On Singlehood and Loneliness

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sojourner

Puritan Board Freshman
I have heard a lot of sermons with regards to single blessedness.
But honestly, there are moments that I can't help but feel lonely.

I am aware that the true meaning of marriage is for the advancement of the Kingdom of God, and it is not about ourselves, and we can use our singleness
for the time to serve God, because we cannot devote more time compared to when we are married.
am I wrong feeling this way? Is the feeling of wanting to get married is not right?
I remember Abraham's story and how he waited for a child, as a human being
waiting is really hard... that you can't avoid sometimes taking matters into your hands.

My pastor told us before that it is good that we are praying for our future partner since we want to get married someday.
My concern is there aren't any men in my church (Im older than them), so I even tried joining a dating reformed site online.
Wherein I haven't met someone still maybe because of cultural preference I have made a friend though, fellow countrymen.

In my thinking sitting around here even if praying will not get me a good man, or a husband.
Its not wrong to seek. right?

I even read a the same plight of a single woman, she took care of her parents now she's living alone since her parents were already gone. She has a degree, job and everything.. she's thinking is there still a good man out there for her? Same goes for me. I have a college and a master's degree,
have a stable job. There arent any Reformed Christian men at work, although there's a secular man, but I can't yoke with an unbeliever..

Would love to hear your thoughts..
 

johnny

Puritan Board Sophomore
Hi Leah,

I hated being alone too, (nobody to share small moments with)
Lots of my friends are in your position, Just keep praying and looking :)

Proverbs 13:12
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But desire fulfilled is a tree of life.
 

Miss Marple

Puritan Board Junior
Leah, I hope you truly know, that marriage does not necessarily make you less lonely.

Still I pray for you to marry if you so desire it.
 

Miss Marple

Puritan Board Junior
Also I would unashamedly join Christian Singles or similar to start corresponding with possible husbands.
 

OPC'n

Puritan Board Doctor
Psalms 56:8 "You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?"

1 Sam 9:Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat beside the doorpost of the temple of the Lord. 10 She was deeply distressed and prayed to the Lord and wept bitterly. 11 And she vowed a vow and said, “O Lord of hosts, if you will indeed look on the affliction of your servant and remember me and not forget your servant, but will give to your servant a son, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and no razor shall touch his head.”

12 As she continued praying before the Lord, Eli observed her mouth. 13 Hannah was speaking in her heart; only her lips moved, and her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli took her to be a drunken woman. 14 And Eli said to her, “How long will you go on being drunk? Put your wine away from you.” 15 But Hannah answered, “No, my lord, I am a woman troubled in spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the Lord. 16 Do not regard your servant as a worthless woman, for all along I have been speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.” 17 Then Eli answered, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition that you have made to him.” 18 And she said, “Let your servant find favor in your eyes.” Then the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.

19 They rose early in the morning and worshiped before the Lord; then they went back to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her. 20 And in due time Hannah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Samuel, for she said, “I have asked for him from the Lord.”

God did not create us void of emotions. He demands of us to come to him as a child goes to their father requesting all the things they need of their father. This is done in order for us to learn all good things come from our heavenly father and all glory goes to him, and teaches us that we are helplessly dependent upon him....he's always faithful to bless us in some way but sometimes we have to look for that blessing. So keep asking him for a good husband, and if on the off chance he doesn't want you to marry he will steer your heart in a different direction and give you all you need for that new direction.

Loneliness isn't a sin God gave Adam Eve bc he knew Adam needed a helpmate. Falling into self-pity (I'm not accusing you of this) or some other destructive/sinful behavior in order to quench your loneliness is another thing. Also, ask God to help you learn the things of him he is wanting you to learn which would be a learning experience you can then also bring into your new marriage....maybe submission (IDK you might already have that down but you know what I mean). I've always been single so I knew how you feel and I know how God is faithful to meet my needs.
 

psycheives

Puritan Board Freshman
Of course Christ is the one who completes us. Still, God said "It is not good for man to be alone." Men and women are designed to compliment one another. I am also single and waiting patiently should God decide to bless me with a husband someday. I am happily single for the most part but sometimes I feel really sad because ALL my attempts to make male friends are shutdown by the men, who prefer male friends over female friends. I believe even if we feel the gift of celibacy in waiting, we often will STILL be lonely for male friendship/companionship. I think this is natural.

The error here is in today's Christian "modesty culture." In striving to raise sexually pure/modest children, these families instill very hurtful ideas about male-female relationships. Instead of learning to grow up with boys and girls and learning to control one's sexual desires, parents promote separation and one sex to avoid the other at all costs. This legalistic tactic is very similar to Islam, which instructs women to cover while the men run around with uncontrollable lust. The men are never taught to control their sinful desires. Thus, very very few meaningful platonic friendships develop between boys and girls. Were these friendships allowed to develop, the gifts that God has given men and the gifts God has given women would be able to be shared across the sexes and help fill this loneliness. I believe it is very unhealthy for men to only have male friends and women to have only female friends. Men and women should not choose their friends based on sex. This is biased and discriminatory. It is telling the entire other gender, "You are of NO value to me BECAUSE you are male/female." This attitude destroys the unity and family of God. How can we be brothers and sisters in Christ when we won't even be friends!

I found this book helpful: Forbidden Friendships
 

Unoriginalname

Puritan Board Junior
The error here is in today's Christian "modesty culture." In striving to raise sexually pure/modest children, these families instill very hurtful ideas about male-female relationships. Instead of learning to grow up with boys and girls and learning to control one's sexual desires, parents promote separation and one sex to avoid the other at all costs. This legalistic tactic is very similar to Islam, which instructs women to cover while the men run around with uncontrollable lust. The men are never taught to control their sinful desires. Thus, very very few meaningful platonic friendships develop between boys and girls. Were these friendships allowed to develop, the gifts that God has given men and the gifts God has given women would be able to be shared across the sexes and help fill this loneliness. I believe it is very unhealthy for men to only have male friends and women to have only female friends. Men and women should not choose their friends based on sex. This is biased and discriminatory. It is telling the entire other gender, "You are of NO value to me BECAUSE you are male/female." This attitude destroys the unity and family of God. How can we be brothers and sisters in Christ when we won't even be friends!

Without trying to derail this thread, I think that is an interesting observation. I grew up in broad evangelicalism and was encouraged to make friends of both sexes, but now that I am grown,and float in more socially conservative reformed waters I find that observation true that too many folks are unable to grasp mixed gendered friendships in my current circle. Which is extraordinarily odd for someone who grew up and still has close female friends and works with mostly women (being a nurse and all)
 

sojourner

Puritan Board Freshman
Thank you Eric, Sarah and Psyche,

By the way Psyche Thanks for your help before you remember my churchmate pastor intern, Kirby is now at Westminster California with another intern of ours. They both got scholarships. Have you meet him there? Anyway, Blessings :)
 

mgkortus

Puritan Board Freshman
Leah,

Desiring a spouse is not wrong in itself. God's ordinary plan for individuals is for them to marry. Continue to bring your desire for a spouse to God in prayer. But in that prayer, be sure to ask for contentment in the single life. This is very important because our sense of fulfillment and satisfaction cannot be based on our circumstances or marital status. Before I met my wife, I remember thinking that if only I had a wife, then I could be content/satisfied. However, once a couple is married, it becomes a temptation to think that if only God would give us children (which he has withheld from my wife and I thus far), then I could be content. You see, each stage of life comes with its own unique hardships and troubles. We can readily fall into the trap of basing our happiness on our circumstance. However, contentment rests in God, not the events of our lives or our marital status.
Thus, in your prayers, ask God for grace to find all your satisfaction and fulfillment in Him. If one does not find contentment in single life, one might continue to struggle with being content in other areas of life.
 

mgkortus

Puritan Board Freshman
Psyche,
You speak of boys and men needing to learn control over their sexual desires. While God calls us to put on spiritual armor and fight the good fight of faith, with regards to sexual sins the calling is much different: Run! The allure of sex, especially for men, is so great that controlling one's sexual desires is not possible. Instead, we run from the sin out of a desire to starve our lustful desires. Where do we run: first to God, second to our spouse (if we have one).
This is the reason that some discourage close male-female friendships - they recognize the power of sexual allurement and they want to be faithful to God's prescription against sexual sin: running away.
 

sojourner

Puritan Board Freshman
Thanks Matt what you've said is indeed a word of encouragement. I would like to use that last line of yours for encouragement. Would love to share it with others. :)
 

Afterthought

Puritan Board Senior
Along with joining dating sites, I recommend asking people that you trust and view as wise to keep any eye out for potential suitors, if you have not done this already. Also, while on the one hand, Abraham had to wait for his child, and we can learn about patience in waiting for the fulfillment of God's promises from that...on the other hand, it should be noted that Abraham sent his servant to find a godly woman for his son, and perhaps from that we can learn that some sort of seeking in this matter is permissible.
 

Reformed Roman

Puritan Board Freshman
Also want to mention, I regret being so close to so many women. I am friendly and I can gain things through small groups or other things with females. But if I was meeting alone with an attractive Christian woman it would just not be wise. In my mind friends can meet alone. Bake cookies, become as emotionally attached as they want. This is extremely dangerous. I've seen men have to take years off from ministry, or even get out of ministry entirely because of an emotional relationship that they got too involved in. So in my opinion, it is dangerous to meet alone with the opposite sex in most cases and can lead to serious sexual temptations.

I suggest being healthy. Being kind in public, affirming them, taking advice, etc

But I was so driven by a relationship that I became friends with so many girls growing up. While my motives were impure I found myself talking to multiple women privately, all while pursuing my wife. I thought they were genuine Christian women and thought nothing of it. But I regret the situation I put myself in and all the women I hurt.

PS: I recommend being around them publicly, valuing them and talking even openly, in a way that is Chrissy like and held accountable

It's okay to feel lonely and desire marriage. God says marriage is good, as people quoted above. Don't be afraid to desire it and seek it. Just put God's glory and Himself above your own pursuits, and pursue it for His glory
 
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jwithnell

Moderator
Staff member
It is a sad reality for finite creatures living in a fallen world to know that God sometimes withholds from us things He has declared good. While it is prudent to discuss your plans and desires with a mature believer to ensure that you are not doing something to derail your hopes, please don't be hard on yourself. Use this time to be useful in your congregation and to grow as an individual. Recognize God's sovereign hand and don't allow society to tell you anything is wrong. These are incredibly useful skills and will allow you to weather life's difficult storms whether or not you marry.

Signed ~ someone who married later in life and waited another 5 years for a baby.
 

sojourner

Puritan Board Freshman
HI thanks JWithnell for your reply.
As of now I am reading THIS MOMENTARY MARRIAGE by John Piper. I have this book for maybe for some months now and I havent even finished reading chapter 1. Yup, I need to trust God more and more each day.
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
Make wise and godly moves to finding a husband in God's providence, but in the meantime, I think we always need to remember - whether single or married - how much better off we are than many of our fellows in this world, even many of those who are happily married, and thank God for the good gifts He has given us while learning faith, patience and contentment.

Some are also married and yet suffering from terrible afflictions otherwise.

I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord. Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered. (Psalm 40:1-5)

All that we are and have is of God's grace to us as sinners:
For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it? (I Cor 4:7)

In fact we have everything in Christ, even if this life is much less than perfect:
Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; and ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s. (I Corinthians 3:21-23)

It is possible to learn contentment, but even the Apostle Paul had to learn it:
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (Phillipians 4:11)

The saints have to exercise patient faith in this life, whether they are suffering physical persecution, or suffering other trials, like waiting for/looking for a spouse:
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. (Revelation 14:12)
 

Unoriginalname

Puritan Board Junior
Psyche,
You speak of boys and men needing to learn control over their sexual desires. While God calls us to put on spiritual armor and fight the good fight of faith, with regards to sexual sins the calling is much different: Run! The allure of sex, especially for men, is so great that controlling one's sexual desires is not possible. Instead, we run from the sin out of a desire to starve our lustful desires. Where do we run: first to God, second to our spouse (if we have one).
This is the reason that some discourage close male-female friendships - they recognize the power of sexual allurement and they want to be faithful to God's prescription against sexual sin: running away.

I agree with you to a very large extent I have just noticed that in some circles this notion is taken to the unhealthy degree to which men and women cannot interact with each other in any meaningful way because they view each other more as stumbling blocks than brothers and sisters. I believe men and women can be friends but that friendship is by its nature different than the friendship shared by those of the same sex.
 
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