September 05, 2012

Singles, Rise!

Tomorrow is my brother's birthday.  He's in his late twenties but will always be my "baby" brother. :)  If I close my eyes I can still see him as a little boy with big dark eyes, a bright smile, and a contagious laugh.  I love him tons!

I know there's a lot I could give him for his birthday but the one thing he really wants, someone to spend the rest of his life with, that I can't find.  And I understand his pain because I too am still single.  No longer being in my twenties I feel the reality of being single more heavily now than before.

And its not for a lack of trying on either of our parts.  There just never seems to be the right person.  And every single has to wrestle at some point with whether-or-not they will allow their singleness to define them.  God has been showing me that my status of married or single is just a state of being.  It should not dictate my relationship with Him or my self worth as a unique individual.

Its hard for me sometimes to encourage my brother when he asks the tough questions because I still ask them too from time-to-time.  But there is also a kind of bitter sweetness in being able to comfort someone when you are suffering in the exact same way.

Who doesn't dream of meeting the one person who will always be faithful to you and love you even when you are moody or ill or just having an off day?  Who doesn't want someone they can build treasured memories and share life experiences with?  We all want that!  There is nothing wrong with desiring a spouse.

But it is wrong to become bitter, critical, cynical, and desperate.  And that last one, becoming desperate, seems to be the biggest hurdle for most single women past their twenties.  I can't tell you how many of my single friends are starting to turn some deep color of desperate.  And it makes me very sad because they're missing out on the joys and blessings of their current years.  They don't see how beautiful they are even without a mate.

I would think that being desperate would be a major turnoff for most guys anyhow.  Who wants to be married to someone who looks to you for their total happiness and fulfillment in life?  What happens when that person fails?  Because they will.  They're human and so they are fallible... just like I or you would be.

 I know there are a lot of books out there in the world that say men are not doing their part to take the lead in relationships.  And some of that is true.  A growing number of men prefer to remain single and just sleep around while they continue with their corporate ladder climbs and X-box gaming.  Committing to one woman when they can get it all for free from desperate women is so much easier.

But I think women are a big part of the problem too.  They believe the lie that if they let the man they want have everything they want first, like a test drive, then he'll love them forever.  That's simply not logical.  That's not how a man's brain works.  And women don't seem to realize what a powerful effect their actions have on men.  The way a woman chooses to dress, the words she chooses to use, and the activities she gets involved in all paint an accurate picture of who she really is no matter what she says she is.

It seems to be an unspoken belief that if you just compromise enough, if you just settle for him/her, if you just try harder then it will all work out.  But what does society tell the growing number of singles who find out the hard way that these things don't work?

What do I tell my baby brother?

I tell him that life is short.  I tell him that ultimately we will lose everyone we love unless Christ returns first.  I remind him that its more important to continue staying close to God because then we remain focused on improving our own attitudes and character.  And if it is God's will that we should marry one day then it will happen as a natural progression of trusting in God and His timing.

I think that the type of person we all want for a spouse is someone who is mature, responsible, and faithful.  And those things can only be found in people who learn to love sacrificially.  They are not looking at life for what it can give them but what they can give to life. 

The ideal spouse is someone who isn't desperate but steady and confident in who they are.  They don't spend their days, months, years waiting for Mr./Mrs. right.  They are working on themselves to become a better person, cultivate better habits, and becoming an all around more interesting person to know.

That is attractive.  It is also inspiring.  And its not impossible.  All these things happen when we read our Bibles everyday.  They happen when we pray to God and tell Him our worries and desires.  I can't give my brother a spouse but I point him to the one who can.  I don't understand why neither of us have found the right person yet but God knows.  And I believe that He isn't finished with my brother or I yet.  There's so much to do in life!  And personally, I am willing to be whatever God wants me to be.  So if marriage and kids are in my future... awesome.  But if they are not... God is my strength.

Everything will be alright.  God has not forgotten the singles.  We have a unique opportunity to become amazing leaders in all walks of life and to show the world exactly what God can do in just one life!  So if you are single... stand up!  Be everything you can be today and stop putting your life on hold for someone to stand with you.  God is your strength and with Him on your side there is no limit to what you can do.

Blessings to you and happy birthday baby brother!!

Dear Lord, thank you for the life of my brother.  
Thank you for letting me speak truth into his life.
Help him and I to remain faithful to you no matter how long we live.
Help us on the days when loneliness seems to hurt more severely.
Show us how to use our single status to go as far as we can and please keep molding our attitudes.
Thank you for all you are doing and all you will do through our lives.
In the name of Jesus Christ, our hero, savior, and role-model, Amen.
~ Sincerity


Denise said...

I hope your brother has a day filled with many blessings.

joy said...

A very sincere post. I like your attitude and I agree with you. I believe, the best is yet to come. yOu are on the right path:) God bless you both!

Brenda said...

Your name fits you perfectly, at least I think your name may be that of your blog name.
As I was reading your post I increasingly thought of how God has all things work togetherfor good and how, if you had not been single at this particular moment in time, you would not be in a position to help not only your brother with your lovely encouragement, but also all who are in the same position and come to read this post. There is a time for everything and I firmly believe that God grants our heart's desire when it is a desire that is according to His will. I pray that both you and your brother will each be blessed with the lovely spouse that you both desire, thanks to our Lovely Father in Jesus name.
God bless you

Furry Bottoms said...

With this post, the purpose of your blog title becomes clearer.

I am single too. And I am OK with being that way. Most of the time. There are times when I wonder why nobody will give me a second look... and that's my battle. Otherwise I am perfectly OK.


Denise: Thanks! I is having a great day. :)

Joy: Yes, the best is yet to come. I'm reminded of the wedding Jesus attended and when the wine ran out, he turned water into wine. And the water he transformed at the end was even better than the wine offered throughout the festivities earlier.
He gave the best last! I believe that is what he does for us in life too.:)


Brenda: Thank you for your prayers! They are appreciated. All things work together for our good. Romans 8:28 has been a verse that I have drawn encouragement from since I was a child.

I love how God's promises infuse themselves into our hearts and minds when we allow them to impact our lives. :)

Furry Bottoms: I completely understand what you're saying. Some days are simply easier than others.

I've started to think of the times that I have bouts of loneliness like an annoying headache or cramps of some kind.

Eventually they pass. I just keep drawing endurance from God during the pain. Keep close to Him and you will have victory. Blessings to you.

T-Childs said...

This is a particularly good and thoughtful post. I am single too and can tell you that I have met many women, in pubs and nightclubs usually, that were not nice in any way to me, even though I was polite to them. I got so fed up with this that I stopped trying; bad luck or just my destiny, who can say? It's certain that there are good and sweet people out there, but sometimes you can look too hard, and that does come off as desperate and no one likes that.

Being single is like a lot of things; like having few friends, or being unemployed, or having no seeming purpose in life, and so on. Being a Christian means that we are always progressing even though sometimes it seems we are standing still; God is always working behind the scenes though!

Do not despair, and see every day as a blessing!


T-Childs: I'm sorry you had bad experiences with women. Although, from the women I know in my city, if they're at a bar or nightclub they're usually thinking only of themselves.

Perhaps one day God will restore your desire to seek out a wife. And if that happens I can promise you she will not be in a bar or nightclub. :)

The advice my parents have given me is to keep living for the Lord. And as you find ways to help others He brings the right people together.

And you're right, being single is like a lot of things in life. But God knows its tough and wants us to cling to Him.

Thank you for your kind words of encouragement.

Mara said...

I got married 2 months shy of my 37th birthday. Until that time, it was very difficult for me, as all my friends were getting married in their 20's and having families, while I was living alone. Yet, now I am happily married, but currently have not been blessed with the gift of children because of a late marriage. So, most everyone I know is a mother except me. So, I am "alone" again.

It just seems like in this life, sometimes you are alone and at other times you are with others. I suppose this is why God tells us to be content with where He has planted us. This is not always easy, as we're always trying to compare ourselves with other people's lives.

At any rate, just thought I would share. :)


Mara: Thank you for visiting. Wow! How neat that God answered your prayers for a spouse! And if it is God's will you will soon have children too. Don't let your age worry you.

It is hard not to compare ourselves to others. Singleness is a gift that most of us don't want. But God doesn't with hold any good thing from His children without a very good reason.

Perhaps He is preparing you for a full house of children! You never know!

God bless you and your husband and thank you for your encouragement. :)