He is one of my closest guy friends.
He and I go way, way back. He’s seen me wear many hats: the Christian, the Baylor student, the Tri Delta, the PR chick, the coach, the climber, the writer. He’s really an incredible person.
But he met this woman. And he thinks maybeee he’ll marry her one day. Originally, I accused her of ruining my life. I said, “Dude. What about when we’re 40? Who am I supposed to marry then?”
He reminded me it was only a backup plan. I haven’t picked a new backup husband since.
On Wednesday night, my gal pals and I shared Torchy’s chips and queso and delved into this deep conversation on what marriage is, what it looks like, how to wait, and how to give and receive love. It was this raw, honest, convicting conversation.
“Marriage is a gift, not a given.”
Oof. My friend Sarah delivered the truth.
Here’s the thing about marriage: it is absolutely beautiful. God uses marriage as a model of how Christ loves the Church, to show us how He pursues His children, to give us an idea of how unconditional and irreplaceable His love is.
Here’s the thing about marriage: not everyone gets married. I can think of a handful of wonderful, godly women well over 30-years-old who are still single. Some chose it. Some didn’t. Each has an exquisite, intimate relationship with The Lord, and have positively impacted my faith.
“Singleness is a gift just as much as marriage is.”
Yours truly threw this one out on the literal Torchy’s table. I meant every single word.
I’ve never exclusively dated. I’ve been on dates and had those childish summer flings. But I’ve never been in a fully committed relationship.
It used to hurt me a lot. I had this longing to understand how to love and be loved in a romantic way. I felt like I wasn’t good enough to date, like I was unworthy.
Then, it didn’t hurt at all. In fact, what I once considered a shameful weakeness became my greatest strength. It took me about half of college. It took years of prayer and patience.
Every minute of my life is used to follow Jesus and to love God’s children. I am completely accessible to women who mentor me, and to younger friends who I mentor. My flexible schedule and availability to drop-everything-and-run to my friends who hurt are undeniable advantages of singleness.
Benefits of singleness include: I rarely have to shave my legs, I have awesome cuddle seshes with my dog, and I don’t have to share my meal with anyone.
Actual advantages include: free weekends to serve, an undivided attention to seek God first, an availability to dive deep into friendships with other singles (and marrieds, of course).
We are not defined by our relationship status.
We are defined by The Lord, by the incredible lengths He undergoes so we can merely grasp His love for us. We are defined by Christ on the cross, bleeding out for all of God’s children, just so we can call Him “Abba.”
We are qualified by who we are: we are chosen, we are humbled, we are loved. We are qualified by whose we are: The Lord our King. That is all that matters. That is who we are.