Hooray! It's time for our first Guest Post in the Singleness Series! I don't know about you, but I'm excited. Like, really excited. SO many of your sweet selves have talked about how singleness is a subject that gets ignored or glossed over, and this series is a fierce attempt to be honest about being single. Let's be brave together, and push this topic into the light.
Speaking of bravery, today you have the pleasure of hearing from Bailey Jean Roberts, the vibrant and passionate lady behind the blog Brave Love. It's been so lovely to get to know her better, and hear her heart. Read on, and find out why Anthropologie dishes have everything to do with loving Jesus well.
Also, will you pray traveling mercies for Bailey Jean? She's moving back to Texas today!
Hi sweet friends! My name is Bailey Jean and I blog over at Brave Love. I am a Texas girl but I have spent the last year adventuring with Jesus in Seattle. I have a passion for storytelling, a desire to empower artists within the church, and I love encouraging women in all seasons of life. I am also footloose and fancy free (aka single), and today I want to talk to you about thriving.
"Singleness" is a term I'd throw out the window if I could. I’ve read every article, book, and blog out there about singleness, and I’m still sitting in the middle of it. Actually, for the first time I’m thriving in the middle of it. I firmly believe we were put on this earth to thrive, to rejoice in the daily gifts from God, whether or not we have a significant other to walk with.
In all of my reading and research about singleness, I found the book Lady in Waiting. One sentence drastically changed my perspective on being single, and for that I am thankful. “Invest in beautiful dishes.” That's it. No rhyming revelation about the joy and freedom of the unmarried woman. “Invest in beautiful dishes.” It was the kick that I needed.
When someone is engaged, the world suddenly says, "Congrats! Now you deserve that bright blue Kitchen Aide mixer!" or "You made it! Here is a stack of plates from Crate & Barrel!" But what about me? What about us? Are we to live on mismatched paper plates and have a folding table in the dining room because we’re not married?
Those are bitter questions I asked. I went to each wedding and shower with a smile on my face, but inside something was cracking. I poured out my heart to God, but no man magically appeared. And I was good at wallowing in that. But by the grace of God I pressed on in prayer, picked up a book resigning myself to the single life, then found myself running off to Anthropologie to buy beautiful dishes.
The connection? The change?
Contentment. Celebration. I came to realize I didn't have to put my life or my dreams on hold, waiting for the "someday” man. My desire for a best friend to run after God with has not disappeared, but my feeling of lack has lessened. I wanted to thrive, and I realized that didn’t have to wait.
I bought the beautiful dishes. I filled my home with friends and festivities. I packed my bags and moved to Seattle. I've packed them again and am moving back home. I have a God who wants to celebrate each moment with me. He's not saving His blessings for later, waiting to give me a wedding present if/when that day comes. He says, "Beloved, come away with me. Today."
The same goes for you.
Ladies, I want to encourage you. Don’t be afraid to thrive. Don’t be afraid to stretch your arms wide, filling the space and season you’re in to the fullest. I teetered on the edge, wishing away this season in my life for too long. When I finally took off into the deep, the unknown, alone, the waves crashing over me never felt so sweet. Don't be afraid to go all in, right now, where you are.
Unmet desires are an opportunity for greater intimacy with Jesus. Dive into that.
Conquering your desire for a husband does not mean convincing yourself you don't want one, or that you won't get one. Conquering your desire is acknowledging the hold it has on your life and saying, "Lord, I trust you with this. I trust you with my life. I trust you today." The Bible says the desires in our hearts are from the Lord. We are to take delight in Jesus, to rejoice in His ways and His words, and trust that the desires He has given us are for a purpose.
Trust Him with that desire. Buy those beautiful dishes. Dream big and bold and in six different directions. Thrive.
Be sure to pop in next Thursday to hear from the fabulous Rachel Cox!