It is clear that when two people get married, each and every story is going to be different. As much as we would like to find the button to push or the formula to plug, the whole thing is a mystery, from start to finish. You can see why some cultures and some eras just let the dads settle things by arranging marriages. Makes me shudder! But I know that God can and does use all kinds of means to bring about good ends. I once knew a couple from India who met on their wedding day, and they were very happily married. Even so, not a practice I want to recommend.
But for all you unmarried women out there reading this, especially those of you who do not fit into the “early” category, these posts on early marriage can just be aggravating. I can see why. So here are some suggestions for you in the hope that you do not lose heart.
First off. Marriage is a means, not an end. It is not the only means of glorifying God, but it is one of the common means. But He has other means. So glorify God where you are, in what ever state you are in. That is a tall order and requires diligence. Coasting always takes you downstream.
Second. Whatever it is you are doing, whether it is endless college degrees or working in an office, don’t be restless. Contentment is a work of grace on the inside, and moving or changing jobs will not fix it. You may be exactly where you are supposed to be, so don’t get antsy. But if you have good reason to press on, then consider it. The important thing is to flourish where you are. See that your soul is prospering, wherever you are. And if it isn’t, then consider what is causing the impoverishment. Is it an internal problem? If so, you will just take it with you. If it is an external problem, perhaps the solution is to change your position or take a new job. Find a church that will provide nourishment and fatten you up.
On the other hand: You may need to push your comfort zone a little and get out and meet some new people. (And I don’t mean at the bars.)Â Go to a conference. Visit friends. Don’t hide out. Don’t get in a rut. Change things up a bit. A new hairdo? An updated wardrobe? Losing some weight? Consider whether these things might be spiritually healthy improvements.
Unmarried women ought to enjoy domesticity as much as the married women do. Embrace your femininity. Push yourself a little more. Take a cooking class or learn to sew. Redecorate. Paint. Throw a party. Make friends with little people and old people. Don’t retreat or minimize the impact you can have on your community. Give yourself away everyday, and God will continue to fill and refill your capacity to do it all over again.
And as you pray for marriage, ask God to shape your ideas about marriage. We all have much chaff mixed in among the wheat. Learn to think about marriage in a Christian way, and jettison those worldly ideas that have taken root.
All this to say: God did not forget about you. You did not slip through the cracks. He has planned good things for you, and He will never leave you or forsake you.