I can’t remember exactly where I was, or who I heard it from, but the words stuck to my heartbroken single-woman-soul like a nasty piece of gum on the sole of my Asics.
Wait on God’s timing. He has a man out there for you. But God waits to give you what you want because He has work to do in your heart. It is not until you are completely content with being single that He will grant you someone to be with.
There are nuggets of truth in there, and I’m sure whoever it was meant well, but this teaching is a dangerous one. The thought that God only grants a husband to those who are completely satisfied in Him, led me to believe that those who are married have figured out the secret to contentment in Christ. And single ladies? Well, God still has work to do on us; we are not yet marriage material.
If I am still single, God must have more to work on in me. I must not have surrendered enough of my life for God to grant me marriage.
This translates to so many other places in life.
If I am not rich, then God must not think I can handle all that money. If I can’t have kids, God must think I am not ready for kids, or that I will never be a good mother. If I lost my job, my health, or a loved-one God must be punishing me for something I did.
Lies. All lies.
For far too long, I spent my single days looking for the man who would enter the room and change my life forever. I woke up each day thinking it might just be the day my prince would come. I wasted precious energy hoping in husband instead of God’s best plan for me. When my hopes were dashed I looked inward; I tried to clean myself up, and attempted to please God with my actions and “sacrifice.”
God’s economy is not 1+2=3. He is not Santa Clause or a vending machine. He is an all-knowing, merciful, and faithful God who knows my every heartache and longing. He knows the difference between what I want and what I need. And most importantly, He knows how my life can give Him the most glory.
So, if you find yourself single (or poor, or barren, or fill-in-the-blank with whatever your heart yearns for most) and wondering, “Why, God?” you are asking the wrong question. Instead of wondering what we did wrong, or what we need to do more of to get God to give us what we want, we must learn to find our hope in God alone and ask, “How can I experience more of you, God?”
Only God’s presence will soothe the ache of lonely single nights, a barren womb, and loss of life. Only through being in the center of God’s plan for our lives do we experience the joy and satisfaction we are desperate for. Our hope must be in God alone. His plan. His glory. His loving, faithful character. Regardless of what is to come (or not.)
Where is your hope today? What does your heart yearn for more than anything? Are you believing the lie that you need to try harder, in order to earn the reward of a husband, a child, or a different position in life? Let’s chat in the comments.
Grace-clinger. Truth-speaker. Pastor's wife. Mommy of 3. As a Bible study writer, retreat speaker, and local women's ministry leader, Katie is passionate about equipping others to walk intimately with God for a lifetime. Katie currently serves as the Social Media Specialist and Community Manager for Flourish.me, a ministry of the North American Mission Board to ministry wives. Learn more about Katie on her website KatieOrr.me
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