Today's insights come to you courtesy of Rachel from Oh, Simple Thoughts. Simply put, Rachel is one of the best ladies in the blogging community that I know. She's always got great content on her blog, shares her heart honestly, and seems to always have some awesome new idea up her sleeve! Like a link-up about hospitality or a real life blogging retreat :)
Read on, friends!
Hi friends, I am Rachel, and I blog about my little life and family over at Oh, Simple Thoughts. Thanks so much to the Rachel of Our Yellow Door for having me today! I am happily married to my husband of one year, Ben, and we have a little cockapoo puppy named Piper that we adore. I am deeply grateful for my marriage, and my husband, but I am here today to share about the long journey I had to finding true contentment in the season before marriage...singleness.
I have always been a very emotionally driven individual. I feel deeply, and long to be encouraged and verbally affirmed. This was evident in my life in many ways. But one of the primary ways that was seen was the deep craving I had to be affirmed by relationships. This went beyond that of romantic relationships into my friendships and my family relationships. I was driven by the need to be affirmed, validated and recognized by those around me.
I think that most of my life I was unaware of this driving force, but it became very clear when I got to college. I went through two very hard break ups during my sophomore and junior years of college, and I was devastated both times. Both guys were Godly men, and overall the relationships were very focused on the Lord...both times I felt very confident that the guy I was dating would be my husband...and both times I was wrong. After the second break up, I think that I found myself in a state of panic.
I was approaching the second semester of my junior year, and I was single. This is when most girls start getting serious with their boyfriends, and some ever begin getting engaged. So I was determined to find a guy...and I looked at every guy as a potential boyfriend. I would size them up in my mind, run through a checklist, and begin asking myself..."Is this guy the one?", "Or is he my future husband?"... I did this until I was driving my friends and myself totally insane.
You see, I was lost, totally lost, in my discontentment. I craved affirmation, love, and validation, and I was looking everywhere but to the Lord to find these things.
This all came out over a Christmas break when I just hit the bottom of my emotions. I was so tired of searching, so worn out from coming up dry. I poured out my heart to the Lord late one night...I sobbed about my desires, my fears, and my hurts, and laid them at the foot of the Cross.
Shortly after that night I came across these two verses, that gave me such purpose and encouragement during my season of singleness...
"It is not for you to know the times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority."
"...The unmarried or unbetrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband."
1 Corinthians 7:34
I clung to the verse in Acts knowing that the Lord knew when this season would end, or if it would end, and He would sustain me through it. He has all the seasons of my life fixed, and by his authority he will carry me through them. What a relief this was...for me as a planner, to know that there is a plan, the Lord has a timeline, and a plan, and all I have to do is trust that timeline.
So I began to view singleness as a gift. As a time to know the Lord more, and to dig deep into who He is. It was beautiful and prepared me so much for meeting my husband (just 4 months later). Singleness is a sweet time to grow (and that means sometimes there are growing pains), but I am so thankful for that season and how it shaped me!
I would love to connect with you all! Please come see me over at my blog
, or on social media!
I can relate to Rachel's story! The Lord is trustworthy to sustain you through whatever season you're struggling in. He carried me when I was single and struggling, and He carries me still when I'm married and struggling!
Come 'round next Thursday to hear from sweet Madison!