Over the past months, I’ve had a few conversations with some friends who are also single. They talk with yearning about being married, with a wistful look in their eye. Though they may not intend to come across this way, their conversation betrays discontentment. They comment hopefully, “I’m sure God has someone just around the corner for me” or “It’s so hard to watch my friends get married” or “I just keep getting older” or “When will my time come?”
Meanwhile both of my younger brothers proposed marriage to their sweet ladies over the past couple weeks. I’m quite beyond excited for them! The recent proposals have prompted several well-meaning ladies to encourage me with the words, “Your time will come.” Though I understand their heart behind those words, as they look at their happy marriage and wish the same for me, I would like to respectfully disagree.
My time will not come.
“Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:16
After marriage of course, there is the expectation to have children. And after having a child, a new mother will undoubtedly hear, “Just you wait till they’re in school, have their driver’s permit, graduate high school, leave for college, get married, give you grandchildren!” So what is the end goal really? When will it be “my time?”
I have wrestled with this idea, and am excited to share my thoughts with you ladies – single, married, mothers, widows alike.
My time is now.
Marriage does not equal the climax of my life.
Today I can wake up and speak an encouraging word to my sister. Today I can make a meal for a mom with sick kids. Today I can treat an exhausted mama friend to an at-home manicure and grown-up conversation while her kiddos nap. Today I can take the weekend off to fly across the country to visit my nephew. Today I can bring a cup of coffee to a sleep-deprived new mom. Today I can bake cookies with a friend and bring them to a shut-in church member. Today I can babysit for a friend so she can have a quiet date night with her husband. Today I can text a far-away friend to let her know I miss her.
My life won’t begin when and if I get married. In fact, in some ways, marriage will hinder my ability to invest my time and energy in others, since as a wife, I would be investing my time and energy into my husband.
A good friend of mine recently confided that since getting married and having two young children, she is the loneliest she has ever been. Her husband works full time, and her children don’t provide much yet in the way of intelligent conversation. From my single perspective, it seems like she is living the ideal life – married with kids. But from her perspective, she is lonely and would love the opportunities to socialize that I have.
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”Ecclesiastes 3:1
What a privilege this single life is! I make my own schedule, manage my own finances, and have the freedom to spend time with friends!
In fact, as I seek to be a blessing to other ladies, I have been astounded at how many times I have been the one blessed. As I listen to my married friends, I pick up little clues about their healthy relationship, and log things in my brain as qualities I would seek in a future husband. As I watch my mama friends train their little ones, I notice and appreciate their demeanor as they exhibit God’s love to their children. I learn so much from my married and mama friends, and overall it has taught me to appreciate my single life!
Your time is now!
“For I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”Philippians 4:11b
If you are yearning to be married, I encourage you to befriend some happily married ladies. If you are praying for children to be added to your family, I encourage you to find a way to be a blessing to a family who has children. If your children are all grown, I encourage you to converse with single ladies about anything other than why they’re not married yet – trust me, there’s so much more to my life than finding a husband!
The goodness of God led Amanda to repentance when she was a 12-year-old girl, and despite a heart prone to wander, He daily draws her to Himself. She continues to attend Lehigh Valley Baptist Church where she was raised, and enjoys sharing digital art and snippets of what God is teaching her on her Instagram account (@amandaangrrr). When Amanda isn’t working her day-job of managing an insurance agency, she is likely to be found trying a new local restaurant, sipping a coffee delicacy, learning something from a podcast or audio book, or finding an excuse to show off pictures of her nieces & nephews.
Amanda, I LOVE this! My thoughts exactly. Even as a married woman with two children it’s easy to be looking at whatever the next thing is instead of focusing on how God wants to use me in the stage I’m in. Thanks for the reminder. 🙂
Excellent, Amanda! Amen.
This article, written weeks ago, goes so well with the message that Pastor preached last night, “Contentment is the Key.” His main points were: Purpose to do God’s will; Be at peace in God’s will; Keep an eternal perspective. You’ve nailed it, Amanda! Wonderfully written! I love you ~ Mom
Amanda, you have much insight for a young single girl. The time is now….enjoy each aspect of your life and be content. Each on has it’s unique challenges and blessings.
Great truths and encouragement, Amanda – for all of us – our time really is today to serve the Lord and others. Yes, godliness with contentment truly is great gain!
Thank you so much!!! This is applicable to me in my relationship, while waiting for my guy to finish school before we can move towards the next step. I need to cherish the here and now. God has lessons and ministry and life for me here too! Thank you for the reminder!
Thank you also for sharing your thoughts in this area while you are in the now of it. It is one of my greatest regrets I didn’t share what God taught me in singlness while I was single, because now that I have a guy, it appears that my single friends think I do not understand and because I am ‘ so happy’ I can have nothing helpful to say. Not that it’s about me or people hearing my thoughts… I just see them struggle and want to reach out to them to encourage, but, unfortunately it is more unwelcome than helpful. 🙁 So thank you for being open about this.
What a great message Amanda! Serve God wherever you are at. Thank you for your encouragement to all ladies!
Very insightful. Thanks for writing the article!
Well said. I plan on sharing this with the ladies in my youth group.
Our God knows exactly what He is doing with each one of our lives!
But now, O Lord, thou art our father;
we are the clay, and thou our potter;
and we all are the work of thy hand.
It is encouraging to see you serving with joy and trusting the Lord!
This is a well written piece on finding contentment in every season. There are truths to apply to every stage of life.
Amanda Anger…say’n it like it is. Love it! 🙂
And can I just say, just because the Lord has blessed you with a husband and kids doesn’t mean you can’t still serve others. It’s just on a more limited basis.
If I say I trust God, then my life should reflect an attitude of contentment, come what may!
Amanda, Amen. From one who knows what it is to wait for God’s timing for marriage and the blessing of filling that time in with other wonderful ministry opportunities. Thank you for encouraging young ladies to be content.
Donna Kuzel, married at 39.
Great! All ladies need this perspective
Great Biblical thoughts, Amanda! Thanks for sharing it with us.
You did a wonderful job writing this article; why am I surprised? I am sure it is a good challenge to many . . . as the comments attest. As we pray for you we didn’t really know your emotions on this matter but we are happy to know you have learned (or are learning)contentment in the present situation, knowing God has a plan and His plan is the best for us.
My younger sister and several younger cousins got married before I did. I did not feel sorry for myself but it would annoy me getting a timeline every time someone in my family would get married. I believed God had a purpose for me and it may not have included getting married. Once upon a time I wanted to be the cool doctor serving with Doctors Without Borders, serving remote African villages and helpless towns of Asia….. today I worry about Sara and Danny’s homework, Danny performance in PSSA, Sara piano, Danny’s soccer… they have replaced everything and become my highest priority…..these responsibilities distract you from a bigger priority of serving the Lord exclusively. Getting married is honorable but staying single is better. Now who said that ?