidelines on praying together. We’ve designed the questions to work for a mixed group of people from all different life stages – so this is for everyone.
We also want to recognise that there are many different experiences of singleness, for example: some of us may be divorced, separated, or widowed; some of us may enjoy being single and some of us may not; and some of us may see singleness as a calling for a season, or for life. We encourage you to bear this in mind and be sensitive to everyone’s experiences as you talk together.
Note for the host:
As singleness and relationships can be sensitive topics, you might want to start the evening by sharing that the purpose of the discussion is to learn from each other, and letting people know that they don’t have to share anything personal if they don’t want to.
General discussion questions
Feel free to use some or all of the questions, and encourage people to bring other questions or thoughts to the table if they’d like to.
- Was there anything that stood out to you from the film?
- What do you think are the differences between how our culture views singleness and marriage, and how God views them?
- What are some of the lies or unhealthy narratives you think our culture perpetuates about marriage or singleness? (These could be in church or outside church).
- Do you think church culture can sometimes convey the narrative that singleness is less desirable than marriage? Why or why not?
- Can you think of any creative ways we can help single and married people to live together in community?
- In the film, Rowan mentioned opportunities to celebrate different ‘rites of passage’ or life moments for us all. Can you think of any examples of things we could celebrate as a community?
- In your experience, do you agree that dating can be ‘hidden’ in church? How can we normalise dating as Christians?
- Can you think of any practical ways we can support those of us who are dating?
- Nicole mentioned that we can often idolise marriage or see it as an ‘end goal’. How can we keep Jesus the focus of our life, rather than our relationship status? What spiritual practices or habits can help us to be fully satisfied in Jesus?
- What practical steps can we take to grow in vulnerability and intimacy in our friendships and with God?
- How can we support each other through seasons of heartbreak or other kinds of disappointment?
- How do you think we as the church can support those of us who are divorced, separated or widowed?
- The panel discussed how our family background and/or ethnicity can shape our experiences and impact our relationships. How can we as a church continue to learn from and honour people from different backgrounds to our own?
Additional discussion questions for a group of single people
If you’re hosting a discussion in a group of single people, you might want to include some or all of the following questions:
- What are some of the challenges/opportunities in being single?
- What are some of the challenges/opportunities in online dating?
- How can single people thrive in a culture that idolises sex?
- Scripture promises us that we can be fully satisfied as single people. What are some of the ways we can experience and encourage each other to be satisfied in Jesus?
You may want to end your discussion time by praying for one another. You could do this in pairs or small groups, and provide an opportunity for people to share anything they would like prayer for.
You could end your time of prayer by praying the below:
Thank you for Your unconditional love that surrounds each one of us.
Thank you that you made us to be one body, who support each other and love each other just as You have loved us.
Holy Spirit, help us to understand one another, listen to each other, and be the kind of community that reflects your glory.
Would you heal us in our disappointments, help us celebrate in our joy, and fill our hearts with hope in every season.
In Jesus’ name,