Thoughts on the Hopes and Dreams of a Single, Young Woman

Thoughts on the Hopes and Dreams of  Single Young Woman

Dear Mrs. Jacobson,

I follow your blog because I  “share a passion for husband, home, and family”. With only one challenge – I don’t have a husband or a family (at least not yet?).

I’m 28, single and, in all honesty, get pretty discouraged at times. I’d really like to be married, but haven’t met the right guy. Sometimes I wonder if I ever will. What should I do while I’m waiting? Is there anyone out there for me? What do I do with my hopes and dreams?

From a Single, Young Sister

My dear sister,

So you are single. And no longer a girl, but a woman who has hopes and dreams of your own. You long to marry and have a family. But for now, that doesn’t seem to be what God has for you. Perhaps you’re 20 or 25, or maybe in your 30’s.

And you find yourself waiting…and wondering.

Where is that man of yours? (Does he even exist?)

What’s a woman supposed to do? Pine away? Pretend like you don’t care? Is there really any point in hoping?

I was 26 – and a dreamer – when I met my husband.  He was 31. We decided we wanted to get married three days after meeting (I’m going to tell that entire story sometime!) and our wedding took place a few months later.

But where had he been hiding all those years before? Where was he when I was crying alone in my room – desperately missing someone I’d never even met?

His answer: “You wouldn’t have liked me back then. I had a lot of growing to do.” (Hmm…Maybe I did too, come to think of it).

And that’s my basic story. I don’t know what yours will hold.

But here are a few thoughts….

It’s not wrong to want to be married. I sense this growing trend that today’s young woman should not admit she longs to be a wife and mother – that this is somehow less godly? Yes, we need to be content with whatever God has for us, but there’s nothing against wanting something very good and natural. How is it considered more “spiritual” to suppress those feelings? Rather than deny them, you can trust Him with your heart and lay it all at His feet.

God does not guarantee that you’ll get married. Yet, at the same time, we need to be careful we don’t “demand” marriage from God – just because we want it so very badly. Although I sincerely desired (and prayed for) healthy children, He allowed our fifth child to be born with life-threatening health issues. While it was not a situation I’d hoped for or anticipated, God gave what I needed to walk through that time and she’s a sweet blessing. You can be confident He’ll give the grace necessary for what He has in store for you as well.

You only have to be single today. If your heart’s desire is to be married, then the thought of being single “for the rest of my life” can be very discouraging. But as far as I can tell, God’s only asking you to be single on this day. You don’t know what tomorrow holds. So simply rest in what He has for you right now.

Try to be open-minded. I wouldn’t get too specific on what this guy will be like and how you’re going to meet him. Remember, God has far greater resources and abilities to bring about what He has for you. So let Him do the planning and keep your palms open and outstretched for whatever that might be.

Confession: I’d briefly met my husband eight months earlier, but announced to my friends, “If he was the last man on earth, I wouldn’t go out with him.”  I was later convicted by my declaration….gave him a chance…and you know how that ended up. :)

Pray and let others pray for you. Personally, I’m extremely grateful for the mutual friends who prayed us together. I’m thankful for their determination to bring the matter before the Lord, as well as to introduce us. Why not let the people who know and love you join you in praying about this thing that is close to your heart?

Live your life fully each day. Make the most of the time you have. Seek to grow in godliness, in serving others, in knowledge and in skills. After I became a wife and mother, I could appreciate how the various ministries, experiences, and jobs I’d held previously had equipped me for what lay ahead. I could even see how “practicing contentment” helped me after our marriage – when I had small children, my husband traveled, or we were in a tough season. Far more was happening in my “single days” than I ever realized.

Well, I think I’ve touched on all of your questions, except one. Is there anyone out there for you?

Of course, I can’t say. Only God knows the plan He has for you. But I’m sure it’s a good and perfect plan.

And I know that He cares deeply about your hopes and dreams.

That He cares deeply about you. 

In His grace,

Photo credit: thewonderofitall.shutterfly.com

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  • http://modernishhomemaker.com Amy

    Wow – I feel like I wrote that letter. I love what you said about – “you only have to be single for today” . . . I had NEVER thought about it like that. Even when it seems like I don’t have any prospects – I don’t know what tomorrow holds. I only have to worry about living my best today. Thanks for this!

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    You’re welcome, Amy! Many blessings on your today and your tomorrow!

  • http://younglovin.wordpress.com Dolly

    For encouragement for the woman who wrote the letter to Lisa:

    I was once too a praying young woman, and now I am engaged to the man of my dreams. Don’t give up. Have you tried christian mingle? Maybe just opening yourself up to more church events and social events will invite the opportunity for the right man to enter your life. Just give yourself over to God and he will take care of what is best for you.

    Blessings,

  • Annalise Farris

    Lovely post.

    I am a young woman of 18 years who is dreaming of being a wife and mother. Being so young I am trying to not be impatient. I am working to focus my heart and mind on what the Lord has planned for me at this point in my life.

    Thank you Mrs. J for writing posts that are so thought evoking.

    Loves,

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    Thank you, Annalise! I love watching what the Lord is doing in your life.

  • Mary

    Thank you, Lisa for this wonderful note. I agree with Amy as I never thought about only being single for today. I’m 36 and don’t have a single prospect in sight but I’m trying hard to trust God. I do okay most days but every once in a while, sadness and loneliness sets in. I cry out to God during that time and I strive to hear his voice and his comfort. I shall remember this post and re-read it often. Thank you!

  • http://www.themazeofourlives.blogspot.com Kristi

    I so appreciate your touching on this topic today. I am also a single woman who has been following your blog and Facebook page for a few months. I’ve never been married and will be turning 50 this year. These thoughts have passed through my mind many, many times. The Lord used this post to encourage me today. Thank you.

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    How kind of you to comment, Kristi. I’m blessed to hear this encouraged you too. <3

  • http://www.smallloops.blogspot.com Jo

    Thank you for this post. I’m 32 and single still and have been wondering myself how I fit into God’s people as a single woman. All of the women my age in my church are all married with children, and it gets lonely. I also have never thought to look at “You only have to be single today”. I love that thought. Thanks again for the encouragement.

  • Dianne

    Great advice, Lisa!

  • http://www.alyssaslittleblog.blogspot.com Alyssa Bohon

    A tender-hearted and encouraging post, Lisa.
    One thing I would add from my experience as a wanting-to-be-wed single young lady is that there are so many wonderful things to do – as a somewhat independent young lady who loves the Lord and is old enough to drive – in the community and especially the church, to bless others, that married women and moms are not as free to do. Don’t be ashamed to step in to those church committees (or whatever you have) that are mostly old ladies. Ignore the fact that you might be the only single young women involved, and pitch in to pray for missionaries, take meals to sick people, and help new moms. As I grew older and more people close to my age were moms, I realized that many of them with multiple kids felt tired and overwhelmed. You have more loneliness than you can handle – she has more kids than she can handle. It can be a great cooperation for mutual blessing. I started to be content with the possibility of never having children when I started helping moms, since there were plenty of overwhelmed moms who were glad to have another Christ-loving woman to love their kids and help them out. Most of them won’t know to ask you though. Pray and pray for God to open doors for blessing and service to you and then jump on those opportunities to offer mother’s helping, baby-sitting, etc. when you find a mom who is really a kindred spirit. Another thing that happens is that when you do this a lot and come home and go to bed in your own room, instead of feeling quite so lonely, you think “Well, it’s actually kind of nice to have a moment to myself, and a clean room with no crumbs or drool on the carpet.”
    Now I am married and pregnant and I feel like my expectations for motherhood are much more realistic because of those experiences. I am happy, content and blessed, but only because I learned to be content in what God chose for me whether I was married or single. Get busy! <3

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    A terrific addition – thank you, Alyssa!

  • Erin

    Thank you for another wonderful post, Lisa. Two things in particular really struck a chord in me:

    You only have to be single today. What a weight drops off if I stop worrying about whether or not I’ll be married five years from now, or three, or even one.

    Pray and let others pray for you. A lot of peace comes when you know your family (including your church family) is praying along with you.

    I passionately desire to be a wife and mother. There are times when I feel at peace and able to leave it all in God’s hands. There are moments when I cry and beg God to make it happen NOW. But slowly I think the good moments are outdistancing the bad moments (is that just because I feel in a good moment now???) It is an up and down journey, and probably always will be. But hey, as long as we go at least slightly more up than down, we are making progress!

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    Oh, yes, Erin, a little more “up” than “down”! And neither are you on your own for this journey. We are with you!

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  • http://www.smallloops.blogspot.com Jo

    I agree Erin, it is an up and down journey. I also agree that I am having more good moments than begging to be married. God’s been working on me for a while to be satisfied where I am and to bloom where I am planted.

  • Riana

    Thanks for this. I really needed to “hear” this. I’m 27 and have wondered many times if there is someone for me. But we never know what tomorrow holds. God will give the right person at the right time for us. :)

  • Lori

    I like the “just be single one day at a time” concept, too, and used it when I was single – til age 42 (!!!). I too (like Mary who posted on June 4 said) was happy most of the time but also had a great desire to be married and some times of tears. It helped me too to remember that married ladies also have times of tears – and some of them didn’t overlap with mine – i.e., marriage has its own tearful days that singles DON”T have to deal with.

    I met my husband thru a neighbor. Be nice to your neighbors! If you’ve been waiting a while, you are most likely to meet your husband through someone you don’t know all that well (otherwise you would have already met him -right?).

    God has been faithful; this week-end I was praising Him for the precious time I get to spend with “our” grandchildren who both just arrived last year. It’s true I didn’t get to have my own children, but I am thoroughly enjoying the precious baby times with these two – feeding them, changing them, snuggling with them, watching them learn and grow. I know it’s not the same as having my own kids – but it’s still a blessing to me.

  • http://club31women.com/ Lisa

    Lori, I appreciate the point you made about married women “having their own tears too” as that is so true! I also liked your “be nice to your neighbors”! :)
    I think you’re probably right – that after a while, your chance of meeting “him” is likely to be through unexpected or unknown connections. A good piece of advice! Blessings on you and your sweet grandchildren. Lisa

  • Eloise Greeves

    Hi to all the ladies reading this blog. All I can say is WOW. I feel as if someone has been reading my mail. I am 47 years old and still trusting God to get married. If there is one thing my singleness has taught me, then it is this. Society puts so much pressure on you as a young girl to get married by a certain age. If you are still single after that, you get treated as if there is something wrong with you. My redemption can in the form of chasing the call of God upon my life. Yes, it does get lonely, especially when all your friends are married and have children. It’s even harder when you are in a church that only regards couples are leadership material. That having been said, I personally feel blessed to still be single at this age, even though there are times when I long for the companionship marriage offers. I would honesty advise the younger generation to not be in such a hurry to get married. Truth be told, most of us are still on the journey of finding out who we are at the age of 23 – 24. And getting married at this age is a challenge because added to getting to know yourself, you now need to get to know your husband/wife as well. So, Single, Young Sister, do not allow yourself to feel pressurized to get married. Enjoy being single.

  • Rebecca

    A praying friend of mine just gave me the link to this article. It has been my dream to be a stay-at-home wife and mother since I was 15. I am now almost 24 and have cried many silent tears over wondering how? when? who? I don’t even know any guys my age! And yet, it seems that everytime I wonder “when?”, I see why it couldn’t have happened just a couple months ago… For instance my mom just had her 11th baby and had to be on bed rest a lot. with having 6 brothers still at home and a younger sister still dealing with learning to be responsible, I had to shoulder a lot of the load. I’m not complaining about that. I’m simply saying, that was my purpose for that season in my single life. Helping care for my family so that mom could get the rest she needed, so that she could give birth to my beautiful sister now sleeping in my lap. <3

    There are 3 things that esp encourage me in my disappointed times. #1 Knowing that with God in control of my life, everything will happen in perfect timing. He will bring the RIGHT guy at the RIGHT time, and not before. #2 Having a wonderful friend who is always there for me and praying for me. <3 And #3 Knowing that there are other women in the same boat I'm in and taking time to pray for them. I may not know who they are, but I know what their going through and pray for God to help them.

    Thanks for yer encouraging post!

  • Annamae

    Thank-you for your post. I was also encouraged by your taking being single 1 single day at a time and make the most of it. I also was encouraged by Lori’s comment being married later in life and enjoying his grandchildren.