Sunday, November 10, 2013

Worth Waiting For

I absolutely love fall.

There's something about that "smell" in the air that is simply delightful!

Every time October rolls around and the leaves begin changing colors, everything becomes pumpkin-flavored, and the scarves come out of the closet, my heart leaps for joy at the new season!

holding hands,love,romances,together,bonds,people,tracks,railroadsThis year was no different. But for some reason, there was something else that changed this fall. Something else was in the air, besides that fall aroma. At least for everyone around me, it seemed like "love" was in the air.

Out of nowhere, many of my friends have started courting/dating, are in a serious relationship, or are engaged. Facebook has never been so full of relationship statuses. And for the first time, people younger than me are getting married. What happened?

Maybe it's just that I'm finally beginning to reach that "marriageable" age. Or maybe it's just that most of my friends have reached it. :) Either way, there's a great tendency to look around and become dissatisfied.

Why am I the only single person here? Sometimes, it just seems hard to wait. For those of you who are older than me and are still single, I understand that you probably think me naive...or hopelessly romantic. But truly. When I look around at many of my friends and see them with their "special someones", there's a yearning for someone to love, cherish, and grow old with.

I have been praying about this lately; praying that the Lord would allow me to rejoice with those who have been gifted with a relationship/fiance/spouse, but to remain satisfied and overjoyed in my Love. And oh friends, how He satisfies! I know I have said this before, but truly there is no one like Him!

The other day, the Lord put several questions to my soul. I had been pondering the joys and blessings of marriage in the lives of my parents and other godly men and women and how wonderful it would be to experience that unity.

But then, the Lord challenged my heart, "What is the purpose of marriage, dear one?"

"To bring You glory, by showing the world a picture of the selfless love and union between Christ and His Bride."

"So then," came another question, "are you willing to joyfully wait until I will be more glorified in your marriage than in your singleness?"

Joyfully wait. That's the hard part sometimes. It's easy to say the right thing. To answer the "relationship status question" with the fact that you're waiting on the Lord to bring along your spouse in His perfect timing. But am I living like I believe this? Or would I dare to argue that right now is His perfect timing, that He would certainly be more glorified if He just brought along my "someone" today.

I know we probably wouldn't admit to this form of thinking, but that's how we often act....or at least how I know I've acted in the past. Do I believe my God is able to bring my spouse and I together at the right time? Then, why would I give into temptation by worrying over it? More importantly, why would I give in to unbelief by living discontentedly? Yes, His timing will probably look different than mine. He could see fit to bring my husband and I together in 6 months or in 10 years. But am I willing to wait, joyfully and contentedly that He might be glorified?

arms outstretched,emotions,freedoms,happiness,joy,looking up,stretching,sun,women,peopleBecause truly, marriage is not the "end-all". He alone is worth living and dying for. So, whether or not He brings along a spouse is not the great concern. It is His glory and His name that is to be sought after and lifted high. Not marriage. Not a relationship. But Him. That's why I must be willing to let go of any dream or desire that is not in alignment with His will. Today, it is not His will for me to be in a relationship. Praise Jesus! I am blessed with Him and Him alone today! He satisfies more than any love story could. In Psalm 16:11 King David said, "You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever."

One more thought. Am I willing to pray that He will not bring my spouse and I together until our relationship will cause us to seek and love Him more? That's a daring prayer. I have seen so many relationships, even "Christian" relationships, in which the young man and woman become so captivated by each other that they lose their zeal and passion for Jesus Christ. But I have seen a few, a select few, where their relationship causes them to fall in love with Jesus even more than they did before. And not only that, but their God-written love story causes others to seek, love, and adore Him more because of it.

That's what I desire in a relationship. And that's worth waiting for.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Rich Words from Spurgeon

The Shores of Lake Michigan
If you have read some of my blogposts in the past, you probably know that I have a fondness for Charles Spurgeon. The Lord has used his words to encourage, challenge, and convict me time and time again. Spurgeon's Morning & Evening devotionals for today were very thought-provoking. These are not the entire devotionals in full, but have been slightly shortened. I hope and pray that the following will be a challenge and encouragement to your soul tonight!

"Take up the cross, and follow me." (Mark 10:21) "You have not the making of your own cross, although unbelief is a master carpenter at cross-making; neither are you permitted to choose your own cross, although self-will would fain be lord and master; but your cross is prepared and appointed for you by divine love, and you are cheerfully to accept it; you are to take up the cross as your chosen badge and burden, and not to stand cavilling at it. This night Jesus bids you submit your shoulder to his easy yoke. Jesus was a cross-bearer; he leads the way in the path of sorrow. Surely you could not desire a better guide! And if he carried a cross, what nobler burden would you desire? Take up your cross, and by the power of the Spirit of God you will soon be so in love with it, that like Moses, you would not exchange the reproach of Christ for all the treasures of Egypt. Remember that Jesus carried it, and it will smell sweetly; remember that it will soon be followed by the crown, and the thought of the coming weight of glory will greatly lighten the present heaviness of trouble.

Lift up now thine eyes to the north and to the south, to the east and to the west, for all this is thine. There is not a brook of living water of which thou mayst not drink. Be thou bold to believe, for he hath said, "I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."In this promise, God gives to His people everything. "I will never leave thee." Then no attribute of God can cease to be engaged for us. Is He mighty? He will show Himself strong on the behalf of them that trust Him. Is He love? Then with lovingkindness will He have mercy upon us. Whatever attributes may compose the character of Deity, every one of them to its fullest extent shall be engaged on our side. To put everything in one, there is nothing you can want, there is nothing you can ask for, there is nothing you can need in time or in eternity, there is nothing living, nothing dying, there is nothing in this world, nothing in the next world, there is nothing now, nothing at the resurrection-morning, nothing in heaven which is not contained in this text-"I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. "

~Charles Spurgeon