The Lord loves convicting my heart, doesn’t He? Yes, another biblical based post, just because I am learning SO much from God right now in regards to my own life and because I feel it will be so relevant to others, I must share!
I don’t know what it is, but once you hit your late 20’s, it seems as if everyone you know is either doing one of three things – getting married, having a baby, or living up their life with a successful job/relationship. And with the joyous help of social media, it seems as if all of these exciting life events that are happening to your friends will be broadcasted in your face 24/7. So it becomes a constant reminder that either a) you’re not engaged, b) you’re not married and having a baby, or c) your life pretty much sucks.
Now, I hate to be a downer, but it’s only natural that as humans we like to compare and compete with everyone else. So my natural tendency is to compare my own life to the lives of everyone else I know and right now, my life doesn’t seem all too exciting. To make matters worse, as any girl I’m sure would relate, being engaged, having a baby or just having a wonderful life in general is a girl’s life goal. Ok, I don’t mean that it’s the only life goal we ever have, because that would be kind of shallow, but these events are all pretty important milestones that us women REALLY look forward too. And because I am ticking closer to 30 as each day goes by, the thought of “what if I never get married” is becoming much more prominent.
So because of all this nonsense and worry, I’ve brought it upon myself to have a mini panic attack after hearing the news of yet another engagement of someone I know and I’ve been stuck in a bit of a slump ever since. I went through the typical (pathetic, non-self-loving) motions – “why me? What’s wrong with me? Why doesn’t anyone love me?” for the past week and half. And then today I had enough. I sat down and I prayed. And I had a little conversation with God that went something like this:
“Hey God, yup, it’s me again. OK seriously what’s going on here? Why am I the last one to get married out of everyone? You know I want it so bad. Like I’ve wanted it since I was a little girl. And my dream has always been to be a wife and a mother. So why won’t you just let it happen already? I’m ready now. I’m going to be 27. Can you just make my boyfriend ready to propose already so we can move on with this? I reallllly don’t want to get to 30 and not be married yet, so please spare me that embarrassment ok? Work with me?”
And then God, being the loving Father that He is, said no.
At first I was upset. I mean it’s normal for any grown 27 year old woman my age to throw a temper tantrum when her Almighty Father says “no” to one of her biggest requests, right? Yeah. I don’t know. But I was seriously upset. I started to even doubt His love for me. I started to doubt whether I was even good enough or beautiful enough or lovable enough for a man to even want me. But then I realized right away that it was all just Satan speaking in my ear. So I started to ask why instead. Why is He saying “no” to me right now?
I began listening to a sermon from The Gathering Oasis Ministry about Christian dating, and even though it was kind of unrelated, the pastor began to speak about something that completely answered my question. He was talking about women just like me who were asking God why He wasn’t bringing them a husband or children or whatever it is that they wanted out of life. He then spoke about how most of the time the reason is because it isn’t in God’s timing yet and because we aren’t trusting God with our desires. The other thing that really stuck out with me, that I know for sure was a message directly from the Holy Spirit was this one line: Patience is a fruit of the spirit. And contentment solves the need to be impatient.
Whoa. That is truth literally hitting you in the gut.
God gave me my answer. He wasn’t saying “no” entirely, He was just saying “not yet.” He was trying to explain to me that I was being really impatient and not trusting in His timing for what He wants in my life for me right now. And because I wasn’t trusting Him and being really impatient, it was breeding a lot of discontentment in my life to the point where if I continued this way, it could very easily ruin the wonderful relationship I already had going. He made me aware that I wasn’t enjoying the waiting period – the discovering and learning period of a relationship. He told me that I was being too impatient, that I shouldn’t be in such a hurry to fast forward to marriage because in reality I’m still not ready because He is still working on me.
This hit me pretty hard, and I’ll be honest, it was kind of disappointing to hear that I wasn’t getting what I wanted still, but at the same time, I do feel at peace. I feel like I really do need to trust in His timing and His plan, because He really is the only one who knows best. It made me think that what if I really am not ready for marriage or baby and what if God is saving me from a lot of heartbreak because of my lack of preparation right now. I know He needs to work in me still. I know there is a lot to learn. And I’m sure there is a lot of work that needs to be done on my future husband as well (whoever that may be.) So yeah, it’s kind of disappointing, but it’s also kind of exciting, because I know that if I do trust and be patient and endure like He says, then the result will be something beautiful. I don’t want to rush things and make them a mess.
So here’s my lesson to you all, trust in the Lord and be patient. I know it’s hard to endure that period of waiting, but it will probably be worth it. And in the meantime, learn to be content right now. Find joy in the present moment. Maybe it’s not where you’d like to be, but enjoy it for what it is right now. Find happiness in it. Life is too short to be miserable over waiting for things you want to happen. They will happen when they happen, if they are meant to. I just thought of this metaphor that relates. It’s like fruit. If you force it to ripen before it is ready, it won’t be very sweet. But if you let it ripen on its own, you can guarantee it will be delicious and rewarding. So let the events in your life ripen naturally.
And for all of my married friends or soon to be married friends or friends with babies or even friends with super successful, amazing lives, I’m happy for you. There’s nothing worse than being bitter over someone else’s happiness. So I’m not going to let myself be that person. My time will come too. I just have to keep reminding myself – patience and trust, patience and trust, patience and trust. I think you’ll find that once you begin to let go of holding on tight to the thing you want most, somehow it will end up in your hands anyway when the time is right.
The Self Love Challenge:
Have patience with the things in your life you want most. Trust in God’s timing. And allow things to ripen naturally.