Put your hands up!
Thank you, Beyonce for helping create confidence in single ladies. LOL. There’s no way I can write a blog post about single-ness and not mention Beyonce. Seriously.
Ok. Let’s move on. 😀
Yesterday began with some texts from friends on the topics of singleness. Unmarried singleness. Non-dating singleness and “Yes, I will marry you Joe Poe-Dunk down the road, as long as you don’t drink and you have all your teeth”-singleness. (Ok, I added that last one in jest to my former self.) 😉
I was asked a few different questions regarding singleness, but they were all asked within completely different tones. I gave some advice on joy and freedom as a single person, and then I gave my honest opinion about flirting, playing hard to get, and dating websites.
I honestly don’t feel super qualified to advise on any of those things, although I’ve tried pretty much all of them. Let’s pause for a second and insert a funny but serious story, here.
So, when I was maybe 17, MySpace was BANGING. Like, your Top 8 made your life or broke your life. You could also meet people. I must have been in a dry season or something because I ended up engaging in conversation with another guy who lived a county or two to the west, and well, he had PINK hair. The rebellion was enough for me. We decided to meet up one day at a local mall about 30 minutes away to hang out and/or talk. *BAD IDEA. NEVER DO THIS. NEVER NEVER NEVER* Luckily, my friend Erika came with me so I’d have a buddy, just in case this dude turned out to be a creeper. He seemed kinda cute in his profile picture…well, the quarter of his face that I could see peeking out from underneath the pink ‘do seemed kinda cute. We met up in a Claire’s, I think (LOL). He was the guy in the picture and all seemed normal and awkward. We walked together for a little bit but sadly, things didn’t take off because he was constantly taking off on his skateboard. It was all he could talk about. He invited us to come watch him join some of his friends skateboarding around the parking lot and well, we were as good as gone. But before we could get away, he was all into his tricks and tried to do one of those cool jumpy, twisty things inside Dillard’s and he proceeds to hurtle into some displays and eats it completely! He’s trying to recover and there are mannequins falling everywhere, blouses being ripped off the display tables and the noises to match. Erika and I were gone. We ran so fast! And never saw this guy again. What bad girls we were. LOL.
Mom, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry I lied and I learned my lesson. Internet meet-ups are a BAD BAD IDEA. It’s like careening down a steep hill sitting backwards on a bike….or like buying underwear from a garage sale…….or Linberger cheese. Your outlook is pretty bleak. :O
Ok, I’ve returned from 2007 and I’m back in 2017. HA!
Amidst my advice giving, prayer, and encouraging talks, I compiled an answer to an important question. “How does one find joy and freedom in a life of singleness?” In my experience, I asked that question because I longed for a Christ centered companion, friend, and eventually husband. And I was unhappy at times. I felt as though my life hadn’t begun yet and that I was perpetually waiting for something. And the natural place to look for help is to someone who seemed to overcome that feeling and was either in a strong relationship, engaged, or better yet, married. I encourage gals to come to me with prayer requests or advice on singleness. But I often question or pray for their heart because I can discern the motive behind their questioning. Most of the time, I get questions that regard finding joy, contentment, peace, and comfort in Jesus while waiting for a husband. But other times, I get questions fueled by impatience and frustration that involve behavior modification or changing oneself as a quick fix for singleness. This encourages inferiority and the idea that who you are isn’t good enough. 😦 I’ve been in both places.
In the end, the correct answer for the loneliness, the potential bitterness, the inferiority, the impatience, the lack of self worth in this season is Jesus. Draw close to Jesus. Yes, the obvious answer, but no detail. What does this look like? I had no idea what it meant to press into Jesus. So, today, I provide detail in the form of testimony. I understand everyone is different. Some of you may be in a place where you’ve already done every single thing on this list, and may not get anything from this post. Although, if you’ve read this far, you’re still seeking some insight. Good for you! Here we go!
- The Heart – So, we’re girls. We have these things called emotions. I discovered that during those times when I was at my lowest or feeling really, really stinky, it was because I was letting my emotions run rampant. I started to feel sad, and then played along and fed myself lies. If I felt lonely, I sat in a pity party and moped around with the cloak of insecurity looming overhead. You know that feeling, right? When you’re sad and emotional, and you know it, and still run with it as if you have some bout of sadness you need to play out for it to go away? Yeah, I know. So, really, none of those things you tell yourself about never getting married, or being too this or not enough that, none of them are true. They are lies, fed to you by the Father of Lies because he thinks that our emotions make us weak. They do not. So, what do we do now that we know not to have a pity party when we feel sad? Well, my personal remedy was kinda like pillow talk. You know, your gal friends are over and you’re having a sleepover where you tell your dreams and secrets while in your PJ’s on your bed? You’re holding a pillow close to quell your nervousness about sharing things that are so important, but golly, when you let it all spill, it feels magnificent! Talk to God like that. Prayer styles are different among people, but at that point, mine changed from being all formal and elegant, to being a best-friend, tell-all session every time I started to go a little emotionally woo-woo. And y’all, I was changed. My view of Jesus changed and I realized how more than ever He is a complete healer. I was comforted and encouraged every time I sought Him out to hand over my feelings. So all those times I saw flashy new engagement rings on my News Feed, someone’s glorious wedding day, during those nights when I lay in bed alone and so lonely my body could break, or even someone much younger than me finally tying the knot, I gave way for prayer, not the emotion ride. I urge you to try it the next time your emotions start to creep up. It’s worth it, I promise.
- The Spirit – “27 Idle hands are the devil’s workshop; idle lips are his mouthpiece” Proverbs 16:27. This looks kind of grim at first glance, but hear me out! This isn’t just a paragraph about how you should find stuff to do so you don’t think about your singleness all the darn time…..but then again…..it kind of is. Think back to all those times you felt so lonely, so unworthy, so sad, and so broken….it was mostly done in private or when you were alone. You know, you sit on your bed in your room and just think about how great it would be to have your cheek stroked before you were kissed, to be safe and secure in the arms of your husband, or how unfair it is that Elizabeth Bennett got the richest man around to fall in love with her and THEY DIDN’T EVEN LIKE EACH OTHER IN THE BEGINNING OF THE BOOK, GEEZ and It seems that by now, fictional characters have it better than you. Am I right? *le sigh* Again, these are notes from the true story of mopey Kailee circa 2012. I’ve been there. So, what do we do instead to avoid such times as this? I encourage you to pursue things that are conducive to single life. So, spend time cultivating your gifts, talents, and things you love for the Lord, while you are single.
- Here are some of my examples: 2013 was turning out to be a great year. (I met Joshua in November of that year..) I sat down at the beginning of the year and prayed over some goals. I was in my last year of college, and at the beginning of 2014, I would be doing my Internship Practicum, which after a short summer break would then lead to my first teaching position in a local elementary school. I wanted to pursue things that I probably wouldn’t be able to when I started working as a teacher. Some of my favorite things/loves in life are music, travel, and any form of art (at the time, it was photography, hence, my fledgling business..) So during that year, I chaperoned a youth trip to Memphis to feed my traveling soul. I began photography and made money doing something I really loved, so there was the creativity/art part. And then I became more involved in music by self teaching some more music theory and served through music and worship at church more often. These things are now things I am glad I spent time on because I do them often now that I am married! And most importantly, when I was in the midst of doing all these things, and serving God, I felt more loved, less needy, and so equipped in the Holy Spirit that I felt less and less depressed, less often sad or lonely,
4 Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4
I encourage you, sisters, to seek out God and His Word with your actions and your mind. He knows our hearts, and will not let us down. When you want to down yourself, don’t. Pray freely and openly instead. When you want to be alone because you feel lonely, find a friend to hang out with, go spend time with your family, you won’t regret it. Being alone without the Lord often doesn’t do great things if you are struggling with a particular issue.
I pray often for you, reader, because I know that if you’re here, and you’ve read this far, it’s because you are seeking answers, or anything to help you conquer the imposing spirit of negativity around being single and waiting for so long for your husband.
You are valuable. You are worthy. You are special. You are cherished. You are worth more than rubies.
Keep the faith, sister. He is coming soon.