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Mary Crowley's Journey of Faith - Part 2

Guest: Mary Crowley

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April 22, 2024

Feeling Discontent as a Single? 6 Ways to Deal

Do you ever struggle with being single? You like having time to do what you like to do, but you also long for the day when you'll have a significant other to do life with.

You're okay being on your own, but you also want lasting love.

If you feel conflicted, that's okay. I think most singles do at times. It's perfectly normal to desire marriage—or a relationship—and still be content with your state of singleness.

I get it.

I've been single for years, and sometimes wonder if I'll ever have a positive love relationship that lasts with someone special.

Of course, there are days when I'm content. I enjoy spending time with friends and pursuing writing projects and nature photography, among other things. Most days, I am hopeful—for the future and for what God has in store for me each day.

At other times, I wonder why I'm still single. After being a bridesmaid and not a bride more times than I can count, I've wondered if God has forgotten about me and why I haven't been chosen? The truth is, we all get lonely at times.

It's a holy struggle living in the tension of both contentment and desire.

Difficult? At times, yes. Impossible? No.

So how can you, as a single or single-again person, be content in this solo season of life?

Here are six ideas to consider:

1. Give your desires to God. "Desire" is not a bad thing. It's what you do with it that makes a difference. The negative side of desire is obsessing over wanting to be married. Or, forsaking your own life to live in a fantasy world of "someday."

Instead, give your heart's desires to God. Talk to Him in prayer about your fears and longings for love. Instead of taking matters into your own hands, trust God's timing and His ways. Why? Because God loves you and wants the best for you.

2. Know who you are. Whether you are single or not, you can find your true identity—your worth and value—in Christ. You are a child of God, well-loved and created for His good purposes. Don't compare yourself or your situation to those who are married. Your journey here is uniquely yours.

3. Prepare for future relationships. Take this time to deal with and heal your past. Find out the possible stumbling blocks that are keeping you from finding love.

Also, learn about the opposite sex and different communication styles. Ask God what you need to do to be ready to be in a healthy, loving relationship.

My friend, Ann-Margret, a freelance writer, has found it helpful to make friends with married women who provide a more realistic view of marriage—both the joys and the challenges.

She has also learned to put God first in matters of the heart and to trust Him. "I realized that God never asked me to give up the desire for marriage," she said, "God was calling me to trust Him, day by day, and to find fulfillment in our relationship."

4. Make the most of your time now. As a single person, you're not in love's "waiting room." Don't put off the things you want to do until you have a relationship or a marriage partner. Live your life now! Take a class. Travel. Volunteer. Pursue your hobbies. Enjoy time with family and friends. And use your God-given gifts and talents to help and bless others. Remember, when we serve others it blesses them, pleases God, and brings us satisfaction and joy.

5. Look to God, not people or circumstances for peace. I love the biblical account of Peter, who walked on water when Jesus came up to his boat during a storm. When Peter's eyes were on Jesus, he stood firm. When his eyes were on the storm, he began to sink.

So I try to remind myself to keep my eyes on Him—not my circumstances or life's storms of loneliness or discontentment that can blow in unexpectedly.

My friend, Judy, says, "The more we know Jesus, the more contentment we can have with our singleness. I have purposed and practiced loving Him, and soaking in His love, recounting who He is and how He shows His goodness to me."

6. Stay in the truth. Some people mistakenly think that because they're single, God is withholding a blessing from them. Singleness is a gift and marriage is a gift. We know that God will meet our needs, but we don't know how or when. So pray, and take action. Trust that God will guide you each step of the way.

You haven't been "passed over" in the relationship department. This time of singleness (and even rejection, such as a breakup) is God's protection and redirection. He is a loving Father who wants what's best for you. Choose to trust Him with your love life and your whole life.

As for me, I feel content, yet hopeful. Trusting God with every twist and turn of this unpredictable adventure called life. I choose to enjoy the here and now. Tomorrow will come soon enough.