Singleness looks and feels different for all of us. The only common thread is that we don’t have a spouse or partner with whom we share our life. Some of us have found a way to be content and vibrant in our singleness, while others struggle with self-doubt and feelings of loneliness and discouragement. I would venture to say that even the most actively involved of us have a downside moment to living alone. That said, we probably are no different than most people who are stressed and distressed by their circumstances, except we may not have someone with whom we can share our burdens and who will help to carry those burdens with us.
I think that singleness is often portrayed as a negative and sad thing on television and in the movies. If we singles aren’t portrayed as damaged or dejected, we are portrayed as massive partiers without a care in the world. That may be true for some of us at some point in our lives, however; I think for many of us, we believe our lives have worth and value and we live fulfilled and happy lives. If you are in the dejected, sad, lifeless crowd today, I hope the message in the this blog will bring you hope and that you come to see your value as a contributing member of society.
Singleness is, for the most part, out of our control. We have no control over a spouse dying. We may have had no control over a spouse leaving us. We may have had to leave a marriage to protect ourselves and our children. And we certainly can’t force someone to love us and to make a lifelong commitment to us. What we can do, however, is acknowledge who we are and what our strengths and gifts are, and then make a decision to use those gifts to enrich the lives of others. We can decide to overcome the painful aspects of singleness and create a new positive image of a life lived with value and worth. We hold the keys to turning the negative image into something positive. We only need to move beyond the obstacles we face and emerge stronger and bolder.
We all face challenges in our singleness. We may feel that we don’t belong. I know I have walked into rooms of people at church and felt like an outsider as I scan the tables full of couples. I usually search out another single to sit with so that together we are not alone. The truth is, that probably is more about my perception than the perception of the couples sitting there. Yet, I let those thoughts trap me and keep me from developing new relationships. We do belong. God does want us there. We do have something to contribute. We do add value. Once we get past our own insecurity we are likely to find that we can change the image others have of our singleness by changing the image we have of ourselves.
I encourage you to ask yourself the following questions and to pray that God will show you who you are in his eyes, for you are well-loved by him and made to love others, even in your singleness:
- What are your three best characteristics or qualities?
- What are your three strongest abilities?
- What three things could you do with those great characteristics and abilities to serve others?
- Who can you share these answers with that will pray and encourage you?
What’s stopping you? GET MOVING!!
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39New International Version (NIV)