I had an interesting conversation with my boss the other day. We were heading back to the office after a property inspection and got stuck in traffic. After discussing the economy and the problems of the world in general, I remarked that it is sometimes incredibly scary to me to think of trying to raise children in this world. His response to that was very surprising, and has really changed the way I look at my time as a single person. The general idea of his response was that there is SO much to do in this world, so many children who have no one to care for them, teenagers who need positive role models, and so many other people who need a helping hand. And he is so wrapped up in his family and making sure his own children become productive and good members of society that at times he wished he were still single so that he could do more good for more people.
It seems to me like the number of singles is increasing. I think it is easy to get caught up in worrying about our marital status - and focus all our energies on finding our eternal companion. But maybe there is a purpose for our extended time as singles. I had never before thought that my time as a single could be a blessing to my community and to people around me. I participate in the service projects my ward arranges and help within my own family when I can, but I always thought real community service was for when I had a family and was a room mother or worked in the PTA etc. But think of the huge force for good the single members of the Church could be if they would focus more of their energies on building their communities and less on trying to control the uncontrollable. How much more meaning and joy would I have in my life if I spent more time guiding and nurturing and caring for the people around me and less time worrying about another Friday night home alone.