Someday My Prince Will Come Part I
I Corinthians 7:29-31
“I do want to point out, friends, that time is of the essence. There is no time to waste, so don’t complicate your lives unnecessarily. Keep it simple–in marriage, grief, joy, whatever. Even in ordinary things–your daily routines of shopping, and so on. Deal as sparingly as possible with the things the world thrusts on you. This world as you see it is on its way out.”
This whole section of the book of I Corinthians gets taken out of context a lot. If you read chapter 7, you get the sense that Paul is anti-marriage. I’m not convinced that that is accurate. See, Paul was Pro-God. Anything that got in the way of a deeper relationship with God got put on Paul’s bad list.
As women (and particularly as single women), we often get hung up on the relationship issues that we have (or don’t have, as the case may be). We have such a keen yearning to love and be loved that it consumes our thoughts. Do not tell me that you haven’t met a guy for the first time and said, “Hey, he’s cute. Maybe he’s The One!” We’ve all done it!
Angela Payne in “Living Every Single Moment,” says, “We would be wise to realize that our years, our days, and our hours are a gift from God alone. Our times, our words, our conversations, our business activities, and all that we do are a gift from Him. With this truth engraved upon our hearts, we should cherish every breath and live each day with gratefulness. Each second of our lives is closer to that which is eternal. That is why we were given life in the first place. In essence, we are living to die.
“As single women, this is a wonderful time to evaluate the activities of our fleeting lives. We can live life exhausted and self-centered, or we can continually refresh ourselves in His present and seek to share His life with theirs. May our daily prayer be, ‘Teach us to number our days so that we might present to Thee a heart of wisdom, and that we might have wisdom in ordering the moments of our days.’ Then when we do make our final journey, we can say, ‘It is well with my soul,’ instead of, ‘Oh, I needed to pick up one more thing at the mall.'”
Singleness is not about finding Mr. Right. (As Rita Rudner says, “When I married Mr. Right, I didn’t realize his first name was Always”). Singleness is just another period of our lives when we need to draw closer to God. If God is first and foremost, the rest will come. (“Seek first God’s Kingdom and His righteousness…” sound familiar?) Sounds all well and good, right? But maybe your asking, “Jess, how do I do that? I try and try and try and I just seem to make myself feel guilty because I can’t seem to get past this big wall of singleness. So, how? How do I do this?”
Well, I’m glad you asked!
John Eldredge writes in “Journey of Desire,” “Henri Nouwen once asked Mother Teresa for spiritual direction. Spend one hour each day in adoration of your Lord, she said, and never do anything you know is wrong. Follow this, and you’ll be fine. Worship is the act of the abandoned heart adoring its God. It is the union that we crave. Few of us experience anything like this on a regular basis, let alone for an hour each day. But it is what we need. Desperately. Simply showing up on Sunday is not even close to worship. Neither does singing songs with religious content pass for worship. What counts is the posture of the soul involved, the open heart pouring forth is love toward God and communing with him. It is a question of desire.”
When we consciously choose to spend time with God, when we consciously choose to develop our relationship with Him, we choose life. We choose freedom from the bondage of our singleness. It’s not about being single. It’s about being in love with Jesus. We all want a marriage covenant someday, but we are already in a marriage covenant. We are the bride of Christ!
“When we stand before the Lord at the end of our lives, the question will not be, ‘Were you married?’ But rather, ‘What have you done with God’s gift of life to you?’ Every moment that He gives to you as a single woman (And perhaps one day as a married one) is to be lived for a purpose beyond yourself. Trust Him. Keep Him foremost in your heart. God will take the moments that make up our minutes, days, and hours and fill them with the fullness of His life. Be assured that as you are about Your Father’s business, He will be busy about all the things that concern you. I pray that you will hear Him say to you, ‘Let there be life in every breath, and may you live it freely and joyfully, every single moment.'” (Angela Payne, Every Single Moment)
Be concerned about your Father’s business. Just like Paul says, the time is short. The things of this earth are temporal, but the things of God’s Kingdom last forever. I know that it doesn’t feel like singleness is temporary. It feels like being single is a permanent thing (at least to those of us who seem to be perpetually REALLY single). And being single, living with that hope deferred, really does make the heart sick. It’s tough. But sometimes, living the Christian life is a matter of the will, not the heart.
So spend time daily with God. Even if you can’t do an hour, do 15 minutes. Just develop the relationship. Focus on God. “And all these things will be added unto you.”