You know the conversation. We've all had it. Sitting on the couch with a fellow gal pal, we bring up the #1 girl topic in girl discussion repertoire. The love life.
"Do you like anyone?"
Maybe your friend blushes as a special guy comes to mind. Maybe she brushes it off, pretending she could care less about dating. Maybe she's a little down over the various boy-related woes that pervade the female world... "I haven't found the right guy." "I don't know if he's the right guy." Or, better yet, "I thought I found the right guy, but..."
A few weeks ago, I was enjoying similar "girl talk" with a friend of mine who responded in a way that took me off guard.
"I don't know if I'm wife material."
Hold up. This came out of the mouth of a gorgeous, smart, kind-hearted, powerful young woman of appropriate age and in perfect mental health. Not wife material??? I was, in short, befuddled.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"I just don't know if I'm meant to get married. I mean it's not like I don't like the idea. I'm just really content being single right now."
Somehow, the fact that she was not pining over the elusive "Mr. Right" had made my friend question if she was really cut out for the whole marriage thing. She didn't feel "excited enough" about it. My response to her (after reasoning with myself)?
"That is SO healthy."
Wait. What? NOT wanting to get married is healthy? Shock. Horror. Yes, well, please peel your hand away from your gaping mouth and let me explain.
I got married at 19. I was not one of those girls who believed (or acted like) finding a husband was in fact the very meaning of this cosmic journey called "life." Sure, I had my moments. I had crushes and daydreamed like the best of them. I cried (a little) in "P.S. I Love You" and prayed to God for my Mr. Darcy. I was even casually looking for "the one" when I set foot on my private Christian college campus. And I was blessed enough to find him the first week of school. Even moreso, I was blessed that we actually lasted.
Because I wasn't the only one. There were many gals "on the prowl" throughout my journey as a young, eligible, future wife. Some of these girls rushed their way into marriages that failed for reasons I am not privy to (and I therefore do not judge). Some of them are still in the dating scene, mastering the process of elimination. And some of them are still single, waiting, and wondering.
The first set are a cautionary tale. Though my heart breaks for them, they have shown me that sometimes we can want a good thing a little too much. And I have seen time and time again that often, the girls who get "Mr. Right" dropped into their laps are the ones who didn't "need" to find him.
It's okay to date. And it's okay to not date. Some people need to figure out what they're looking for, what's important to them in a mate, and test the waters. There IS a way to do this maturely rather than messily, and I applaud those who discover it. Some have a built in radar that causes them to say "no" at every turn until their "yes" shows up. I applaud these girls as well. I was one of them.
I believe everyone's journey is different, but our heart posture must be the same. Date (or don't) for the right reasons. Guard your heart. Choose wisely, not wistfully. And never EVER let a relationship be the factor on which your happiness hinges. A man should be one of many variables in what makes you tick, and Jesus should be the constant.
Yes, I just took you to Sunday school. Because what is marriage and all that love and fireworks about anyway apart from Him? A lot of people thought I was crazy for getting engaged to a man I had known only 6 months (and I was still a mere "teenager!!!" to top it off). Why didn't I finish school first? How did I know he was the one? Did God really confirm it or was I just rushing into things because I wanted to be married so badly? Could I even hear God??? These (well, most of these) are valid questions, but not for me.
If anything 18 years of being a single hopeless romantic had taught me, it was that I couldn't say "yes" to the wrong guy even if I wanted to. It's like God had anointed me for being undatable. Every crush I had, every spark - fizzled out the moment my affections were returned, until Jacob came along. But I guess I wasn't really undatable. I was just "reserved" for a husband rather than a boyfriend. God has perfect timing and He decided Jacob and I needed to start our journey THEN. We sought Him above all else and in seeking Him, we found each other. I don't think I'm any more special than anyone else for having not dated. That's just the way it worked out for me. But I am thankful.
When it comes to that "wrong-guy-radar," I can simply tell you this:
Your heart is worth something.
Recognize that worth.
And don't let go.
When someone wants in, you have control over how quickly the door opens - or if it opens at all.
But ask yourself, "Is he worth it?"
Know your tendencies.
Know your boundaries.
But take care.
But be patient.
Be happy, no matter what.
Flourish in EVERY season.
Learn to wait and maybe you will forget you are waiting.
Until one day...
The wait is over.
Being married is good. It is beautiful. It is healthy. But so is being single and ENJOYING it. Someday, you will have a man to cuddle, do Netflix marathons with, and cook experimental dishes for (if you're called to get married - I'm not saying it's required). Someday, you'll be all grown up, dealing with grown up things in your grown up world. Someday, you'll find out what kind of "wife material" you are. But for now, just LIVE WELL. Date Jesus. And don't spend your life striving to find love. Let it find you. You're certainly worth finding.
Written by: Anna