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Last night I went out with a friend to a late showing of the film “I Can Do Bad All By Myself.” I left the theater last night feeling outraged. No offense to Mr. Perry, because this is an issue I see with many Hollywood films. But why is it that whenever we see a woman onscreen in a bad relationship the solution for her to get a better life is for her to fall into the arms of a better man? For the life of me I can’t understand why we rarely see the moment in time where a woman struggles to regain her sense of self–BY HERSELF, maybe with help from friends, family and God–finds her own peace and strength BEFORE the next man comes along. Or God forbid the woman doesn’t find a new man at all. She gets rid of the old one and lives a happy life by herself. It’s almost as if men always have to be the Savior before God. I think our culture has created this mindset that we as woman cannot be happy unless we have a man or unless we are married. And Hollywood perpetuates this false notion. It’s sad because I think there are many of us who are still putting our lives and our happiness on pause because we’re waiting for the fairy tale…I’ll end my woman’s lib soap box there for now…

But I read a blog yesterday morning on Lone Prairie that spoke to this issue to a degree. It speaks to the idea of singles really learning to accept singleness as a calling and not accepting society’s status quo that men and marriage are the only path to fulfillment. I know, haven’t we heard that one before. But this article put a slightly different spin on the issue that got me to thinking. Here’s an exerpt that really spoke to me:

Why would God ask us to be single, and, seemingly, in increasing numbers these days? If you’re a last-days believer, you might think God wants more people focused on his work than raising families. I won’t berate that theory at all, frankly. Perhaps the church needed some adjustment from their idolatry of the family — and yes, it has a problem with that. If you have a family, you will not see the problem. Perhaps people are finally breaking free from culturalized Christianity of the past that caused people to marry who really shouldn’t have. What would the face of Christianity look like if a large number of its followers weren’t fettered down with children, responsibilities, and jobs? We don’t really know, but I think we will.

God is asking people to come to a place of truly accepting being single. Not for pity, not for something they lack, not because of how they were or weren’t made, not because of who they aren’t, but because of who they are. If we could shrug off this push for marriage, there are some people struggling in life that could be set free to have a purpose in the body of Christ instead of feeling second class…

Could it be that Paul was on to something when he said it would be good for us to remain single as he did? Could it be that in these last days God has so much more for us singles than we could ever imagine? I used to think that whole “it’s good to be single because you can spend that much more time serving the Lord and fulfilling your purpose” was a bunch of bullcrap, a means to put salve on the wound to a hurting soul. But the more I think about it, the older I get, I’m starting to think maybe, maybe just maybe there’s some validity there. Maybe, just maybe our lives don’t necessarily become more happy and full when we get married. Maybe we’ve bought the lie that that’s the most important thing. Right now I am working two jobs, making this film, editing someone else’s film, and helping out with a new church plant. I live a very full life that keeps me busy, but there is no way in the world I could do all this if I had to then come home and worry about taking care of a house, a husband and some kids.

What would you do if you were faced with the possibility that you will never get married? Does that idea freak you out?  That kind of view is very counter-cultural. A tough pill to swallow…maybe just chew on it for a minute like I had to. Our society has put marriage and relationships on such a pedastal that sometimes it’s easy for us singles to lose a positive sense of self. I can only pray that Hollywood will someday realize that there’s more to life…And maybe that’s why it’s time for “Something Worth Waiting For” to be made. I’ll end there so I don’t give too much of the movie away…

But Hollywood, take note……

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Lights!…Camera!…….

Well, here we are 6 days away from shooting the promo for “Something Worth Waiting For” and I am super excited! WOO HOO!!! Just wanted to check in and let you all know that things are coming along nicely. I am so thankful to be working with some amazingly talented people on this project and I cannot wait to see what will happen with this film and where it will go. Please keep us in prayer over the next few days as we tighten up the loose ends on pre-production. This promotional video is just the beginning of the next phase of seeing this feature film come to fruition. We will continually be looking for your prayers and your support as we continue the daunting task of finding investors to fund this project. I truly believe within my heart of hearts that this is a film that needs to be made and a story that needs to be told. Even though the film is ultimately a comedy, I still feel it has a strong message that people in general, but especially singles, need to hear: that there is a place for us in this world and that there is forgiveness at the cross regardless of our past. And as a single woman myself who hasn’t always done the right things, that’s music to my ears…

Please stay tuned for this journey……it’s gonna be a lovely ride!! 🙂

So this past weekend I attended my church’s annual single’s retreat. This was my fourth time attending this retreat and I’m never disappointed. This year’s theme was “Dateability.” Interesting topic–I mean, God forbid the church should actually TALK about the elephant in the room. Even though this year I went as a a staff volunteer and not as a normal attendee, I still expected to come back with some great fuel for why this movie is needed, or at the very least for why singles need more avenues to talk openly and honestly about…stuff…

Well, the trip did not disappoint. I discovered that I’m not the only single person who gets a little perturbed that brothers in the church suddenly have to become ghost once they “put a ring on it” and tie the knot. I’m talking about these rules that people (mainly Christian men) have about not associating with single women–not being alone in a room with them, not corresponding via email, not talking on the phone with them–as though we’ve got the plague. Or as though we’re the ones to blame for their potentially lustful eyes. Now, don’t get me wrong. Please hear me on this and please read the post all the way through. I know that there are some trifling women out there who will go after married men, but I am not that woman. Once I see a ring on a man’s finger he is off limits. I don’t play that. But I get it, not every woman has that same moral code. However, here are my problems with those rules…

First of all, while I have heard of married men taking precautions against impending temptations (which they rightfully should), I have never seen it at this level until I moved down here to the South. I was once producing an event and needed to email one of the participants about the program and he emailed me back saying that he needed to ‘cc his wife on all of our correspondence to guard against any temptations. My internal response was “Um, excuse me buddy, but I’m just not that into you,” and even if I was and if I was that type of woman that would come on to another woman’s husband, I think I’d just find another way to get at you.

Second of all, these rules have made me more uncomfortable around married men than I ever have been before. Not uncomfortable in an “I’m attracted to you” kind of way. But just uncomfortable because I feel paranoid, wondering if they or their wives are looking at me like I’m some kind of danger to their marriage for the mere fact that I’m single. While before I felt like it was completely normal to have a conversation with a brother in Christ who might happen to be married, I’m now in my head all the time, even with brothers I serve with in ministry–Am I talking to him to0 long? Should I call him to ask him about this ministry question? Is it ok to send him an email? If he comes into the room should I run out? I’m not trying to get with the guy, I just want to let him know to meet at the chu’ch house at 7!

Thirdly–and this is a big one for me–I feel like these rules sometimes keep us single women from having godly mentors, from having BROTHERS who will look out for us. I mean, what if I just wanted a real brother to look out for me, to mentor me, heck, to introduce me to some of his guy friends? What if I wanted to have coffee and hear from a happily married man what it’s like to have a happy marriage, or get some advice about how I can be a better companion to someone else in the future? I grew up in a house full of girls. I think it’s a good thing to have men around who are not trying to get with you, not trying to take advantage of you, who can speak truth into your life. Not all of us single ladies are out to be home wreckers. We’re not tryna be the next Hester Prynne. We just want some guidance and fellowship with real men sometimes.

I’ve had this conversation with a number of my female friends, including my fabulous roommate this past weekend at the retreat. As I said before, I get why people do these things, but I’m just venting my frustrations and looking at it from the other side of the coin. And I know what the other response will be–what starts out as friendly conversation can turn into something else down the road. Well, true, but that can happen anytime and with anyone. Alls I’m saying is that some people just want to send a simple email to let you know what time to show up, or just want a listening ear. Nothing more, nothing less….

Star Power Locked and Loaded!

starsHere we are less than a month away from shooting the promo piece for Something Worth Waiting For and things are coming together beautifully! We are finally in a place where we can announce our lead actor. We are proud and extremely excited to have Naima Imani Lett on board as Clarissa Rodney! Naima’s recent credits include The Curious Case of Benjamin Button starring Brad Pitt, Fox’s Prison Break, Lifetime’s Living Proof starring Harry Connick Jr, BBC America’s Wire in the Blood, and Lifetime’s Inspector Mom.

Along with Naima’s talents, the promo piece will showcase hit music from renowned gospel artist Canton Jones! We’re humbled and grateful to Canton, his representatives and everyone at Arrow Records for their participation.

Shooting dates are locked and fast-approaching. We’ll be shooting September 24 – 27 here in Atlanta. The one obstacle that still stands in our way is the tightness of our budget. Even though you all have been more than generous, we are still significantly short of our goal. Please consider giving toward the production of this trailer. Every corner we have to cut in the promo piece puts us that much further away from being able to make the high-quality feature we’re all looking forward to. There’s that yellow button to the right. Give it a click.

Hop on board! It’s gonna be amazing!!

It’s been an emotional couple of weeks. I’m starting to miss my ex. I mean, I know I did the right thing by breaking up with him, but then that loneliness settles in and you start to wonder if you made a mistake even when you know deep down inside that you didn’t. Does anybody feel me on this? Prior to dating my ex-boyfriend I was one of those people that celebrated my singleness. At that time I felt like I could go either way on the marriage thing because I had a full life and I was enjoying it very much. Then I got into a relationship. And realized that it was nice to have someone. And now I’m realizing that after having someone, the process of getting back into the mindset of being a happy single is a lot harder than I thought it would be. I’m finding myself more vulnerable to insensitive words from married folks, more vulnerable around office baby chatter, overall more sensitive to the fact that I am single in my 30s, a place that growing up I NEVER imagined I would still be.

BUT THIS BLOG POST IS NOT ABOUT BEING AN ANGRY SINGLE…

Today, I’m going to get myself out of this funk by reposting a blog I wrote 3 years ago on MySpace (before I got all high tech with the blogging and social networking and all)…It’s encouraging to know that in the midst of the frustrations of singleness, there is some good. Sometimes I think we all need a reminder that in the grand scheme of things, being single is not the worst thing in the world……Enjoy!

Ahhh…The Single Life (Written 10/28/06)

Ok so I’ve been a little bummed lately about the whole singleness thing. I just keep wondering what kind of guy will actually get my weirdness? 🙂 A co-worker was telling me about an article that said there are 30 million single people in the U.S. On the one hand that’s depressing. On the other hand, it provides a ray of hope that there’s got to be somebody out there somewhere for me.

But in the meantime I figured I’d count my blessings and give my reasons why I can be thankful for singleness during this season of my life. So here it goes…

Top 15 Great Things About Being Single…

  1. On a beautiful day like today (Saturday) I can do whatever I want, even if it means doing absolutly nothing.
  2. My money is my money. I can do whatever I want with it–even if it’s pamper myself with a day at the spa–without having to think about how it’s going to affect someone else.
  3. I could move to California tomorrow if I wanted to, without having to “discuss” it with anyone.
  4. I can channel surf without having to be considerate of what someone else might want to watch.
  5. In my house, I’m the boss and what I say goes–’nuff said.
  6. When I make dinner I can usually eat off the leftovers for an entire week.
  7. There’s more Mayfield Birthday Cake ice cream for me!!
  8. My free time is for me. I don’t have to share myself with anyone else.
  9. I don’t have to deal with with someone else’s drama unless I choose to (‘cuz you know we all got drama).
  10. I get to enjoy moments of solitude more often.
  11. I’m free to live out loud and follow my dreams without any hindrances!
  12. When I take my twists out, I don’t have to worry about how wild and crazy my hair looks because I’m the only one that has to look at me.
  13. Whenever I get the urge to just sit on the edge of my bed and stare blankly into space, I don’t have to worry about someone interrupting my trance by asking me questions like “What’s wrong with you? Are you ok?”
  14. There’s no one to interrupt me while I’m blogging. 🙂
  15. I can sing and dance throughout the house like nobody’s watching because nobody is!
So here’s a toast to all you single people out there! Let’s celebrate what’s good about our lives for a change. What about you? What would you add to this list??

Sorry for the random Bon Jovi reference. I’m not even sure where that came from. But what I am sure of – what’s making my little producer heart do a happy dance right now – is that we have reached the halfway point in our fundraising goal for the movie trailer! I’m happy that we’ve come this far, but a little bit stressed that we haven’t got much time to get to the other side.

Halfway is great. Halfway gets something done. But it doesn’t get everything done. Halfway is a silent movie. But we want Something Worth Waiting For to be one of those new-fangled talkies. We’re actually also thinking about using color.

I’m extending my DEEPEST thanks to those of you who have already given. And I’m asking those of you who have been putting it off to go ahead and donate today. You see the link over there to the right. The yellow button. Go ahead and click it. You know you wanna.

Here’s to a color film with music and dialogue!

The results from last week’s survey are in and once again, very eye opening about Singles and the Church. 66% of the people surveyed said that they feel like an outsider at church because of their singleness, and 89% said that they do not feel the church adequately addresses the issues that singles face. There were some very interesting comments on the survey as well. Some said that singles are “tolerated” in church and are treated as “subordinates” to married people. Many people said the church does not provide a safe environment where singles can share what’s really on their heart, but instead they provide “pat answers” to serious questions.

Hey folks…I don’t know about you, but I think we might have a little bit of a problem within the Body…  I think I might be very fortunate in some ways in that the church I attend now is predominately single. So outside of the fact that we rarely have any messages geared toward singles, there are plenty of events that are geared toward singles. I’m not sure if I’ve ever felt like an outsider at church per se because of my singleness, although I can definitely see how people could feel that way. I can recall feeling like an outsider in society in general when people assume that I have nothing better to do with my time because I don’t have any family obligations.

But I definitely can relate to the feeling that the church does not adequately address the issues that singles face. 100% of the people who took the survey said they think it’s appropriate to talk about love and sexuality in the church, but I’ve never heard any churches or singles ministry address this without cliches. When I started writing Something Worth Waiting For 8 years ago, I got to a point where if I heard one more person talk about being content with singleness I thought I was gonna scream. At the time I wasn’t content. I was lonely. But I wouldn’t dare say that in church because what would follow would be a bunch of scriptures and advice about Jesus being my husband.

And we’ve mentioned before how Christian singles are neglected in the movie world, which is why we’re making this movie…But it all makes me wonder, if this many singles are unhappy with God, and if this many singles are feeling neglected at church, are they really being ministered to? How can one effectively preach to a demographic of people who have this on their mind, while their concerns are being ignored?

So the big question is what do we do about it? A couple of people mentioned how small groups are helpful with giving singles a safe place to express themselves. They definitely helped me out. But what do you think? What should churches and society do to adequately address singles so that they don’t feel like second-hand citizens? Those of you that have good experiences with being single at your church, share those as well…