What we need to stop saying to the single girl

I used to hate going home.

My years being single, and yes I said years, I hated going home. Because I knew I was heading towards a lonely bed and a smelly chihuahua to feed.

With people, with friends and family, singleness didn’t feel like a burden. I loved being around friends. I thrived around people who lifted me up and held me accountable, whether they were married or not. I adored my people. And most of my people, most of the closest friendships I had while single, were sweet girls who went home to a husband.

Most of the people in my life that I chose to spend my time with and be encouraged by, were married. And I loved it. They threw gasoline on my fire for Jesus, they encouraged me to live whole heartedly for the gospel, and they rallied around me in times of true heartache or joyful victories.

But when I left those exciting gatherings, I hated going home. Because I wanted to be like them, getting to go home and snuggle with a husband.

And I know for a fact I’m not the only girl who hated that drive home to a lonely bed and a meal for one. (Even though now I love my home alone meal for one kinda nights) I know I’m not the only girl who hated all the cliche lines people would tell you, like “His timing is perfect, just be patient” Like, okay since you seem to know my future can you tell me approximately WHEN I can expect His timing to show up? #peoplesometimes

Or the worst one I heard…

“You’re pretty, so you’ll obviously get married eventually.”

Uh… what does that even mean? At first, it was fun to believe, but after awhile… it felt empty and dishonest. So, everyone who’s physically attractive is entitled to a husband? Let’s not be shallow women who rely on what will fade. Or assume our looks will seduce a man into marriage. That is by far, the dumbest thing anyone ever told me while I was single.

There were definitely times where I loved singleness, and I rocked my life stage like a badge of honor and good times coming. I truly believed I was in a good place and my friends were enough for me. I had dreams of what I wanted to do in life, and none of them really involved a guy. I had friends who loved me and a God who adored me, so why did I need a husband? Who said marriage was the ultimate victory? But like I said, there were definitely times I laid in bed teary eyed like I was the star of Taylor Swifts “Tear drops on my guitar”video.

So, I know where you are. I’ve been lonely before. And to be quite honest, the married girl still experiences times of loneliness too. So please don’t think your period of loneliness expires the day you say “I do…” because if I gave you that kind of false hope, I wouldn’t be telling you the truth.

If I’m being honest, the reason we still experience periods of loneliness in marriage is because a husband will not patch up your wounds and send you on your merry way to the lonely free club where skies are blue and the cupcakes are always free.

The deliciously good looking, kind hearted, Jesus loving man you’ve been dreaming about your entire adult life will never be enough for your precious heart. He just won’t. He is terribly incapable of doing so.

Because your husband is not Christ.

I pray you don’t anticipate this concept of a marriage where you never feel lonely again, because there will be a night where you’ll fall asleep disappointed in what you pictured this whole marriage thing to be. And you may even ruin your pillowcases with mascara stains from crying. Because this is coming from a girl who adores her husband with everything she has, but knows the darkness that can sinfully reside in a Christ centered beautiful and Holy Matrimony. And you need to understand that truth, that there isn’t an expiration date on your loneliness labeled with “your wedding day”. Heartache will still come because this world is not meant to satisfy our hearts. Your husband will fail tenfold with those kinds of assumptions and expectations, that his job is to be the knight in shining armor.

I’m not here to tell you to look to Jesus and wrap things up feeling successful, giving myself a pat on the back. Because I refuse to give you the Sunday school answer to what you feel is the hardest season of your life. But I do want you to know something important that will sting before it heals.

You may never get married.

Bare with me.

Before you click the back button and roll your eyes at that statement, know this.

I understand how hard of a truth that is. I’ve been exactly where some of you are. And I know how heavy your heart is. And this truth, as harsh as it may sound, gave me so much freedom in my singleness.

And wrapping your mind around this concept won’t happen in a day, but the second you let yourself believe this truth? The burden will begin to soften… and the bitterness will begin to fade… trust me. I had to stop believing all the advice that just gave me a huge bucket of false truths I carried around when I got sad. Because that’s what they are, they’re false truths that just sugar coat the actual truth. The truth that marriage isn’t for everyone, so let’s just tell girls that “it will come” because that’s easier and less awkward.

By believing this truth, that marriage might not be in the cards for you, isn’t giving up on love. It’s not throwing in the towel and holding up that white flag of surrender.

It’s freeing yourself of the chains of waiting, and opening your eyes to the endless possibilities that the true gift of singleness brings. 

It’s frustrating when the happily marrieds try to give advice to the singles. And all they’re doing is setting you up for potential disappointment and implying that if you just wait for His timing, it will happen. When that’s the biggest lie that anyone could ever tell you. Because they are not God, and they did not breath your life into existence.

He is faithful to fulfill our every desire, and He has promised to rid us of our loneliness. But some of us have confused “God will give us the desires of our heart” with “if I desire it, God will give it to me..”

God definitely will give us the desires of our hearts when we delight in Him, Psalm 37:4, but when we are delighting ourselves in Him and His goodness, our desires will begin to shift in wanting more of Him, and He will freely give that to us because He knows what true joy will look like in our lives.

You’ve heard it too many times, “If you have the desire to get married, then you’re probably getting married” or “God wouldn’t give you that desire if He wasn’t going to fulfill it.”

And that my friends, is why so many girls are burdened with waiting. And waiting. And waiting.

And waiting.

But what if it never comes? Have we prepared them for that? Or have we just filled them with buckets of false hope when they’re sad? We must stop sugar coating their pain and encouraging just a little more patience in Gods timing… we are not helping her.

Our deepest desire, beyond anything else, is to be deeply known, and deeply loved. And Christ has already offered that to us on a silver platter.

And it’s called the gospel. Where Jesus, being perfect and without blemish, died a death that we deserved on a dirty cross and took the weight of our sin on his shoulders… and then rose from the grave three days later, so that by believing, we would have a chance at eternity with Him. He is enough for us. With or without a husband.

I don’t want to encourage your tender heart to be patient in waiting for a husband. That’s the last thing I want you to do. I want to encourage you in living a full life, content with His plan and putting your hope in Christ alone rather than a life that includes wedding bells. Because even if He does have a husband waiting for you at an altar someday, that’s the last thing you should be dwelling on. Because you have people to love and lives to change with the big heart He’s given you and the working hands He’s put on your beautiful body. You are worth more than waiting for a white dress.

You were made for more than a husband. Never forget that.

So go out there and rock this single life! Live boldly and wildly and beautifully for Christ. There is so much to be done in this world, and you could be who He uses to do that. Make His name known to the nations, wrap your arms around friends who adore you and cherish your heart. Love people crazy hard, chase after truth, and cling to the gospel. Because that’s where your heart will find joy, not in waiting for your prince charming to arrive on a white horse to sweep you off your feet. Because the truth is…

He already has. And His name is Jesus. And you can rest assured that He will love you better than any husband ever will.

-Catie

Photo cred: Bianca Osornio Photography  Model: Lydia Loftis

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