Hope in Singleness

6b229a944b055296a5af87f06929849bMy good friend Jeff Cherry wrote a blog today about singleness. If you find yourself in this season of singleness, check it out here: The Purpose of Singleness. Thank you Jeff for your heart, wisdom and pointing it all back to Jesus.

Although many people would say that I wasn’t single very long considering I got married at 25, I remember vividly being in that season and having it seem like f.o.r.e.v.e.r.

“When Lord? When will I get asked out? When will a guy like me? When will I have my chance at love? When will I meet my husband?”

I wish I could say that I walked through the season of singleness with a heart full of hope, bursting with thankfulness to God and embracing every moment for His sake. Some seasons, yes. Some seasons I loved being single. Some seasons I was totally content and satisfied with it just being Jesus and me.

But often, I fought to be content. I fought to be thankful. I wondered why. I wondered when. I was bitter. I was fearful—Has God forgotten me? Does he see me?

And through a heart breaking summer, I found that yes, He sees me. Yes, He knows my very heart, my every longing and desire and hope. He did not forget me. And He has not forgotten you beloved. He is for your joy. He is for your good and His glory. God is always at work in our lives—we may not know how, we may not understand—but we must believe.

“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Is. 55:9

God is for you. If you are in a season of singleness right now, know—believe—trust that God has you there because it’s for your best. It wouldn’t be best for you right now to be with someone. As Jeff Cherry said, maybe He’s refining you and purging you of a sin that needs to be dealt with before you bring someone into your world. Maybe it’s because He wants you to truly trust Him and build a solid foundation with Him first. Maybe it’s because He is using you in a mighty way that couldn’t be done if you were married right now….

I see all 3 of those while I was single. There was a lot of pruning to be done in my life for sure! One big one being that I needed to be healed and restored in how I viewed myself. I had an eating disorder for many years because I wanted to be in control and fell into the lie that I had to be skinny to be beautiful. No. God wanted to purge me of that and bring me into wholeness; to see that I am created in His image and therefore need to be a good steward of how I take care of my body. To know that I am beautiful because He created me, because He died for me—He gives me worth, not a boyfriend or husband. The Lord brought me through the valley and mountaintops of waiting well on Him—of truly trusting Him with His choice for me. Did I really believe in His Fatherly care for me? In His mighty power? In His ability and wisdom? And I was able to do awesome things that I can’t now as a married woman: College. Studying abroad in Israel. Traveling through Europe. Mission trip to South Africa. Intern in Maui. Living with awesome girls. Late night ice cream runs. Sleepovers in the living room.

According to statics, most likely you will get married.

But more importantly, take HOPE that God knows your heart.

He sees you.

He is for you.

Run into His arms and nestle yourself right into His chest. Think of your life as a ball of yarn. Pull out just a few inches…that’s your single season. Short. Oh so short compared to the rest. You can wait. In Him. And beloved, remember that our yarn goes to eternity. Our lives here on earth are very short. Soon, we will be with the Lover of our Souls, our Husband in Heaven, scarfing down food at the wedding feast. Soon we will be with our True Love. The One who pursued us, proposed to us on the cross and has given us His Holy Spirit as our engagement ring. He’s coming back. We don’t know when. But He is coming to get us. On a white horse, no less!

Take hope. He is for you. Wait well beloved.

 

Do you find it hard to wait while single? What helps you wait well?

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65 comments

  1. Do you find it hard to wait while single? What helps you wait well?

    I’ve been in the Lord for almost 3 years now. Because my past was full of men that never knew how to give or show me the love I wanted; I learned God’s love. His love is the love I always searched for. I enjoy being single right now because I get to know who I am in Him. God knows I want a husband and a family, but I surrendered it all to Him. He knows exactly what I need right now. Right now I could say no I don’t find it hard to wait, because I know He’s doing a great work in me. What helps me wait I guess is, surrounding myself with female friends, sometimes I see other relationships that can either remind me from something in the past or like a worldliness and it reminds me to wait, to not settle for just anyone, to not run wild with my own desires because they aren’t my own and I just want to be obedient to the Lord.

  2. Yeah. Sometimes it’s hard. But I’ve realized that, being single right now, at this very second, has brought me closer to God. I’m learning so much how to be single. I’m learning to have comfort in myself. and most importantly, having comfort in the Lord. My father has taught me that, we need to ask ourselves why we crave the attention of men so much? why do we need a boyfriend especially at such a young age? (I’m 19!) and I’ve realized that, because I feel lonely, or that I dont have someone to talk to. Now I’m learning that I am not alone, and that the Lord is always with me, and He is always there to listen. So honestly, I’m not exactly “single” per say, i am in a relationship, just a relationship with God. Thank you for your blog posts! They do give me such inspiration and motivation. <3

  3. thanks Alyssa

  4. Thank you so much for this post, Alyssa! I needed that reminder! :]

  5. I’m only eighteen years old, in College, but I am already struggling with singleness! For so many years I didn’t know why I was craving for love and for a husband.
    But now I know that I need to be completly satisfied in Jesus and God’s word, so that I can be ready for marriage & the kingdom according to God’s perfect timing.

    I got baptised two years ago: the greatest moment of my entire life, but I still struggling with myself because sometimes, I don’t trust the Lord enough. I guess God is still working on me. He is mighty to save and He does not forsake His children.

    I hope you are having an amazing time with your husband and that soon, you will have a beautiful baby together 😀 !

  6. Wow. I just found your blog and read through a couple posts. So good. Thank you for speaking truth into my life.

  7. So, so encouraging. Thank you Alyssa!

  8. One of my friends follows your blog and sent this along. It was so encouraging. It helped me see that God is working to shed me of sin before giving me the desires of my heart. I don’t know you, but I really appreciated this word! Great writing!

    1. Thanks Kelly. And it just hit me…perhaps right now He is giving you the desires of your heart. Not in a husband yet, but in drawing you to Himself and showing you first and foremost His undying love for you. I think so many of us want to get married to be loved and wanted…and you are! Completely. Wholly. Fully.

  9. I always end up reading your posts right when I need it. Thank you so much for taking the time!

  10. Thank you for sharing this post. I know having been engaged at 18 I thought that I knew God’s will for me and I had found my perfect husband. Clearly it was my plan and not God’s because as I sit here today I am single and the man I was going to marry is actually married. Being single is when you learn most about yourself and more importantly your relationship with God strengthens. Being single isn’t always the most ideal situation; however, don’t rush into something that isn’t meant to be just so you are not alone.

    1. yes Alanna! As Jeff says, it’s better to be single and lonely than married and miserable. Keep waiting well girl!

  11. I was very blessed by this! Thank you for sharing your heart! The Lord used you to bring me the confirmation that I’ve been desperately seeking. The Lord has brought a great man into my life, someone who I’ve been praying about for years. But every time I think about stepping forward in that relationship, I’m held back by the fact that this is not the right season. I really feel like the Lord has a billion things for me to do in my singleness and now is the time to focus on them. Thank you for unknowingly encouraging me to walk in that truth!

    1. THIS is too funny my friend lol I’m in the exact spot your in hun! On top of that, my name is also Amanda! (I have to confess, thats why I looked at your comment lol) hope all is well in your soul. Stay encouraged as will I 🙂

  12. Thanks Alyssa!
    I have always struggled with singleness until this year I have made the decision to stay single and focus on God for 2013. Many people have told me over and over to wait on God’s timing but i had to figure it out on my own. This really helps in encourage me to push forward more. Thank you! God Bless you and Jefferson!

  13. This is beautiful. Honestly, your life is an inspiration to me! You have made me realize, with the ball of yarn analogy, that this time of singleness is so short compared to the married life! I should take my time and enjoy the safe pastures that I find myself in now. 🙂 Something that helps me is to know that God sees the desires of my heart and He’s forming my husband right now as He is forming me. And one day He will send him my way whenever I am truly ready and have given God every area of my life. You’re amazing, girl! 😀

  14. Thank for this encouraging reminder! Sometimes it´s hard to believe that God is taking care of everything… but He always is 🙂

  15. I am a single mom of an 19 year old boy. When my son was 5 years old I found myself in an extremely dangerous relationship which thankfully God delivered me from. At that moment I chose to raise a man instead of chase a man and have remained single ever since. These past 14 years have been filled with ups and downs of singleness, but Iook at the man my son has become and the men and women God has placed in his pathway and I do not regret a thing. Now that he is off to college I can honestly say that I am ready to start dating, but if you could all pray for the poor guy God sends my way because he is going to have his hands full with this extremely independent lady. 🙂 Happy Valentines everyone!

    1. Wow. thanks for sharing Tammy. I pray that the Lord blesses you with a very tender and tough man who can cherish you and show you His love. Thank you for loving your son and raising him up to be a great man I’m sure!

  16. This was exactly what i needed to hear today. I’m only 18 but I have never been in a real relationship, and some days it so hard to understand why God lets me wait. I think that the things you wrote will help me in many ways. Thank you!

    Bless

  17. What helps keep me going is knowing that I am not ready for a husband or a long term commitment. I know that I’ve got to keep working on loving myself and viewing myself as God sees me. I’ve got to keep cutting out the sin in my life and the people that pull me into it. I’ve got to keep up my daily devotion to God and grow closer to him and the people I fellowship with at church. After these things are done, I’m sure God will open the door to a man of God that was created for me. Until then, I trust that He will help me become the best wife I can be with His strength.

  18. Although I am not single I loved this!! It can be applied to all the seasons of our lives. Thanks for your encouraging words and your beautiful heart. May God continue to use you and your husband. Y’all have both been a blessing to me and my family.

  19. Thank you for this! Needed some support today =)

  20. Hi Alyssa,

    Beautiful words. Thanks.

  21. Wow. This is something I have been struggling with for awhile actually. At 27, and being the only one of my friends not married is increasingly difficult. And honestly there are days I get frustrated and angry because I don’t understand His plan. But I KNOW He has one for me and that His timing is nothing but perfect. This is not the first time this has been brought to my attention in recent months and I am learning and realizing He is teaching me and molding me…and that is not always easy. I definitely needed to hear this today. Thank you for allowing God to use you and speak through you.

    1. Thank you for sharing Jason. I love your heart and openness. It is so hard–but how beautiful and precious that God is working in you through this. THIS is His best for you. He is drawing you near to Himself and molding you to be more like Him. And perhaps giving you a glimpse into how He feels about waiting to come back for us. Press into Him. He is for you. He is working in you. Blessings Jason!

  22. Thanks for your wisdom!

    Even though statistics show that a majority of people are likely to get married, we have to understand that there is no promise of marriage for any one of us. It is not one of God’s promises; if we expect it and God does not give that to us, we are setting ourselves up to be resentful against Him.

    He does, however, show us that we can be complete and fulfilled in His word alone by looking at how Jesus lived completely fulfilled in the word of his Father. I need to learn more of that, haha, and if someday God calls me to be a husband for my wife I will be better equipped to understand the relationship between Jesus and how he loves His bride the church.

    Blessings Alyssa and thanks again for your encouragement!

    1. Thank you Julio! Great truth.

  23. 🙂 A thumbs up to this post!

    I’m 19 and i never had a boyfriend before but i still appreciate the fact that i’m single up to this time. I know God has a plan everything will work out in his perfect timing.

    God bless you and Jeff~ :DD

  24. “Soon we will be with our True Love. The One who pursued us, proposed to us on the cross and has given us His Holy Spirit as our engagement ring. He’s coming back. We don’t know when. But He is coming to get us. On a white horse, no less!” BEAUTIFUL! gave me chills!
    Thank you for this beautiful post!

    About the question…
    For me…writing helps me to wait well.
    My friends, stories, traveling, music, serving & helping others…
    Whenever I get too impatient, whenever I feel like I want/need to be love (romantically) I let myself be in love with everything… God’s creations!
    I fall in love with music, with the ocean, with art…& with God’s higher masterpiece…I just stop to admire people around me: family, friends, classmates, even strangers…how beautifully & splendidly were all of us created. I stop focusing on this guy I haven’t met & start feeling LOVE. The Passion of just being alive & breathing & most important : Loved by the Creator of the Universe. (everything else just looks dull and little after seeing the world from that perspective)

    1. Thanks for sharing girl!

  25. Alyssa, I LOVE the term “waiting well.” The idea of doing something well is the key qualifier for many. It’s one thing to wait, it’s another to wait well.
    In seasons where I want my timing instead of God’s, God has a way of reminding me (usually through other believers) of the million other small ways God has proven His sovereignty over mine: my idea of a career, my ideal age for dating, my idea of a good boyfriend, summer jobs that seemed pointless, my plan for after college, and my motives for learning new skills.
    If my life right now actually consisted of even half the things I thought I wanted 5 years ago, I would be miserable. Promise. I couldn’t be a missionary in Manila, I wouldn’t want to be a worship leader, and I’d be so nieve about the reality of poverty it’s almost shameful.
    On the days I pine for the future, I look at what a mess my past could’ve made of my “today” and suddenly my perspective changes. I am thankful for today, a day I’ll never have back, meant to be lived fully for now because tomorrow’s coming soon.

    1. So awesome to read Jax! Thank you. One of my best friends prayed that for me through my season of singleness before Jeff–during times when it hurt to wait–it felt like I was trudging through mud and going so slow. Wait well dear one. He is at work in mighty ways as we wait!

  26. Thank you for these words of encouragement and allowing the Lord to speak His truth and love through you.

  27. Girrrllll, if I ever make it out to Washington (I’m a Georgia peach :), we seriously need to sit down and have lunch! I am 26 and have never really dated, not that I haven’t wanted to, it’s just like God hasn’t opened that door for some reason. Sometimes it’s really hard and I do feel like God has forgotten about me but then I am overwhelmingly blessed by the amazing opportunities He has given me to serve Him that I know I would not have had if I had been married. Thank you for sharing your heart in these posts! Most of the time I feel like you’ve read my journal and are addressing me personally. Thanks again and sorry for the long comment lol!

    1. So awesome Emilee! Yes! And if I come to the south we’ll sit and have some sweet tea 🙂 What a beautiful heart you have girl. Keep praying and laying your heart and desires at His feet. He hears you always and is working…promise.

  28. I loooove this post.!!! I find it very hard to sometimes. I pray about it everyday. I know their some things that I need to work before God can send my husband for me.

  29. This was such an inspiring post. I’m 20 years old and have never been with anyone and sometimes i wonder if it’s because there is something wrong with me. But other times I know its because god has someone intended just for me. There are times where i’m okay with it and times when i’m not. But I know i have to keep my hope alive because the lord only wants good things for me so that’s what keeps me calm in times of singleness. I’m satisfied in knowing that the longer I wait the better it will be.

    1. So sweet Karen! YES YES YES. Keep hoping beautiful! And run into His arms, and the hope and truth that He loved you first and loves you always!

  30. I do find it hard to wait at times. I go through my high moments in life, then low ones. However what does keep me going is just Hard-Work. I think as a christian our new heart DNA is to work and get through to mountain top in some way. Whether you get there without a limb, therefor its the same for singleness. I work hard every day of my life to be in Gods purpose so that one day when he hands me over I will be the ideal person for my husband. I mean we could all cheat out life but it benefits us not, so I find that just Patience, Prayer and Hard-work and busy schedule helps me go on some how. God provides the strength we lack in though moments and that’s the beauty of it all. Thank You for this article!

    1. Hi Darlene,
      Thanks for your reply! Awesome that you are busy at work for Him! Remember to rest in His presence too and delight in being with Him. And one thing I’m learning quickly is that neither of us is perfect! OH BUDDY! Marriage is simply another season that God uses to refine and sanctify us together. We’re always in the refining process- which is such a blessing! What a sweet promise that He is faithful to bring us to completion! Love ya lady!

  31. Let me start off by saying thank you for all that you and your husband do, you are two very inspirational people. This blog just reminded me that there is God out there that loves me unconditionallly. Although I may get lonely and feel like I’m going to be alone forever I often have to remind myself that I’m not ready for a relationship, if I do not completely love myself, how can I love another? I also have to remind myself that God is working in my life to prepare for when the time is right to be in a relationship. As people its natural for us to go search for love everywhere other than in God.That’s where the mistake is made, if we cannot understand Gods love we fully do not understand love at all, it becomes a word that has no value or meaning behind it.Love is choosing the greatest good for the other person even at great cost for yourself, like Jeff Cherry defined. I feel in love with this defintion of love because it’s so TRUE, God gave up his only son, for sinners, to SAVE us. If you ask me thats TRUE love!! You and Jeff are like the boost I needed to open my bible and study the word,it’s something that I’ve been needing to do and for that I thank you.

  32. Hi,

    Thanks for this post – so tender-hearted, spirit filled and an encouraging read. At 24, I have only really in the last year genuinely learned the secret of contentment, and realising that Jesus really is my everything.

    From having learned the hard way; from being a young girl uncomfortable in her own skin, envious, doubtful, and incredibly lonely, I would encourage all girls (and boys too!) who are struggling in their season of singleness to PRESS IN to Jesus. Don’t just read your bible, meditate on it… Learn scripture by heart. Contemplate verses. Pray. Surround yourself with like-minded friends, and people who can make you laugh until you cry. Use opportunities to serve wisely. Keep a prayer journal so you can look back at where God has worked in your life, and answered prayers. I promise you these things will not be futile.

    There is SO many blessings to be had in this life, whether single, dating or married. Not one status is better than the other. My prayer for all of you is that you will not just wait for a spouse, but live life and more than that ENJOY life in the mean time. Don’t ever think you have been sold short… The Lord loves you way more than that!!

    Thanks for this post Alyssa! Thank you for blessing so many people with your honesty and transparency 🙂

    Love from a sister in Christ in Scotland x

  33. When the Bible says “the steps of the righteous are ordered by God” if never else I totally believe that today. Been single all my life (23 years) and honestly it has been great. About to be 24 in July of this year and all of a sudden instead of focusing on God completely I find myself distracted by people telling me “this year God is going to bring your husband” which if that is true – glory be to God. However, the truth of the matter is that God has always been my husband and I have always been satisfied in Him so why now that the blessing is so close am I focusing on the blessing and not the blesser? This post really brought me back to basics. Whether I am single, dating, married… I always belong to Him and He is always my priority. The funny thing is I didn’t even know how occupied my mind has been with this thought of ‘I won’t be single anymore’ and just spending all of my time trying to figue out – when, where, how I will meet my future beau. When God says ‘He will make all things beautiful in His time’. The main thing is that people might have good intentions but you can’t let that dictate how you act. Always focus on God whether you meet you soul mate tomorrow or years from now. Love God for who He is and not for what is in His hands. Thanks for bringing me back to reality. Just as a caveat; it is not bad or a sin to think about dating or the person you might date but when it taking time that belongs to God then it is a problem. Thanks again Alyssa. You are such a wonderful women of God.

  34. Needed to see this today…
    Thank you Alyssa.
    My boyfriend of three years broke up with me three months ago… I’ve been struggling ever since with why he left and it breaks my heart even more than he is now talking to someone new and has not even tried to contact me. Almost feels like we never existed… We talked about so many serious things, even engagement rings, but now it seems as if he doesn’t even think of me. I have serious issues regarding weight and self-confidence. I try to see it in your light, that right now, God and I need to work on me. I need to learn to love myself before anyone else can. It still pains me with this past relationship. Hoping he will return. But I do know that I need to work on me right now. And then I thought maybe God isn’t bringing my ex back to me because I am not where I need to be, or maybe he isn’t bringing “Mr.Right” to me either because of the same issue. So thank you for this… still a struggle to have faith and believe but it is a timely effort that’s for sure! 🙂

    1. Hi Faith,
      Thank you so much for sharing. Girl, my heart breaks with you. I’m so sorry for your heartache and pain. Keep running to Jesus, and cry out for Him to hold you, heal you, and do His beautiful work in You. He is at work in You. He does all things for your good and His glory for those who love Him. Have hope girl! He is with you this very moment. Don’t worry about learning to love yourself- I think we all love ourselves too much! But rather, ask the Lord to show you how abundantly HE LOVES YOU. His love is steadfast, unconditional, gracious. He adores you and loves you far more than you could ever imagine. And He is faithful to work in and through you. Can you meet with an older woman to walk through this season with you? Someone who will pray for you, hold you and lead you to Him? That was a huge blessing in my life when I went through an awful breakup.
      Love you girl. Have hope!!! He is with you.

  35. This is cool 🙂 very uplifting….what I’d like to know is, what did you do in the year that you and Jeff broke up? Were you praying for him? Did you guys speak or communicate? Were you hoping that one day God would reunited you guys and get married? or did you just gradually forget about him?

  36. Dear Alyssa,

    Tonight I searched YouTube for Jeff’s videos, wanting to share them with my mom. I’d forgotten his name but did find them. I am delighted to see he has married since I first saw him speak! From reading a bit of your blog, I see he has chosen wisely. Your post encourages me, thank you! It’s true, pruning, a solid foundation, and fruit-bearing IS behind an unmarried person’s wait.

    I am 42 and continue to trust the LORD for a husband. I have observed many people over the years and had a few friendships, but never romantically dated anyone.

    My understanding of myself and the LORD has grown over the years and I see that all my needs are met. He seeks me, He leads and guides me. His word purifies my soul and spirit. I have good hope.

    Thank you for writing and sharing your heart, humbly and gently.

    May the LORD continue to bless your life and marriage!

    With love,
    Elise

    He performeth the thing that is appointed for me ~ Job 23;14

  37. Thanks for this post. I am 24 and I have never been in a relationship…I’ve had “flings” but those didn’t last more than 2 weeks each and I am grateful for that now. I used to struggle soooo much with being single…I hated it. i didn’t understand why God was keeping me single! It was hard. It doesn’t help also that our culture today glorifies relationships so much, that if you are single there really must be something wrong with you. But as I turned 24 towards the end of last year, I choose to take the year off and be single and be content about it. It’s not been easy, especially cause there is a guy I really like, but I am determined to stick it through. So far God has shown me that I can be and I am complete in him, that no man can fulfill me..no matter how hard I try to convince myself so. He has also helped me deal with my insecurities, my trust issues that would be a problem if I was in a relationship. Most of all he has taught me that it doesn’t matter whether or not a man is in Christ or not…all are flawed. We are flawed and our hope lies in only him. I desire to get married (I wish it would be soon), but I am now content with waiting on the Lord, and even as I wait I find out that there are so many things that I want to do for him that would be difficult if I was married…conundrum, I know. But I am loving what God is doing to me and through me in this season of singlehood. To him be all the glory.

  38. As you said, some seassons are really hard, but when you seek Jesus it’s easier to handle! Praying and hoping forever 🙂 Thx for sharing

  39. Alyssa,
    thank you so much for sharing this i have struggled with this a lot with all my friends that are all getting engaged then married and some are now starting their families while i yet still remain in my singleness season, i enjoy being since but at the same time i have my moments this is a huge blessing to me.
    Loves and Blessings to you 🙂

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