“It wasn’t until I heard that…speech about self-doubt that it struck me: the real issue wasn’t that I felt like a fraud, but that I could feel something deeply and profoundly and be completely wrong.” – Sheryl Sandberg, Lean In
I’ve tried really hard not to write about singleness. I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who writes about the controversial or “viral” topics like yoga pants. I’m not interested in that.
So this isn’t about singleness. It’s just an example of the bigger issue.
Here is what I’ll say:
Being single is really hard sometimes.
Being single is really awesome a lot of the time.
Going to church alone is really hard, all the time.
I don’t know what it is about church – but being there by myself and seeing all the “happy” couples all around me, worshiping together, just does something to me.
[Side note: For the love of all things holy, married people, can you STOP MASSAGING EACH OTHER IN CHURCH?!]
Just needed to get that off my chest.
All I know is that more than anywhere else, the devil speaks lies to me about my identity and self-worth by pointing out the married people in church and telling me, screaming at me, They are better than you. They are more than you. They have it together more than you. They will be more successful than you.
That’s what he does, isn’t it? He takes something so beautiful, something God created for us, and turns it into a source of comparison and insecurity for those of us who don’t have it.
I mentioned to my roommate that I am finding myself growing bitter towards married people, especially young marrieds (so sorry, friends) and really just want to spend all my time in my single world with my single friends living our single lives. She spoke truth into my soul by saying: NO. Bitterness is not allowed in this house, bitterness cannot be allowed in our hearts – that is from the devil.
I can’t be bitter towards married people; that would be letting satan win. He wants to bring division, he wants us to hate each other and be unable to relate and live life in unity. (Apply that to any issue in our world today, will you?)
What I have to do, what we have to do, is take those lies he speaks to us and give them directly over to God – kind of like a game of hot potato. If you hold onto them for too long, they start to seep into your skin, down into your heart and soul and become part of who you are. That is how we start believing these false things about ourselves. We’d do our world good to teach young people how to recognize voices of truth and voices of untruth. You have to give these lies over to the Lord, because not only will they not become part of you, but God has a chance to speak truth over you in a way you’d never imagine.
Because His response to these lies is this: You are everything they are. You have everything they have. Don’t believe the lie that you are incomplete. I have redeemed you, I have called you by name, you are mine…you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you.
So it’s really not about singleness at all; it is about the fight we are in every moment of our lives to be aware of the voices speaking to our hearts, to not digest the lies that we are incomplete, not enough, not worthy, ugly, stupid, boring, not as good…but to believe the truth that says you are ENOUGH: You are made in the image of the Holy God, who created everything and gives life to us all. You are VALUED: He loves you beyond anything you could ever imagine and has plans for you that will blow your mind. You are HIS: You are precious and honored and loved.
One thought on “church, for one.”
I always wondered why I myself became resentful of others when I attended church. It wasn’t until later on I realized Satan feast on our insecurities and weaknesses. God has someone out there and he’s Amazing. Funny how cliche this is but I met my husband when I gave up on searching and jaded from Love. There was no way I was going to meet this great ‘Christ-Like’ guy in this day and age. As we began dating, attending church was necessary for him. I questioned how he was still single, no children, no divorce, nothing! But through time I figured out The Lord always has a plan for us and he designed it for us to have a partner to share our life with. Now that I’m one of those happily married couples along with our beautiful children, I’m so happy for my blessed life. Given my impatience and comparing myself to others, I don’t think of myself as a negative person but I can’t hide that those thoughts entered my mind. God truly has a plan for each of us. When you do find the man whose worthy to show you off at church and you grow spiritually together in Christ’s Love, you’ll look back at your single life and laugh. Like how silly I was for thinking being alone was hard. Trust in the Lord because your story will be truly beautiful 🙂