Hey there, friend! Welcome back to the Singleness Series, the part of our regularly scheduled programming where I invite another blogger to share with us her thoughts about being single and loving the Lord well during that time. If you didn't read Lauren's thoughts last week on being Single and Brave, you should go do that.
This isn't a series that tells you Jesus will drop a husband in your lap if earn enough "good girl" points. This isn't a series that tells you it's wrong to want to get married. And this definitely isn't a series that tells you that you are somehow a second-class citizen if you don't have a spouse.
This IS a series that says Jesus is enough. In every season.
You have the privilege of hearing from a genuinely sweet and creative woman today, Jenna. Her blog is full of mouth-watering recipes (I mean, Peach Crisp with Maple Cream Sauce? *swoon*), her desire to give community to those around her, and beautiful pictures of that time she and Lamar went to FRANCE.
And her story about submitting to the Lord? Definitely worth reading.
Hello Our Yellow Door readers! I'm Jenna and I blog over at Dearest Love. I'm a second grade teacher and lover of Christ, my two kitties, and coffee. I'm so thankful Rachel invited me over to share in her singleness series. It continues to inspire and encourage me every time she shares a post!
I'm married now, so immediately someone might think that I can't relate to singleness. Actually, singleness was a huge part of my life growing up--in that I couldn't be single. So when I was happily dating someone and God called me to a time of singleness, I nearly had a breakdown. The journey He took me on was life changing.
Let's talk about submission. Oh goody.
I'm going to be so honest here: submission can be really difficult to do. However, I've learned over the last few years that it is necessary, rewarding, and that our God calls us to it. I think it's hard for us, because it puts us out of control. We grow up in a world where we desire to control most or all aspects of our lives.
A few years ago, when Lamar and I had been dating for a year and our relationship was pretty strong, I started to feel weird. God was definitely planting something in my heart, and I knew it was about my relationship with Lamar. I fought Him for a few weeks, even begged for God to change His mind. So I challenged God and continued to date Lamar. I didn't want us to break up, I saw myself marrying him one day, I loved his family, I loved him. Why would we break up? I finally prayed a prayer that would ultimately change my and Lamar's lives forever. I asked God to take away all of my feelings towards Lamar if God really did want us to be apart. God worked incredibly fast, and I went from believing I loved him to only liking him as a friend in a matter of days. This was absolutely crazy, and I knew that my prayer was answered.
The breakup was extremely difficult to get through, and for Him it was a huge surprise. I was a mess for the next few weeks, but I knew it was the right thing to do. I continued to communicate with God, and it became clear that God was drawing me closer to Him. I began spending more time reading the Bible and I began planning a mission trip back to Romania. I prayed for Lamar, and that he was also drawing near to God during this time.
Turns out, Lamar was drawing nearer to the Lord, too. We ended up in the same small group at church, he signed up for my mission trip to Romania, and he got baptized. In a matter of months I saw a new man in front of me! Still, though, I only saw him as a friend. I continued to pray and journal for my future husband, drawing nearer to God, and learning more about the Bible.
Exactly 8 months after our breakup, we went to dinner and I knew. After months of seeing him at small group, church, and friend gatherings, the feelings were back! I asked God for signs and He gave them. It was almost immediately that I knew Lamar would be my husband -- yes, sounds crazy! We talked, Lamar felt the same way, and we got back together. It would only be 8 months later that he would ask me to marry him.
I'm so incredibly thankful that I listened and submitted to the Lord when He called me into action. It wasn't easy and I wanted to fight, but I knew in my heart it was the right thing to do. And it was! Lamar was baptized during our time apart (I actually helped baptize him at church!). I believe we both needed alone time in the Lord before He was ready to put us together as husband and wife.
I continue to learn about submission as time goes on. What it looks like, how it should be done, and when it might happen. God can call us to action at any time regarding any thing. We must be prepared, brave, and willing to give up all control as difficult as it may be. I'm here with you, though!