When going to university classes in my home town, I had to take a bus every morning to get there. I would go to one bus stop and wait, get a bus, go to the local bus terminal, wait with the rest of the morning bus rushers in an immense line and get on another very crowded bus to get to school. Sometimes, I would wait for the next bus to come by, so that I could get a not-so-crowded one and possibly have a chance at a seat. The same story for coming back home. I felt like I was constantly waiting for busses. One day, the busses decided to go on strike, but I hadn’t heard this piece of information. As I waited there at the bus stop for close to an hour, I started to get impatient and asked one of the other people there. She commented that the bus drivers were on strike and that our only hope was to get the much smaller, and thus much more crowded private vans that would drop by the bus stops. Here I was waiting at a bus stop, for a bus that would never come. I could either, get on a much worse and dangerous ride or I could decide to not wait anymore, go home and be productive. I did the latter.
One of the clichés most used with singleness is “I’m waiting for the one.” “I’m waiting on God.” While these phrases started with a great truth, people have twisted this phrase dry of meaning.
As kids, we were fed the idea that we will grow up and get married just like in the fairy tales and Disney movies. As adults, we have rom-coms, to feed our fantasies that one day we will find our Prince Charming. In the church, we are taught that marriage is good and that we must save ourselves, and get ready for that special someone and that special day when we finally get married, have a family and basically have our own Christian fairy tale ending. I understand why we are taught to yearn for marriage. Marriage is good. God created marriage and it should be within the boundaries of its Creator. As I discussed in my last post, the desire to be married, and to have a marriage based on God’s truths is a God-given desire.
However, where in God’s Word does he promise that all Christian ladies will get married? If you’ve found one, I’m sorry, but I’ve missed this verse! Paul speaks to the Corinthians that it is not good for a man [woman] to live “burning in passion” as a single, and that it is best for the person to be married if that is the case. In Genesis, after Adam concludes his work of naming the animals, Adam and God come to the agreement that it is better for man to not be alone, but rather have the companionship a marriage offers. Yet, nowhere in Scriptures does God promise to give us husbands! So, why are we always waiting that we will find that One that we will spend the rest of our lives with? What God DOES promise is that his will is “good, acceptable and PERFECT” (Romans 12:2) He also reminds us that:
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”(Isaiah 55:8-9)
God sees the bigger picture. He knows what lies ahead in our story and in the story of this mortal world. He knows what is best for you and for me, and he knows exactly what we need. Maybe more than a husband, we need to pull closer to Him and have a greater dependency on Him. Maybe he wants to use us as singles in ways we could never imagine than if we had been wives we would never be able to.
I believe it is wrong to live with an expectation that I will one day marry, when this is not a promise of God, but rather it is best to live knowing that God has a will for us, and that his will for us is good and perfect and uniquely made for each of us. My life plan is not the same as my friends’. My friend might get married at 21 and I might get married at 35 or maybe even not get married at all. God’s plan for me might be to serve him with more of my time as a single, than if I ever got married. Because of this, I myself decided to stop putting the expectation of a promise that God never made to me. If someday, I find that God’s plan for me is to be married, it will be an added blessing in my life. If I live single for the rest of my life, I won’t have the weight, the pain and the bitterness from my unfulfilled expectations.
My challenge to you this week, is to analyze, whether you have assumed that you will for sure one day be married. Have you dreamed of that day, knowing it will one day come to you, but you are just waiting to know when? I’m not asking you to give up all hope on marriage. Chances are that most girls will get married. What I do ask, is that you stop pausing your life, dreams, and ministries as you wait for God to drop the perfect guy into your lap. Don’t keep hurting yourself by living with the expectation that you will for sure get married. For the longest time, I’ve lived this way, pausing my life and some of my dreams, because “you never know who you will meet and when.” But these unmet expectations have created discontentment in my mind. I become frustrated with God when he hasn’t given me a husband yet, because that’s my expectation. I’m tired of feeling cheated and vexed with God for something He never promised me. It takes a lot out of you to live this way. When I begin to trust that God does know what he’s doing, and He does know what is perfect for me, it’s such a comfort and I can truly relax.
So, with this in mind, I encourage you and challenge myself to stop these hurtful and untrue expectations. It is a daily choice to not give into discontentment, but to rather pour yourself out to God. To run towards him and His Word, is such a relief, and the closer we get to God, the more obvious his will, will be for us. The desires of His heart will become the desires of our heart, and not the other way around. I challenge us, myself and you, to pray not for a husband, but that God can use us in a great way to minister to others. That he would show us, where we can be the biggest blessing to others, and to stop waiting for something that might never happen.