I wrote this post a little differently from my previous ones. This post started out as a ramble in the notes section of my phone, but I began to see some good lessons in my babbling and decided to make a blog post out of it :-). The words that are italicized are part of the original writing, and they are absolutely straight from my heart, so I decided to leave them in there.
My Dear Single Girl: Lessons Learned from a Non-Single Girl
Maybe we agreed to trudge through life together because we thought we could fill all the cracks in each other’s hearts. We thought we could close in the gaps for each other. Maybe we thought that this arrangement between us would clean up all the mess inside us, we thought that it would wipe away the hurt and the heartache that others left behind for us.
But I’m learning that that’s not how love works. Love works in the mess and the heartache, it doesn’t erase it. Love sticks through it. Being in love with another person doesn’t put the chaos in your heart back in order, it chooses to stick with you through the chaos.
If you’re looking for someone to fix you, you’re looking in all the wrong places. If you need someone to clean up your mess, look up to Heaven, not around on this Earth.
When we signed up for this, we didn’t know that sometimes love would be the cause of the mess and the worry and the hurt. That sometimes, love would turn its back and refuse to speak. We didn’t know that love wouldn’t always cultivate happiness, or that some days or weeks or months, happiness would be nowhere to be found.
Maybe I thought that you would always love me well, and maybe you thought I could always love you well. Maybe that’s why we chose each other, we were hoping to be loved perfectly by another person. Maybe we thought that we could be the cure for each other’s loneliness. We didn’t know that affection and kindness wouldn’t always come easy. We didn’t understand that just because you love someone, it doesn’t mean you’ll always feel affection for them.
I’m learning now that no one can love me perfectly except The One. During seasons of singleness, we look for the one that we think is going to love us perfectly and deeply no matter what we do. We don’t realize that we’re actually just searching for Jesus. And even when you’re in a relationship, maybe you still expect him to love you perfectly, and so when he inevitably fails, you crumble. Maybe all the things you’re searching for in a relationship with a guy are really only things that you can find perfectly in a relationship with Jesus.
Maybe we checked “agree” without really reading all the conditions. The conditions that said in order for the relationship to last, sometimes a lot of times, you’ll have to lay down your happiness. The conditions that would’ve told us that by agreeing to this relationship, we will learn how to sacrifice like we’ve never had to before, that we would learn how much pride and selfishness we really have in our hearts. We would’ve been prepared for the difficult and heartbreaking moments, the days that feel empty even though the person you love is sitting right next to you.
The promise between two people in love doesn’t guarantee happiness or an easy life.
The promise between two people in love guarantees growth. We are guaranteed another person to struggle and hurt with. We’re making a promise to another soul to keep choosing each them every day no matter what.
I’ve said it before and I’ll probably keep saying it until the day God calls me home: the deeper I go into understanding God’s love, the more I realize how terribly I fail at showing His love. I’m learning more and more that a relationship is not for my own benefit, it’s for the other person’s. And ultimately, a relationship (with anyone) is for the glory of God. I’m learning that if I go into a relationship for the purpose of fulfilling something in my life that I believe to be missing, I’ll never be satisfied.
So, why then, do you choose someone to be in a relationship with? What’s the point? And how do you choose them?
You choose them because you see something special in their heart, something placed there by God. Choose the one that has a love that resembles the love of God.
Choose someone who loves you and others in a way that reminds you of the way God loves.
Choose the person who is going to protect your relationship with him, with others, and with God.
Choose them because you see godly characteristics in them- forgiveness, patience, kindness, and faith. And then you love them for who they are not for how they love you.
When you are looking for the one, choose them because you have a desire to add joy to their life, and you want to help them grow and you want to encourage their walk with Christ. Don’t be looking for someone if your only focus is to see how much they can do for you or how well they can love you.
Don’t check “yes” if you expect them to fulfill everything for you, or to be your sole source of happiness and purpose. That’s not what they are. They are a companion to help you grow and learn. They are someone to help you honor God. Part of the purpose of your relationship is to be a godly example and to be a picture of the love of God to others. They are simply someone to walk through life with, because God knew that it would be easier for us if we didn’t have to do this life alone.