While the season of singleness on earth can be difficult, the wedding we all can look forward to is the one awaiting us in heaven.
I often struggle with my season of singleness.
Looking for love on earth
As a college student, I see many of my friends dating and marrying these wonderful and loving men who give them everything. I’m thrilled that they are happy and loved and get to enjoy the blessings of a relationship. But truthfully, it hurts me when I think about how much I want what they have.
I am the first to admit I am jealous. I go about my day with classes, work, and extracurriculars and come home to my empty apartment because my roommates are out with their significant others. My best friends now have someone else they’d rather talk to and spend time with. I feel left behind because it seems like there are no decent single guys anymore.
One of the hardest parts is that I don’t feel like I can express these feelings to my friends because they don’t understand. Usually I get the classic “It’s all in God’s timing” or “I’m sure there’s someone out there for you.” But how can they be sure? They can’t guarantee that I will ever be married. I may never find someone. I’m sure some of you can currently relate to this, have felt this way at some point in your life, or know someone who does.
Looking forward to the heavenly wedding supper
The truth is that God enables you to be content with what he has or has not given you. Therefore, nothing my friends could say to me would ever make me feel better. The only thing that can truly bring lasting comfort during these moments is God’s Word and his promises that are unbreakable.
The Sunday before Valentine’s Day I heard a passage of Scripture that helped change my perspective on my singleness. The content of the sermon that Sunday was John the Baptist and his role of pointing to Jesus. (John 3:25-36). In verse 29, John refers to Jesus as the bride-groom and the church as the bride. “The bride belongs to the bride-groom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.”
That passage stuck out to me. I realized, Why am I chasing what I already have? I already have the perfect relationship with the perfect partner. God promises to be with me always (Isaiah 43:2), to listen to me always (Psalm 66:17-20), and to give me blessing upon blessing (Genesis 12:1-3).
God describes his relationship with the church, all believers, using the metaphor of marriage. In Revelation 19:7, the apostle John sees the wedding supper of the Lamb. This is the union of Jesus and his bride, the church. But we don’t deserve this heavenly wedding. We fall short of God’s demands. We break the Ten Commandments repeatedly every day. However, God’s unconditional love for us means that he sent his Son to die on a cross and save us. His love was undeserved, and now we get to celebrate the union of Jesus and his bride, the church.
Looking for love on earth is hard. Finding that guy who makes you happy and feels the same way about you is difficult. But God’s love is eternal, free, and perfect. He will never leave you nor forsake you. The wedding we all can look forward to is the one awaiting us in heaven.
Of course, these promises don’t erase the emotions. There will be times when I feel jealous, lonely, and frustrated at my relationship status. If you feel this too, I encourage you in those moments to go to God and his promises. Trust him to guide you and strengthen your faith. Then look forward to the perfect wedding to come!
The author, a student at Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and lifelong WELS member who wants to reach other young adults struggling in the same place in life, asked to remain anonymous.
Volume 110, Number 9
Issue: September 2023
A single life to live
Hannah Schermerhorn, a member of St. Marcus, Milwaukee, Wis., also struggled with her singleness. As the synopsis for her book, A Single Life to Live, explains, “She was months away from getting married when her wedding was called off. She absolutely loathed being single again, but in the following years, God taught her many hard lessons that transformed her bitterness to authentic joy. Drawing from the diverse experiences of single people in the Bible, Hannah debunks common myths and understandings about singleness, including the pervasive feeling that a person can’t really begin their life until they’re married.” Here’s an excerpt:
It is easy for Satan to get into our minds and make us believe lies like “you are alone,” “you will always suffer,” and “the pain will never end.” But when we lay our fears and emotions before God, God can ease our suffering with his truth.
God did this for Jeremiah, and he will do it for you and me. Despite the terrible circumstances Jeremiah faced, there is confidence in his declaration [Jeremiah 20]. He had hope and peace that God was fighting for him in every aspect of his life. Look at how Jeremiah triumphed over his loneliness. Look at how he even went as far as to praise God despite such a difficult life!
So what about you and me? We face incredible loneliness and everything that goes with it—rejection, disappointment, fear, and so many other heartbreaking emotions—in singleness. If Jeremiah could praise God when people were trying to kill him, then do you think we can get to the point where we can praise God in our loneliness as well?
I understand if that attitude feels unrealistic. I understand if you’re thinking, You don’t know what I’m going through. You don’t know what I’ve been through. If you had any idea, you would know I can’t praise God in this. It would be another fake mask to wear. I have thought the same thoughts. But as I study Jeremiah and look at his example, I believe that there is a better way to live our lives than succumbing to our loneliness and pain. We can control these thoughts and triumph over them. We can acknowledge that the difficult feelings are there, but it is our choice whether we let them overtake our lives or give them to God and let him fill us with joy and confidence. Jeremiah has shown us how to do this.