This is the last year of my twenties, and I can say what a roller coaster of relationships I’ve been in. From the immature & gullible stages in my early 20’s, to the maturing mid-twenties, to the seasoned late twenties. I have encountered the real, and the not so real relationships. I have encountered the hopefuls. The wishful. The prideful. I have encountered more than enough hurt one can bear. Criticism from close ones. The side eye from my family. The question ‘what’s wrong with you’? With relationships, I have encountered everything to know… what not to do…but one thing I forgot to do is be single.
Now I had my stages where… couple of months, half a year… few months where I was ‘single’ before getting into another ‘thing’ or relationship. I thought that time span was good enough to get over an ex. But in those times I was still entertaining men, nothing serious, but still entertaining them. But those flings kept my mind off being actually ‘single’. They kept my mind off doing what I needed to be doing; and that was to cultivate the person I was becoming. No, not me. I was still doing my thing, talking on the phone, going out…hanging out with guys because I felt the need to somewhat be sought after and needed. But in those times of singleness I did not once try to patch up the broken pieces that was shattered from my past boyfriends. Not once did I ask the help of the Lord for forgiveness. Not once try to complete the healing and mending from the last relationships. Not once try to live content as a single person. Not once.
Heartbreak doesn’t get much credit now a days. The term “love” is misused to the highest complexity. People say, “..ahhh get over it and move on!” But people don’t tell you HOW to. Because in all actuality, they don’t know and never did it themselves. They just know the best they know, and that is to keep it moving. But those who really love someone else (those that didn’t see a way out of their relationship, knowing that anything broken could be mended, those that saw good still in a broken person, that was patient, understanding and still gentle, that believed in the good) know the real heartbreak & brokenness feels like after a failed relationship or marriage. Real broken people know the sting of knowing a person who wasn’t reciprocating the same feelings of the desperation and ‘try’ in a failed relationship. And in the brokenness, we don’t how to mend ourselves back together So we sometimes repeat the cycle of jumping into yet another relationship to ‘forget’ our ex.
I gradually learned that being single is not a curse! The ‘lonely’ feeling is not a valid feeling from God! The alone time you have does not make you relationally ‘outcast’. Even though there will a time where you feel alone and by yourself, God is never away. We long for a physical person by our side, to cuddle, to talk, to touch, to cry to. But oh how we learn that physical person we filled in our lonely days meant nothing good for us in the end! Personally speaking, my heart hurts for the woman who is so afraid of being single, that she keeps filling her life with physical voids that does her no good. That she continues on with a man who is dampening her destiny. I was the former of the two, and look how long it took for me to get it! Almost 10 years! 10 years of trying to fill my ‘lonely’ days with physical people and things! Starting conversations and relations with people that should have never made it past hello. All for a fulfillment I only got through Christ anyway. I could have tried Him out a long time ago if I knew all of what I was trying to do, led me right back to Him! How foolish of me!
God may have specific instructions for you, but in my singleness and after my breakup, God told me to:
BE STILL and know! He sat me down to where it only could be Him and I. The one on one time with Him, the weeks of just Him and I by my bedside. Crying. Gutting Out. Pouring Out. Tears. Reflection. This was a period I really hated. The silence was so loud to me. I didn’t want to be home by myself. I was finding reasons to get out and drive around. Go to bed extra early. I didn’t want to listen to the noise of ‘lonely’. But as we try to fight our own battles, we fail miserably. I was trying to fight. Fight for what I wanted. Fight because of the misunderstandings. I wanted to Fight. God sat my tail down and said “I will fight for you, you need to only be still!” Exodus 14:14.
ACKNOWLEDGE who He said I was, and that my value and who I am is not based on what people say about me, either good or bad. If I don’t acknowledge what God says about me, I will always try to seek people to compliment me, seek people to tell me how much they love me and to put my worth and value in their hands. That’s a dangerous thing. People will disappoint. We are fickle. We go to where our mood takes us. We depend on our feelings a lot. So we waver. So our hope shouldn’t lie on what & who people tell us we are, good or bad. Because they might be having a good day, or a bad day. God is the author and finisher! Hebrews12:12 “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.”
WATER MY GRASS I lived on. After surviving the ‘lonely’ period and acknowledging the goodness the Lord says about me, I continued to apply the Word of God to my life. I continued to do what He called me to do, continue to do good, and continue to be the best Amber I could possibly be, daily! God said to me just because he didn’t realize who you are, don’t mean you are not! So I continued to be who I was, gathered what I learned, and applied it even more. I didn’t let the breakupharden who I was or harden my heart. I could have even turned into the person my ex said I was, and that was a woman who was delusional. But I didn’t even let that harbor in me. God said not so! He told me to continue on, quietly, and learn what I could from it and apply it. 1 Thessalonians 4:11 (MSG) “Stay calm; mind your own business; do your own job.”
LOOK TO HIM in all the paths I took from then on. He told me not to focus on what’s going on around me. This was the very important part, was that God told me to stay focused on Him during this time. This time there will be a lot of men trying to ‘get at me’ and date me. There will be a lot of movement around me that I didn’t have to be a part of. But He said to just keep looking to Him until He tells me to go right or left. With other relationships I didn’t do this. As soon as someone approached me that were ‘sorta’ what I liked, and I thought was genuine, I was like, “YES!” He told me there will be plenty of suitors, but you will know the one I have for you. Keep doing the work of the Lord. Stop trying to see if every guy that crosses your path is your husband. Keep seeking me, just as you been doing, and I will tell you when to look up. POW! So my thoughts were less of “oh, is he the one God?… no, no.. It’s him right? Nooo, its him! Yes its him!” and I began to pray, “Lord, send away all the distractions and what’s not for me. Block those that mean me no good. Help me to have discernment and Holy Spirit be a guide when guys approach me. As I continue to seek you with my whole being, block those who have motives that aren’t pure towards me.” I know for me, when I was in my periods of ‘singleness’ I felt like I had to entertain everyone that came to me because I didn’t want to miss the opportunity for the right one. But I found there is nothing wrong with declining invitations because I wasn’t ready, and I was gutting out all the bad relationships I’ve been in. Happily single.
And through this season, I became content and comfortable single. I am finding my purpose. I am doing things God has said to move forth in. I am enjoying the time by myself, because relationship wise, I didn’t have time to do these things. (I really didn’t have time for myself. I was struggling with the time I needed, just to myself. I was giving it to ministry, friends, family, boyfriend and I was starving for some quiet time.) As always, as a single woman, I don’t have to ‘check in’ with anyone, come and go as I please. I am not responsible for anyone now. I guess these are the things we look over as a single person. Biblically, when you get married, you become ONE PERSON with your spouse, so there is no more ‘single’ identity, but now you are one with your husband.
I just want to encourage someone who may feel the pressure of leaving a dead end relationship but don’t want to be single. Or those who are struggling in singleness because they are rushing to be married. There is a proper order. Be encouraged, and be strengthened in your walk.