Thursday, January 17, 2008

Lady in Waiting

"I've been dating since I was 15. I'm exhausted. WHERE IS HE?" (a quote I heard on TV once)
I got the sweetest e-mail today from a really cute girl, Caroline. She wrote me to tell me she enjoyed reading my blog and loved that I mentioned singleness and she and her friends wished I would talk more on the subject. So I decided I would dedicate a post to the journey that is "waiting for the right one".
For one reason or another, God has had me in a waiting status for the biggest part of my adult life. Probably because I'm a planner and a control freak but most likely because He wants to teach me to trust Him and He also wants me to know Him and I have learned to cling to Him during these times. I had to wait a while for a husband and now I'm waiting for a baby. And the one thing I know for sure is God has let me go through both of these things so that I can have the ministry of encouraging women who are single or are infertile. I have such a huge burden for both groups because I know the pain that is in the waiting.
I grew up thinking I would go to college and meet the man I would marry. I thought that was how it worked and I tried to help this along by going to a Baptist college where I would for sure meet a Christian guy to be my soulmate. Well graduation came and went and I didn't have a ring, a M.R.S. degree or even a boyfriend. As the years passed, I began to feel more desperate and hopeless. I tried to put my trust in God but I felt like He had forgotten me. And I constantly compared myself to other girls who had gotten married - what was wrong with me? Satan really tried to attack my self esteem. That is one of the main things that burdens me about single girls is that you can really start to feel like you aren't "enough".
Well - the truth is that God has the perfect match for you if He has given you the desire to be married. And He is a God of perfect timing. And the thing I learned the most after years of trying to be who I thought guys wanted so they would like me is that there is nothing you can do or say - if he is the ONE - he will fall for you and it will work. If he is not IT - there is nothing you can do or say to make it be different. I used to think if I was just thinner or blonder or more stylish or funnier or smarter or more athletic or more Godly, THEN he would like me and want to marry me. Or if I would have just said this or done that - it would have worked out. But the thing is - if he is not who God has for you - there is nothing you can do to "make it work". The only guy I ever dated who I was just myself around was my husband. I never pretended to be something I wasn't. I never played games. I never tried to make it work - it just did. It fit. It felt like I had always known him. It just felt like home.
And I remember on my wedding day finally getting it. It HAD been worth the wait. I was a month shy of 30 and I thought that day might never come - but it did. And God IS so good. And I know now He needed to shape me into the woman I needed to be to make a good wife.
And marriage is not perfect. It can be wonderful but it can also be very hard. I always thought the answer to all of my problems was a husband. And I put a lot on hold until I was married. "I'll tithe when I am married. I'll get involved in church when I'm married. I'll invest in my retirement when I'm married." If you are single - don't wait on life to start when you get married. Marriage can just bring a WHOLE new set of trials and issues. But the one good part - is you have a partner to get through the problems with! God is so good to have ordained marriage and to give us these best friends to spend our lives with.
I pray if you are single - that you will just trust God that He does have a plan. I pray that you'll look forward to the day you are on the other side of the tunnel looking back and realize the journey you have been on has made you a better woman.
Sweet Caroline said something in her e-mail that I LOVED so much that it made me cry. My favorite verse right now (that I had made into a nursery sign) is Psalms 37:4 "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart". That was my life verse when I was single and it's on my heart again as I wait for a baby. Caroline said "Don't forget the verse before that says 'Trust in the Lord and do good; Dwell in the Land and enjoy safe pastures'" She said her and her friends love to say "they are just dwelling in the Land". Isn't that awesome?
I'm just dwelling in the land right now and I hope if you are too - that you will be encouraged that God loves you more than anything and if we humans who are evil like to give our children (or friends or family) good gifts - how much more does He want to give good gifts to those who ask Him? (Matthew 7:11)

27 comments:

chickadee said...

kelly, what an awesome post. i can see god is already using you to help other women through this post.

Jessica said...

I love God's word. There is no comparasion. It is truly like "Water to the Soul."

Marlee Belle said...

Great post Kelly! Very encouraging! I am working really hard to enjoy this safe pasture we're in before kids. It's hard though. The anticipation for Marlee is so great!

Marlee Belle said...

oh...but to add some. I too am a control freak and I believe that God is working on me through this situation. People always wanna know what brought us to adoption and it was truly a God thing and I think he is working on me specifically in major ways!

Anonymous said...

You rock!!

Leigh Ann said...

This is GOOD stuff, Kelly! Even though the marriage and kid stuff doesn't apply to me now, I still am "dwelling in the land" on other issues in my life. Thanks for being so encouraging! I needed that today!

Guy & Julie said...

You are so right on all counts. I wish I'd had you to talk to before I got married...you hit the struggles I had right on!

Hillary said...

I heart Kelly! :)

sas said...

Great post! I felt the same way too. All I ever wanted to be was a wife and a mother. I ALWAYS had a serious boyfriend and I was pegged to be the 1st married by both my high school and college friends. Then after college, it didn't happen. All of my sorority sisters who PARTIED like crazy were married and having kids. I thought "What did I do wrong?" Even after my husband and I started dating, I was pushing him. I'm so glad he didn't budge until he was ready. Our life is so great now!

Sarah said...

Wow...every "lady in waiting" out there should read this post. Beautifully and eloquently written! I, too, feel like I've been in waiting for lots of things in my adult life, and I would constantly compare myself to others and wonder, why not me, Lord? Caroline sounds like an awesome person.

Re: your note on my post: no, unfortunately, no pg symptoms for me! Just that yucky Metformin! :)

Linda said...

Kelly what a sweet post. Thanks for sharing your heart and what God has done in your life. I am sure not only the single ladies will be inspired plenty of us married women will be as well.
Blessings,
Linda

Brad & Jill said...

Kelly,
Thank you for your sweet post. I have a very special family member that reads your blog daily and the minute I read your blog today, I called her and read it to her over the phone. It was just what she needed!! Isn't it funny how God can even use blogs as a ministry.

Stephanie said...

Thanks for sharing, Kelly. I've done a lot of waiting also. In fact, I'm waiting now on several issues. That verse is also one of my life verses. I love the idea that God will put the desire in my heart and then he'll fulfill it.

Chris and Julie said...

Thanks for that verse Kelly. I need to read Matt 7:11 over and over these days. Thank you!
Julie

Jen said...

What a raw and honest post...just what I needed today!

mer said...

I love what you wrote, Kelly. So honest, and so encouraging!

Anonymous said...

This post honestly touched my heart. It was exactly what I needed in my life right now. I am one of the "ladies in waiting" and there have definitely been times in my life when I have felt like I just wasn't "enough". Thank you for reminding me that God's plan is greater than my own and that He cares for me and will provide for me in all things. I truly hope that God blesses your life abundantly!

Jenny said...

God's timing can be so different than ours. I'm glad He knows the whole plan. I needed that reminder tonight. Thank you...

Lena Warnock said...

What a beautiful post, Kelly! I know that you have certainly touched a lot of women out there with your kind words!

Caroline said...

I love how God's truth is so universal. We all have to wait on things and I love that the waiting brings so many believers together. Thank you for your words of truth!!!!!

Fran said...

Thank you Kelly! As soon as I read this I sent it to my daughter who is in college. She has all the frustrations you spoke of and needed to hear this.

Fran

Jill H. said...

Thank you for this post! It's so hard to sit still and wait, but sometimes that is exactly what we are supposed to do....very hard for us impatient, always in control women!!!

Lindsey said...

What a candid post! Great job! Good things do come to those who wait!

Tamara said...

Kelly,

Your post blessed me. I, too waited for many years for God to provide my sweet husband. Like you, I grew up in a Baptist church, and thought I would certainly meet God's man for me at my Baptist college. I spent years questioning God and beating myself up for being a "loser". Finally, I came to a point where I realized that God had not lost control of the situation, and I wanted to be where He wanted me to be, even if that meant a long season of singleness. I started becoming more aware of opportunities He was putting in my path. And then, when I least expected it, He plopped my (now) husband right in my path. I was 32 when we married. The funny thing? My husband was my first boyfriend, in high school. 14 years after we broke up, God brought us together again. They were 14 painful years, but God used them for good.

Now we're in a season of waiting again. We were unable to conceive, and we have spent time grieving that loss. God has just called us to pursue adoption, and we're excited to be waiting on Him to see what He will do!

Thanks for sharing your story and encouraging me and others!

faith said...

what an amazing post! this really hit home.

Melissa E said...

Thank you for being such an encouragement. After hearing about Miss Harper and praying for her I have been reading your blog. You have been an encouragement to me these last couple weeks. I am 38 and have a wonderful 18 year old son. His dad left us when he was 2 and it's been hard training up a little on my own, but I would no trade a day of it. I love him with my whole heart. Over the past 16 years I have wondered why God has not seen fit to bring a godly man into our lives. I still don't know the answer to this, but I wait on the Lord. So, as I face a empty nest in August I am having to really trust that God knows best and I am not alone. And when my heart aches so much for a husband, I look to God who is my heavenly husband and a wonderful provider. God bless your day.

Kate said...

Kelly, this is really an amazing post. As a single Christian girl, I'm so thankful you've shared your thoughts on this.