Singledom. Dictionary.com defines singledom as “the state of being unmarried or not involved in a long term relationship”. Sometimes this is good, and sometimes this is bad. Good times: I get to spend my money how I want (after paying my bills): travel, buy toys, and not worry about paying for others besides myself (unless I chose to take someone). I only have laundry and dishes for one person to deal with. I can come and go as I wish. Bad times: weekends alone, no one to talk to, eating by myself all the time, and no one to blame for things but self.
So there are good things and bad things about being single. Especially at church on all the special occasion days (father’s day, mother’s day, baby dedication day, marriage focused sermons, and kid focused sermons — never sermons to celebrate singleness). Not that I cannot celebrate the fact that I have a mother and father, I do and I appreciate them for everything they have done for me, but often I’m the third wheel making the cart out of balance because I bring nothing to the table but self. Can’t celebrate what you don’t have – no husband to make a father, no child to make myself a mother…no kids to make my parents grandparents.
Long term relationship. I had one once and I sabotaged it. Then I had another one that sabotaged me, some of my other relationships with a best friend and a family member, and my psych in general…and sadly sometimes continues to do so. Breaking free from relationships that have such an impact is hard.
All of this has been going through my mind lately, trying to find a niche for self in the world of couples and families. That’s when I got an email from a blog I follow about Love God Greatly, titles “Looking for Contentment in all The Wrong Places“. It talked about being distracted and not focusing on what we need to focus on. It quoted a scripture, Psalm 119:37, “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways”. I have a lot of worthless stuff crowding in my line of vision, and a lot of the times it is stuff that I focus on that keeps me from turning to the One that I know will give me Life and that more abundantly. It is hard to take our focus away from things that fulfill (physically, mentally, emotionally) us on a human level when we think that is all we have. By failing to “turn our eyes” from these things we are going to miss the most important part of our life journey and miss the one that can fulfill our mortality. He can give peace, comfort, and joy to us that we can only imagine…but we have to be willing to leave the “worthless things” behind.
Is it easy? No. Because as humans we want immediate results and tangible things. Walking away from things that we can see and feel is hard when we are going toward the unknown. But in the end it will be worth every step that we take…we just have to be willing to take the first step. It may be baby steps, and one step forward and two steps backwards…but eventually one day, we will look and see that we have finally accomplished it. But when we truly get to the point of allowing Him to “give us life in His ways” we will find contentment in the right place. And when we find contentment in the right place, then we will be content in whatever state we find ourselves…whether that be married, single, divorced, widowed, struggling, or living life to the fullest.
Taking life one step at a time…