I’ve a secret to share. But just among us friends. I loved being single! When I eventually met the man I married, I was 38 and quite satisfied in my life. It’s true, but it wasn’t always.
Growing up I dreamed of marrying young, raising children and cheering a husband on in ministry. Not in my wildest imagination did I dream of being single until I was 40! Obviously my life didn’t turn out quite like that.
God put my life on a different track. Looking back I am amazed by His wisdom, love, provision, goodness, mercy and grace along the way. But I have to confess; at times I was not too happy about His choice.
Being single can be lonely, hard and scary. It can be difficult making every decision in life all by yourself. Coming home to a dark empty house after a long day, every day, can be no fun. Taking the car to get fixed can be intimidating. Going a wedding alone can be depressing. Putting your heart on the line and having it rejected can be devastating.
Being single can also be satisfying, simple and exciting! It was wonderful spending as much time with friends as I wanted. Eating out after work, every night if I chose, was great. Taking off at the drop of a hat to some far off land when God called is thrilling! Buying what I wanted, when I wanted is every woman’s dream, right! Doing only my laundry and cleaning only my dishes gave me tons of free time for reading, worshipping or serving God in new ways.
It’s a choice. Singleness is a gift from God, a blessing — if you choose to see it that way. That doesn’t mean you give up hope or you will never marry. It just means you embrace the season of life God has you in and enjoy it to the fullest until He brings a new season with new blessings.
Through heartache, turmoil and tears God taught me valuable lessons that helped me enjoy my singleness for as long as it lasted — which in my case was quite long!
Enjoying the Season
Since we’re friends here, I’ll share my TIPS so you can enjoy the season too! They are: Trust, Intimacy, Purity and Service.
God can be trusted. David knew this. God delivered him from many enemies; provided food in the desert; gave him companions and homes; even comforted him when he was down. David wrote by experience, “those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord have never forsaken those who seek you.” (Ps 9:10)
When you face decisions, problems and needs, big or small, God can be trusted to work it out. He did it for me: good parking spaces on rainy days, unbelievable deals on cars, protection as I traveled around the world. He rescueded me from wrong relationships to save me for the right one. I know God is good. He can be trusted to provide and protect. Knowing that gives wonderful freedom to do all He asks with joy!
We are created for intimacy — to be fully known and loved as well as to fully know and love. We seek it. We crave it. We do crazy things for it. Only intimacy with God can satisfy that desire — ask any married person. God also longs for intimacy with us.
The Song of Solomon is a love story of how God pursues relationship with us; how delighted He is when we respond; and how totally contented and secure we become in His love. When you seek God, to know Him — His likes, dislikes, sorrows and joys — He speaks to you and is with you in ways too wonderful for words. You know true love. Jesus becomes dearer than life itself and walking through each day with Him is pure delight. Your desires and pursuits change to be in line with His. One thing you desire is purity because it is the pure in heart that will see God (Matt 5: 8).
The Apostle Paul said a lot about purity. He admonished us to “flee from sexual immorality” which is a sin against your body, the temple of the Holy Spirit (I Cor. 6:18). Instead “purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” (II Cor. 7:1).
Purity is possible, even today. I know, by God’s grace and power I remained a virgin until I got married … at 39 and 11 months. God provides a way out of every temptation — learn to take it. God gives strength to overcome sexual desires, call on Jesus when you ache for physical intimacy. A life of purity eliminates the fears of STD’s, AIDS, pregnancy and all their complications. Seeing in others the hurt, pain and devastation that comes from sex outside marriage confirmed to me the wisdom of God in waiting.
Purity is also in spirit. Guard closely what you listen to, participate in and watch. Be an influencer bringing purity to conversations and gatherings rather than being influenced to compromise. Don’t give the devil a doorway into your thoughts. Set your mind of things above and the beauty of life is revealed!
Life is most beautiful when we know God and do the things for which we are created. Did you know you are created “in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Eph. 2:10).
As you walk with Him daily He will reveal the things on His agenda for you. There are so many things to do. Some are long-term assignments like running a crisis pregnancy center; being a missionary overseas; leading worship for a church group; or mentoring inner city children. Some are short, like buying a homeless woman a meal; campaigning for a righteous candidate; or going on a summer mission adventure. The needs are as varied as we are. Jump into the ministry He puts before you. You’ll be amazed how fulfilled giving makes you feel!
When you make God’s will, His Kingdom, His glory a priority in your life the rewards are out of this world. Joy is yours! Peace is yours! Provision and protection are yours! If you delight yourself in God, He will give you the desires of your heart (Ps. 37:4). So enjoy this season of singleness. Enjoy the freedom and opportunities that are unique to this time. Then when it’s over you won’t look back with regrets and longing; you’ll be free to look ahead with delight!
“He has made everything beautiful in its time.” Ecc. 3:11