Overcoming Married vs Single

We fast and pray together, asking God to raise up men as leaders in the church and in marriage, to change our hearts and make us more like Christ, and to bring marriage to those who desire it.

Every time I log on to facebook, my newsfeed is saturated with pictures/updates of my friends’ kids, engagement photos, wedding photos, and yes, even the occasional honeymoon photo. I can’t answer the “Mommy friends, what’s the best way to…” questions or, “Getting married! Who did you use as your videographer?”

All this makes me feel a little left behind and out of the loop.

I’ve had countless numbers of conversations about “losing” friends after they got married and about how married friends “just don’t get” the struggles we singles are going through. And, I’ve had conversations with married friends about how glamorous my life seems to be (which I make it seem by being selective about what I post online – who wants to read about lonely Friday nights?).

The Lord has blessed me with an amazing, Christian coworker who has been vulnerable enough with me in sharing about her marriage to show me that marriage isn’t always the fantasy of happiness and ease we singles (and facebook) make it out to be.

For example:

  • Two schedules have to be taken into consideration when making plans.
  • There are in-laws.
  • There are situations from each person’s past that affect the present and future.
  • Some decisions are easier to make together because two people are providing insight and exploring options, but other times it’s harder based on the strengths, weaknesses, and biases each brings to the table.
  • It can difficult to find time to be alone with the Lord.

Talking with my co-worker has emphasized to me the importance of continuing to pursue and enjoy my friendships with my married friends, especially those who are Christians. How much stronger will my marriage be some day if I am armed with the knowledge of battles I will face and strategies for overcoming them? How much stronger will my friends’ marriages be if I’m praying for them and supporting them? How much more effective will the body of Christ be if we edify and love each other as we should – no one excluded?

I realize that this is going to take some church culture-changing, and that reaching out to married friends and vice versa isn’t always going to work or be easy. I admit that my jealousy and longing for what my married friends have with their spouses sometimes holds me back from spending time with them. I also realize that just as my single status often defines what I do/say/think, my friends’ married status influences what they do/say/think.

However, I’m encouraged to have married friends who reach out to me, and I’m also encouraged by the mix of married and single people who fast and pray together on Mondays. This is a step in the right direction.

This week as we fast and pray, let’s use our facebook feeds for good and not be discouraged by the married/unmarried disconnect we feel. Let’s pray over the couples whose Pinterest-inspired wedding pictures are popping up and rejoice in the marriages the Lord is ordaining. Let’s pray for the courage to be vulnerable and for unity within the church. And let’s continue praying for marriages for those of us to whom God has given the desire to be married, waiting with hopeful anticipation as to how He will answer prayer.

Praying with you,

Emily

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6 Responses to Overcoming Married vs Single

  1. hjm says:

    Thanks for the post Emily it’s quite true when checking out Facebook and your friends post about their engagement, birth of a child or just being in a relationship. It does make me ask the good ol question “what about me?” “When will that be me?”
    Thanks for the post it is encouraging to know that we can learn from our Christian friends who are new parents or newlyweds. Also knowing that the grass is not as green on the other side. I think that helps me realize that I still need to learn more in my singleness.

    =) hjm

    • Emily says:

      Glad the post was an encouragement to you! I’m realizing that there’s always room for growth in every area of life…we never really “arrive.”

  2. Michelle says:

    Hey Emily, was just thinking something similar tonight as my aunts commented that they want to be single like me so they can travel (my Facebook keeps them informed). It’s all a matter of perspective! ~Michelle

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