Over the years I have read so many books and listened to so many podcasts on singleness, dating, and marriage that it’s hard to remember them all. But there are a few that have stuck with me and definitely changed the way I think on the topic. So here’s my list of my all time favorite resources:
Not Yet Married: The Pursuit of Joy in Singleness and Dating By: Marshall Segal : I downloaded this book for free during I time when my then relationship was on the rocks. It one: gave me hope and a right perspective for how to live if that relationship were to end (it did), and two set my standards a little higher for my time of singleness. Not Yet Married, though touching a very familiar topic, does so in a way that is eye-opening and refreshing. I highly recommend it to any believer- male or female- who is not yet married.
Let Me Be a Woman By Elisabeth Elliot: In this book Elisabeth is writing letters to her daughter Valerie. As she imparts wisdom from her life full of experience you feel the love and guidance of a mother, but also the confidence of a good friend or mentor. Overall, it’s a great start for those of us ladies who want to know how we can view ourselves, our womanhood, and what that means as we look at the possibilities of dating and marriage. After reading this book I felt I had a new kind of confidence and value for myself and a better idea of what I longed for in a relationship as well.
Gay Girl, Good God: The story of who I was, and Who God has Always Been By: Jackie Hill Perry: Honestly the title of this book sums it up pretty well. Jackie has a style of writing and teaching that is direct, sincere, and so relatable that you won’t have a hard time feeling her story with her even if you have never experiences same sex attraction. This book is bold, powerful, and will help you understand how God sees sexual sin and just how powerful his redemption is: for all of us. This book is a must for anyone who has struggles with SSA, knows someone who as, or just wants to see God’s goodness on display through the life of this incredible servant. I also highly recommend you check out Jackie’s teaching through a kick search of her name on YouTube.
Girls Gone Wise In a World Gone Wild By Mary Kassian: Okay, so I have to be honest. When I first saw this book I did NOT think this was for me. One, because I was already in my mid-20s and this seemed more geared towards younger girls. And two because I’m not exactly into the ‘wild’ scene. But never judge a book by its cover. Mary Kassian lays out God’s design for sex, what happens when we don’t live within that design, and what to do when we’ve gone too far. What makes this book the best in its area is that Mary does a wonderful job of explaining why certain attitudes, actions, and behaviors are harmful. It isn’t just a list of do’s and dont’s. It’s the details of why our mom’s tell us not to do those things that they probably felt too embarrassed to explain to us. However, it’s still an appropriate book even for younger teenager girls. It is direct and detailed enough to help girls understand how and why to live out purity without crossing the line into being explicit or in any way compromising to the reader. I highly recommend it as a group study or even as a guide for youth leaders to talk to their students about purity. It’s also great even for older singles because honestly this topic can be somewhat taboo in churches. But we need godly women who are willing to talk about these subjects instead of just hoping we can figure it out ourselves.
Shadow of the Almighty By Elisabeth Elliot: Maybe you’re asking why this book is included as a resource for singles. And truthfully I almost didn’t include it because I know it’s a little out there. But hear me out: Jim and Elisabeth Elliot spend years writing letters back and forth before getting married. They had a rather long season where Jim honestly believed God had called him to be single: because what woman would be crazy enough and strong enough (I know, I know. Come on Jim. They’re are plenty of us!) to go with him into the jungle. If you are a hopeless romantic like myself and want to get lost in a love story that ends up being far greater than just the two young seminary students involved, this one is a must. And bonus points for me because I would readily follow a man into the jungle if he loved Jesus the way Elliot does. Hahaha.
My last few resources are podcasts! Reading is a wonderful way to learn but sometimes pressing play on an encouraging word while we go about our daily lives is just as helpful and little more practical. Not every episode of the podcasts relate specifically to being single. But all the same they have been of great encouragement to me in this season of life.
- Revive Our Hearts https://www.reviveourhearts.com/podcast/revive-our-hearts/ Here you can find a variety of series. These podcasts are always very centered on the word of God, but talk about topics we can all face. You can find ones very specific to struggles you are facing or on more general topics found in the Bible.
- Crossway https://www.crossway.org/articles/crossway-podcasts/ These podcasts are more information than practical application. Several I have listened to are by authors speaking on the topic of their book. It’s a good place to find resources and well-researched info on a variety of issues.
- Thirty Minutes with The Perrys https://theperryspodcast.libsyn.com/ My favorite part of this podcast is how often Jackie and Preston make me laugh. It has an informal feel, like sitting in the living room with friends and chatting about real stuff. Don’t take this one too seriously, but also be ready to hear and process some good, deep truths.
There are SO many more resources I could share. But as I said, these are the ones that have stuck with me most through the thousands of pages and hours spent listening over the years.
Got any resources you’d like to share? I’m always open for suggestions for myself and to recommend to others. I would love for you to mention some of your favorites in the comments below.
Until next time!