Three years ago, I was overthinking about being thirty. I was single and I will not deny that there were moments when I think that not being single is cooler. I bet that many singles feel that their lives will be better if they are romantically involved with someone. I know of some friends who would rather skip family reunions or going to home because of the dreaded questions:
How old are you? Why are you still single?
Two questions that make them feel insecure and incomplete. I am telling you, you are not alone.
Now that I am married, I received these questions from friends: Did you proactively seek someone?How did you lay down your intentions? What kind of conviction did you feel from the Lord that Richt is the one from God?
Whenever they ask about me, I feel like I am being pushed to become a love guru. I will never be that. It is never my intention to be a competition of radio personalities. There are a lot of them already.
It took me weeks to finally give an answer to those questions. I wanted to be sure that my answer is fair and grounded. It turns out my answers do not directly address the questions. Rather, it talks about new perspectives on the season of singleness.
On Marriage and Porcupines
If you are reading and you are single, assess your heart because marriage might become an idol already. If your everyday thoughts are almost always about marriage then maybe it is about time to shatter that idol and enjoy the season of being single. One of my mentors said:
If happiness is the goal, then marriage is not the answer.
That is true! You have to understand that to be married is to be with someone who is flawed and imperfect in this fallen world. Marriage is compared to the porcupine dilemma. It is a metaphor that of porcupines that are seeking to be together in a cold winter night and yet in the process their sharp spines will hurt each other.
I am not trying to scare you but marriage entails hard work. Being single is a preparation of that hard work. When you get married, you will never have the chance to experience this season again. You might look back and realize that you have not enjoyed this season.
So how do you make being single a worthwhile season?
Single and Available
The best thing about being single is your availability to do a lot of things. You have the freedom to say ‘Yes’ to many things. Yes to late night movies. Yes to random meet-ups. Yes to long hours of conversation in a coffee shop. Yes to starting a new passion in calligraphy or painting. Yes to possible career options. Yes to random vacations.
That is a lot of yes’! For your “yes” to be worthwhile, say yes to things that add value to who you are. It can include being available for volunteer opportunities or training. Say “yes” to things that matter like run for a cause, clean-up drives or tree planting.
Say “yes” to things that allow you to lead or be led. If you are a man, it will help you grow as a leader. If you are a woman, it will be your practice of submission.
Single and Serving
Make your ‘yes’ a gift to the world and to the people around you. Serve your family. Visit friends who are sick or hurting. Share your life to young people who needs a good model and a good influence.
Serving other people is one of the noblest thing that you can do on this season. When you serve and do not expect things in return, you allow yourself to be selfless. You allow yourself to be vulnerable and compassionate at the same time. You allow yourself to be a blessing to others.
Serve with other people who are singles too. Broaden your network. Learn from them. They are in the same season as you. So they may understand and share the same feelings with you about being single.
Making use of this season to serve is a preparation on your willingness to serve and be selfless to your spouse when God leads you to marriage.
Single and seeking
But ultimately, seek God. God loves a person who seeks him.
I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me. – Proverbs 8:17
The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. – Lamentations 3:25
Seek God by reading the Bible, listening to preaching, do daily devotions and pray. Pray a lot. Successful marriages are fought in prayer.
Seek God through the lens of married couples. Spend time with married couples who you think are great examples of a married life. Knowing is half the battle. There are couples around you who are so willing to share what they had to go through to inspire you. They may share also their mistakes so that you will not have to go through it.
Seek God by serving other people. See Jesus through the eyes of other people. See Jesus for what breaks His heart – the poor, the widows, and the orphans.
By seeking God, you allow His faithfulness reign in this season. Seek him, serve Him and honor Him, then you will have a heart who is so full of love for other people.
I can say that marriage is a beautiful thing so as being single! Being single is a preparation and there is no better preparation of marriage than to enjoy God and be satisfied in this season of singleness. As I said, marriage is hard work but your devotion and love to God will make it easy for you and your spouse.
When you understand that Jesus died for your spouse also, you will love beyond who your spouse is just like how Jesus loves you beyond your imperfections.
To seek God is to be found by Him. We were not lost first. We were loved first.
We love because he first loved us. – 1 John 4:19
While we tried to be lost, He loved and found us. Always.
Be available, serve others and serve Him but ultimately, seek Him.
WRITTEN BY: JUNVER ARCAYNA
PICTURE: RD DIAN