Here’s the problem with a lot of singles: We are extremist.
We either never want to get married or we can’t be happy unless we do.
But what’s really ironic is that the person who is able to find their God-arranged spouse AND have a wildly successful marriage is the person who doesn’t even need marriage to happen for them.
These are the people who have mastered the balance between enjoying singleness, yet still preparing for marriage. They have the ability to find, create, and maintain happiness and contentment no matter what stage of life they’re in.
But what I know all too well is that this is WAY easier said than done, so here are some tips on balancing singleness and marriage prep.
Contentment in Singleness
Figure out the things about yourself that would make you a bad spouse
Knowing what your current flaws are also works wonders to pump the breaks on lusting after marriage because it shows you just how much work you have left to do.
Who you are now will be who you are in marriage. A good way to keep from being obsessed with waiting for your spouse to materialize from thin air is to focus on your little (or BIG) self-improvements now.
Don’t wait to get married to be this amazing, accomplished person because you WILL NOT magically transform after you say vows. I used to think that once I got married “things would be different” because I would now be a “wife.” Marriage only exposes who you truly are already, and some of us aren’t “exposure ready.”
Live like you’ll be single forever
Before you hyperventilate and pass out at the thought of dying alone, answer these questions first (then you can pass out)…
Will you be happy and fulfilled if marriage never happens for you?
If your life stayed exactly the way it is now, would you be okay with that?
If not, then put your focus and energy into pursuing a single life you wouldn’t mind living for a lifetime because, again, it’s the people who are completely content and fulfilled in their singleness that end up happily married.
Like I said before, who you are now will be who you are in marriage. So if you’re discontent while single, then you’ll be discontent in marriage as well.
Preparing for Marriage
Find ways to practice the values of marriage in your single life.
Marriage is a BIG DEAL. It would be very naïve to assume that we could become fully prepared for it in that short time between a proposal and the wedding. We need all of the practice we can get.
Think about the type of spouse you want to be. What kind of value will you be able to provide your marriage? Actually write them down. Especially if it’s something you don’t know how to do yet.
It’s really important to find ways to provide those things to friends, parents, siblings, coworkers, church members, and even strangers while you’re single!
Now I’m not saying to treat others like you would treat your husband or wife (please don’t be extra).
But it’s necessary to practice these things because it teaches you to serve with joy. Now for some people, this takes no effort whatsoever, but I’ve never met any of those people ever in life.
For the majority of us, this doesn’t come naturally so it’s necessary to practice this until it does. Marriage is all about serving and being selfless and it’s better to learn that willingly that being forced into it.
Treat your relationship with God like a marriage.
Now this tip seems like a contradiction with the 2nd tip but let me make the distinction for you: create and earthly single life that you wouldn’t mind living for a lifetime. But when it comes to your spiritual life, if you are a true Follower of Christ, you are already married to God, His ways, and His Word.
Our marriages are simply an earthly example of how Christ loves the church. The bible says, a single person is concerned about the things of God, and when marry we will then honor God through honoring our spouse.
But you never want to show God that you will treat your spouse better than you treat him. Because trust me, they will never show up until you desire God more than marriage.
Ok… I want to explain something….
When I say “be married to God” I know a lot of you probably think of nuns or that super-spiritual spinster lady that shuns the entire world except for “her sweet, sweet Jesus.”
But something I want to highlight about being married to God is that He has billions and billions of children. If you were to marry a person with children, they would become your step-kids and you would, ideally, treat them as your own.
God expects us to care for other people around us. Even if it’s in small, thoughtful ways, like a smile or simply making eye contact with people. Once He sees that you will keep Him first and honor your commitment to Him and others, then and only then will He be able to honor you by blessing you with a spouse.
It’s not easy balancing a thriving single life with making sure your future marriage lasts, but I hope these 4 tips will help you balance it all out and walk the tight rope between the two!