Once again we are fasting tomorrow for God to work in men, work in us, and work out some good marriages. I’d encourage you to pray with a friend if you can, even over the phone. Also, consider taking the next “fasting” step: if you aren’t fasting, consider skipping lunch; if you are fasting lunch, try fasting breakfast as well; and if you are fasting breakfast and lunch, you might take the plunge and fast from when you get up until breakfast the next day. There is power and strength in choosing to be weak through fasting.
One of the challenges of choosing to live a life of faith (whatever your marital status) is continually setting our eyes on God, looking for what he is doing, rather than dwelling on what we can see from our vantage point. I used to work with the kids in my church, and we would teach them to remember that “God’s eye is watching your life, and God’s hand is working in your life.” He is the director of our lives, we taught them, orchestrating each event and working in all the details.
It can be incredibly painful to ponder why he hasn’t given the gift of marriage, why he didn’t cause a specific relationship or potential guy to come to fruition. You may understand why at some point, or you may not. The ache of not knowing can make the loss feel worse. Even though there may be (from your vantage point) zero activity on the marriage front, or pointless missed opportunities, God is up to something. He’s working in your life. From time to time, as I try to grapple with painful situations in life, I do a little self-counseling project: I take a piece of paper and write down these questions, then try to answer them as specifically as possible: What is my circumstance? What can I see God doing? Where do I see him providing for me? What might he be trying to teach me? What does he promise to be for me? What does he promise to do? What, based on Scripture, do I know is true about this circumstance? Sometimes just thinking through these questions and writing them out can bring fresh perspective.
Here are a few promises from Scripture that I often use to start with, because regardless of the specifics of a particular situation, we have promises from God
of what He is doing and will do. He will work everything for our good (Romans 8:28). He will never leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). He will give us everything we ask for in prayer – or something better (Luke 11:10-13). He will forgive us (1 John 1:9). He will complete his work in us (Philippians 1:6b). He will guide us (Proverbs 3:5-6). He will hear our prayers (Psalm 34:15). He will discipline us (Proverbs 3:11-12). He will give us strength (2 Chronicles 16:9a). He will not withhold any good thing from us (Psalm 34:10). He will keep us from harm (Psalm 121:7-8). He will provide what we need (Philippians 4:19). He will fight for us (Hebrews 13:6). These promises are always true, no matter what; the trick is asking for the Spirit to give insight into how they apply specifically to our circumstances.
It’s not a fool-proof exercise; imagine Joseph trying to come up with answers to these questions in prison! But, it’s a place to start, and it’s been helpful to me in trying to refocus my heart towards a God-centered life perspective.
May God give us grace pray, fast, and see what he is doing in our lives.