April 1, 2019


I have bittersweet feelings writing this post. But it's something that I have needed to process and you and I both know I do that best through writing.

But before I continue, I should probably clarify something. No, I do not have a ring on my finger. In fact, I am still very much single. I do not have a boyfriend. Haven't gone on a date in a couple months. And at the beginning of the year, I actually deleted all of my dating profiles (yes, you read that right, profilessss). 

So what has changed, you ask? My perspective on singleness. How I view singleness and how I let it define me, too. 

For as long as I can remember, marriage and motherhood were the identities I longed for most. As a child, I would play with my dolls and stuffed animals, my dollhouse, and my Barbies all in the context of a family. I was typically the mom and there were tons of kids who would all get into trouble (does that say anything about my future?). 

So as I got older and the ring finger remained ring-free, singleness became something I struggled with and wrestled with more and more. It was the cry of my heart. The identity I was ashamed of and grew to despise. Marriage became an idol; I would have eagerly traded in singleness in an instant if I knew who/when I'd get married. 

There were months and brief seasons where I found deep joy in singleness and yet that desire for marriage was still always present, even if it wasn't on the forefront of my brain. The desires for marriage and motherhood would come and go, especially as hormones changed and my loneliness increased.

Something changed in 2019. Maybe it was the mindset of letting go and letting God, but God has significantly changed my heart in terms of singleness. And this is what makes this post so bittersweet. 

God's changed how I view singleness and it's no longer the biggest way I define myself nor the season I want to let go of. In fact, I am finally at a point where I enjoy singleness and all it has to offer, especially in terms of the ways I am able and capable of loving and serving those around me. 

And because I'm a list-maker, I knew I had to write down some of these truths in singleness:
  1. Singleness has given me more time. I didn't realize how free I am right now. Free to give my time and my energy towards the hobbies and passions, the people, and the education and skills I value. 
  2. Singleness has given me more love to share with others. I have made more friends this year than I have in a looonnnnngggg time and part of the reason why I've cultivated so many friendships is because I've had the time and energy to devote my attention, my heart, my prayers, and my love to the people that God's put in my life this year.
  3. Singleness has freed me of loneliness. With so many more relationships, especially friendships rooted in Jesus, I have found myself freer from the pangs of loneliness and fuller with the love from my friends and family (and more able to love others as a result as well). 
  4. Singleness has given me opportunities to practice communication and vulnerability. I think of this as one of the greatest gifts of singleness. Singleness gives me time to  people in my life to practice say those hard things, be direct, and be vulnerable, too--all things that I definitely need more practice with before marriage!
  5. Singleness has given me the chance to serve. I used to skim over those letters written by Paul where he would talk about the gift of singleness because it would just make me bitter inside. But lately, I find myself agreeing with his thoughts wholeheartedly. Singleness has provided me with so many opportunities to share my skills and creativity with my church and community and I know I wouldn't necessarily have this free time to do so if I was married/had kids.
Don't get me wrong, I still very much so want marriage and motherhood to be a part of my life and I still feel like I am called to both (especially in terms of adoption and fostering). But it's not something that I feel like I'll be incomplete without. And it's not something I need to have before a certain date or time. And I am not lacking or not good enough simply because it's not a part of who I am today.

God's still working on me and I know that this season will not come with temptations and weak moments. But I am truly grateful that singleness is where He's called me at this present moment, even if it's not how I would have ever planned for or imagined. 

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© IN ITS TIMEMaira Gall