"Resting in His Time"
I stepped into her new little home. It was small, but cozy. There were old family pictures on the wall and blankets folded up in a chest. She pointed out what once used to be her grandmother's and that was now passed down for her own household. It was sweet. Here she was, newly married, pregnant, and getting ready to set out on an adventure of a lifetime. And in a small way, I envied her. I've always dreamed of doing some of those same things. Getting married, setting up your own little 'home', having babies, and starting off on the adventures of life along side your best friend. It was almost a melancholy feeling, even though I was really happy for my friend.
Timing is something I've been pondering lately. It seems like God rarely ever does things how we expect Him to, if ever. Even things we feel like He's told us about. His timing certainly isn't ours and when the Bible says "His ways are past finding out" (Romans 11), He really meant it. And honestly, that's probably a very good thing. God gives us grace for the 'here and now', and not our tomorrows. If you could peak ahead and glance at what your life would be like in 5 years...would you? I would be tempted to. I'm a naturally curious person. But I know that I'd regret it if I had. Here I would have seen some things, possibly even really hard things, and I would have forfeited my 5 years of His grace in preparing me for that future time. Now that might seem rather silly to some. Obviously, you CAN'T see into your future, whether you would choose to or not. But, I think some girls are in danger of doing this in their hearts and even their imaginations. They 'dream up' what their futures will be. They have expectations. And when these expectations aren't met, they fall into despair. Sometimes we even hold expectations as to timing. I wouldn't have thought I'd be almost 23 and still single. My mom was married rather young and so were some of my sisters. It was just kind of an 'expected'. But, here I am regardless. And I'm thankful. God hasn't failed me, because I'm still unmarried. And God would still not have failed me even if I NEVER got married. Why? Because my life is to be "hid with Christ in God". I belong to Him. I was created for His purpose above any other. He has a reason for His timing, even though we can't see it for ourselves. And in a way, it really is thrilling. He has a beautiful purpose for my life...even right now at this moment... and it is a purpose for good. For His glory, for our sanctification, and for others' service. He obviously doesn't have a need for me to be married just yet, or else I would be, and that's okay. He knows exactly what He is doing and I can trust Him for it. He cares. I'm not forgotten in the shuffle.
As a single young woman, sometimes there are the "ups and downs" of being single. At least, there is for me. As much as maybe we'd even like to suppress it, we can't deny that as a woman, we were created to compliment a man. There is no way around it. It is a natural God given desire and calling. We were created to nurture. Whether that be children, our husbands, our families, brothers and sisters, our communities, our pets, a garden, or even plants! It's there. And sometimes, in being single, it can be a frustrating desire to deal with. It would be easier just to "throw in the towel" so to speak and say "who needs men! I'm getting an apartment and a dog!" But true peace and real purpose for my life lies in surrender. Laying down all our desires, natural, God given, or otherwise, and placing ourselves in His will for His divine purpose. Just as I wouldn't seek marriage to complete or fulfill my life, I also wouldn't swing in the other direction and embrace singleness to prove my independence. Embracing or denying a desire doesn't make it go away. It must be given over to God. He can deal with it. He can give us the grace and strength to be content and courageous women for Him right where He's placed us.
If you are still single, you can count on it, there is a divine reason for it. I'd like to encourage you to stay faithful to Him. He's doing something special. He's preparing your heart. He's writing your story. Marriage is only a step in the journey. It isn't the journey itself. So even in the ups and downs of being single, the happy times, the hard times. The times when it feels so easy, when you feel content and ready to serve Him alone. When your heart is soaring. And then the times too, when hope feels lost and desire seems forgotten. When your heart feels the squeeze of a hope deferred. Can we still trust Him? Yes. Can we rest in His timing for us? Yes. Knowing that He works "all things together for good". (Romans 8) Knowing that "all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist." (Colossians 1)