Lately it has been hard to realize the blessing of being single. I know in my head that it is a blessing to be single at this time in my life but sometimes that message doesn’t quite reach my heart. When I really look at my life and the freedoms I have, I am not ready to give up some of that just to have a boyfriend. But then at the same time, I want that social constructed relationship. The relationship that is not focused on the right things but rather on worldly things. It is this battle between what I know to be true and what I feel to be true. It has become a battle of what is running my train.
What train? Well let me explain…
Basically, there are three “cars” to the train: fact, faith, and feeling. These three aspects are the basis for how Christians can have a better relationship with God. Many times the train of life is led by our feelings; we act based on how we feel in that situation. In reality, the train should not be run by the feeling cars, but rather by the fact car. The order of the train cars signify the importance of where we place our decisions. First we should consider the facts, then faith (or trust) and THEN we can factor in our emotions and feelings. When we lead by emotions, the train runs out of fuel and it is more difficult to get where we need to go. But when emotions follow, we can make well informed decisions.
Lately my train has been running with the feelings car in the front. I am running my life based on the feelings of being single; feelings that manifest in jealousy, self-deprecation and even anger. With the holidays around it has become a time where I am being surrounded by all of these cute/adorable things! And no I am not talking puppies….
There are cute couples on cute dates, cute reunions as people come home from college, people talking of gift ideas for their significant other. The snow has a romantic feel (perhaps made up by me) that though seemingly perfect for a walk, I lack the “right” companion to do so. There are cute Christmas romance movies. It’s everywhere!
It is in those moment that I lose sight of what I have; how blessed I am. It is in those moments that I feel the back of my train, my feelings, take over. I lose sight of the blessings that come with being single and the blessings that come with the holidays. I have my family, I have my friends (my many friends and sisters), I have no strings attached and so much more! But in one moment my mood can change, my energy shifts and I am caught up in that desire to have a relationship; the feelings crowd in…
If I am truly honest with myself, I get scared. Scared that I am going to be alone forever, that I will never find “the one”, and on the really bad days I am scared that I am unlovable. I question who I am, what I am; am I too loud, am I too energetic, am I too fat, do people even find me attractive? The insecurities crowd in and I lose who I am; the temporary thoughts in my head take over and I forget the things I know to be true. I become a person who defines their life by the people they surround themselves by. But more importantly, I lose God.
I should be defined by God in every day of my life. I am too young to be worried about my relationships; I need to find me. But I should find me by seeking him and loving him and being so fully immersed in him that it doesn’t matter what relationships I have! He loves me for everything; he loves me IN SPITE of everything. In spite of these feelings and in spite of me turning away from him he loves me. So fully that I can’t help but be overwhelmed; in a good way.
I have to share my life, my plans, my vision with someone else if I am in a relationship. But right now it is just me and God. Me and Jesus! Who is better than that? How much better can a relationship be then me and someone who I KNOW without a doubt will love me even though they know every little thing, good and bad, about me. They created me!
Is it hard for me to be single? Yeah! But not because I don’t appreciate the gift of singleness, its because I lose sight of who I am. And when that happens I have to go back to the one who made me, the one who knows the real me. I have to go back and realize that I cannot define myself by my relationships, by how many dates I go one, what others think of me; rather I am defined by God and his never-ending love for me. It is this truth that I need to rely on.
But even with the realization in my mind, I find myself lost. Don’t think for one minute that I have it together right now because all of this is what I deal with so often. I still have these feelings; I wouldn’t write about them if I didn’t! But I just gotta get off my self-pitying butt, and live my life! No, it’s not easy! Yes, it’s a continuing struggle. Does this matter? If we are honest, sometimes; but should it? No. So my challenge: live your life. Go places, meet people, see things, have fun! Pursue your dreams. Because when it’s just you and Jesus, what better time is there to explore the world? What better time is there to find the plan God has for you?
It can be hard, but: singleness is a gift.