By Salem Afangideh
“An unmarried woman is concerned about the LORD’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the LORD in both her body and Spirit” 1 Corinthians 7:34My dearest and beautiful sisters, I wish I could sit down with every one of you and have coffee and just chat about where you are in your view of singleness, because its almost too generic to just write about it without knowing where you are; I hope something in this post identifies with you because as a single young lady, I have felt them all. From frustration, to discontentment, to contentment, to wondering if a certain guy is the one, to desiring to be content, but not really being content, to actually being okay and seeing singleness as a gift. I pray that in some way, this post will lead you to release any bitterness about singleness you may have and receive the gift of singleness with a thankful heart.
. Here are some tips that have helped me in my journey through this season:
- Take your frustrations to the LORD: One of my really good friend calls this cuddling season/the season of engagement and babies, and it is very difficult to be content with singleness if all your friends are talking about how amazing their boyfriend/fiance’s/husbands are, or maybe you are the lady who has done the right things and right about now you had planned to be in your husband’s home, but the LORD has different plans…this can be aggravating. So, take it to Him. Tell Him exactly how you feel about being single and let Him speak peace and calm over you!
- Cut off things that sow the seed: I remember that the times in my life when I was the most desiring of a man was when I was engrossed in romance novels and movies, and after reading them I would ask God over and over again to take this desire for a man away because I knew I wasn’t ready to be married or in a relationship, and I remember the one time He spoke clearly to my heart, that reading those novels only made things worse and that I needed to stop at least for a year. Its been 2.5 years since and I don’t think I have picked up a romance novel since. I started back watching chick flicks after a year, but my mindset was changed so much in that one year that in a weird way, chick flicks only make me realize that He is my one true love, and after a chick flick I mostly always end up spending time with Him. My point is that maybe you need to cut off some books, movies, and maybe even cut down on some of the pinterest wedding planning (I know, I just went there) but seriously though, Jesus said “if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off”
- Have a purpose for your singleness: The verse above talks about a woman whose aim is to “be devoted to the LORD both in body and in Spirit” Only a single woman can spend crazy amounts of time with the LORD without having to worry about her kids & hubby needing her. Only a single woman can get up and go on a spur of the moment mission trip to help the less fortunate. Only a single woman can decide to spend every Friday night going to nursing homes, or spending time with the homeless on the street. There are so many ways that we can grow in our relationship with the LORD and I think we ought to take advantage of that. During my quiet time a couple of months back, the LORD showed me that right now is the only time in my life that I can love on my brothers and have such a significant impact in their lives and in their relationship with Him, because they get to see me every day and see how I interact with Him. The LORD also gave me the idea to write down a list of things I want to do before I say “i-do” and focus on actually doing them while I still had the time to do them, and that has been such a blessing. Some of the things on my list are learning how to sew, doing some kind of foreign mission work, etc ….SO, I encourage you dear friend to sit and think for a little while about the mission statement of your singleness and how you will intentionally use this time of your life to bring Glory to God.; maybe learning to have a consistent quiet time, learning to be filled with gentleness, teaching a kids class? Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you!
- Have a Re-defined view of marriage: I think Hollywood has given us an unrealistic view of marriage and so many Christians in the Church today don’t really reflect God’s ideal for a Christian marriage. So we have a group of people that are very cynical of marriage, love, and relationships and if you happen to be one of them, I will say that marriage is a beautiful gift from the LORD and it is meant to be a picture of Christ and His bride – the church. However, if all you think about marriage is how nice it will be to have sex all the time, I would say to you that marriage is beautiful, but it requires some sacrifice and a dying to self, so rather than thinking sex, think, “dying to self”. There are a ton of good Christian books about the realistic view of marriage, and I would recommend reading “Sacred marriage” and “The art of marriage” if you need to see marriage through God’s eyes.
- Fall in Love with the LORD: I strongly believe, dear sister, that this is the answer to every question in our spiritual walk. The more you fall in love with Him, the more everything else pales in comparison. A great earthly marriage may last a long time, maybe even up until you depart from this earth, but a relationship with Him is the only thing that will last forever, so why not use these single years to invest time in loving Him and growing even more in your intimacy with Him. You can never have too much intimacy with the LORD, so read the 66 letter love story He’s written you, worship Him passionately, steal away time to be in His presence, write Him love letters, songs, poems. Hang with Him and let Him lead you on whatever path He wants for you, while you accept and cherish this precious gift and season of singleness.