Estimated reading time: 3 minutes:)
I’ve learned it is not God’s desire for the single woman to be completely sufficient in herself.
We were not designed to be independent.
All through high school so many people encouraged me to become an independent woman. Whenever a guy came into my life and then left, my friends would say things like, “You don’t need him anyway.” “You’re better off without him.” “His loss.”
They were saying all these things in an effort to comfort me, and nothing’s wrong with that. But as I stumbled down the path of independence, I found myself becoming just as heartbroken as I was in the wake of a broken relationship.
No matter how much “self-love” I pampered myself with, no matter how many times I leapt into a situation with responsibility like an adult, no matter how many times I convinced myself the independent lifestyle was best for me, nothing changed. I still felt heartbroken. I still felt empty. I still felt lonely.
Because I’m only a person.
Believing we, as single women, are completely sufficient and fulfilled in ourselves is just as dangerous as believing we are fulfilled in a man.
And God’s been teaching me over the last year that singleness isn’t really singleness at all.
No part of singleness is about being single.
It’s about leaning on God instead of yourself or a boyfriend or girlfriend. It’s about leaning into community.
It is the way God designed us: to long for intimacy. To ache for relationship.
I mean, think about it: in Eden, Adam was in the full presence of God before Eve was created. But he was still lonely.
This is the way God designed us, to need one another.
I used to beat myself up for wanting to be married. Because the world almost presents it as a weakness, for a woman to want a guy. It seems needy.
But I realized, sure it may be needy to obsess over guys and constantly be in a relationship with one, but to patiently wait in anticipation for the person God possibly has for you ~ that’s not needy. To pair desire with patience and surrender to God’s plan, that’s not needy.
It’s okay to want to get married. But as I wait and surrender to God’s timing, I’m learning:
God doesn’t use seasons of singleness to build up our own self-esteem, independence, and self-sufficiency at all.
God doesn’t use seasons of singleness to grow independence. He uses seasons of singleness to grow our dependence on Him.
It’s in our relationship with God that we practice our vows, put away a spirit of being a girlfriend, and put on the spirit of being a wife. It is in our relationship with God that we begin to understand what love looks like.
We love because He first loved us!
And it’s only when we are fully committed to Christ and living out our calling as a wife with Him, that our hearts are prepared for a man.
Not that our purpose or end-goal in life is a romantic relationship with a guy or a girl. Our purpose rests in being with God alone. But it’s in our relationship with Christ that our hearts are prepared for a marriage relationship, if that’s what God has for us.
It’s a kind of paradox. No human relationship will ever fulfill. And yet we cannot rely only on our relationship with God to live healthily.
I guess all of this is to say, maybe God’s using this single season so you can grow closer to Him instead of becoming a “functioning adult.”
I always cringe when I hear, “I’m dating Jesus right now.” Because we, independently, aren’t God’s “wife.” The church is God’s bride, not us as individuals.
But when I understood that in God’s relationship with the church I could better learn and practice faithfulness and love like a wife to Christ, it deepened my relationship with Him x1000.
God’s greatest desire for your life isn’t that you find a godly man and settle down. His greatest desire for you isn’t that you have good Christian kids and build a beautiful family.
God’s greatest desire for your life isn’t your happiness.
It’s to be with Him.
So be with Him.
And I know that’s a little simplified. But know God just wants to be with you so badly.
When I simply be in relationship with God, there is peace.
When I cling to God as a wife clings to her husband ~
When I rest my head on His shoulder and let Him hold me ~
When I submit every day to Him like a wife, reaffirm my trust that He will provide, follow by His side wherever he goes ~
When I let Him love me and let it be enough ~
These are the marks of a marriage that’s already fulfilling. This is the relationship that will sustain me even if my earthly marriage strains. This is the love who will never fail me, never leave me, never forsake me.
And this is the relationship that prepares my heart for every other relationship on the horizon.