Valentine's Day... Single Awareness Day...February 14th...Call it what you want, it's typically a difficult day for those who aren't in a relationship. At least, it has been for me the past several years that I've been old enough to be considered a true single (which in my book means old enough to legally marry--18-- but not in a relationship).
But something was different this year. On December 27th, I decided that I would stop focusing on (read: idolizing) a relationship and instead pursue my first and greatest love, Jesus Christ. I have devoted this minimum of 6 months specifically to grow and change (by God's grace, with His help) into the kind of woman and wife that I believe God desires to me to be based on His Word. I have committed to praying for my future husband and our marriage, and for myself as a wife, daily during this time.
As a result, Valentine's Day was very different for me this year. Instead of focusing on the ONE thing I DO NOT have, I found myself immensely grateful for all the I do have. An amazing family who encourage and support me, wonderful friends who inspire me to strive for godliness, a new job complete with great students and supportive staff, and an abundance of other blessings.
Additionally, today I found myself hopeful. Rather than wallowing in self-pity, feeling like I'll never find the earthly love that I want, I found myself excited and hopeful that one day, hopefully soon, my heavenly Love will bless me with a husband that I could never have even dreamed about. This change in heart and perspective is most certainly not from me (those that know me well know how true this is! ;-)), but from God, and I am thankful for what He is doing in my life.
For those of you who are single like me, I can empathize with you. You might be, like me, watching a sibling get married soon. You may be experiencing jealousy towards a younger sibling who entered a relationship before you did. You may have been out tonight watching hundreds of couples celebrate a romantic dinner together. You may have scrolled through your Facebook news feed and seen mushy messages and statuses posted by friends in love, and all the pictures of their gifts. Can I assure you that I know how painful that can be? There is no magical solution for contentment. There is nothing I can say that will make it easier to get through Valentine's Day as a single. I won't repeat the thousands of cliches we singles hear daily from well-meaning non-singles who have deemed themselves experts on love and relationships and have the perfect formula for us "if we want to get married." It hurts, I know it does. I've cried and I've gotten angry by these comments. But there is one "cliche" I'd like to remind you of today. And this is it:
Jesus is the only love you need, and He loves you more than any spouse every will.