Author: Sharyn Kopf

A Foolish Seduction

For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. ~ 2 Corinthians 11:2-3 (NASB) While retreating with 200 other singles in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville, NC, last weekend, my carpool pal, Jill, wore a cap with the initials SKAD on it. Of course, I asked her what it stood...

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Working For It

For the last few months, my cat Neal and I have been at a bit of an impasse. He stopped eating the food I set out for him—not completely but definitely less than before—and seemed to only want the pricier canned stuff. Now, I’m already limited by what I can give him as he needs the dry food for sensitive stomachs. Found that out the hard way. Unfortunately for him, I can’t afford to give him two cans a day. And I definitely can’t give him tuna every day, which I’m sure is what he most wants. So I tried several things—adding water or chicken broth, giving a little yogurt with it (on the advice of the local vet), even mixing in a bit of gravy. He seemed to enjoy it, at first, then wouldn’t finish it. Which meant I ended up throwing the rest away. I was frustrated, and he was losing weight. A few days ago, though, I caught him up on the kitchen stool where I’d set the cat food bag, trying to get into it. All while he had plenty sitting in his dish just a few feet away. Well, for heaven’s sake, I thought. What is wrong with this cat? Then I remembered something I had read recently. Cats are hunters. So I set the bag on its side on the floor, where he...

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Eight Ways Married Women Can Support Their Single Friends

A week ago, I asked my Facebook friends for article suggestions. One recommended I share ways married women, like her, could support their single friends. It just so happens I created a list of do’s and don’ts for the married women in our lives not that long ago and put it in my book, Spinstered: Surviving Singleness After 40. This list shows up at the end of a chapter specifically geared toward the happily wed. Basically, it serves as a recap for the whole chapter, so if you want to find out more, follow the link to the book and snag yourself a copy. Now, without further ado, here’s the list: 1) Don’t tiptoe around us like we’re fragile children. Treat us like adults who can figure things out and work through them. Singleness does not equal immaturity. 2) Don’t claim you know there’s someone out there for us. That leads to false hope. The only one who knows if that’s true is God. 3) Please don’t repeat clichés about singleness. We’ve heard them all and have already decided how we feel about each one. 4) Do let us be sad and offer us a comforting shoulder to cry on when we need it. 5) Do tell us about great single men you know. We realize it’s one of the best ways to meet new guys. Most of us are...

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Don’t Give Me Time To Think

Every fourth Sunday, I serve on a greeting team at my church.  One week, our coordinator sent me to a side door that, I soon learned, few people use.  For about half an hour, I stood there, welcoming maybe a handful of attendees during that time.  I could hear conversations coming from the fellowship room and down the hall, yet I waited alone. And I felt it, crawling through me like a fever.  Yep.  You’re alone again.  Big surprise.  With nothing to distract them, the destructive thoughts made themselves known, catching me completely off-guard.  I was at church, for heaven’s sake.  Why was I letting this negativity get my mind off my purpose for being there? It’s not as bad as it used to be.  I remember times of solitude when I screamed my frustration, venting an anger I kept stuffed inside the rest of the time.  As a result, I’ve learned how to use noise as a diversion.  Music, TV, books, even singing to myself seem to do the trick.  Still, there are those rare moments… and I’m not always good at handling them. An ugliness comes from a place deep inside me that I thought I’d already dealt with.  “I’m doing great!”  I tell anyone who asks.  “Writing about being single has been so cathartic.” Then I end up standing in my church hallway, fighting off tears...

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Socks, Gravity and Other Things That Make Me Angry

The new Marvel’s Avengers movie, Age of Ultron, opens a week from today.  As a big fan of superhero movies, I’m looking forward to it.  The action!  The adventure!  The Chrises’ (Evans and Hemsworth) abs! Still, it’s Bruce Banner/The Hulk I most relate to.  When he said in the fist Avengers movie, “I’m always angry,” I got it.  No, I’m not always angry, but I think we all know what it’s like to feel that way and can sigh in gratitude that we don’t turn into large, smashing-stuff, green monsters when the anger takes over. Well, not to a Hulk extent anyway. For instance, last week I went into a mini-rage over socks.  I had done laundry the night before and had a basket of socks that still needed to be matched.  All I wanted was a pair of black ones.  I didn’t care which pair.  But all I could find were singles.  I had four different socks clutched in one hand while I searched for a match with the other.  It didn’t make any sense.  I knew they were there; I’d seen them.  Socks might disappear in the dryer but not in the basket…right? And the next thing I knew, I was flinging laundry in the air and throwing the basket across the room.  That’s about the time I realized my reaction was what didn’t make sense.  Take...

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