(Repost of a piece I wrote for Delight Ministries in 2017)
I don’t get it, your friends don’t, and your mom for sure doesn’t. You are earnestly trying to pursue Christ above all else and guarding your heart the best you can. You aren’t hooking up or “talking” to anyone and there are seemingly no prospects on the horizon. On paper you check off all of the right marriage-material boxes and people constantly ask you why you are single as if you knew the answer. I’ve been there (I am there) and trust me I don’t get it any more than you do, but I’m thankful that God does. I’m thankful that the reason isn’t lost on Him and that no season of my life is wasted.
If you’re like me, you’ve dealt with hurt in the past, but you’ve let mistakes and rejection make you better rather than bitter and you recognize the beautiful restoration from brokenness you have in Christ. You know how worthy and deserving you are of great love and the more you get to know the Father’s love, the more you just want to run into a love that mirrors that. You want to meet that right person right now. You’re getting impatient because you feel like you’re just stuck waiting in singleness.
However, the thing I’ve come to realize is that I don’t think it’s being stuck, I think that there is purpose in this season (regardless of how long it is.) We experience frustration because we think that there is abundant life, better life, being withheld from us. We question, “God why are you not giving this good gift to me?” The problem is that when we get impatient and work from our own timeline, we put up blinders that keep us from seeing the abundant life God has for us right now. I’ve realized that I really short-change God when I look at being single as a time of “waiting” and I miss out on all the incredible blessings in my life in this current season.
While I am excited to one day be in a relationship and then a marriage that glorifies God, I know how much it inevitably will consume my life. So while I have this unique gift of time to invest in so many different people (and myself) I want to take advantage of it and live fully in the abundance that God is providing right now.
So here’s what I’m continually learning (and hope you will too)- I’m learning to see being single as a blessing. I’m learning to trust God’s perfect plan and stop trying to find the security of potential relationships. I’m learning to trust God when he overrides my plan. I’m learning to trust that there is protection in every single let-down. I’m learning to stop overanalyzing and overthinking, trying to make sense of God’s timeline. I’m learning to stop expecting my life and relationships to look like others my age. I’m learning what it looks like to be patient, and how to intentionally replace frustration with thankfulness.
How cool is it that we serve a God who loves us so much that He closes doors to protect us and removes us from relationships that aren’t His best for us? Even when we don’t understand what He’s doing, we can understand His goodness to us. He is going to do immeasurably more in our lives than we could ever have asked or imagined (Ephesians 3:20). He’s not holding out on us, but he is holding on to the promise of His good and perfect timing.
While a relationship is a good gift to look forward to, just make sure you don’t miss out on the gift that is right now.This summer, ask Him to show you how to take advantage of this season and look for the blessing and abundant life found in the time you’re being given.