Personal Challenge #8 Let’s Talk about Singleness

I’ve been single for 10 and a half years. It hasn’t always been fun nor easy. (But probably the same can be said about marriage, no?) When I began to hear several of my married friends say that the one thing they regret was not savoring their time of singleness (eagerly waiting for it to end – does that sound familiar to anyone??), I was inspired to discover what singleness is for. These friends told me, “Don’t take your single time for granted. Savor each day, enjoy all the blessings you have, because after marriage there are different blessings, but you can’t have your single time back again, even if sometimes you want to.”

Every human experiences singleness, so there must be some God-ordained purpose and blessing to discover during singleness. I was inspired to discover what there is to celebrate in singleness, and how to live joyfully and victoriously in the midst of the longings and desires that are a God-given part of the human design.

1. If you’re single, how long have you been single? What do you love about singleness? What do you really not like about singleness?

During times of contentment, there is a lot I enjoy about singleness. My time is my own – I can stay out late; and because I live alone, I can delay washing dishes for a day or so. It’s a time to focus all my love on Jesus. I’ve been able to work on so many goals and projects.

There are times when singleness is really difficult. There are times of loneliness and longing for a husband/family especially during the ‘family times’ of the year (holidays, some weekends, etc.). Sometimes it is a blessing to live alone – after a busy day, it’s pretty great coming home to just be able to rest. But sometimes, it feels sad, and I long for when someone will be there in the evenings with me, and someone to spend Saturdays with. There are times when my sex drive feels especially strong (for example, just before my period is sometimes a really challenging time). Sometimes I stress as it feels my beauty, marriageability, baby bearing years are fading faster than I can meet someone.

“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
for to you I entrust my life.”
Psalm 143:8

I want to follow God’s leading in things like where to live and what jobs to take, so how much more do I want to follow God’s leading in something as binding as marriage?! I strongly believe that it is better to be single than to be married to someone who hasn’t been pursuing healthiness.

2. What are your thoughts on “Mr. Right versus Mr. Right Now”?

3. In what areas of your life do you trust God? In what areas of your life do you WANT to trust God? Do you know that He is trustworthy? If not, ask Him to show you.

Jesus’ life proves that singleness is not second-best nor does a single person lack anything they need. He was single throughout His life, and was healthy, whole, content, and joyful. I believe that the ability to walk out singleness like Jesus did is available for us too. 

I take this verse literally: “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:19).

I believe with all my heart that God knows what we need and gives us what we need. Right now I don’t have a way to express sexual desire, but I trust Him in that too, and consider that this is a time He wants to strengthen me in mastering my sex drive. I trust Him that He has not left singles alone, and that He has a special way to be everything they need. Fueled through those longings for a companion, I walk towards Him in expectation and faith. I believe that the design for marriage is a reflection of God’s relationship with us, and so those longings He put in me can drive me into Him, and be met in Him. 

And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8

4. What do you feel that you lack as a single (unmet needs)? Ask God to show you how He meets these needs (it may look different than you expect but He knows exactly what we need even more than we ourselves know! I trust Him to meet my needs in the way He knows I need. He is my Good Father.)

I want to STEWARD this time of singleness well! I want to make the most of this time; I want to discover and accomplish ALL that God has for me for this time. I want to live a fruitful life. 

Let’s do some inventory. Where are you at now in these areas? Where do you want to be? Throughout the rest of this 55-Day Challenge, we will delve into many of these areas:

  • Singleness is a good time for pursuing healthiness. I believe that pursuing healthiness as a single is much less complicated than beginning to pursue healthiness after marriage. 
  • Singleness is a good time to discover the unique dreams, passions and giftings God has placed in me. (Every person has these, but many just haven’t spent the time to determine what they are – who best to sit down with than your Creator?)
  • Singleness is a good time to see what is good in my life and practice joy and thankfulness and contentedness. Look around and see the family God has placed you in. Look at what you HAVE, not at what you don’t have. Singleness is a good time to discover that Jesus is all that I need. A major focus of this time has been to get Jesus into first place in my life. I know that I would have put unrealistic expectations on my husband to meet my needs had I not intentionally pursued getting Jesus into that first place in my life as the source I seek for ALL my needs. I imagine that that would have resulted in great stress on my marriage! When Jesus is first, all the other relationships in my life are blessings but not my sustenance. (We will focus on this in Part 4 of the Purity Challenge).
  • Singleness is a good time to take inventory of the unmet needs you feel, and learn how they can be met in healthy ways as a single. I believe it is important to not carry a bunch of unmet needs into a marriage.
  • Singleness is a good time to work through issues of self-esteem. Singleness is a great time to get to know yourself and see yourself the way God sees you. As I have spent time with myself, I have really come to love who I am (not vanity!).
  • If you have sexual baggage, singleness is a great time to work through that.
  • If you have out-of-control sexual desire, singleness is a great time to work through that. 
  • Singleness is a good time to lay down your expectations and plans of how you thought your love life would look. I have walked through emotions of anger towards God regarding this. “I trusted You… yet I’m still single..”, and coming again to that place of surrender. Are there any difficult conversations you need to have with God regarding your singleness? 

5.Are there any specific areas (or additional areas not mentioned above) that you would like to pursue greater levels of healthiness and freedom?

I encourage you to entrust your life to God. Surrender your dreams and desires to Him. It is the utmost act of trust. He is fully trustworthy. Entrust your dreams and desires to Him for His safekeeping. He treasures them and takes care of them. Keep your eyes on Him rather than on your dreams. Walk with him, carrying no burdens. He holds everything for you. He has many, many dreams for you, and as you walk along with Him you begin to only want what He has for you. And keep listening to Him for when He invites you to dream with Him and believe Him for these dreams and desires.

6.Would you like to do this right now, with Him?