Tag: childless

Singleness and Celibacy — A gift from God

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.

The Love That Never Came—A Post For Empty Hearts

“You are not alone…” How many times have you heard someone who wants to help say those words to you and when you get home to an empty place and start the battle of a lonely and empty heart all over again, you really wish those people, who can’t possibly understand what you’re going through, would stop trying to help?

I’ve been there. I know your pain. And I’ll be honest and share with you that I still struggle with being single and childless at times, especially this time of year as we start heading into the holiday season. I get the holiday blues. It’s the most challenging part of the year for me and has been since I was 16—when my dad left me and my mom.

I haven’t written since the last post in September over a month ago. Soon after I published it, I felt like I started battling again with a little bit of depression. Funny isn’t it? I pour my heart out on this blog with the hope that others will be encouraged to reach for the Lord and then I find myself struggling again. My first reaction was to be embarrassed by it, but then I realized that I am human like everyone else. I never claimed to be perfect. I’m still working on issues from my recovery journey and I will continue to share this journey and be honest about it. I’m so thankful that I am still strong in the Lord and He continues to help me through it all, along with the most amazing family of God standing by my side. And one of the best miracles of my life is still a miracle—I am still sober and approaching my four year milestone in just four months. Praise the Lord.

So don’t be upset with those trying to help you. They wouldn’t want to help if they didn’t truly care.  Although some of them can’t really understand what being alone and/or what being lonely can be like, I have learned to appreciate them for caring, I appreciate their love. I am grateful I have learned to reach out and let them know that I am struggling. That took a while for me to let go of my pride and reach out. I didn’t want them to know I was struggling or why. Reaching out is not easy, but it has been a great lesson. The prayers have been powerful. Who doesn’t need people praying for them??!! I have so many who have been praying for me and it has been an amazing walk through this latest valley. I may have said this before in a previous post, but it’s worth repeating…the Lord always guides (more like carries) me through to the other side, every single time. And I am always better and stronger than before I started walking through it.  I could not keep up this walk without my loving family of God backing me up.  I can never tell them enough how grateful I am that they are in my life. In the past, I used to keep it all inside and that almost destroyed me…especially because I did not know the Lord at that time.

So you know what I have discovered through all of this? I really am NOT alone…EVER. Even when it feels like I am. I’ve got Jesus in my heart and the most amazing family of God holding me up. Anytime I hear those words “You are not alone” from someone, it doesn’t matter whether or not they can relate to my circumstances, I am going to claim those words. I think it’s good to be reminded now and again.

For the longest time I believed the lies that I was unlovable and would never find love and that it just wasn’t meant to be for me. I regretfully made choices that have kept me single all these years. My last relationship was a severely mentally abusive one (you can read more about it in “I was a lost soul…” posted in September 2012) and after finally breaking away from it, that’s when I had lost all hope. I walked around believing that love never came and that it would never come because  I didn’t deserve it.

I was SO wrong. I am still single with no children but I am surrounded by love—God’s amazing love—I was just too lost and blind to know it at first. It’s true that there is no greater love than His. I don’t know what God’s will is for me as far as marriage. I can’t worry about it. I’ve discovered that I am still in need of healing from that last horrible relationship and I am working on that. So I just keep doing what I have learned to do. I keep God first in area every of my life, I serve Him in ministry which is my passion now, and I trust Him to provide what I need one day at a time and He always more than provides.

For those who are going through this struggle, I am praying for you. Don’t ever give up. And don’t try to walk this walk alone. It’s true that no man or no woman is an island. Don’t be afraid to reach out to others who will lift you up. I pray you have or find a church family like mine. A church filled with the love of God and love for one another—a family that will never let you walk alone. I have even been blessed with many godly people that have their own church. So He has truly surrounded me with His love. I pray that you will seek God with your whole heart and put Him above all. Open up your heart completely and He will fill the emptiness with His love and peace. It’s indescribable when it happens, but you will know without a doubt when it does. He’s the only One who really can fill the hole in your heart—I am speaking from experience. And who knows. If it’s His will that you get married, He will make it happen…in his perfect timing of course. Here’s a good scripture verse that I like to keep on my heart at all times: “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33 (NLT) Amen. Keep Him first always and you can never go wrong.

I am going to end this with these words because I believe them to be true: YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I hope you believe it too. Be encouraged. Be blessed. YOU ARE LOVED!! ♥