Thoughts On Singleness
By Karen Myers
One day a group of single women in their thirties were philosophizing about their lot in life.
“I’m thirty-five years old,” said one. “If I live to be seventy, I’ve already lived half my life.”
“When I consider that,” said another, “it makes me wonder what is the purpose of life? Is it to get married and raise a family? Is it to get a job and work to support myself? What am I accomplishing with my life?”
“I’ve wondered the same thing,” said the third. “Even though I’m in my thirties, I don’t really feel settled. I keep thinking, that any time he will come along, and then I’ll feel that I finally belong-that at last life has meaning. I’ll buy that china I’ve been looking at. And I’ll have a real home, not just a tiny apartment. I’ll have dining room furniture with a lighted china cabinet to display my new china.”
“I’ve decided to live and make any future decisions as if I’ll be single for the rest of my life,” said one. “Why not buy the china now and enjoy it?”
“When I think of being single all my life, it’s depressing,” said another. “But I can see how it would make a difference in decision making. I guess it isn’t too early to look ahead and start planning for retirement.”
As the ladies continued discussing their apprehensions, anxieties, and, yes, even the advantages of being single, they arrived at the following conclusions.
Live Life Now
“Mr. Right” may come along next week, next year, or not at all. But life should not be put on hold while waiting. One should take ad-vantage of the opportunities available to do things she would enjoy or from which she would benefit. Such activities might include taking classes, either for credit or for personal benefit; pursuing hobbies or finding new ones; or traveling.
Plan For The Future
Although life should be enjoyed now, it is wise to plan for the future. What if a single lady never marries? Is she happy with the career she has? Or if she knew she would never marry, would she pursue another career? Is she preparing for the retirement years? Certainly we are looking for the Lord to return at any time. However, so were the apostles.
Suppose “Mr. Right” did come by tomorrow. Would his bride-to-be be ready? Has she learned to live within a budget? cook? keep house? A single woman should learn organizational and homemaking skills now, for even though she is unmarried, she is a homemaker. She is making a home for herself.
Be Happy By Giving
Happy people are giving people. Singles who live alone may need to look for ways to give of themselves. They should strive to develop sensitivity to the needs of others. Some suggestions- are calling or visiting someone who is lonely or in the hospital, sending a card of appreciation or encouragement, or just looking for something for which to compliment someone.
Participate In Church Activities
Another avenue of giving involves church projects. Many types of ministries are available. These may include teaching a Sunday school class or a home Bible study, working with Bible quizzing, being a Scout leader, going to nursing home services, participating in Ladies Auxiliary projects, and others, depending upon the local church. Not only is involvement in these activities of benefit to the church, but serving others is a blessing to the one who serves.
Be Dedicated To Work
Especially if the job or career is service oriented, focusing one’s energies on her work can be rewarding and bring a joy to life. Being involved in such a job can make a person feel useful and needed that her life counts for something.
And if she is fortunate enough to work with someone who appreciates her efforts, she is doubly blessed.
When a person concentrates on what she has rather than on what she does not have, she will find many things for which to be thankful. Thanking, praising, and worshiping God will lift one’s spirit. One should live with an “attitude of gratitude.”
Ultimately, worshiping God is the purpose of life for everyone-married or single. As Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 12:13, “Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man [woman].”
Perhaps this should be number one on the list, for it is the basis of living a contented life. Sometimes one may be tempted to question God. After all, marriage was His idea. “Why, then, am I still single?” one may wonder. However, if she can overcome doubts and fears with faith and trust, she can say with the Apostle Paul, “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (Philippians 4:11).
God really does know what He is doing, and if our lives are committed to Him, He has everything under control. We may not have all the answers, but we do have a promise: “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:20).
This article “Thoughts On Singleness” written by Karen Myers is excerpted from Reflections the January/February 1987 edition.