In high school, I prayed a dangerous prayer; I asked the Lord to only let me date one or two men before I was married. I wanted to save my heart and body for my husband. I’m now 28-years-old and have never been on a date. Despite that fact, I’ve liked my share of guys, and a couple times I thought he might reciprocate the feeling. But God has closed each one of those doors, actively reminding me that my timing is not God’s timing. For a long time I was discontent; I couldn’t comprehend how women could write about being content in their singleness and yet balance that with a healthy desire for marriage. How could you feel both?
Thankfully, over the past year or two, the Lord has been teaching me that there CAN be a balance – I can be content in where He has me now, I can look around at the opportunities available to me as a single woman, and yet I can still have an eye on the future with a hope of marriage. I don’t have a lot of wise words on how to help someone else get to that point; you really have to surrender to the Lord and truly trust that He can change even the most stubborn heart.
Recently, the Lord impressed upon me a basic truth, a truth I’ve been taught numerous times, but I hadn’t preached it to myself in my own words. I think it was early in the morning when I was half asleep that I wrote myself the following note, and I’ve been keeping it next to my bed as a reminder: “Although marriage is a picture of Christ and the church, it is NOT to be my end goal. My purpose is to serve and obey Christ. My worth is in Christ. My aim is to [pursue] Christ. The top of my life goals list should be to serve God. Do not let marriage creep higher than service to God!”
Isaiah 54:5 (ESV) is a verse I frequently read before going to bed:
Artwork Credit: Amanda Weaver Design
I don’t have to wait for a man in order to be fulfilled; the God of the whole universe, the Creator of each and every person, the Sovereign One over everything is my husband. I encourage you (whether you’re married or single) to take a moment to let that sink in.
The Lord’s ways are not my ways; His thoughts are higher than my thoughts (see Isaiah 55:8-9). I have seen Him work mighty miracles in other areas of my life; I have seen His power to bring great blessings out of nearly hopeless situations. And yet I have had the hardest time letting him have control of my heart in relation to men.
I live in a small town and frequently have used that as an excuse for not having met Mr. Right. However, I had a very enlightening conversation with a friend several months back. She lives in a big city, is surrounded by Christian men, and yet she is still single. She reminded me that just because I’m in a small town and she’s in the big city, it doesn’t affect either of our positions as singles. The size of my town doesn’t affect God’s power or timing. I don’t need to move to a big city to find a husband. If I am where God has called me to be, then I need to stay here until God moves me.
God could bring a man to my small town. Or I could remain single for a long time or for the rest of the life. But I need to be seeking the Lord first and foremost and not viewing marriage as the end-all goal. Marriage is a wonderful gift, but so is singleness. I will have the most inner peace when I am walking in God’s will, regardless of my external circumstances.
A song that has been my heart’s cry is “All My Devotion” by Kristene DiMarco. I encourage you to look it up, especially if you struggle with God being your primary focus. I also modified the sign to the left as a reminder to myself that I am to follow God’s heart, not my heart. When I seek to be obedient to God and trust His sovereignty, my heart’s desires will begin to align with God’s desires. His heart will become my heart.
Photo by: Kristen C.
About the Author
I am a Christ-loving woman who is continually being stretched by the Lord. I live in small-town Texas and love playing soccer, baking cookies, playing games and hugging trees. I split my time between working towards the conservation of endangered species and training up the next generation of children and youth at my church.