“Too many women throw themselves into romance because they’re afraid of being single, then start making compromises and losing their identity. I won’t do that.” —Julie Delpy
As we grow older and mature, relationships, marriage, and love becomes more apparent to us singles, am I right?
It seems like everyone is in a relationship, getting engaged/married or announcing the arrival of a new baby.
Today’s article is slightly different as I’m bringing back a mash up of two very old posts (June 2010 and April 2013) about this very subject.
I must preface and say that this topic of love and relationships has surfaced a lot in my conversations with friends lately.
So, I thought I’d republish two old articles by intertwining them and providing commentary in parentheses.
To all my single Christian brothers and sisters in Christ, this one’s for you.
Oh and get ready because it’s going to be a long one.
THE ACCOLADES OF BEING SINGLE
I have arrived at a point in my life where I am completely content with myself. (Almost eight years later and this is still true.) I know who I am finally and it feels…SO good. How did I get there you ask? I got there by being single. (Yep, still true story.)
I am not one to date a lot or the type to need to always have a boyfriend. (Still don’t.) For the most part, I have not found anyone worth my time to fit into my schedule to get to know them. Believe me, time is not an excuse as to why I don’t date; it used to be…until I realized that I would make time for those I care about, that and I was being picky.
Being hopelessly picky is why I have not dated often.
My main standards for men to meet has not and will never change: a (strong) Christian (recently, I’ve learned that my partner doesn’t have to be a
strong Christian), doesn’t smoke, doesn’t drink like a fish and faithful in their “promise” to God (I can’t remember what I meant by ‘promise’, haha). Someone who sincerely cares not only about me, but about others whether they are family, friends or strangers is an eye-catching quality. I’ve known the type of person I am/want to be with. (Still do.)
I know what you’re going to ask next. How many men have met your criteria? Only three guys have met them (it’s more than that now).
Now, when I think back, I am so glad it never worked with anyone in my past. I can’t imagine myself being with them now. I am proud that I’m someone who will not change who I am, what I’m looking for, and that I should never change who I am. On top of that, nor should I settle for anything less than what I’m looking for. Until then, I will be patient and let God do His thing. (Man, I really am so proud I still believe this 100%!)
BE IN CONSTANT LEARNING MODE
Throughout my time of being single, I have learned so much about myself by people I’ve encountered and hung out with. This, in turn, has assisted me greatly in learning about my identity. (Preachhh, young Huongie! Preach!)
Additionally, I have been fortunate to witness my friends’ relationships with their partners. This has helped me to know what I do want and more importantly, do NOT want in a relationship. Their experiences have reinforced why I am so proud of who I have become: strong, independent, loving, and grounded. (Both short and long relationships my friends have been in/ended has given me so much insight!)
Am I right or am I right? Well my siblings in Christ, I’m here to tell you how to find Mr./Mrs. Right. You need to do two things:
#1: Master the Art Form of Being Single
It’s okay to be picky. (You hear that?)
For the last decade, people have constantly asked me, “Why is a girl like you single?” My answer was always, “I’m too busy for a guy. I don’t have time. I work, go to school, and take care of my mom, so I have no time.” (It’s true, I was a VERY busy college kid.) Only after finding myself did I realize that I had been giving the wrong answer the whole time.
My decision to be single for over a decade is because I’m picky.
There. I said it. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not being so picky to where I’m not looking. I still have my bait out there, I feel that I just haven’t caught the right fishie yet. (Still true.)
You feel the same way too? Do you feel that if you met the right guy or girl, you would make time for him or her no matter how busy you are?
And learn to be okay with being single during this season of your life…
At first, I thought having so many criteria was wrong, that I wasn’t being fair by not giving others a chance. However, as time went on and guys walked in and out of my life, I began to learn who I was, what I wanted from life, and the different types of guys there are out there. (I learned a lot about men and their mentality.)
With each experience, I became a bit pickier because I did not want to deal with guys who were not only unsure about their lives, but of themselves, their beliefs (in whatever it may be), and what they wanted out of life. (All the praise hands here because I still very much believe in this! A confident man has my attention. Note, I said confident, not cocky.)
Being single has contributed to helping me learn about who I am and what I want in my future husband. I’m happy to say that I am not one of those girls who tries hard by changing their morals, values, and beliefs just to have that “in a relationship status” or just so my S/O wouldn’t break up with me or or to gain someone’s love/attention. That’s just not what I believe if one wants to find true happiness. (Amen, sister girl!)
While you’re single, learn about yourself and who YOU are…
I will never forget the scene in the early years of Gossip Girl when Nate Archibald was talking to Blair Waldorf about who she was to him. His words had hit me so hard that I sat up and wrote it down: “You can’t fight who you are.”
I learned from God that He made me an all-around girl. I began to really embrace the fact that it’s okay to have an interest in everything. It’s okay to be into video games, fashion, sports, history, science, writing, reading, traveling, etc., and not just clothes and beauty. I’m happy being different and feel great that I can bring something different to my friendships. I feel that being single for awhile has contributed to my all-around personality too. And I’m happy to be a great mix!
While you’re single, learn WHO you want to be with…
I am so excited that God has taught me that it’s okay to be picky with guys. Knowing God and His plans for me, I have had no problem being single. I’m just going to live my life, contributing to His kingdom all while waiting for the one for me. (I still feel the same way. Being single this long hasn’t bothered me like it used to.)
On my journey, I have learned that I want a guy who’s a Christian, but not just any Christian, a God-fearing Son of God who loves the Lord with ALL of his heart. I want someone who loves Him more than He would love me. (Future hubby’s heart is what matters so much to me. Looks will fade, but his heart won’t.)
I want someone who is witty, can find humor in every situation, passionate, contemplative, thoughtful, brave, has goals in life, and has his morals and values grounded. This person has to be someone who is enthusiastic about life and learning. To me, someone who won’t change their beliefs for anyone else and knows that there is someone out there who will love them for who they are is so important.
Most of all, I want someone who trusts God so much to a point where being single is okay with him because he believes that the love of his life is out there and that it’s only a matter of time because God is doing the planning. (Can’t wait for God to reveal my special love to me!)
While you’re searching, have faith…
Being on the opposite side of the road from Blair, I am fighting for who I am and I will NOT change because I want someone who’s just like me: happy with who they are, picky about who they date, loves the Lord and is excited about life no matter what’s happening to them/going on around them. (Emotional intelligence is so attractive in a person!)
I know God has, is, and will take great care of me and my love life. He will take awesome care of you and your love life too.
I know and believe in Him with all of my heart. And it’s one of my proudest attributes. I trust God with everything in my life. Including finding the love of my life. (I’m sure that’s why I days like Valentine’s Day don’t bother me anymore.) Do you wholeheartedly trust Him?
He knows who I’m looking for because I tell Him. He also knows who He wants for me because with each guy I come across, the next guy is better than the last. (True story.) My Lord proves to me that He is working by weeding out all the ones who aren’t meant for me. (Best gardener ever!) Does He know your desires?
And be patient…
All you have to do on your end is put your requests in His to-do box, pray, continue to pray boldly, be patient and have faith in Him. I firmly believe that the one God has planned for you exists. Until you find him or her, be single contently, go after your own dreams, and obey God’s commands all while waiting patiently. The thrilling part is KNOWING that s/he’s out there.
Yes, being single is hard because having patience is hard too. (I’m very impatient even with recovering from being sick.) However, we need to learn that it’s God’s watch and not ours. And most of all, that His watch is not broken.
In the meantime, learn about yourself, what this world needs that you can give back to, and love others. Factor in what you want from life and people, learn from your experiences, and have patience. Being single won’t be so hard when you’re busy. Before you know it, you would’ve mastered an art, something that not a lot of people cannot do
#2: Seek a God-loving Man/Woman
Years ago, someone new came into my life wanting to date me, but he turned out to be someone who used to be a God-loving man. Knowing my Lord is the only One for me, I told him that we were not going there. (Right now, I know God can change anyone’s heart.) I know with all my heart and soul that the person I want to be with is someone who loves the Lord MORE than me.
Rachel, my best friend, once asked me why and I explained my reasons on why my guy should love God more than me: by loving God more, he proves to me how strong his faith is during the good and bad times, that no matter what happens, he will always trust the Lord, lean on Him, and give Him all the glory/praise. I know that if he does that with the Lord, that our marriage will be strong and that his love for me will be the same, but at the earthly level and that’s more than I could ever ask for.
Yes, there are times when being single can make you feel sad or like you aren’t good enough for someone, but when you realize that God has plans for you, the waiting process becomes easier. When you realize that God knows you are good enough, it becomes easier. (When you know your self-worth and love yourself, you’ll know how God felt about you all along.)
Know your priorities…
For me, I’m single because He has instilled in me to find a man who loves Him first. Going through every guy who has ever said that they cared about me, loved me, etc. has helped me to understand that I’m meeting them for a reason: to be one guy closer to the one of my dreams. (I’m still waiting for you to find me, honey!)
I don’t care if I’m not married or engaged like everyone else my age seems to be. (I’m now in my early 30s and this is still happening, lol…man, time sure flies! Geez!) My time will come when God sees fit. The time I have for myself as I’m moving and shaking things up not only in my life, but in the lives of every person I encounter is a blessing. I know that when God knows I’m ready and knows that my guy is ready is when He’ll reveal a wonderful guy and that friendship will develop into something God wants me to be blessed with.
I hope my two cents have helped. However, before mastering the single life and seeking a Godly S/O, I advise you to SEEK GOD FIRST AND LEARN OF HIS LOVE FOR YOU. Refuse to live without Him and know that you cannot do or have anything without Him.
HOPE THROUGH STRUGGLES
Many people ask me, “What’s the secret, Huong? Why are you always so happy?”
If you haven’t noticed through my social media sites, I’m really content with the life God has given me. How I express myself on Twitter, Facebook, and this blog is how I truly feel. No hiding. No shame. (This is still true! What’s the point in pretending to be someone else? Well, unless you work in the entertainment industry for a living.)
I’m happy because I refuse to do anything without Him.
I know I can’t do anything without Him by my side. By handing my entire life over, I have nothing to worry about. I have no burdens to carry because He’s carrying it all for me. He’s in total control of everything and I LOVE it! (It’s less stressful too!)
Let me tell you, if you knew everything I’ve been through, you’d be wondering and asking me why I’m still smiling. In return, let me ask you this, what’s left during our trials and tribulations? What do you have during the difficult times that no one can take away from you? Your hope (that’s why Psalm 130:5 is my favorite verse!) and faith.
All I did was put every single one of my problems in God’s to-do box, stopped worrying about it and prayed over my problems. It’s that easy! And boy, is He answering! For me, it’s great to have no worries because I know God will take care of me. (Coming out on the other side of hardship is the kind of experience you need to keep your relationship strong.)
If you are struggling with the single life, do the above. Seek Him first, give Him complete control, tell Him what/who you want while you seek a God-loving man/woman, pray about it, and have faith by not worrying about it! It’s so important to have faith.
Being in constant communication with God
Side note, another way to get closer to finding the One is to meet with Him and seeing what He has to say. I love the feeling of being in His house, singing and signing (those who can’t hear need to know about Him too) about His word/love and hearing love-filled messages because I know God is using our pastors to speak to me. Many times over, there have been messages that leave me with my jaw on the floor. Why? It was something I prayed about that week or even that day that I didn’t talk to anyone about personally!
I can feel my faith and relationship with Him getting stronger by the day.
Can you say your relationship with the Lord is strong or getting stronger?
Can you say that you are truly seeking a God-loving man/woman (by doing it His way)?
Just like you, I have days where I feel sad because I don’t have anyone to share my life with too. However, when I think about how God has worked in my life, I know that He’s listening, knows what/who is on my heart, and is constantly reminding me that the one He has plans for me to be with is out there somewhere. He’s telling me that He’s taking His time to mold each of us to be the best before we meet each other so that when we do finally meet, we can be stronger together than we were when we were alone.
Can you imagine a strong, dynamic couple helping people, kicking butt, and adding names to the Book of Life in His name?! How humbling, honorable, and fun is that?! (Hashtag Power Couple!)
And guess what? The best part is that He’s telling my future guy the same thing.
Being single IS a blessing.
It just depends on how you look at this season in your life. Being single is not as bad as some would think. There are a few benefits to not being attached: 1) you learn about yourself and who you are and 2) you learn about who you want.
The key to these benefits is being patient, staying grounded and not settling for anything less than what you believe in. (To me, the super fun part is looking back and seeing yourself grow.) Oh and of course, having faith that the one you are looking for IS out there.
Sometimes you just have to not look in order to find them. (My best friend’s dad told me once, “It’s when you’re NOT looking is when you’ll find them.”)
I personally hope you see being single for the time being is an advantage.