On kingdom seeking and stuff: a personal reflection

If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you’ll know at times I’ve felt the pangs of singleness and wondered if the Lord would be so gracious to grant a simple prayer I prayed back in Fall 2004, a few months after my husband passed away. The prayer was that when it came to relationships, I had pretty much only known wrong and I desired to know something right. By right, I mean first and foremost a Christ-centered relationship, followed by mutual respect and shared values. Though I was married, it’s not something I’ve known and I’ll just leave it at that.

Recently, the Lord has been so gracious to bring a wonderful man into my life. Funny thing is that the prayers I had prayed for a godly mate had a diminished a bit as other areas in my life rose to the forefront and which occupied more of my prayers than this long-standing request. To be honest, I was getting to the point of wondering if God just wanted me to stay single and praying that I be content with that. Needless to say, this latest development kind of took me by surprise.

Little did I know this past Christmas eve Sunday, that tall, dark and handsome visitor to my church was there specifically to meet me. It wasn’t long after the service ended that someone came up to me and indicated this gentleman had been asking for me by name. I figured it had to do with my blog. Sure enough, I learned that he was visiting from out of town (though he used to live in the DFW area and attended another PCA church) and he was sent a link to an article I wrote. Shortly after that, his friend (playing match makers of sorts) sent him another article. Why? Because he knew the things I wrote about would resonate with this gentleman…and of course, he pointed out that I was single. Thankfully, I only knew at the time of our meeting that he had come across my blog and was very appreciative of the kinds of things I wrote about. I figured he just happened to be visiting the church and since he knew I was there, asked about me. I would come to find out several weeks later, after an initial “coffee” ask, phone communications and another trip back to Dallas, that he intentionally came to church that day to see if he could meet me. Continue reading

The Question that Doesn’t Really Matter in Singleness

woman-waitingI’ve noticed an emerging question that has arisen in relation to how Christian singles should expect God to move in providing a spouse. ┬áThe question at the center of it is this – is one person who is uniquely designed for us or are there multiple possibilities? A compatible question is how do we encounter potential mates either way. Do we sit around and wait for God to show us “the one” or do we acknowledge that there is no such thing as “the one” but rather are a numerous amount of possibilities? On the surface, this sounds like a legitimate question because it will determine who we should expect God to move.

On one hand, if you believe that there is one person who is uniquely designed for you, the tendency will be to sit around and wait for God to bring that person to you. No need to engage in any seeking activity because God will “tell” you when you encounter that person. Therefore, you will not necessarily be involved in a active pursuit of a mate.

On the other hand, believing that there is no such thing as “the one” will place a stronger burden on engaging in activity to meet potential mates. You will be open to a number of possibilities that suit your values and criteria.┬áThe sides have seemed to be polarized as if it has to be one or the other.

I’m going to suggest that this creates an unnecessary dichotomy about how singles who desire marriage find a mate. If you are single and desiring marriage, the first criteria is understanding what marriage is from a biblical perspective. Paul’s description in Eph. 5:21-33 provides a good measuring stick, that Christian marriage should reflect something of Christ and his bride. That means a certain gospel-centeredness should exist, with Christ as the foundation. If you meet someone and can’t agree on the very essential point of who Christ is and who we are in relation to him, that’s not a good foundation. If that person does not see him or herself in need of a Savior who cleanses us with his work and word, that’s pretty much very shaky ground. This also should provoke us to check our motives when thinking about marriage. I thought this piece from Desiring God was helpful. Continue reading