Like many young women, I started thinking about my wedding day around the time I decided that boys were interesting. As I grew older and remained single, I often heard people say that you find your spouse when you decide you want to be single. I made that mindset a personal challenge. Surely, it must have been the magic formula to convince God to allow me to get married. I made all sorts of arguments to myself in hopes of becoming convinced that I didn’t want to get married. However, the end goal of my ridiculous debates was to pave the way for me to find a husband. I recognized the flaw in my plan, so I just fought with myself about that too.
It was not healthy for me to always battle with myself to try to believe lies and to be someone I wasn’t. I believe there is a healthier approach that doesn’t involve attempting to reverse a desire that God placed within us. If I were to go back to the years I spent as a single woman who desired to get married, instead of trying to find some secret solution, I would first tell myself to just be honest about what I want. It’s counterproductive to lie to ourselves. Instead, I would say that I should live as though I may always be single. That wouldn’t mean that I shouldn’t want to get married or that I should avoid going on dates. However, I should accept the possibility that I may live the rest of my life as a single woman.
I actually started to live this way late in my single years. For example, after finishing my master’s degree, I debated between finding an apartment and buying a house. I was hesitant to buy a house because I felt I should wait until I was married. However, I knew that I wanted a house where I could have a quieter environment. I also wanted a fenced in yard so that I could eventually adopt a rescue dog.
I eventually realized that God never promised me a husband. He gave me the desire for marriage, but He never said that I should expect a spouse. I decided to go ahead and buy a house with a yard even though I wasn’t even dating anyone. I planned for finances as if I would be responsible for payments on my own. I found that I was much happier when I planned my life around my needs as a single woman while recognizing, but not necessarily expecting, the possibility of eventually getting married. I didn’t tell myself that I didn’t want to get married, nor did I avoid situations where I might meet someone. However, I stopped living as though I was waiting for my life to start when I had my own family. I began trying to live the life God called me to in that moment rather than hoping everything would come together once I had a husband. I found that I was much happier and gained new confidence because I wasn’t waiting for the crutch of a spouse to help me with my next life steps.
My current husband came back into my life after I started living this way, but it wasn’t the very next day. It took some time for us to start dating again, and it took even more time for us to get married. There was no perfect formula that would align my life so that God would give me a husband.
If I were to go back, I would tell myself to focus on what God calls me to do in the moment and to never postpone His current calling until I get married when He has not brought a spouse into my life. I would tell myself not to play mind games with myself in hopes of feeling the right way as if I had the ability to manipulate God’s plan through my emotions. I wasted so many years’ worth of emotional energy hoping for an event that I didn’t even know would come. We don’t know what God has in store for us. We only know where God has us now, and we can only choose to follow Him in our current situation.