A History: Nana’s 10-Year Prayer
It doesn’t matter how old you are. Once you turn 18 in this family you should have a husband in mind, or at least a few prospects. Seeing as I am nearing 28 and Paul Rudd is already married, I tend to shrug my shoulders a bit when I’m asked about marriage. That’s not entirely true, I have plenty of opinions about the state of marriage in society today and the role the church plays in that (for another time or platform perhaps), but as far as my story goes, I’ve been busy, okay. I’ve been busy learning, making mistakes, taking adventures, learning what to carry and what to release. I have enjoyed every last bit of it and where it’s taking me now. I’m certainly not worried, and yea, I’m offended when people suggest that I should be. This is God’s story being woven in me, not my own, or I’d have chosen, without His help, a hard road years ago. But that’s just my personal side of this story, a story which we all have and tell differently.
Let me take a step back. When I say “family” perhaps I’m not being fair. By family I mean my grandma, “Nana”. Now, at this point, I am to the point of hearing from God about my future husband and family and praying over them, but it doesn’t hold a candle to Nana’s prayers other than perhaps being more personal given what God’s speaking. If it were up to her dear heart I would have been hitched a long time ago and it’s no secret that it is a topic of high concern for her. She tells me every time we speak that she prays every day for me to find a Godly husband. Every day for ten years, she’s prayed over my future marriage. I genuinely tell her that I love her for it and my future husband and I are grateful for her prayers. I’m sure he’s grateful, after all. I mean we are pretty much covered, right? I’m praying, Nana’s praying, he’s probably praying. I can’t imagine anything being prayed over more, to be honest. She’s a warrior for my future and present. I try to direct her prayers to the anti-trafficking movement, or African babies, but she persists, and I am honestly humbled by her devotion to the end to my singleness. She probably prays for that other stuff too, or maybe leaves it to me since it looks to her like the former issue is not quite as pressing to me.
What has God promised that He’s intended for your life? Think about it, what does GOD promise? Freedom, joy, life abundantly… and what I want when I feel I am ready to have it. Wait… that can’t be right. He’s calling us to adventure, and I frankly don’t know what I want or need, to an extent.
Let’s sidestep Nana for a second, which, by the way, would be hard to do if you were following her as she drives her electric scooter. Marriage is a tricky subject for a lot of people. It took me forever to think of what to write about it because of that. Whether you are married or not, it brings up ideas and emotions. Rights and wrongs. Fears and insecurities. Joys and sorrows. We are absolutely relational beings to our very core.
So, if God is crafting His goodness and life in us, why can it be such a dirty word to announce our “single” status? Even now, ideas others have planted in our hearts try to spring up at the mention of it. There is a temptation there to believe the lies that have been spoken in generations of lonely hearts. It is loneliness that leaves us empty and tempts us to fill the empty with broken things and lies.
The temptation in singleness is to be led to think we are broken and need fixing, and that one other person (THE one) will fix it. We are setting one another up for failure.
“MY grace is sufficient for you for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
GOD’s grace. It is grace that is sufficient. That sufficient means: Equal to the end proposed; adequate to wants; enough; ample; competent; as, provision sufficient for a family.
I almost hesitate to bring any scripture into this because so many verses have been twisted to represent what we want them to. Thus, we ignore the facets of God’s glory that should be at our very core of understanding anything relational. The only verses I could then bring to the forefront are ones of God’s goodness, mercy, and grace, and those speaking over our identity in Christ. Those are the beginning of our understanding of self and then branch into understanding of others in our relationship.
So often I see women and men consumed to the point of despair over their singleness. Being in despair is like letting a thief come in and take away what God is showing you in this time! This is YOUR time alone with God. What will you make of it?
The Story is Yours
Everyone’s story is different. For me, it all boils down to the fact that God wants me to experience utmost joy, life, and freedom through His love. So, in coming to finally accept that, then His promises are made known to me for the future.
So, I propose (no pun intended) that we change the way we talk about singleness and marriage. I don’t want to be “fixed up” per say, and I don’t desire to “live happily ever after” because I want to weather storms together, too. So, I would prefer to follow in God’s footsteps and see where His love leads me, because He can and has saved me when I was seemingly beyond repair.
I want my husband to see God in me and vice versa, knowing for a fact that we’ll never fix each other, but loving without condition and providing comfort in the depths that may come. Because what greater love story is there than the one of rescue God’s already given both of us? So, why not love in the midst of that?
Isaiah 43:1 “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name, you are mine.”
So, see through the eyes of your Father and follow in His love. Don’t strive or toil, you are clothed in righteousness and you will be restored.
Isaiah 61:10 “I am overwhelmed with joy in the LORD my God! For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation and draped me in a robe of righteousness. I am like a bridegroom in his wedding suit or a bride with her jewels.”
We are the bride of Christ. Therefore, what we anticipate with longing is being placed on that which it was not intended. Once it is placed rightly, we can truly embrace the roles God has for us each in each others’ lives. Not a role of rescue and completion, but of communion with Christ.