C3 Hobart

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The community of C3 Church Hobart invited me into their conversation about being “Better Together”. They’ve been exploring relationships, parenting and marriage. 

On Sunday March 27th I shared into the topic of Singleness. Or namely “How can the church family be family to those without family?”

Overwhelmingly the response from those in attendance includes comments from Singles expressing such joy to have their unique situation highlighted and understood. And from marrieds who are encouraged to consider what they have to offer to Singles in their circles looking for a deep sense of belonging and inclusion. 

You can listen here : 

http://c3hobart.org.au/26032017-kim-smith/

my year as a professional Single 


I’m Single. No, like, REALLY Single! Oh, you’re Single too? Bet you’re not as Single as me!

I’m SO Single I wrote a book about it! (Truly! You can get a copy of it here!)

I’m SO Single I get invited to speak to groups about how to BE Single and how to care for Singles. (For real! You can book me here!)

I am, essentially, a professional Single. 

See, I am more Single than you. 

A year ago I was preparing for my first book related speaking gig. Steeling myself to step into the place of being “that Single girl” (read the blog about it here). 

While dealing with a familiar wave of self-doubt and insecurity over my abilities – I was also battling a stronger wave of resistance to stepping into that emerging role. The ‘professional Single’. 

I don’t want to be Single. I don’t want to be the expert on it. I don’t want to be known as that Single girl. I didn’t then. And I still don’t now. 

But here we are, 12 months into the journey, and I am so incredibly humbled by all I’ve got to be a part of in that time. The fabulous people I’ve met and communities I’ve been welcomed into. The champion leaders who’ve humbled themselves to learn and understand, the many who have read the book and been shifted in their attitudes and actions. That Dad of Single adult children, the Single-again parent, the leadership team, the young adult Single, the church community – multiple unique and moving stories of how God has used the message of the book or hearing me at an event or listening to me via a radio broadcast to encourage them or strengthen their understanding, empathy and ultimately, their relationships. 

It is my ongoing wrestle. So convicted of God’s call and sure in His anointing and yet so deeply desiring to be writing a different story – to be living a different kind of life. 

I said this a year ago and I affirm it again today. 

“So I will be “that Single girl” …and anything else He would ask me to be … trusting His timing, being confident in His calling. Even if I’d have chosen something else, I know He has chosen me for this and this for me.”

It has hurt and it has been hard – some of my loneliest moments have come on the back of these ministry opportunities – but the fruit is evident and the joy of partnering with Him in His greater work fuels me to ongoing obedience and surrender. 

Even if sometimes it’s through gritted teeth and clenched hands. 

I keep stepping out and moving forward. 

I am a professional, after all! 🙂

“Maybe there’s something wrong with me?”

This was the conclusion of a 25 year old (yes, 25 years old!) single contestant/participant on the first episode of the new series of Married at First Sight when reflecting on her life status. 

She is 25. She’s single and doesn’t want to be. There must be something wrong with her. 

Imagine me sitting opposite her in a coffee shop (because that’s what I’ve been doing) and this is what you’d hear me say. 

There are two options here. Either there IS something wrong with you – in which case, you should fix that – you shouldn’t marry someone you haven’t met before on a reality TV show meets psychological experiment. OR there ISN’T something wrong with you – in which case you shouldn’t marry someone you haven’t met before on a reality TV show meets psychological experiment. 

Then I would let her pay for the coffee. 

The more I think about the “maybe there’s something wrong with me” question that has the potential to plague single people of all ages and stages (more so for some than others) – the more I think it’s an question we need to face and not avoid or dismiss. Because the haunting nature of that question has the capacity to powerfully derail an individual in their living of a fruitful and fulfilling life. 

So single dude, single lady, IS there something wrong with you? No really, is there? Don’t answer “well there must be because I’m single” – think beyond that. Is there anything wrong with you? While that possibility lies unchallenged in your psyche it will have an unhealthy control over your sense of self and could lead you to finding yourself sitting in a limousine questioning whether or not the decision to marry someone you’ve never met is a good idea. Or making other very bad decisions in life and love. Find out if there’s anything wrong with you and work to fix it. Get that question off the table. 

It might not change your relationship status but it will change your perspective on it.

You’re probably not single because there’s something wrong with you. Firstly, some of you haven’t even had the chance for a prospective partner to find out what’s wrong with you. And secondly, look around – have you seen some of the people who ARE married? There are some twisted, broken, weird and altogether unpleasant people who are married! There’s stuff wrong with them and they’re married!

Here’s a word of advice for you without the price of the coffee. Take the question off the table. Move on to more productive spends of your emotional energy. 

Focus on the Family interview #2

It was great to have a chance to chat with the team of Focus on the Family Australia.

You can listen to the interview by clicking HERE

The first interview went live last weekend and I was encouraged to receive responses from people all over the country. (You can listen to that one here.)

The feedback Focus on the Family has had over many years is that this topic isn’t discussed that often so it’s great to be part of bringing it to the fore.

There’s some strange vulnerability associated with having a very unknown listening audience but I keep trusting that it’s landing on the right ears, encouraging the right hearts and advancing the conversation in all the right places. 

Barrabool Hills Baptist Church – Aug 30 2015

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It was great to be at Moolap and Barrabool Hills Baptist Church on Sunday across all three of their services.

Seated in one of the services was a lady who had recently lost her husband … and when I say recently, I mean super recently … 4 days earlier! She was there with a girlfriend who had come to stay with her – clearly still in that numb state of shock and disbelief that can often accompany grief and loss. But they were both blown away by the sovereignty of God to have her sit under a message about the importance of community and family for the Single person. Her girlfriend was challenged to understand the new needs and challenges that were ahead of this newly widowed lady. They bought a copy of the book for them both to look at in the weeks and months to come.

What do you say to someone who is processing such grief and loss? She was so convinced of God’s timing and provision of this message (& the book) and we were able to agree and affirm that God clearly had her number. While everything else ahead of her is uncertain right now – she can be sure that God is right there with her in it.

You can listen to the message HERE

that single girl

On Sunday I will officially become something I’ve been trying to avoid for many years -“that Single girl”. 

It was over 8 years ago that God first spoke to me (prophetically through a ministry friend) about writing a book on Singleness and God’s family. For the first year or two after that the idea was spoken about as a bit of a joke – “when you write that book …” or “that’s a story for your book!”

Alongside my general propensity for procrastination, one of the reasons the project didn’t happen for so long is that I didn’t want to be “that Single girl”. I didn’t want my “life’s message” to be about singleness. I didn’t want to be some sort of singleness expert. Even as my experiences accumulated and my understanding of the Single life (mine and other’s) deepened and even as I saw (from both positive and negative examples) the significance of the interactions between Singles and the Church family – I didn’t want to be the one to champion or steward the message. If I’m going to be the “voice” of something couldn’t it be marriage or parenting or … or … underwater basket weaving!?!?! Anything but singleness!

Last year, God’s long-suffering and gentle prodding shifted gears and He came at me with a multi-fronted attack – “Write the book already!! Just do it!!” So, while I may be good at procrastinating and excuse-making, when it comes to wilful disobedience I’m no dummy! In fact, another friend prophetically declared it my “book of obedience” and as I followed God into the project He opened all the doors and His provision was generous and sure. 

The book was published in March and has been seeping out to various individuals, leaders and churches since then. (Order your copy HERE) I am so encouraged by the feedback it’s received. God is using it to bless, encourage and challenge His family. I love that God works that way – He takes our humble offerings and breathes His Spirit of grace and truth into them and they bear fruit in the lives of His children and for His Kingdom purposes. And we get to participate with Him! It’s been such an exciting project to be part of. 

But now, as I prepare for my first book-related speaking opportunity, I find myself needing to process a fresh wave of …well, I’m not exactly sure what it is. Grief? Disappointment? Resistance? I have to step on the platform and be “that Single girl”. You know, the one who is so Single she’s written a book about it!? While there are some potential positives to such a public declaration of singleness (my mum has long hoped for me to make my status part of my introduction anytime I’m speaking to a new audience) there’s a work to be done to sort through the “stuff” to get to a place of greater celebration and expectation. 

I’ve rarely been as sure of God calling me to a specific assignment than I have been with this book. I am thoroughly convinced of the Church’s need to hear and respond to the message it contains. I am 100% committed to seeing this book reach the full intent for which God commissioned me to write it. But the reality is there’s a cost. There’s a surrendering required. There’s a setting aside of my own agenda, pride, embarrassment, or disappointment in order to free my hands to embrace all that these opportunities will no doubt contain. 

So I will be “that Single girl” …and anything else He would ask me to be … trusting His timing, being confident in His calling. Even if I’d have chosen something else, I know He has chosen me for this and this for me. 

The True Cost of Jealousy #2

Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.”

It continues with quite a list … including a time to be born and a time to die, a time to scatter and a time to gather, a time to search and a time to give up. And then concludes in verse 11 by saying “He has made everything beautiful in His time.”

There is a time for everything. God has ordered the changes in the physical world and He also orders them in OUR world. There is a time for sleeping in and a time for sleepless nights. There is a time for travelling and a time for staying around home. There is a time to spend and a time to save (or scrape by). There are times of deep grief and times of great rejoicing. There are seasons of relative ease and times of seemingly perpetual struggle. Continue reading

The Warning Light of Jealousy #3

Last year my friend and I got Gold Class movie tickets as a Christmas gift. We got ourselves settled into the comfy couches (DO NOT go when you are tired unless you’re just wanting to pay for a nap – waaaay too cozy!) and took a selfie – as you do – and checked-in online, tagging the friend that had given us the tickets so they could see us enjoying them.

A friend of mine, married with two adorable kiddies, posted on the picture saying “oh to be single again”!

Ok, firstly, pretty sure married people are allowed to go to the movies too! But that’s beside the point. Continue reading