Ok so here’s the story.
11 years ago when I got engaged for the 3rd time and realized I was finally going to get married, I felt a need to create something for singles, something to leave behind as a legacy to help other singles grow in their faith and not waste their single years pining for love. The Bible makes it very clear single years are not to be wasted and as much as I did in those 13 years, I knew I wasted a lot of energy chasing the wrong things.
At the time I already had 3 websites going and wasn’t sure I wanted to start another. I gave it to God in this way. I said okay, I will search the web. If I find one, just one website that is devoted to helping singles grow in their faith and not just a dating service, I’ll let it go.
I found nothing. Not a darn thing. Every Christian portal with a singles link sent you to a dating site. There was nothing – NOT ONE WEBSITE – to help singles grow their faith. Only dating services.
Now I was furious. I had flashbacks to my college days when no one at church could give me a good answer as to why we didn’t have a program for singles. We had a thriving youth ministry drawing hundreds of kids a week. When you graduated from high school, they shook your hand, said congratulations, and that was it.
Around my junior year of college, they announced they were hiring a singles pastor. I was so excited, I inquired about applying for myself. One of the staff members laughed at me and pulled me aside.
“John, we’re not hiring a college minister. We’re hiring someone for the ‘single again’ crowd. The middle-aged singles.”
“Are they going to do anything for college students?” I asked.
The answer was just one word. “No.”
Couldn’t make it up if I wanted to.
Someone else at the church clued me in on why college/young adults was not a priority. The general attitude among the church leaders was that college kids and young adults were expected to go away, get their education, and come back when they had families. They didn’t care what they did in those intervening years. They were just expected to come back later when they had kids – and income they could give back to the church.
Back to my original story. When I did that exhaustive search of the Internet and found nothing but Christian-branded meat markets, my response was to create a parody dating site called getyoked.net. Getyoked featured fake video personals parodying Christian singles and the people who made their lives miserable. We also added videos from a pair of “experts” who also chided singles for not being married and fruitful. It was a blast to create, but it never really took off. I kept it afloat for 8 years before pulling the plug. and I repackaged the best videos into a video Bible study called Desperately Seeking which is posted free on the RI website.
Over the next six weeks, I will be posting these videos here on the blog, complete with the Bible studies written to support them. Beyond that I will be posting more video Bible studies – or “Videvos” – created with a young adult/college/singles audience in mind. Many of these are films already available from RI, including Fluffy and Clive the Zombie, but I have put together a team of friends, former students, and collaborators to ultimately create new content for singles and young adults.
My hope is that in the coming year, we can build a portal here on Righteous Insanity where singles and college kids can find some support for their Christian walk. We also hope that the very few pastors and volunteers out there working with singles can find some resources to use in their ministry.
It is a SHAME that the church spends so much time in kids, teens, and parents while turning a blind eye to young adults. It’s a gamble the church has won more often than not in the past but is losing today. Let’s change that. Let’s make a difference you young people at a time in life when they really need it. Let’s stop shaming them for being single, pushing them into marriage before they are ready, and help them focus on the relationship they need the most – Jesus!