Playing It Tough
The other day, I received the following message from one of my followers on Twitter:
Hi Yvonne, I wanted to thank you for your post last week. I had been ‘playing it tough’. Acting as though I’m good with being single, even forever if that’s the Lord’s will. But I hadn’t admitted to God that I was indeed feeling, not just alone, but lonely believing I may not be afforded the experiences of love that I see around me etc. Anyway, what your post did was allowed me to admit to God that I’m not as sold on the idea of ‘forever-singleness’ and that I do feel lonely deep down inside. But what I’ve also been doing is asking Him to show me where/how specifically to create an amazing life for myself. And truly practice delighting myself in Him. Thanks for being steadfast and unmovable and allowing God to use you. God Bless!
Take Off The Mask
It takes courage, to be honest. It takes courage to take off the mask. I applaud you for your honesty. Messages like this warm my heart and confirm I am on the right track of ministry. Just when you’re wondering if your words are making an impact, God shows up.
Is It A Feeling?
After reading her message, I received a newsletter from Boundless; a collection of unique voices addressing the issues young adults care about right now; everything from dating and faith to current events. My eyes landed on an article titled, Contentment in Singleness – Is It A Feeling?
Happiness And Satisfaction
Let’s start out by defining the word contentment. One dictionary defines contentment as a state of happiness and satisfaction. Another dictionary defines it as the state of being mentally or emotionally satisfied with things as they are. Synonyms for the word contentment are fulfillment, cheerfulness, pleasure, gratification, peace, serenity and tranquility.
Aura Of Contentment
Here’s some of what the writer shared in the piece over at Boundless; when speaking about being single and lonely, she says, “As a single person, I’ve been caught up in a vicious cycle of negative feelings associated with singleness. It starts with loneliness. Then there’s guilt for feeling lonely because I have many things to be thankful for and I should be able to focus on those. Then there’s shame for not being a “good enough” Christian and struggling with these unhappy emotions in the first place (isn’t there supposed to be some “aura of contentment” that people keep insisting singles are supposed to achieve before they get married?). Then loneliness circles back around again because I have nobody to share my struggles with on an intimate level.”
She continued; “For some reason, this idea that “as soon as you stop looking, as soon as you feel happy where you are—that’s when you’ll find the person who’s right for you” has been ingrained in my generation’s church culture. I think this is a damaging idea to spread, because lots of people who haven’t had their lives together, who aren’t completely content, have found spouses. Complete satisfaction in life is not a requirement for married people, so it shouldn’t be a requirement for singles either.”
Jumping For Joy
I agree 100% with the author when she says, “Complete satisfaction in life is not a prerequisite for married people.” Here’s my question, why is it for singles? Why does a single person need to have it all together and be in a constant state of contentment to be qualified as a “good” single person? Feelings of loneliness are not solely relegated to singles. People of all walks of life feel unhappy emotions. Being content doesn’t mean jumping for joy at every turn.
Feel Your Feelings
We’re humans, not robots. We have feelings. So here’s what I say to my Twitter follower and to you, if this is your story, I say, feel your feelings, all of them, just don’t wallow in them and have an all-out pity party with invites and snacks.
Get It All Together
Just because you feel lonely deep down inside, doesn’t mean something is wrong with you. It doesn’t mean you’re not a good enough Christian and it certainly doesn’t mean you’re not suitable for a romantic relationship. It doesn’t mean you now have to go and get it all together if you want love to find you.
Total State Of Bliss
I think that’s where many Christian singles get it wrong. Many of us have been led to believe that if we desire marriage; we must be fully content and totally in love with being single before it can happen for us. P.S. No one is ever fully content and total happy 24/7 not even the “best” Christian single woman on her best day.
Something to think about…
What say you? Why is complete satisfaction in life an expectation for single people and not others? How do you define being content? Were you fully content when you met your spouse?
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