I am 27, and I am single. This alone causes a number of people to feel sorry for me, or at least feel the need to reassure me that "don't worry, someone will come in God's time!" Well, maybe they will, or maybe that time could be "not at all," but either way I'm not sitting around pining, twiddling my thumbs, and feeling sorry for myself while waiting for my life to begin.
Let me clarify here. I think marriage is wonderful! God created it and it's a very good thing. In fact, I do hope I am married one day. And I look forward to loving and serving God alongside someone for life. Marriage is great. Kids are great. I hope I have both someday. (And I'm not opposed to single mom adoption, either, in fact I'm a fan, although I'd have a lot to think through, plan, pray about, and talk through with a lot of people in my life.)
But singleness is also great. This is actually in the Bible, yet some Christians act shocked when I tell them I thoroughly enjoy my current status. I had this conversation recently...and although my memory may be a bit fuzzy on the exact words exchanged, I am not exaggerating...
Me: So, I do want to get married someday...in the future...but I really LIKE being single.
Newly Engaged Friend: Noooooo!!! That's wrong!! You can't enjoy it!
Me: But...Paul says it's a good thing in Corinthians.
NEF: But still! You can't ENJOY it!!!
My naturally stubborn nature says...why not?? If you tell me I shouldn't enjoy it, I will enjoy it even MORE! Ha. But seriously though, I'm single and I don't particularly enjoy being pitied for it. I actually love my life.
I love working in ministry, and if I married, I'm not sure I'd want to leave it. I love caring for babies that need a home.
I would say I love my independence, but in my situation, I depend on others, and I have a LOT of people who depend on me for everything from rides to church to finding the sugar (like a mom, I'm apparently the only one in the house with x-ray vision). And although it may be tiring at times, it is good practice in laying my life down for others. I don't think people are meant to be as isolated as we are in the States.
I love my little room, even when I'd rather have my own place, because I'm learning contentment.
I love my church and the fact that my adopted family is as real as any biological family.
I love the future, the potential of years ahead of loving and serving alongside these people, and the unexpected things God brings into my path.
I love living in South Africa, early morning walks in the neighborhood, trying to learn languages, finding new things and places to love.
I love the good, the wonderful, the crazy, and the obnoxious about living in the baby home...New babies arriving. Bengu dancing in the sitting room. Four people trying to cook four separate dinners. "You wash, I'll dry." "Can I borrow an onion? Cooking oil? Sugar?" The endless requests to "show me how you cook that!" Embarrassing lessons in cooking pap - which seems like it would be easy, but taught me a very humbling lesson in patience for the next time someone asks me how to scrape a bowl with a spatula. Seven-minute workouts. Saturday morning scones and dancing as people run in and out. Rapping into a bottle of soy sauce about grasshoppers and mice. Earnest conversations, tears, laughter. Endless, endless Psalty, Steve Green, and Slugs and Bugs songs filtering over from our slowly dying TV. Piles of laundry loading into our washing machine that constantly sounds like it's readying for takeoff, no matter how many times it's fixed. Gertrude's stories of her childhood. Labor advice for pregnant moms. ("Scream really loud.") African and American dishes cooking side by side. Babies crying. Babies laughing. Learning to love each other well.
I love my good God. I love the fact that He is my dwelling place, my family, my joy, my ENOUGH, whether He brings someone into my life or not. And I hope He does. Just maybe not quite yet.