I remember scrolling through my Facebook feed once and seeing a status post that said, “Lord, can I PLEASE get married before the Rapture?”
I thought it was funny until I realized how many of us have actually asked God this question. Maybe not in the same exact words, but we have.
Not everyone can understand the anxiety that a lot of singles—especially those who are never-married and over 30—experience over being single. It’s not always because we’re just so desperate to get married. Or that we buy into the lie that being married is better than being single. Often it’s because deep down inside we’re content with singleness but terrified that God will leave us that way.
It sounds like an oxymoron. But let me explain what I mean. Singles in this frame of mind have made peace with being single, and they love, worship and serve God wholeheartedly. They don’t pout because they don’t have a date for that special event or because they they’re just tired of being alone. They do, however, have moments where they have to come to grips with the possibility that they may never get to do two things that their hearts truly desire: marry and have children.
Those who are married with children are so quick to quip, “Well, there are some people who wish they were single with no children!” And I’m sure that’s true. But we’re not talking about them, because they had their chance to marry and have children. We’re talking about good, single people who want to marry and have children and would probably be awesome spouses and parents. Good, single people who—if they wonder why they’re still single while they’re looking at people who don’t want to be—could question God and start to believe deep down inside that God just doesn’t care about the matters of their hearts.
So what do you do when you’re single, faithful and committed to God (though not perfect), contented as much as possible in your singleness but still experiencing bouts of anxiety over the future? What do you do when you can appreciate all the blessings that singleness brings, but at the end of the day, you really do want to be married?
Be honest with God about it. God already knows, but sometimes it helps you to voice your concerns to Him. The truth is that He does care very much about how you feel about your single status – whether you’re contented, contented with some misgivings or seriously disgruntled. He wants you to give Him everything you’ve got when you share how you feel. Even if you go off on a tangent, God can take it.
Be honest with yourself about it. If you’re generally happy in your singleness, be honest with yourself and admit that you’re having a bout with discontentment. Work through your feelings by acknowledging them and giving yourself permission to feel the way you feel. I have yet to meet someone who’s always happy about everything in their lives. So don’t think you’re lacking in faith or maturity in God just because you recognize the things in life that make you legitimately sad. Acknowledge, accept and work through your feelings.
Be honest with your accountability partner. The right accountability partner makes all the difference in the world. They strike the perfect balance between listening to you, being empathetic and giving you sound, godly counsel on how to move forward. And they pray for and with you. So if you don’t have a strong confidant in your close group of friends, find a competent counselor or spiritual leader you can talk to.
Whatever you do, don’t give up. True, you cannot know all that God has in store for you. But if you truly desire marriage, you shouldn’t just resign to being single the rest of your life either. Keep seeking God. Keep abiding in a life well-lived. Keep investing in your friends, family and local community. Keep dating. Keep stepping outside of your comfort zone. And don’t allow bouts or seasons of discouragement or discontentment to derail you from your path or keep you stuck. Remember always that God cares for you and is writing a beautiful life and love story for you.