I called my Dad in the weekend and told him that I got divorced this past week. His immediate response was “so you’re single now?!” Echoing the response of a few people I had bumped into during the week. A reality I probably stepped into mentally a long time before I did legally. However…Not long after I separated, someone asked me “so does that mean you’re single now?” And I was like “um, no. Not quite on the market yet.” And I guess it’s not about being on a market – although sometimes I wonder if websites like “Plenty of Fish” could be compared to the single “market” of modern times.
Single to me is my about being free to allow God to join you together with someone who’s going to compliment and partner with you for life. That somebody may just be Him.
God gave me a clear vision at the beginning of 2016 and it correlated with the first few verses in Isaiah 54. What that chapter carried on to say totally resonated with my story and where I was at that moment in time:
5 For your Maker is your husband—
the Lord Almighty is his name—
the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer;
he is called the God of all the earth.
6 The Lord will call you back
as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit—
a wife who married young,
only to be rejected,” says your God.
Recently I’ve been wondering if single people often stay that way because they don’t want to limit their options to one. I’ve hung around and counselled many single people since I posted about “Sex after divorce” and now I have to put it into practice. To be honest, I’d be happy staying single forever. As a single mum I have a lot to consider when it comes to dating and remarriage. I wish I didn’t want company. I wish I didn’t long for more. But God put that within our hearts. He, Himself saw Adam in the Garden and said in Genesis 2:18, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”
A couple of weeks ago in church we heard about how we don’t need to just have a vision, but we need to have a GOOD VISION. The speaker talked about how people in prison had a vision to get out of prison. This inevitably meant that they reentered prison so they could get out again. If your whole vision is about getting out of something then you’ll have to continually have to get yourself back in. Maybe that’s why we struggle with keeping weight off after we lose it- because our goal is to lose weight when it should be to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
It also made me think about getting out of being single. What’s our goal for finding a wife or husband? Is it to find someone to get you out of being single or to find someone who “ticks all your boxes”? Is it to have someone to keep you company and be rid of that nagging sense of loneliness? If that’s your vision and you’ve set yourself up for a certain type of person or lifestyle (ie. to fit into the “couple mould” or “happy family” dream) only to have them change and grow and not fit a mould anymore or circumstances shift- then what? Do we go out looking again for “that” person and not ever find lasting fulfilment??
I think there’s a better goal than “finding a husband”, ladies. Or a wife, Men. What about if we made the good vision, to be a good husband or wife: to become complete and whole in who we are as a single individual so that WE are going to be a blessing and not a burden to the one that God wants to align us with.
We can take our singleness and use it to actually work on ourselves so that we would be the right person to be in a healthy relationship with another! To be as confident in our own ability to do life and love as we would want a potential partner-for-life to be for us.
For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you. Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
In this season between separation and divorce, I have experienced a greater sense of the Father’s love for me and my children. He’s the kind of Father that says “I’ve got this sweetie. You don’t have to worry about it.” He’s perfect in all of His ways. He’s so much more concerned with our character than our comfort and as He puts us in uncomfortable situations, He shapes us and moulds us, preparing us for all that He wants to give us.
God is into capacity building. He has ALWAYS built capacity for a thing before He makes the thing. He did it in Creation. He spent the whole Old Testament (spanning 5000 years) preparing the Israelites to receive their Messiah so that they had enough illustrations and prophesies to know that He was the One. Yet they still denied Him. Why would He not spend time then preparing our lives in the short time we have on earth? We can get to a place and deny that God is even interested in that aspect of our life but He is SO interested. He died for relationship. It’s a big deal.
So let’s get a good vision while we’re being prepared. Be open to what God wants to chip off and knock around. He’s only setting you up for a better future. Use your time now to do what God can only do with you while you’re single! It’s a blessing to have more space in your life that you can devote to building the Kingdom purposes of God. As Paul encouraged the church in Corinth:
“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. I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 7:32-35 NIV