Today’s blog post was prompted by a recent FB post by a younger, single friend. She wrote that you should not be sitting around waiting for a future spouse but get involved in ministry.
Here was my response to her:
You have definitely “hit” on something. Actually, one of the best things you can bring to a marriage is “wholeness” and contentment. So many marry out of need and try to suck from their spouse what only God can give them. It will eventually drain your marriage dry. Not to mention, it actually results in great selfishness. On the other hand, if you are already finding your completeness in Jesus, you will have more to offer to a marriage, will be more mature, and truly able to love more.
The other aspect of this is, so often in Christianity, we have conveyed the message that you are only “complete” in marriage, that you are “waiting” to be married (meaning life hasn’t really begun until your are married), and that marriage is the ultimate goal to reach. I have been happily married for almost 16 years and wouldn’t change it, but I can tell you that our spouses were never meant to be our god.
Marriage is not the end goal. Marriage is not the “completer” of us or our “crowning moment.” That’s all the wrong identity.
Perhaps, this isn’t the best analogy, but marriage is more of a vehicle. It is a means that God often uses to bring us where He wants to bring us — maybe through the many ways it reveals our own weaknesses and also through the ways it can potentially strengthen and mature us.
Marriage is a tool that God uses to potentially multiply His purposes for us (kind of like a hammer and nail — together they work beautifully). Marriage though can also be detrimental to our relationship with God and calling if it’s not in God’s ultimate purpose for our lives and not with the one He has ordained or not in the right timing…
If you are still single, please don’t see yourself as less than, incomplete, or waiting around for “life” to finally happen to you.
Marriage isn’t the fulfillment of life. It is a blessing and can be amazing, but not for everyone. It’s definitely not the solution to your lack or perceived lack.
Please know that you are only complete in living fully and being fully who God created you to be.
Another person can’t “complete” you or make you whole. If you aren’t “whole” when entering into marriage, you will try to live in your spouse’s “wholeness,” and it won’t “fit” you correctly.
Please also don’t have a mindset that you are going to find something to pass your time until the right one comes along. There is wrong thinking in that. Your life isn’t meaningless until a spouse comes along. You aren’t living half of a life and shouldn’t be just passing time until the “real event” happens (e.g. marriage).
You don’t begin “living” once you get married.
I know that singleness can be a lonely road for many. I also know that marriage can be a lonely road for many.
Focus on becoming all God created you to be — in being whole in Him.
Blessings, dear friend. Don’t let your marital or single status define you. It’s just a checkbox on a form.