Tag Archives: Single Sundays

Single Sundays-Finding Wisdom and Clarity.

“How much better to get wisdom than gold,
to get insight rather than silver!”~Proverbs 16:16

I hope you are having a very blessed Sunday that includes lots of peaceful time with the Lord & fellowship with others! Today is the last Single Sundays post, as it is the last Sunday in February. Today I will focus on how being single provides ample opportunities to gain wisdom & clarity for your life and future marriage. Without further ado, read below some of the reasons why being single for a longer time can actually be a blessing!

Being single provides time to gain wisdom. Wisdom is a gift from God. Very young people can be endowed with more wisdom than an elderly person. However, God grants many of

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us the gift of wisdom over time and through experiences and growing in our relationship with the Holy Spirit. Experiences can take years to amass for many of us. Sometimes we even need to re-learn the same lessons over and over during a period of years. During your time of being a single person, you can find wisdom about marriage. You will be able to observe many relationships & marriages. This will give you a vantage point to determine qualities you hope for in a partner. Your observation of different relationships and talking to those you know who are courting, engaged, or married will give you wisdom. You will be able to learn from the successes, challenges, and even mistakes of others.

Being single gives you time to gain clarity. As I wrote in the post last week, marrying young can turn out to be detrimental for some, as they have not yet realized their callings. They may not have had the time and experiences to clarify their purpose that those who are single for a longer period of time have. A person who waits longer for marriage is generally more mature and has had more life experiences to gain clarity about what direction their life is headed. A time of singleness (and past relationships) can also provide clarity about what you are and are not looking for in a marriage partner.

The clarity you find as a single person can bless your marriage, future family, and maybe even a ministry as husband and wife. As you grow older, your vision grows wider.

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You are more aware of the direction your life is headed in. I am in the midst of some big decisions, decisions that could affect my husband & our children. These decisions have come about due to wisdom and clarity I have gained about my purpose & the vision I have gained for my (and my husband’s) future family. As a person in my younger twenties, I did not have full clarity about these visions for my life.  I am grateful now that I have a clear vision for moving forward into marriage and family life. If you are in ministry or feeling called to ministry, it will be good to know the realities ahead of time so you and your spouse can be on the same page. Sometimes the Lord calls couples into ministry together, so you may even be looking for someone ministering in a similar or complimentary way. That clarity is very freeing.

What opportunities has your time of singleness provided to gain wisdom and clarity?

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Single Sundays-The Gifts of Singleness.

The gifts of singleness? You might be tempted to shut out of this post now. Bear with me. I’m on the single journey too. I know there are very difficult days. There are aspects of singleness that are consistently difficult. However, today we will focus on the gifts. Despite the pain, there are always positive aspects to be found. Finding gratitude helps to keep a positive attitude and live in the blessings.

So, what are some of the gifts of the single life?

The single life can more easily be devoted to service/ministry. As a single person, it is

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easier to live a life of service or devoted to ministry. I can think of many occasions where I was able to go help a friend due to my single state. A mother with little ones can’t drop everything to help a friend. A spouse must think about how their service work or ministry will impact their marriage and family life. St. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 7:32-34: “I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord. But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife—and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband.” Truly, living single-heartedly for the Kingdom is much easier as a single person! The time and space to build an unshakable relationship with God is a huge blessing of the single life.

The single life provides a degree of freedom that married people don’t have. This can mean travel, more time to invest in writing or other projects, and of course, ministry or easier ability to do mission work. It can also mean greater availability to invest in relationships with members of your faith family, blood family, friends, and even people you may serve as a mentor to. I enjoy the flexibility of singleness. I don’t need to check in with someone else (or multiple people!) about my calendar but can plan as I wish! It is simple. I also find a bit of financial freedom despite the single life meaning only one income. At least in America, many people have debt. Getting married can mean double the student loans, car payment, and credit card debt to manage. (Note: I don’t believe debt is normally a good thing. Unfortunately, it is the reality for many Americans.)

A single life is one with a single person’s problems. One could also argue that marriage is easier because it gives you another person to sustain you in trouble. However, two families bring two different dynamics and two different sets of troubles-plus the troubles within your own home and marriage. Additionally, the stressors of being a parent can be overwhelming for anyone. Add special needs to the plate, helping a child through bullying, or trusting the Lord to provide for the family when the economy is bad–parenting is painful! Learning to love your spouse through the times when they are not at their best can also be difficult–such as if a spouse is diagnosed with a mental illness or facing their troubles from the past. The troubles of a single person pale in comparison to adding a spouse, their family troubles, and children’s struggles as well! (Though I know singles look forward to pouring out love in these circumstances–we have a bit of a break now!)

A longer single life provides more time to attain wisdom, life experience, and clarity about p1030501.jpgyour calling(s) and the direction of your life. Had some of us married younger, we may have missed out on certain aspects of ourselves. These aspects may very well be important to a marriage and perhaps even a shared ministry! For example, during the past decade the Lord has confirmed to me that Africa will continue to play a part in my life. Thus, if I had married someone lacking a love for Africa, I would have missed out on a huge joy and part of my life. I know now that the Lord has someone for me who will be willing to live in countries other than the USA. In His infinite wisdom, the Lord has given me more time to discover these aspects of my calling. I believe it is the same for you, if you have been waiting longer than expected!

Don’t lose heart. There are gifts in the season of singleness, just as there are deep struggles.

Live joyfully in the gifts of today, and you will be able to better receive the gifts of tomorrow.

“I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.”~1 Corinthians 7:7

Have you discovered any other gifts in singleness that were not mentioned here?

Single Sundays [Bonus Valentine’s Day Post]–The Life You Expected.

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”~Romans 8:38-39

Happy Valentine’s Day, dear readers! This day and every day, at every moment, you are totally and completely loved by God.

 

Have you ever examined your current life and found it is just not what you expected or wanted? At my current age, I thought I would be married with two children, living in a house

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purchased by my husband and I. Obviously none of that has come to pass. For so many years I lived under certain assumptions about how life would go, that the milestones expected by society (and dare I say by some members of the Body of Christ?) would just fall into place. My life has turned out very different than the milestones expected by society. I have come to a place of joy and contentment. This did not come overnight. There are a few steps I’ve realized that those of us who are very single (& expected to be living life married by now) can benefit from:

  • Accept the disappointment. Ignoring it won’t make it go away, but will make it worse. Pour it out to God! Be honest with God. Talk to trusted people, other single friends, maybe even a counselor. Figure out what it is exactly that you are grieving. Put a name to it, realize your disappointment, but don’t let yourself stay there.
  • Accept the reality of your current situation. Most of all, find the blessings in it! Find the wisdom. For many of us, marrying at a young age may have been detrimental. In your current season of life, there are many blessings. In fact, single people are doing amazing things! We have more “free time” than married couples/parents. We have more time to focus solely on the Lord, not distracted by human love (1 Corinthians 7:34). Though it can be painful, there is much freedom found in singleness.
  • Pray to see the bigger vision. I’ve written before about this. At least for myself, I had a limited vision for my life. My Heavenly Father continues to expand my vision and show me new aspects of my self and the purpose for my life. There is so much more than marriage or children. He will surely do the same for you. When you are living within the bigger vision and understand it, you will find great peace and contentment. You can also ask loved ones or spiritual mentors how they see the Lord working through your life in order to gain more insight. The Lord has the full vision for our lives-we see but a glimpse.
  • Love others. We were created by Love, for love. You have the time, and you have love to give. For now, it’s not a spouse or children. However, there are so many others in need. Perhaps they even live within your home or right next door. Service is so important. Don’t dwell on your own single state. Build community.
  • Love yourself. I’m not talking narcissism. I’m talking about taking good care of yourself, a unique human being created in the image of God. You are a temple of God! Realize your own needs and the way God made you. Treat yourself with kindness and make sure you are not ignoring any part of yourself.
  • Cultivate a strong relationship with God. God made Eve for Adam. He didn’t allow Adam to be alone for long. We have the ability to create community with other people around us. Yet I don’t believe that living out an extended period of singleness is natural. It’s not. Celibacy is not a call given to many for a lifetime. It is a difficult call to walk out, as long as anyone is asked to walk it out.  Only by leaning on the love of God can we do this. We must find our identity in Him and in living within His great love and abundance. Only by living in relationship with our Creator can we make sense of our lives.

On this day when society (at least American society) might make you feel  sad due to the focus on couples, delight in the perfect love of God. Delight in the love of the people around you. Reach out and spread some love to those feeling hopeless or unloved. This life might not be what you expected or wanted. Yet it is your earthly life, and in it there is abundant purpose and blessing. No matter whether you are courting, married, or completely single for the Lord. Let’s live in the joy and freedom!

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Single Sundays-Finding Wholeness.

As singles, sometimes our focus can unknowingly be on finding someone to make us whole. In a world that places having a significant other on a pedestal, society can make us feel like there’s a problem with us if we are standing alone. Even the church sometimes makes an idol out of marriage, seeming to forget that Jesus Christ was single! Not only that, but it seems that St. Paul’s letters to the Corinthians focusing on singleness are not talked about much. Church events are more often than not geared toward families.

A relationship or marriage will not make you whole. You need to be secure in who you are as an individual. How do you become whole? You focus on a relationship with Christ. You seek an identity in your Creator, and not in one of His creations. Seek your identity as a unique child of God.

Isaiah 43:1 tells the children of God that “I have called you by name; you are Mine!”

Your spouse will be so blessed to have a spouse who knows who they are in Christ. You will not be needy and wanting them to fulfill your every need. Your spouse will never be able to fulfill all your needs. You will not be able to fulfill all their needs. If you are seeking Jesus Christ wholeheartedly, you are more likely to (in God’s time) attract the person who is seeking the same thing!

So, how do you become whole? 

  • Focus on your relationship with Jesus Christ. Focus on Jesus and not on finding a man or a woman. Pray to know Jesus in a new, fresh way. Read the Scriptures, especially the Gospels, carefully. You will get to know His heart and teachings. Spend time in Eucharistic Adoration and pour out your heart to Him. Also find like-minded people on the same journey.
  • Forgive! Forgiveness is powerful. In the Lord’s Prayer, we ask that the Father “forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Often we hold onto hurts from the past. This holds us back. Resentment, bitterness, and anger make us emotionally and spiritually sick. They poison our relationships. Moving forward into marriage, you will need to learn to forgive. Your spouse will hurt you at times, and you will hurt them.
  • Attend counseling. (As a future counselor, of course I have great faith in this tip!) A good counselor can help you walk into healing from the hurts of the past and present situations. They can give you outside insight and help you learn better how you function & how to function more healthy in the future. If you attend counseling, I recommend a Christian counselor. Secular counselors may not understand the integration of faith and its importance to healing, and may have recommendations that are not Christian.
  • Learn self-care. The truth is that many of us need to learn better how to live healthy lifestyles. What does this involve? Feeding your body nourishing foods. It means getting enough rest and not pushing yourself too hard. It’s surrounding yourself with healthy people–and knowing yourself and your boundaries. Self-care is taking care of your mental and emotional health. Of course, I cannot leave out what was discussed earlier: a healthy prayer and spiritual life! Self-care looks different for each of us since we are all wired differently, but it ultimately comes down to this: a balanced life which does not neglect any aspect of ourselves.
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Most of all, I want to leave you with this: Jesus Christ is THE greatest Love we will ever have. That love will follow us into eternity. Christ is the only One who will never hurt us! Find your wholeness in Him. No matter what life brings, your life being built upon Him will not steer you wrong! You will become the beautiful creation that He intended. You will become wholly yourself. Whole.  

Single Sundays in February.

My dear readers,

I know for many singles, Sundays are difficult. Sundays are the day when you sit in a pew alone, while other couples have the gift of worshiping together. The pews are packed with smiling babies, crying babies, and children of every age. After church, you don’t get to talk in the car about the sermon, the Scriptures, and the songs with your love. You don’t go home and enjoy a wonderful Sunday meal with your family (or at least, not a spouse and your kids). Traditionally a family day, it might be a day that you spend mostly alone.

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During this month of February, when Valentine’s Day is celebrated and reminders of love are all around, I am going to write a series called “Single Sundays.” I hope to talk about some of the challenges faced by single people, the gifts involved with singleness, and the graces of God given! I will be posting each Sunday as well as a bonus post on February 14th, the day Valentine’s Day is celebrated!

I will be writing about:

We’re all in this together, my fellow single people!

 “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”~Philippians 4:13

(Additionally, I am writing a short book of reflections on the topic of singleness and waiting for a spouse! The book will include all of these topics. Stay tuned for further announcements on this project!)