This post is part 3 of my Summer Series featuring each of the Ten Christian Voices We Can’t Ignore from my e-book, Outside In, which you can get for free by subscribing to my newsletter here. I will be inviting guest posts, adapting parts of my book, and sharing original ideas. I hope you will follow along and consider picking up the book (for free).
In one of the chapters of my book I address the glorification of marriage within the church. Sometimes married people, like myself, make the mistake of assuming we understand what it’s like to be single because we were all, once upon a time, single. But more and more people are remaining single well into their 30’s, and the experience of single-hood as a twenty-something adult is different than being a single teenager or a college student. This is why I am relying on the voices of my single friends to inform this subject.
Today, I am excited to welcome Karla, a twentysomething single woman. I hope you’ll appreciate her poignant prose on the lies and the dream of marriage as much as I did.
I’m slipping again. Slipping into this whole mindset of I don’t need to work toward anything right now. Once I get married, then we’ll figure out together what in the world we’re supposed to be doing.
I’m not saying things can’t work out that way, but I can’t know that things will work out that way. So everyday for me is a fight to not settle, to keep dreaming, to keep pursuing goals, to keep thriving. To fight the mentality that marriage is just around the corner when the truth is, at this rate, it may be years and years away. And what am I going to be doing until then?
I should be:
None of this waiting.
It’s so easy to slip into this waiting, this mindset of procrastination. When I don’t want to learn Spanish. And I don’t want to research the things I care about. And I don’t want to work diligently at my day job. When I don’t want to develop my talents and hobbies. When I don’t want to wrestle through what God might be calling me to do alone. When I think this whole life thing will be so much easier with a spouse. I get lazy, and I think When I get married, then … Then.
And even when I have some renewed motivation to pursue goals, I’m really thinking This is all just a back-up plan if I don’t get married. This isn’t the real deal. I don’t really need to be serious about this. Real life starts when I get married.
I’m calling bullshit on myself. On the devil. Because all of that is a LIE.
A lie that keeps me paralyzed. A lie that keeps me lazy. A lie that keeps me from going anywhere. A lie that keeps me reordering my life so that it looks pleasing to men rather than God. A lie that keeps me manipulating my circumstances. A lie that keeps me from wholly seeking God.
Marriage is a dream. It’s a beautiful dream. It’s a God-given dream. But unlike other dreams, it’s not necessarily a goal I can work toward. There needs to be another person involved for that to happen. Because of this, I need to find other dreams. Dreams God has also given. Dreams I can put my working hands to.
Working is a privilege. Dreaming is a privilege. It would be foolish to take those things for granted.
Marriage is a dream I can wait for. But there are other dreams I am called to. There is a whole discipleship mission I am called to, everyday. There are people around me I am called to love, everyday. There’s a job I am called to do my best in, everyday. This mission, these people, even this job—as transient as they all may be—are not a part of waiting. They’re a part of trusting. They’re a part of living.
Karla is a twentysomething learning to live, love, and dream. She is a writer, singer, terrible dancer, and a growing advocate for justice and God’s kingdom work. She does social media and inbound marketing for trade books at David C Cook, and is a content manager at Live58. She lives in Colorado Springs where she volunteers with Restore Innocence and chases after mountain adventures as often as she can.
Read previous posts from Outside In Summer Series: