I never thought I would say thank you for singleness (or for gifts taken)

[originally posted on december 23rd, 2014]

If you had told me a year ago that I would be thanking the Lord for my season of singleness, I would have laughed in your face.  I would have told you that that is the biggest joke ever, that I can’t find out how to be thankful for it, and that never, in a million years, would I be happy about it.

I have deep thoughts about how girls raised in the South are programmed to grow up.  I think that society tells us that we are to grow up preparing ourselves for a marriage that will take place in our twenties and that once we obtain that marriage, we will have arrived.  That somehow marriage will solve all of our problems.  Those are my thoughts and I could surely ramble for another few paragraphs, at least, on my thoughts on that, but I’ll spare you of that rant.

Anyway.  Because I grew up that way, when I was young, like 7, I set the plan for myself that I would be married young, like fresh out of college.  From there, I would make some babies and settle down, done by 25 or 26.

Alas, here I am at almost 21 with 0 desire for any of that to happen anytime soon.  In fact, if all of that process did not begin until I was 26 or 27, I think my heart would be happy.

With that said, I have become abundantly thankful for the gift of singleness.  When I first became a Christian, I laughed at people that called singleness a “gift”.  But over and over and over again, I receive that gift and I’m thankful for it.

In July, I lost a relationship.  Maybe one day I’ll stop talking about it, but I’ve learned heaps of lessons from it, so I think it’s worth talking about.  Anyway.  I lost a big chunk of something.  With that chunk of loss came a long season of about 5000 emotions.

Since I am coming out of that season, the Lord has done big restorative work in me.  And I am in a place where I can be thankful for that season because it gave me great gifts that I didn’t know I needed.

Allow me to elaborate some.  If I were in a relationship right now, I wouldn’t be as nearly as invested in the new friendships I have because my heart would be invested in my relationship.  If I were in a relationship right now, I wouldn’t have gone to Seattle because I would have spent my time off from school in a place with my boy.  If I were in a relationship right now, I wouldn’t yearn for the Lord, I wouldn’t seek Godly counsel (I’ve had to cause it’s literally about all I have now), I wouldn’t need community.  The list of things that I need but wouldn’t be doing could go on for pages and pages.

Over and over again, I see how the Lord was protecting me and blessing me in not giving me the things that I so desperately thought I needed.  At the end of that relationship, I held onto hope that something would be rekindled, that some fire would be relit, and I waited.  I waited for the smoke to clear so that a match could, and would, be lit again, but when the smoke cleared, it was dark and that fire wasn’t returning to me.

Never would I have thought that Jesus would be giving me the greatest of blessings when He broke my heart.  Never would I have thought that He would take away my investment, only to give me another 15 or so that are much more worthy of my heart.  Never would I have wished for that, never would I have known I needed it.

Though I could talk for hours on that relationship and on relationships lost, my only real goal in all of these words is to encourage you to take heart.  I encourage you to wait for the Lord in whatever medium that is.  I encourage you to find rest in His promises because they will always, always, always be fulfilled.  And though I haven’t seen mine fulfilled yet, my heart finds the deepest of peace in the rest that His promise will find its yes.  I encourage you to hold to His word and His deep, deep love for you and to rejoice.  He is the giver of all good gifts and He loves you so.  He always gets the glory and we always get the joy, no matter how long it takes for that joy to come.

With all of that said, I must say that things taken isn’t always easy. Being single isn’t always fun. Heartbreak doesn’t always, or ever, feel good. But I believe that there’s a special part of His heart to be found in the waiting. In the times where we cast aside our schedules and to-do lists, in the times where we have no choice but to seek Him – He always shows up faithfully then.I say it often, but onward we go.  Onward we go because He never quits.  I pray that you would yearn for Him with a fire that never goes out or even dulls.  That you would yearn for Him in a way that finds the deepest of peace in the promise that He fulfills His word to you.  I pray those same things for myself.

So, Jesus, thank you for singleness.  Thank you for blessing me through it.  Even more than singleness, thank you for all your gifts.  Thank you for blessing me even when I don’t get it.  Thank you for persisting always, even when I get so mad at you for taking away the things that I feel are good gifts.  Thank you for promises temporarily unfulfilled because I trust your hand and trust that I will see them come to pass.  The best is yet to come and I can’t wait to watch You work.

And thank you for the waiting season, because in it, I see you clearly.

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