A few months ago, I was scrolling around in a group I’m in on Facebook and I saw a post from a girl who was asking for prayer in her time of being single. She wrote about how all she wanted SO badly was to have a boyfriend. To cuddle and watch a movie with someone. To share kisses on cheeks with and buy Valentine’s Day presents for and just lean on when everything else was going wrong. She said in the midst of wanting this every single day, it absolutely broke her heart to see someone posting anything about their boyfriend on Facebook. The posts were becoming overwhelming. She couldn’t stand to see photos of so and so with her boyfriend on date night, or traveling together, or just posting about each other in general. It was destroying her. She couldn’t understand how that was okay for people to post about. It wasn’t fair! It was like they were rubbing it right in her face that they had everything she had ever wanted- and she didn’t.
Although it’s pretty difficult for me to remember what life was like when I was single, it’s not impossible. I remember wanting that so badly, too. I remember waking up and wishing I had someone to text good morning to. Anything exciting or fun was made less exciting and fun because I didn’t have a significant other to share it with. Even when I DID have a boyfriend, I would get extremely depressed when they weren’t there to share those amazing memories with me. I remember one particular instance where my family was going on our first cruise ever. My 13th birthday would be happening on the cruise, and I had been dating S for a whole two months. This family vacation was planned super last minute because my mom was very sick from her cancer and she wanted one last memorable trip with her daughters, her husband, her parents, and her sister before she wasn’t sure there would be any more chances to do it. So we embarked on this 10 day cruise. Up to this point, I had talked to S every single day for hours at a time. Anything that was on my mind, I shared it with S. At 10am, 10pm, and more often than not, 12-5am, S and I were on the phone, just talking about life together. But on cruise ships, there are no phones. Well, there are, but they literally cost $8/minute. I remember this because the one phone call I was allowed to make to S on my birthday ending up costing my aunt $36. I was SO lovesick over missing S that my entire trip was affected by it. Looking back, this all made no logical sense because in real life, I barely even saw S. We went on a total of three in-person dates, two of them being in movie theatres. I just thought I needed him to talk to every day to make me happy. When I couldn’t call him every day on the cruise, it put me into this depressed, withdrawn state that my family noticed two minutes into the trip. In hindsight, I clearly was NOT ready to have a boyfriend if it was going to ruin my last family vacation with my mom. Don’t get me wrong… I was a pretty emotionally mature and responsible teenage girl. I probably had the mentality closer to that of a 16 or 17 year old. But I still wasn’t ready. And yet, having a boyfriend was what I wanted more than anything for the majority of my teenage years. Just like that girl posting on Facebook, it felt like it was the only thing that would make me happy.
Ecclesiastes 3 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens… He has made everything beautiful in its time.” That last part right there – He makes everything beautiful in its time – is such an important reminder. God has made a time and a season for everything in my life. There was a time to be single and focus my heart on Him (and on my last vacation with my mom) and I decided I wanted to do my own thing and it ended up ruining something beautiful with my family. There was a time to focus on school and learn the hard lesson that boys aren’t the number 1 priority. There was a time to move away to college and then move right back home again. And right now, there’s a time for me to be engaged and NOT married. And that has a PURPOSE. God has called me to love and support Justin first as his girlfriend of five years and then as his fiance for some time more before loving and supporting him as his wife. I used to absolutely hate the “enjoy this season” talk. When someone would start giving me the “season” lecture, I seriously wanted to tell them to shut up. I think I probably did just that a couple of times! I wanted to say, “But you don’t understand.” “But you aren’t the one who has been dating for years on end.” “But you aren’t the one going through this right now.” And that’s true. But as with anything in life, we can go back to the Bible for truth that encompasses and speaks life into any and all circumstances.
“But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. […] But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness. And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved.” – 2 Peter 3:8-9, 13-15.
This verse is talking about the day of judgment, but I think it can be applied to our every day lives… there is a purpose for every season. Sometimes the Lord waits to fulfill His promises because I still have something to learn. Just like when I was 13 and so lovesick on our family vacation that I almost ruined the one cruise I would ever have with my mom, I might still need to learn a few things before marriage… and that’s okay! God is refining our relationship more and more every day and it makes me THAT much more excited for the day that we will become husband and wife. I know God isn’t being slow in revealing His plan for my life and it coming to pass… He knows exactly what He is doing in this season of my life, in our relationship, in my business, in my family. Good things come to those who wait! And I don’t want to spend my time of waiting being miserable over the fact that I can’t press the fast forward button. It’s taken me years to learn what contentment looks like, and I’m still learning! But no matter which season I face in life, I know God will fulfill His promise to me of an enternity with Him… and in the long run, that is ALL that matters. Every good thing in between is just a bonus, including marriage! :)
So if I could go back and talk to 13 year old me… if I could go back and speak to that girl whose post I scrolled past on Facebook… I would give her a big hug and tell her that:
There is a time and a purpose for everything under the sun, including her wait for a boyfriend.
That God loves her just as much today as He will tomorrow tomorrow, regardless of how much it feels like He doesn’t want to give her what she wants.
And that no matter what, she has a promise that extends beyond our universe and our laws of physics and boundaries of time that the Lord wants more than anything to spend forever with her.
Anything that falls between then and today is irrelevant in size when placed at the feet of our Maker. And as I’m praying every day for the grace and the strength to make it through my current season of waiting, God wants me to succeed and He intercedes every day to make that happen. To help carry me through. His eternal promise reveals itself in our lives on a daily basis as evidence of His unconditional love. And that same love that was there when I was single will be there when I’m married and when I’m single again if the day comes that I have to know a life without Justin. And that right there is the most beautiful promise of all.