single for a season, single for a reason

Hello all of my captivating ladies!

I know it has been a week or so since my last post. The Lord has been moving and working and breathing new life into my dreams for this blog, and for this ministry. I have some big and exciting things coming up this coming week that I simply cannot WAIT to share with all of you.

I also know we have been sitting in the #captivatingwoman series for a while. I am planning on expanding and continuing that  series, but the Lord laid this specific topic on my heart this morning while I was staring out the window drinking the first sips of morning coffee 🙂

This past weekend, I attended one of my best friend’s Bridal Shower. It was SO fun. I just love celebrating her in this exciting season of life, and I couldn’t be more happy for her. I started to think about how if she had been engaged and soon-to-be-married about a year and a half ago, I am not sure if I would have been as excited for her. I might have been able to somewhat fake it.. smile and say, “I can’t wait for your wedding!” when really, on the inside, I would have been deeply hurting.

You see, my whole life, I have deeply longed to get married. My parents were high school sweethearts, and so for the majority of high school, every guy I dated had to be “the one.” I thought for sure I would meet my future husband in high school and so I tried desperately to make this happen. And it failed. Time and time again.

And then college came around and I thought I would FOR SURE meet my future husband in college. After all, that’s what college is basically for, right?

WRONG.

Four years went by. Failed relationship after failed relationship. Heartbreak after heartbreak. Before I knew it, I was walking across that graduation stage single as single can be. I didn’t have that engagement ring I had been so longing for, and even worse, I had NO prospects in sight.

So while I was at my best friend’s shower this weekend, I just began reflecting on those seasons. They were definitely extremely difficult and I can still remember the sting of unmet desires and unanswered prayers. But then I began to reflect on how truly SWEET those seasons were, in retrospect. Those seasons were the most intimate and sweet times with my Jesus. He was so near, so close to my aching heart. And He taught me so much.

I thought I would make a little list for all of you filled with lessons from my single seasons.

(Disclaimer: I am still technically “single” meaning I unmarried and yes, still not engaged 😉 BUT, the Lord did bless me with an amazing Christian man who I have been happily dating for 10 months now! )

Lessons learned:

1.) Jesus really is enough. I know it sounds so cliche and it can be super frustrating when you hear older married women preach this to you in your seasons of singleness. But He is. If you let Him in during your times of deepest longing, you will discover that He satisfies every longing and desire you have for intimacy and love.

2.) Singleness is a gift. Once again, SO CLICHE, but so true. While you are single, you can focus so much on your relationship with Jesus and your friends and others. It is the only time in your life when you can actually be “selfish” and by that I mean, focus on growing spiritually and emotionally.

3.) The Lord does NOT withhold from us!! Pslam 84: 11 reads,”For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.” When I was single, I always felt like I was missing out on something. I didn’t feel whole or complete. But when I look back, God was not holding out on me! He always knows what is best for us and only He knows when we are ready for a healthy, God-honoring relationship. We have to trust Him with this desire.

4.) Surrendering my unanswered prayers and desires was SO worth it. For the longest time, I just couldn’t seem to surrender my relationships to Jesus. They were my “Isaac” meaning they were the thing that mattered most to me in life and I couldn’t seem to trust Jesus with this deep desire in my heart. However, when I did finally surrender, He did more than I could ever ask for or imagine! HE KNOWS WHAT HE IS DOING.

5.) Allowing yourself to embrace seasons of singleness can actually be such a gift to your future husband! How? Jesus can literally transform you from the inside out during these seasons and there is no greater gift to your future spouse than becoming a woman who is confident in herself and her worth in Jesus alone. NOW THAT is wifey material 🙂

So those are some of my lessons that I learned from my single seasons. I am so glad I had those times in my life. They truly made me the woman I am today! I also thought I would include some tips on how to make it through these sometimes very difficult seasons.

1.) I began praying for my future husband while I was single. I went through a book called “Praying for your Future Husband” By Robin Jones Gunn and Tricia Goyer. SOOO GOOD. I went through it several times and it helped me have hope and vision during those seasons.

2.) I started writing letters to my future husband filled with prayers and hopes and dreams. This also helped me and I know it will be a great gift to my future one on our wedding day!

3.) I focused on my friends and family. I really began to enjoy the freedom and fun times I could have while being single and I made some truly amazing memories with my GIRLS!!

4.) I poured into ministry and serving Jesus. I joined the leadership team at my college ministry and found opportunities to serve people. Serving people gets our eyes off of ourselves and really helps us focus in on what matters!

So, my dear captivating one. I know these seasons of being single can be tough. I know what it is like to pray and wonder if your wedding day will ever come. I know what it’s like to look around and see everyone dating, engaged, or married and feel the sting of that desire burning deep inside your heart. But just remember that our Heavenly Father knows us way better than we know ourselves. He knows exactly what and who we need in our lives at exactly what time. He will never withhold a good thing from us. Speak truth over your singleness today and remember that Jesus alone satisfies and He is desperately jealous for your WHOLE heart. And giving Him your whole heart while you wait for your future spouse will never make it onto your list of regrets.

In Christ,

Amanda Marie

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