Extended years of singleness are a growing trend in our culture. (Whether we like it or not.) For a variety of reasons, many young men and women aren’t getting married as soon as they’d like to.
Since I am twenty-eight and single, I can relate to the struggles, sorrows, and difficulties that accompany those extra “unwanted” single years. I haven’t lived these years out perfectly, but I have learned several valuable lessons along the way. Here are my five strategies for living with purpose as a single girl.
1. Don’t view singleness as an “in-between” stage.
There have definitely been times in my own life that I’ve viewed these single years as a season to be endured. I viewed marriage as the good stuff and singleness as the bad stuff. I wanted the single season to end as quickly as possible so that I could move on in life and be a real and purposeful adult. Thankfully, God has helped me to see that singleness isn’t an “in-between” season that I should endure, but an important and valuable season of life, worthy of embracing.
Singleness isn’t an “in-between” season that I should endure, but an important and valuable season of life, worthy of embracing.
I want to encourage you, single girls, to embrace this season of life. God has you in this season for a reason. Don’t waste these valuable years waiting for marriage to come your way. Take advantage of the time God has given you and make the most of it.
2. Get out of your bubble of single friends.
We tend to stick with people whose lives look like ours. Teens hang with teens. College kids hang with college kids. Singles hang with singles. Married people hang with married people. Empty nesters hang with empty nesters. The idea of mixing up the groups and spending time with people in different seasons of life feels awkward. Yet God’s Word reminds us we have much to learn by crossing those generational boundaries (Titus 2:1–5).
Instead of restricting your friend circle to “singles only,” try mixing it up a bit. Spend time investing in those younger than yourself. Spend time with your grandparents or the elderly couples in your church. Spend time with young families or couples who have been married for several decades. Get outside of your normal friend groups, and start investing in and benefiting from those in different seasons than yourself.
3. Choose gratitude.
Nowhere in Scripture do we see singles given a special pass to live in discontentment and ingratitude.
Nowhere in Scripture do we see singles given a special pass to live in discontentment and ingratitude. God commands us to give thanks in all things, despite our circumstances:
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you (1 Thess. 5:16–18).
Gratitude is a choice.
I love how Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth puts it in her book, Choosing Gratitude:
I have learned that in every circumstance that comes my way, I can choose to respond in one of two ways: I can whine or I can worship! And I can’t worship without giving thanks. It just isn’t possible. When we choose the pathway of worship and giving thanks, especially in the midst of difficult circumstances, there is a fragrance, a radiance, that issues forth out of our lives to bless the Lord and others.
4. Use your single years for God’s glory.
As single people, we have enormous potential to make an impact for the kingdom of God. We typically have energy, youthfulness, flexibility, and the time to be used in ways that married people can’t. Instead of twiddling our thumbs waiting for “the one” to come our way, let’s live with purpose and intention. Let’s take advantage of this incredibly unique season and live with eternity in mind.
Instead of twiddling our thumbs waiting for “the one” to come our way, let’s live with purpose and intention.
As I say in my new book, Girl Defined: God’s Radical Design for Beauty, Femininity, and Identity: “When forever comes, only the things you did for Christ will truly matter.”
Let’s choose to be single women who truly live with that in mind.
5. Look for opportunities to serve.
There are so many needs in our churches and communities. There are young boys and girls that need godly role models. There are elderly people in need of love and companionship. There are single moms who could use help in a million different ways. It doesn’t take long to find a need. We need to start actively looking for opportunities to serve. Instead of waiting for God to bring opportunities to our doorsteps, we can make an effort to love and serve those God has placed around us.
I’m challenging you to live with purpose and intention during this season. Don’t wait for the greener grass to come your way. Choose to live out every day for the glory of God.