Dear Fellow Christian (who happens to be single),
I’m probably the last person you want to hear from. I dated in college and got engaged a few months after I graduated. I didn’t have to wait long for a pretty engagement ring and my dream wedding.
So why are you talking to me?
I get it.
But I think it’s important you hear a different perspective on living as a Christian who is single. Sure, it’s many a dream to get married right away, and live happily ever after. And even though we’re in the world but not of the world, there always seems to be this intense pressure to get married, and soon.
I have the privilege to work with a singles ministry in my church, and we’ve had a couple engagements recently. So of course, it has people thinking: When will I meet the right person? Is it part of God’s plan for me to be alone? How long do I have to wait? When will I know? What are my options?
I remember feeling that way in college – that fear of being alone, wondering if it was God’s plan for me, the hope and prayer that it wasn’t. And then I started dating towards the end of college, got engaged and married fairly quickly – and got a reality check.
Marriage is wonderful and comes with a lot of blessings. You get to do life together, you have a best friend around constantly, you get to see God in a whole new way because of your spouse.
But here is the shocker: life isn’t just yours anymore. Where I used to have what felt like infinite possibilities in my life alone, suddenly I had to start considering someone else in all those future plans I was making. That’s not to say you are suddenly very limited as a married person, or that big dreams can’t come true. But it’s not just about you and what you want anymore. You have to consider what’s best for you both. You have to communicate, and ultimately, you have to compromise. This is true of any healthy relationship.
Technically nothing is stopping me right now from hopping on a train for a weekend getaway, or pursuing further education or a new career. But I can’t just come to decisions like those on my own anymore. If I want to continue to build a loving and trusting relationship with my husband, I have to communicate with him, and decide together if those things are right for our family.
I have no regrets. I think God arranged just the right time for me to get married and make these kinds of decisions with my husband, who is the perfect balance of planning and level-headedness to my spontaneity and free spirit.
But what I want you to realize is that you have an incredible amount of freedom right now to pursue God with reckless abandon. What will you do with that time? When you look back on it, will you realize you spent most of it waiting for a relationship? Or will you look at it as a chapter of your life when you were able to serve God and others, have adventures, make incredible friendships, and pursue dreams? (And, hey, have some great dates along the way, too!)
I want to encourage you – explore all the open doors God has put in your life. Throw out some lines and see what kinds of fish you catch. (Am I killing you with the analogies yet?) What’s to stop or slow you from moving to a new city, going back to school, trying a new career, starting a business or a non-profit?
Lastly, one of the scriptures I clung to at that point in my life was Zephaniah 3:17, NIV (and what could be more loving than this?): “The Lord your God is with you; he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.” (For more great verses on how God sees you, click here.)
In this time, you are so very loved, even if you don’t have a significant other or spouse. I hope you know how special you are, how God longs for you to look to him right now, and how he wants to build amazing memories with you, as you live with an undivided devotion towards him.
Scriptures are quoted from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.