So this might be the first Valentine’s Day that I have been single since… I don’t know… fifth grade? (The only year I’m not sure about is 8th grade)
Yes, I know. It freaks me out too. For Valentine’s Day and for a large portion of my life there’s always been someone, several very sweet someone’s who have blessed my life for both long and shorter seasons. Several of these relationships have even remained friendships after breaking up.
But my dating life is not the focus of this blog post. So let’s keep moving.
Today’s Valentine’s Day right? It’s such a fun holiday (considering I love the color red, could eat my weight in chocolate and am on of the most “lovey” people you’ll probably ever know). And yet there is this pressure that accompanies said holiday. It’s an underlying pressure to fill this longing we were actually designed to feel.
We’re all waiting for that somebody, that special someone who’s going to fall into our lives and turn everything upside down.
And it’s consuming. I’d bet it consumes a lot of your thoughts too.
I bet if you’re single, you imagine just who he/she could be, how you two will happily live your lives, how incredible and special “your person” will make you feel.
And if you’re already married or dating someone, I bet your life is just all perfect and lovely all the time because you and your person are made for each other.
Okay, so I was being somewhat sarcastic (because if we’ve ever experienced a relationship, we know it’s not always perfect and happy) but hear me in this: I loooooove love. I believe in marriage. I believe dating is okay (in the right context). I believe Jesus is incredibly sweet to give us another person on earth who will be the person who loves us most intimately.
But I also know that my future husband is not going to fulfill my longings. He’s not going to take away my sadness or shame or insecurities. We’ll probably even fight from time to time and he’ll likely make me cry (because that’s just what I do, I’m a crier.)
I think I tend to find myself dreaming, thinking, asking God to go ahead and bring the guy along because the season of singleness and waiting is often uncomfortable. It’s hard sometimes to be single when all your friends are falling in love. And it’s hard because I often buy into the lie that this guy is going to fix everything.
But what I’ve learned in this last eleven months of singleness (seriously, probably the longest I’ve ever been single since I started dating people. Crazy.) is that the waiting and the singleness is actually really sweet. The longing and the work that Jesus has done/is doing in my life is only cultivating my character. I’m not going to have it all figured out when ”the one” does come along, but I do believe that I’ll appreciate it all a little more than I would have if I hadn’t ever experienced this sweet season of my life. And believe me, there’s been some really hard moments. Moments where I haven’t understood why some guy wasn’t falling in love with me (because in my vain little mind, why wouldn’t he see me and instantly get down on one knee? Right?). There have been moments that God did something I never expected, even moments that I actually realized that this singleness is sweet, that it actually is worth it. It’s a crazy mix of emotions, a whole lot of good days and bad days, but ultimately, this season of my life has just made space for Jesus to move.
Being single has forced me to run to Jesus for my affirmation, love and affection instead of tangibly getting a fix from a boyfriend. It’s caused me to see relationships from the outside, given me opportunities to rejoice as my friends fall in love, and even cry with them when things have not turned out how we expected. Singleness has given me a chance to develop deeper friendships, invest my life in others, and even has given me a chance to find out what I actually love and what makes me come alive. I’m becoming who I was designed to be because I’ve had time to figure out who that is.
But above all else, being single has caused me to fall hard at the feet of Jesus.
Because without falling in love with him, without actually experiencing his goodness for myself (not just with another person), I’m never going to really appreciate or cherish falling in love with someone else.
Jesus is the greatest lover in the world. He pursues us relentlessly. When earthly relationships crumple, his love for us does not. When anger and misunderstanding lead to broken relationships, Jesus greets our faults and failures with the most tender love and understanding. He knows me because he created me. I don’t even have to explain myself. He just gets me because He’s deeply in love with me.
And one day He’s going to give me someone on this earth who will tangibly give me a glimpse of the love that God has for me. But for today, I’m waiting. And that’s okay. Heck, if it means I get more of Jesus I guess I’d even spend my whole life waiting. Honestly, I don’t really want that to be the case, but if it takes my entire life to find the one, or he never comes along, I will just have to trust that Jesus’s timing is way way better than my own.
I’m not writing this post to say singleness is the best thing in the world, or to say that I’m ready for this season to pass, I’m just writing to say that whatever season I’m in, whatever season you’re in, it’s okay. It’s okay to be single. It’s okay to never have had a boyfriend. It’s okay to have a boyfriend or a girlfriend or a husband or wife. It’s okay to be in whatever season you’re in. Whether you’re in a season of waiting or a season of plenty, Jesus is doing a good work in your life.
I’m writing to say that whatever season we’re in, let’s fall in love with Jesus first. Let’s look for our security and identity in Him. Let’s be pure in body and mind because He is pure. Let’s fall in love with the life He’s given us because life in His Presence is rich and good.
So if you’re dating someone, if you’re married, even if you’re single and desperate for your person to come along, I hope above all else that this Valentine’s Day you would fall in love with Jesus, that His Love would be even more real that any earthly love you’ve ever experienced. And I hope that your earthly love and relationships are filled with love for one another. I hope you celebrate the people you love today. That this Valentine’s Day, you would rejoice in your loved ones, that you would let others love you back. But above all else, I hope you know you’re loved by someone whose love will never fail. Jesus is never going to give up on you. I hope your heart just bursts with love for life that only Jesus can bring. And I hope that love just makes you come alive.
So happy Valentine’s Day friends. You’re loved today and always.
“I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory.Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you.I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you.” Psalm 63:2-5
“Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her.There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will respondas in the days of her youth, as in the day she came up out of Egypt. “In that day,” declares the Lord, “you will call me ‘my husband’; you will no longer call me ‘my master’… I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion. I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the Lord.” Hosea 2:14-17,19-20