The Problem with Waiting to Get Married

The Problem with Waiting to Get Married – By Jessica Bufkin (Single Roots)

I’m not sure when I decided that my singleness wasn’t such a bad thing.

Truth be told, I’ve never really given up wishing and hoping and thinking and praying that one day I’ll get married. I want to know what it’s like to share my life with someone. To gripe about whose turn it is to take out the trash or who lost the car keys…again. To buy two concert tickets instead of one or to book a King-sized hotel bed instead of doubles. To cook a dinner and have no leftovers or to have someone tell me that I don’t need to buy another handbag because I could spend my money more wisely…

All joking aside, I long to be a part of a God-glorifying union that points others to Christ. To have someone know me intimately and to know them in the same way. To be a part of the kind of love that can only develop over years of commitment and trial and error. I ache for that in the deep places of my soul, in ways that the English language is limited in expressing.

But somewhere along the way, my focus shifted. I stopped feeling incomplete or inadequate and no longer felt like the story of my life would reach its climax when I finally married.

I guess you could say that I started living.

While I’m not one to believe that there is a 4-step process to curing discontent, when I reflect on how I got to this place, I can pinpoint 4 things that I believe changed my discontent to acceptance—dare I say, contentment—in this lot of mine.

1. Friendships :: Friendships were a balm for my lonely soul, and they continue to be. I realized that the only way to have deep, abiding friendships—friendships that stood the test of time (and marriage and babies and mortgages and geography)—was to work hard at it. So that’s what I did. I set out to be the kind of friend that I wanted.

I bear witness to God’s faithfulness in the area of friendships. Many times when I would be dealing with the weight of loneliness, He would open my eyes to see that I was far from alone.

2. Ministry :: My discontentment with my single life also began to lessen when I started pouring myself into ministering to others at my local church. I worked with college students, and as I began to see girls follow the same thought patterns that I followed—thoughts like, “I’m not pretty enough” or “What is wrong with me?”—He enabled me to speak Truths into their lives that hopefully helped them fight the lies of the Enemy.

Seeing young girls going through foundational years and helping them to grasp that they are loved and adored by God—and that is more than enough—well, those same Truths couldn’t help but take root in my own heart.

It really is true that when your life is spent centered on others and not yourself, your “problems” fade considerably.

3. Adventure :: When I was in seminary, I had an opportunity to study at Oxford one summer. It was the first time I’d ever left North America, and leaving the country for an extended period of time stirred in me something that I had suppressed. I loved to travel, but I didn’t do a lot of it because deep down I thought I would wait and travel with a husband one day. As soon as I got home, I started planning my next trip, and I haven’t stopped since.

For me, travel was that “one thing” that I was putting off until marriage. It might be different for you. Maybe you’ve always wanted to take guitar lessons or go on a mission trip or buy a house. You have a gift of time right now that is unparalleled. Sure, life is busy, but it’s never going to slow down. And you’re never going to get wasted time back. Whatever it is that you are putting off until you have someone to share it with, it’s time to stop.

4. Trust :: A few years ago, the Lord led me back to Psalm 84:11, “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.”

I’ve read that psalm many times before, but in the midst of a period of loneliness, He spoke to me through this particular verse.

“…No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.”

If I don’t have a husband right now, it is not a good thing for me. A good God who loves me with a far greater love than I will ever understand will not withhold something from me that is good.

I spent a lot of time letting that sink in. I went back to it over and over again. I pondered it in my heart and allowed the Holy Spirit to minister to my pain through it.

He can be trusted to not withhold that which is good for me.

You know, it’s funny…when I embraced that Truth, I turned around one day and realized that I had stopped waiting and started living.

 

About Jessica Bufkin…..  

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Jessica Bufkin recently left her glamorous career as a junior high English teacher for the greener pastures of the blogging world. She is a part of the team of writers at SingleRoots, a site that encourages singles to be intentional with their lives. And, since dating is important, too, they also offer some assistance with a review of the Best Christian Dating Sites. Jessica lives in Fort Worth, Texas where a lot of men really do wear cowboy hats and boots daily. Sadly, that does nothing for her.
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=lovandgrame0b-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&asins=B001BQMKCI&IS1=1&ref=tf_til&fc1=000000&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=FFFFFF&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifrhttp://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=lovandgrame0b-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&asins=0446577367&ref=tf_til&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=001EEF&bc1=FFFFFF&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifrhttp://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=lovandgrame0b-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&asins=0806635711&ref=tf_til&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=001EEF&bc1=FFFFFF&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

 

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19 thoughts on “The Problem with Waiting to Get Married

  1. Absolutely LOVED this! The sentence that struck me was, “If I don’t have a husband right now, it is not a good thing for me. A good God who loves me with a far greater love than I will ever understand will not withhold something from me that is good.” Oh how I love that! It almost makes me cry as the realization is settling in, that my way of thinking is totally opposite of what God is thinking. I’m not married because he is “punishing” or don’t love me enough but BECAUSE He loves me too much to allow something that isn’t good for me and my life at this time. I’ve printed this off and know already that I will be reading and re-reading this in the future. Thank you for encouraging me today.

  2. Greetings Candra and Jessica! Just wanted to say that because of your words (Candra from earlier posts/comments and Jessica from this post), and another perspective I’ve recently gained concerning marriage, God and purpose, I have been “living” since late January of this year – I rearranged my cognitive map if you will.

    As someone who saw marriage in the traditional sense for 30 years (meaning as someone who only wanted to get married *primarily* for the sake of being married and “cure” my loneliness), and who believed I would wither like a flower if I never got married, I have done a complete 180 in this department and it’s surprising for myself (aside from family and friends). It was an ugly path to this realization, but I reached it with the assistance of God, Paul, my aunt and uncle, and blog authors like yourselves. I have strangely reached a point where I no longer have a *need* for being married. It’s been said however that those who are most prepared for marriage are those who need it the least, so maybe I shouldn’t talk so soon lol

    Anyhow, I hope one day to see a post from either of you concerning marriage as a godly mission-purpose vs marriage as a marriage for self-gratification purpose if that makes any sense. This is the primary biblical view of marriage that flipped my thinking upside down and made me see that it is truly a gift to be single (just as much as being married is a gift), and it’s not the end of the world if I never marry because again, the life granted to me is not about me. Again, this is coming from someone who was vehemently angry with God (and expressed it like Job) and other couples for well over two decades, and often fell into depression many times including much earlier this year…Thank you again for touching on a few points in this post that I wish someone had told me years earlier!

    1. Hey Yasmine! I’m beyond thrilled to read your comment. I thank Jessica as well for writing such an encouraging blog for this site. The feedback has been excellent!

      Thank you for the prompt to write about marriage as being godly mission-purposed. This is how I have always seen my relationship with Ronnie. When I met him, I was well content with being single…finally. There was no pressure if our first date didn’t go well. That was a first for me. Lol. Our time together was awesome and we were very attracted to each other, yet still I was pretty cool about it all. 😉 However, when we parted and I walked into my apartment something different came over me. God let me know that there was going to be a shift in my future that involved much more than falling in love. From the beginning our relationship has been purpose driven fueled by love.

      Keep on “living” and enjoying the blessings that God is pouring upon you daily!!! I pray that the things you have shared with me before will continue to prosper you!

      Blessings,
      Candra

  3. I stumbled upon your blog because was reading for a paper to present at school relating to singles but I am being so blessed and encouraged. I am not single but still waiting on God and this blog in particular has been very encouraging, as I wait. “No good thing will He withhold from those who walks uprightly” I will trust Him. Thanks much!

  4. wow!!!! i love this jessica. I really really like this post. at list it will umcourage pople like me honestly. am very glad about you. you really did well for shearing this with us. Keep on with it and enjoying the blessings that God is pouring upon you daily! I pray that the things you have shared with us before will continue to prosper you and God will contenue blessing you.

  5. This is something greatly on my own heart today. In a moment of reflection this morning, I realized that I am utterly content, joyful, and peaceful as a single. Just six months ago I was suffocating with the unfulfilled desire for marriage and the weight of loneliness and waiting. When I started taking God at His word, that He is able to satisfy, that He gives me everything I need for life and godliness, that He knows what is best for me and that what I think is a blessing or even a need (i.e., marriage), is not what I need so much as Him, I ‘started living’ too. He is so much better than anything else I desire! And He is abundantly able to satisfy.
    So often we look at marriage as a display of the love of Christ, and so it is. But singleness is also such a display, because it shows both believers and unbelievers that Jesus is able to satisfy. It shows His amazing love for us and nearness to us.
    Thank you for your encouraging words! It’s high time singles stopped waiting and started living!

  6. I like this blog and the single articles. However im kinda confused at the part “If i dont have a husband,it is not a good thing for me” Its sounding like if im single or if i dont have a husband then im in a bad state than one who has a husband. Being single isnt some kind of a disease, its a phase and whatever state im in, im complete in Him ( Col 2:10). May you please explain to me what you meant by that statement, Thank you.

    1. Hello Tee! Thank you for reading! I believe what Jessica means here is that if a woman is single and does not have a husband, then that is what is best for her at this time. Therefore, she is in a good state. Many people believe that if they are married, they are in a better state, but in many cases marriage does not make one’s life better. Marriage can make your life worse if it is done outside of God’s will. So no, you are not in a bad state. Jessica goes on to write that a good God “will not” withhold something that is good for you. And sometimes marriage is not the good thing to do. And when it is good for you to be married, God will allow it. Does this explanation help?

      1. Thank you for the explanation admin. So rather shouldnt it read ” If i dont have a husband , its still a good thing for me at this time bcz but when the time comes God will not withhold but will release my good thing- the husband. ?

  7. Thank you for your transparency. I’ve also commented on Candra’s posts, so pardon the redundancy but I truly believe my book will be a blessing to those led to these posts. “The Premature Proverbs 31 Woman” can inspire single women who are tired of dead-end relationships, help married women realize where they went wrong in marriage, and single men detect characteristics of a PP31 Woman.

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Premature-Proverbs-31-Woman/dp/1503395979

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