Those videos encouraged me some enough to decide to write about my thoughts...and also answer some questions she had asked some single people.
1. How old am you? and do you still desire to be married?
I turned 40 last month. Most times in my life my desire to be married is strong...however, there are few times (mainly after Sunday mornings Sunday school class it's not as strong -- I teach the pre-primary class and have two adorable and wild little ones in my class).
2. If so...what are you looking for in this stage in your life?
This has changed over the years. When I was younger my dream guy was Kirk Sullivan from 4Him. As I grew older my dream guy was Michael Vartan, but now he's engaged, so I have moved on from him. But seriously now on my "wish list" I have a few items that are non-negotiable.
a. Must be a Christian
b. Must encourage me in my relationship with God
c. Must love and treat me as Christ treats the church.
d. a man of intergrity
Other qualities that are important - that he would not have been married (I know at my age this is hard to find, but I believe all things are possible with God), takes a stand for what he believes, pursues me, enjoys spending time with my friends, wants to pray with me and for me, wants to spend time with me, calls me just to hear my voice, good with money, and musical (either sings or plays an instrument)
I think it is because God hasn't opened his eyes to me yet. I don't know if I have met my "future" husband yet, or if we are still strangers. I would love to meet and be friends at first, but I don't have a lot of single guy friends. LOL!!
4. What is the part you appreciate most and the part you appreciate the least about being single?
Most - freedom. I can do things without having to check plans with someone else.
Least - the lonely feeling...it comes in those dry times of activity. LOL!!
5. How can other single women encourage each other?
pray for one another. I have a core group of friends of about 8 people who are my "support system." 4 of those 8 are married. The rest of us are single girls. We go through times of discouragement and prayer is a big thing for us.
Also being there for each other to do single stuff together. We love the girls who are married in our group, but now that they are married they have a partner that is important in their life. Having those single girls who get you ... and know the lonely feelings is really helpful.
6. What are some things to never say to single women?
You know the typical things like asking "why we aren't married yet?" is something that is not fun to answer...or when at wedding events making comments to us (or behind our backs) is a struggle. My mom is great about not pushing me to date or get married, but some parents push their single daughters too quickly into a marriage that really shouldn't be happening, just to have their daughter "happy." Marriage does not make a single girl happy...marriage is a difficult life too - just as singleness can be. If I can't be happy in my single life, how can I expect that to change with a marriage certificate. Only God can complete me...not some other guy.
7. What do you think are the top two (unhealthy) struggles with single women?
I can't really say for all single women, but my struggle is staying positive about being single. I know with the question above it looks like I know in my head that marriage is not a cure all, but my heart sometimes thinks it is.
The second unhealthy struggle I think single women can face is the life of purity. I'm thankful for parents who taught me purity so well, that it's engraved. I have always liked the quote from "Clueless" when Cher is talking about keeping her virginity "you see how picky I am with my shoes and they only go on my feet." Earlier she states when a girl asks her if she is a virgin "You say that like it's a bad thing."
8. How do you feel about online dating?
I have tried twice with eharmary. Two times I have met guys and they seemed like good guys, one I'm actually still friends with on facebook, but online dating is not for me.
I was at a Women of Faith conference and heard Lois Evans speak. She made a comment about looking for men on the internet and she said something about stop looking for men yourself and let the Man of Galilee lead him to you. I wish I could remember the exact statement, because it really impacted my life and opened my eyes that I was the one searching for someone special instead of allowing God to lead the man He knows He has for me.
I feel sometimes with online dating the girl pursues the boy. In my past relationships I have jumped the gun at times and allowed myself to be caught up in the romance of it all and compromise my old fashion values and pursued the boy. I don't want that...I want a guy that wants me. I read a non-Christian book "He's Just Not That Into You", but God allowed it to show me that even written from a secular point of view, there were values that I was raised to learn and those values were still good.
9. How do you protect your heart and still date?
This isn't one I can answer yet...right now I'm just protecting my heart. (I haven't dated in a few years.) If I were to go on a date now...I would make sure that my devotional time was devoted to this area of protecting my heart. One thing that I have done, is stopped pursuing boys. Yes, I will talk about guys who I find attractive, but I don't pursue. If they are into me, they can ask me out. I also want to give room for them to chase a little too.
10. Are single women supposed to sit and wait for God to bring them a man?
I am speaking as a single Christian girl and if you read the quote I mentioned earlier from Lois Evans it sounds like that is true that you should just sit and wait for the Man of Galilee to bring him, but it isn't...I believe that we as single women, need to be pursuing God and building that relationship. Living our life...enjoying activities. You never know when you will meet your future spouse...it may be at the grocery store, gym, work place, church, or even on vacation,but there are places that I don't go for meeting guys because those are not the guys that have the qualities on my "wish list". God has the power to allow two peoples paths to cross...sometimes our faith isn't as big as He thinks.
11. Do you approach them?
In times past, I would say yes, but I'm trying something new...I'm trying to be pursued by someone who wants to be with me...not because I'm doing the work, but because they enjoy my company. I personally was raised that girls do not ask guys out or pursue, but I have called boys in the past and probably rushed the relationship. It is a fine line and it's hard to wait, but a verse that has been on my heart lately is Psalm 27:14 "Wait on the Lord and be of good courage and He shall strengthen your heart...wait, I say, on the Lord" Waiting is a difficult thing to do, but I believe the prize in the end is going to be worth the wait.
12. What keeps you grounded and confident in the Lord?
My personal relationship with God...my devotional time is important to me...I can tell when I'm not spending enough time with him by the choices I make. That's when I have to evaluate what I'm doing to build it.
I hope this blog has encouarged you. It has helped me get my perspective back to where it needs to be. I'm not as lonely as when I started it, because my perspective is back on God and not on me. Life is all about perspective...God showed me a lot about perspective at the beach. One of my friends who is a little fearful about going into the ocean too far, stated one day the waves were really rough. My other friend and I went out a few moments later...I looked at them and said..."I don't think they are too bad...let's go out." But as we walked we began getting closer to where the waves were breaking over and it looked to be pretty high...the water was at our waists and I began to think, maybe she was right. But then I took a step and the water went down to my calves and as I walked closer to the breaking waves, it was at my ankles, I began to get past the breaking waves and it was smooth sailing...(so smooth that we saw a sand shark...LOL). God showed me with that illustration that I can face the rough storms in my life when I'm looking at Him and not at the storm. I can face the dry desert times in my life if my perspective is on Him.
Until next time...