“I’m so happy to meet your new husband,” she said to a friend before jabbing me jokingly with an elbow as I passed. “Now you just need to find Grace one.”
She patted my arm.
“I heard what you said about Lottie Moon earlier. But I still think we can find you one.”
I’ll go ahead and tell you that singleness is not my favorite topic. Not that it’s a bad topic … I just would prefer for it to be brought up in conversation with the frequency of my subtle toenail polish color (hey, that really matches your dress) rather than that of an electric blue Mohawk (WHOA, would you look at that! That’s so bizarre! I know a great place around the corner where you can get that toned down … ).
Ideally I’d just like for that part of me to fade into the background and let – hopefully – the Jesus inside me come to the front instead.
I had told a story about Lottie Moon to a few folks that day, about how she had spent herself feeding the Chinese – physically and spiritually – and the starvation eventually got her.
But not before reaching many with the hope of Jesus.
“How many there are … who imagine that because Jesus paid it all, they need pay nothing, forgetting that the prime object of their salvation was that they should follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ in bringing back a lost world to God.”
Lottie had an opportunity to marry once. But she knew she was meant for China. He didn’t feel the same way.
“God had first claim on my life, and since the two conflicted, there could be no question about the result.”
It was that simple.
Now I’m no Lottie Moon. Wow, I wish someday I could be a tiny sliver of the lady she was.
But what I am right now is a single woman fighting daily to cling hard and fast to a Savior who’s the most amazing thing life has to offer. Eternity has to offer. At the moment, there’s no husband. Every day I get up and do what disciples of Jesus do – sit dumbfounded at the infinite grace and joy we’ve been handed for free, and fight hard against distractions and my own flesh, fighting to keep my eyes locked on Him. I fight to take His love to the ends of the earth and finish well.
It’s not entirely helpful when I’m in full-on battle mode to hear that I need a different life, even when the comments are made in love.
I love Him, and I want to live the life He gave me.
I want to pack light. I want Him to spend me out in the best way He can use my single life. I want to have time to give from sunup to sundown to relieve the moms who just need a minute alone with Jesus to grieve or rest or decompress. To talk with friends who need it, when they need it, for as long as they need it. To move in with someone for a couple of weeks when they need some extra help close at hand. I want time to pray fervently for others.
My heart was so encouraged a while back when I listened to the podcast of one of our pastors from church speaking about singleness. Not that it’s never been said before, but I needed to hear that message that day.
That marriage is brilliant and messy and God-ordained for some to be the way God shows the Gospel in a human picture … Him giving Himself for His bride, the Church.
And that singleness is brilliant and messy and God-ordained for some to be able to share the Gospel without having the demands of a family (1 Corinthians 7:32-34).
Both of them valid. Both of them needed.
Right now I’m living in the second.
Either way, He’s all I need.