A gift? Really? This is such a difficult subject to write about, but I’m going to take a chance and just do it. I’m really glad that I don’t have to wonder any longer about whether or not it’s God’s will that I remain single. I’ve written in earlier posts about having such a deep longing for family. I kept praying over and over for God to fulfill that longing. During that time of waiting, I also had learned how to pray to ask Him to remove the desire if it was not of Him. I waited for an answer either way for a very long time. It was tough waiting. Since initially the desire had not been removed, I kept holding on to the hope that He would send the perfect man of God my way. Well, just a couple of blog posts earlier, I wrote that God had answered the prayer. He didn’t answer how I hoped He would. It’s truly amazing, the things that God does for those of us who seek Him and His will wholeheartedly. He ended up completely removing the desire for a husband and family that I carried for too long and He replaced it with a desire to fully devote my life in service to Him. Wow. I can’t begin to describe what I feel inside about this. I guess I can simply say that I am happy! I’m in awe of the joy He’s given me with this answer. What an incredible blessing. What an incredible call on my life! And the more I’ve been thinking about it, it truly is a relief that I don’t have to deal with the distractions and complications that can come with being in the dating world. Now, what I can’t say that I know for sure is whether this is for the rest of my life, or for just a season (however long that might be). It doesn’t matter. What I do know is that I am extremely blessed to discover God’s will for me and for that old longing that made my heart ache so much to finally be gone. Today, my focus is on my mission to fully serve God.
There’s a passage in the Bible that really spoke to me some time ago. I wasn’t really sure about what I read back then, but I’ve always kept it in my heart waiting for a confirmation from God. The passage talks about marriage and about being single. When I first read it not too long after I started absorbing and living out God’s Word, I couldn’t forget about it. But I don’t think I was ready either to really accept or understand what God’s Word was telling me in the passage. I wasn’t ready for a long while. But I’m truly happy now that He has answered my prayer and gave me the confirmation I had been seeking. He has shown me very clearly the way He wants me to go.
I’ve been single my whole life. And I’m grateful to be celibate. Of course I wasn’t always, but God has changed everything about me. He’s forgiven me and He’s taken away the ungodly desires from me and I am thankful they are no longer a struggle. I’m thankful He has helped me turn away from sin. This is all so personal, but talking about my singleness and celibacy has been on my heart to share for a while now because I know so many out there are struggling to find their soul mate. I see and feel the emptiness and the loneliness in their hearts. Many times people choose partners without seeking God’s direction first. When someone finally comes along, sooner or later there’s nothing but heartache because one or both end up bringing even more turmoil into the relationship. At least, I’ve witnessed this in so many couples who choose to do things their way instead inviting God to be the center of their relationship. I can see it so well in others, because everything I’ve mentioned is where I used to be. My last relationship was a disaster, I don’t know if I would have ended up taking my own life because of it, but I can tell you I wanted to be relieved of the humiliation and pain the man was putting me through. I was hitting rock bottom with the depression and the drinking so I really think it was just a matter of time for me. (You can read more about my mental abuse story “I wished he would have hit me” in an earlier post if you’re interested.)
I’ve spent most of my adult life feeling out of place for being single, yet I did enjoy the freedom. Before God broke through, I was at a very confusing period of my life. I was quite happy with being single, but as I started to grow older, I really started having a longing for my own family. I didn’t know what was happening to me. I know now that my whole problem back then was that God was never the center of my life, He wasn’t even a tiny part of it. So when I talk about Him today, I love that I can say that He is absolutely my everything in life now.
I’m finally understanding that being single is a gift from God and I am truly grateful for discovering this gift in my life, at this point in my life. For many years some people did a really good job at making me, the single and childless one, feel like something must really be wrong with me. I was always out of place. For so many years, I dreaded a relative of mine looking for a ring on my finger every time there was a gathering. I never said anything, I went along with it, but that sure brought me down every single time. I don’t think the person meant to make me feel that way, but still, it put me in a very bad place. It had such a negative effect on me, it would just keep adding to my depression.
My circumstances in life caused me to be such a lost and depressed soul, I turned to alcohol to self medicate and to numb myself out of reality as much as I possibly could for as long as I possibly could. Today, I see it as a blessing that I didn’t bring children into my dark world. As I have been growing and learning God’s Word and will for my life, He has opened up my eyes and heart to His beautiful gift. I realize how incredibly blessed I am for this call He has placed on my life. ME. The one who for decades didn’t care to know if God was real and then tried so hard to drink herself into a grave since it seemed to be the only way to be relieved from lifelong heartache and despair. I am SO thankful to God for breaking through when He did almost 5 years ago!
So back to the passage I mentioned earlier — at the beginning of this incredible journey, although I didn’t put a whole lot of thought into it at first, I do remember wondering about what I had read in 1 Corinthians 7:34-35 — God’s Word translation puts the Apostle Paul’s teaching this way: “An unmarried woman…is concerned about the Lord’s things so that she may be holy in body and in spirit…I’m saying this for your benefit, not to restrict you. I’m showing you how to live a noble life of devotion to the Lord without being distracted…”
I SO want and desire to live that noble life of devotion to my Lord! He has given that to me! Wow. It’s an amazing change He’s done in me. And as for children, I believe He has shown me through His Word that He will bring me spiritual children and I’m pretty excited about that too. I know there are a lot of single Christians out there walking around with a void in their hearts. It’s not easy being single. I always find it interesting how some married people look at a single person’s life thinking “If only I were single…” And then there’s us single people looking at a married couple thinking “If only I could find someone to love who will love me back…” As a single woman, for the longest time there would always be triggers that would have me feeling a giant void in my heart. I always felt it more during the holidays where families celebrate together. I’m not talking about extended families, I’m talking husband, wife, kids…you know, the perfect family. I know there’s no such thing as a perfect family, but that’s how I looked at them. I saw the love, and I wanted that. But today, I no longer have that desire. I no longer have that ache in my heart. God has given me something better and no matter for how long, I’m going to fully devote my single life to Him and rejoice over it with all my heart. I pray for other Christian singles to discover God’s will for them too. And I pray for the unspeakable joy in their hearts and souls, just like God has given to me.
Well, I am grateful for the courage to share this. I pray that God would reach someone else’s heart through it. Now this life I’m living is not easy. I don’t think it will ever be. There are times that I still feel out of place and even feel an occasional void, but I just keep reaching out to God, I keep seeking Him, I keep asking Him to fill my heart with all of Him and He always does. He never lets me down. What an amazing God I serve. If this has touched you in any way, I hope you will share it with someone who may be struggling in their own journey of singleness so they can know they are not alone in their struggles. Thank you, may God bless you.