There is an unspoken view on marriage in the church that is dangerously prevalent. Many people seem to think that marriage is the next level of godliness, the key to becoming fulfilled. It seems extreme and bizarre. But going from single to married in the church, I’ve seen both sides up close.
For church women, it is as if their entire single lives revolve around finding their “Boaz” and preparing for marriage. For the men, it’s all about finding the right girl and marrying her. While a need for companionship is built into us and we desire to walk alongside someone with mutual love and care, when someone is too focused on ending their singleness, it takes away from all the lessons to be learned in the single season as well.
There are two major points that this thought process does not recognize:
First, singleness is a gift.
Whether for a season or for a lifetime, singleness is not a curse. As Paul says, it is not for everyone, but EVERY believer is called to be content in their season. Every believer is called to be thankful and worship God for his blessings at all times. Therefore, we need to see singleness as a gift. The abilities you have as a single person are far different than in marriage.
While single, there are fewer things competing for your attention. You are much more free to serve God. He gets all your time, focus, and energy. Marriage is a gift as well, but with it comes so many things you cannot have in singleness like partnership, children, and so much more. In singleness, we learn how to rely fully on Jesus. For comfort, love, care, and even in our loneliness.
Second, God knows what he’s doing.
We are called to serve the Lord without the intention of finding Mr. Right. Committing our lives to God without being divided. Having a desire for marriage is not wrong. However, God’s timing is perfect. He knows when we are ready, and most times it’s not when we have read all the books, memorized all verses on being a godly spouse, or have gotten all the marriage advice. When your eyes are focused on Jesus, he can bring a great guy or gal in without them becoming your idol.
If we were to actually rejoice in each season, we would be so much more content and so much more joyful. We would have peace. We would see that no matter single, dating, engaged, or married, these are all gifts.
God pays attention to the desires of our hearts, and he cares. But his desire is for us to be like him, and for nothing else to take us away from that. Married or single, the goal is Jesus. In whatever season, whatever that looks like for you, he must be the focus. Contentment is learned, and more so in these seasons than any other. The beauty in both situations is huge. He will use whatever circumstance you face for his glory. Learn to serve God where you are, and allow him to work. He’s a good Father and he fills our lives with good things. Yours is probably right in front of you, right now.
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