I have been married for 10 years – Best decision of my life! I also have two little rascals that poo and cry and want to wrestle 24/7 – Best gift from heaven!
Yes, being a father and a husband are my greatest accomplishments. There is nothing better than to have a family to love and serve for the rest of your life. But, it is incredibly hard. And yes, (BIG YES) you have to master the art of self-denial, to the max.
Your status is different from mine. Right now you are single. Maybe because you are too young for marriage, or too old for games or too smart for players. Good for you.
If you are single and looking forward to getting married, I understand. (And if you give me your Facebook or Twitter I would have 20 suggestions of people you should meet… Like right now!) Because one of my favorite things to do as a pastor is weddings. Young love is inspiring, it is daring and inviting (and I love free food and ridiculous dancing).
But you could take advantage of singlehood and learn to love yourself. Marriage and babies are a game changer. Simple things like sleeping, eating lunch and watching your favorite movie become limited and sometimes unattainable.
So make the best of this time. 10 Things To Do While You’re Single:
1. Quit your job. Leaving is sometimes the most courageous thing. Once you are part of a family-team it’s much harder to make drastic changes. Now, if you are unhappy with what you are doing you can try something new! Don’t hold back. You only live once, and this is the perfect time to find your niche. Be brave and discover your true joy. Find the trade that makes you want to get up early and go to bed late. No regrets.
2. Talk to Jesus. Yes, have a chat with the most famous single man who ever lived. He hanged out with tons of people and He was great at being alone with the Father. He would go to weddings, share meals, do road trips on foot while changing the world in 3 years. He promised to be with you and He always keeps His word. (One Like Jesus: Conversations on the Single Life)
3. Travel to Latin America. You discover so much about who you are by how you deal with foreign currency, foreign accents, and foreign chaos. And nowhere better than with Latinos. You can get there easily, use your high-school Spanish and eat like royalty, for cheap. Mexico, Colombia and/or Puerto Rico are waiting for you (and who knows, maybe your spouse is there waiting also).
4. Be alone. Properly single. No dating. Limit the flirting (as much a you can) for a couple of months, even a year. After breaking up with my first girlfriend (seven years together) I needed to learn to be “Carlos” with no other titles defining me. It was extremely hard but incredibly rewarding. And exactly 12 months after that I had a dream where I saw a gorgeous girl that I had never met. Today she is my wife.
Embrace solitude, God has a soft spot for the lonely.
5. Hang out with married friends and learn from them. They are married, you are not. So stop pretending like you know more about relationships than them. Take the humble road and ask them questions. Listen to their stories. Celebrate their quirky ways. And go back home smiling at your current freedom. Be happy for your married friends and satisfied in where you’re at today.
Discover why you’re important, then refuse to settle for anyone who doesn’t completely agree. F. Amelie
6. Do a long road trip. The kind where people start calling you irresponsible. Because there is so much to see in the world. So many people to learn from. A road trip with your best friends will go a long way in strengthening those relationships for the future. Go on the open road or on a long missionary expedition… Seriously, go! Both you and the world will be grateful.
7. Be your only roommate. Even if it’s just for a season, learn to live happily in solitude. Be self-reliant. Learn to trust God for your food, your bills, your safety. Your personal space is valuable. Your time in silence indispensable. Learn a new recipe, go to the gym, read an old book, and appreciate your own company.
8. Don’t be cynical. There are times when you will be disappointed. There are times when you will feel lonely. Don’t lose hope — don’t create a self-fulfilling prophecy that you don’t want to become true. Watch a romantic comedy every six months and smile at the end. God has an incredible plan for your future. Stop thinking He doesn’t.
9. Sleep in. And don’t feel like you have to explain yourself. A time will come when that choice will be stolen from you. Forever and ever. #Enjoy
10. Stay Pure. Obvious, I know. But hard. Really hard. Your future husband and wife will be grateful for your strength. I have spent too much time counselling the hearts of champions who lost their way by giving in to sex too quickly. My wife and I barely made it to our honeymoon as virgins. But we did. And 10 years later we are still grateful to each other for the gift of exclusivity.
Trust me, if you have already slept with someone other than your husband/wife, there is grace and kindness available for you. Jesus is more than capable of restoring what was stolen. You are clean and spotless. God is way bigger than your error. Accept his forgiveness and keep on dreaming. (Read more on “Dealing with Sin” here)
You are worth waiting for.
“I have loved you with an everlasting love, therefore I have continued by faithfulness to you.” – God in Jeremiah 31:3
Don’t miss: The 5 Love Languages Singles Edition
I’m probably missing 10 more. What do you think? Comment below.