I’m one of those people who thinks a lot. Sometimes…well most of the time, about some really random things. My recent thinking has brought to surface some things that I am dealing with when it comes to what my purpose is as a young, single, Christian woman. One word comes to mind…waiting.
Now, this word waiting is not a new thing in my life. I’m a 24 year old graduate student who has never been in a serious relationship. I’m at the point in my life where all my friends are getting engaged and married within the same calendar year…and let me tell you, it’s not easy.
Please don’t feel sorry me, just hear me out. Our Christian culture, I believe, places a great deal of emphasis on relationships. I have prayed for God to write my love story and have cried many nights over my lack of even experiencing a love story.
But even in knowing and having to be reminded daily that God is faithful and loves me more than anyone in the universe ever could…I still have faced, seen, heard, and felt an incredible amount of pressure from the Christian community towards relationships and ultimately marriage. Girls seem to always be praised when they have found their dream guy. But when they still have yet to find ‘’Mr. Right’’ or ‘’Prince Charming,’’ they are told that God’s going to bring a man into their lives —as if the sole purpose of their lives is to get married.
So, here’s the question I have been rethinking in my head…how do I respond to this? I know people ‘mean well’ and they ask because they love me (especially mothers, grandmothers and aunts) but how do I respond without sounding or feeling jealous or bitter?
I mentioned earlier that girls always seemed to be praised when they have found their dream guy and those of us who haven’t…well, we just haven’t.
I feel that Christian communities tend to be sometimes unsupportive of single women. It seems like the very people who should be inspiring us to live a life completely devoted to Christ are the ones who severely lower our self-esteem, which in turn leads us to believe that we need to be married to be complete.
I found a book on Amazon listed under ‘Christian and Religious Books’, entitled, Getting Serious About Getting Married. I was shocked to read,
The belief that remaining single is legitimate and godly is a work of the devil. Read that again: Satan dishonors marriage by fooling us into believing that singleness is okay (page 43).
…men and women who are not connected in marriage are like the mutilated members of a mangled body (page 28).
Wait?! What?! Did that just say what I think it said? This book is saying that there is no way for a woman to glorify God other than getting married.
Are you kidding? Messages like this can lead many Christian women to settle for men who are mediocre and self-centered, just so they can supposedly fulfill God’s will.
Single women should not let their lives be consumed by their apparent “need” to find a guy. We should be concerned with devoting our lives to Jesus and serving Him faithfully. There is a song by John Waller called ‘While I’m Waiting’. Let these lyrics be an encouragement for you:
I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience
While I’m waiting I will serve You
While I’m waiting I will worship
While I’m waiting I will not faint
I’ll be running the race
Even while I wait.
My purpose is not to fall into a slump of misery if I haven’t found my dream guy yet. My heart should be enlivened and grow deeper in my relationship with God. If I happen to fall in love with a great man, oh how blessed that man will be! Haha! But he will find me as someone who is devoted to her Lord first and foremost. If I don’t, that’s fine too, because my relationship with God is enough and provides me with the everlasting fulfillment that no human relationship can. My singleness is a journey, not a trapped prison. It’s growing in my trust of the Lord and believing and knowing He has a plan for me. Rather single or married, it won’t matter.
Is singleness a blessing in your life? Is it a burden? How will you be rethinking your purpose?