I got married at the ripe young age of 19. There is so much controversy these days over what is the ‘right’ age to marry, living together before you are married and how long people should be together before they decide to marry. My husband and I dealt with a lot of irresolute comments and ignorant questions throughout our courtship. Most of which came from those who had different backgrounds, beliefs, and morals than we did. They asked us why we wanted to get married so young, told us we needed to live together before we got married to make sure it would ‘work out’ and said we were missing out by not exploring other ‘options’.
In other instances, I have had many unmarried young women ask me about our relationship and seek advice for finding their future spouse. Questions like, “how did you know he was the one and when did you figure that out?” and “do you really think I will find someone for myself?” are among the most common. You see, every relationship is different; no two love stories are exactly the same.
God spoke to each of us individually and told us that we would one day be married (we hardly knew one another at the time…scary). After praying separately and with our parents, we began courting almost immediately, taking premarital counseling courses and going through marriage studies. About 8 months later, we got engaged and 13 months following our engagement, we became husband and wife.
We lived at home with our parents, up until the day we exchanged vows. We waited because we thought it would be worth it, and it was. We are told in Hebrews 13:4 that this is the way it should be. I can stand in front of anyone to this day and say that I have absolutely no regrets with the decisions we have made in our relationship.
Now I’m not going to sit here writing to you about how perfect of a marriage I have and how perfect my little life was before I met my husband. I just want to share the truth- what my life was like as I was growing up and how broken I was, before I completely surrendered everything to The Only One who could satisfy my needs.
Let’s rewind a bit to before we had even met one another. I struggled with a very deep depression for as long as I can remember. I didn’t think I was pretty or worthy of someone who could treat me well. I measured my worth based on the opinions of others. I found my identity in boys and relationships, rather than finding it in Jesus. I allowed myself to focus all of my energy and attention on these relationships, only to end up with a broken heart every time. Rather than finding the satisfaction I was expecting; I found hurt, despair, broken trust and even more depression.
The world has created a new stage before dating. I don’t mean friendship; it’s between friendship and dating. This epidemic is called ‘talking’. I’m sure most of you 30 and under know exactly what I’m talking about. This is probably one of the most juvenile relationships one could be in. Usually a guy will take the girl out like a date…but it’s not a date. Because they’re just ‘talking’. He can kiss her and touch her like he would if they were dating…but he can do that with someone else too, or can he? Because they’re not dating. They’re just ‘talking’.
This type of relationship only confuses and hurts both parties involved. There is no sense of where the relationship is headed, and no proper expectations or intentions set. This typically gives the guys an opportunity to get all of the benefits of a relationship without having to commit to anything. Ladies, you are worth so much more than that. Don’t allow yourself to be led on, and don’t allow someone else to control your happiness. A real man knows what he wants and the person that God chose for you will respect you.
It took an awfully crappy relationship with an equally crappy ending for me to finally snap out of these series of train-wreck-like decisions I was making. I gave up completely. I realized that no matter how hard I tried, I would never be able to find my happiness in another human being. I found myself on my knees in total abandonment in front of my Savior.
I want to take a moment to speak directly to those of you who are single and eagerly awaiting the arrival of your Prince Charming. Guess what? He’s right in front of you! His name is Jesus Christ, the only one who will truly love you regardless of all of your flaws and no matter how many times you betray Him. He is waiting with His arms wide open, ready for you to run and embrace Him. His love for you is deeper and richer than any Nicholas Sparks character or any man you could dream up yourself. Once you allow Him to be your center focus and the love of your life, then, in His timing, He will direct you to the one you will spend the rest of your live with.
I’m not saying that if you’re single, you’re not putting God first in your life. That would be a completely asinine thing to say. I am simply stating that when you give your entire heart to God and find your true worth and happiness in Him, you can’t go wrong. No one else can fulfill that need in your heart, not even your spouse. Marriage was not created to make you happy, and if that’s what you think, you will be extremely disappointed when you find yourself in your first argument with your significant other.
If you think it’s too late to start over, or too late for you to find ‘the one’, don’t fret. And stop searching, your love story has already been written by the most incredible Author. Leave your worries at the feet of Jesus and give Him all of your love. As said in Proverbs 37:4, “Delight yourself in The Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. ” Trust in Him, I promise you will not be disappointed!