22/10/2019

Singleness Q & A Pt. 2

Hi guys! It’s time for the Singleness Q&A Part 2! You all sent in so many kind and encouraging messages after Part 1. I hope you’re excited to read this next one. I feel like many of these questions could be an entire blog on their own, but I did my best to answer them within this one post. So let’s get to it!

Q1: How do you remain patient and happy when all of your friends are in relationships?

A1: Well, like any normal human, my patience comes in waves. There are some days that I question what the Lord has planned for my life since I do desire to have my own family someday! But on most days, I’d say I’m able to remain patient when my desire is to please Jesus first. Truly. 

Your time will come! Don’t be discouraged. Continue to glorify God in your actions and words. Place all of the focus on your relationship with Him.

Q2: What do you do when the moments of singleness really hit you? Especially during family time and holidays?

A2: To be honest, I haven’t felt this loneliness during the holidays. I’m surrounded by so much love within my own family that I don’t really think about this. 

I did have a dream once that my youngest sister had a boyfriend, and then Tay and Luke were there too…we were all sitting down to play Spicy Uno… and they were all trying to get me to lose since I was the only single one there. Truly a nightmare. I knew it was only a dream thought… because I win Spicy Uno in real life. 

Q3: How do you navigate friendships in this season, when it seems all of your friends are either dating, engaged, or married?

A3: I recognize my boundaries with my guy friends who are in relationships–I always make plans that include their girlfriends. And when my girlfriends have boyfriends/husbands, I plan times to hang out with both of them, but I also ask the girl if we can have a “girls” day.

If you’re feeling sad or insecure about being the only single one in a group, bring another single friend. Or just be the life of the party, because that’s what YOU ARE on your own too. When I’m in my group of all married friends, I don’t wanna brag or anything, but I am the funniest         ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ You can pray for “Aubrie’s humility” in your personal prayer time, thx.

Q4: How do I get through singleness? I hate being single. All of my friends are younger and married with kids.

A4: You have time–not everyone gets married in their 20s and 30s. There are no rules or deadlines. You’re not alone and I would encourage you to change your perspective. Being single allows you to impact and influence many people who need your undivided attention. Allow God to use your time of singleness to strengthen your relationship with Him. You’re not being punished with singleness. And finding a relationship isn’t some reward system set up by God. I love what Phylicia Masonheimer said in a Q&A on Instagram… “Don’t serve Him to get a man out of Him.” 

My heart is with you–God hears you and I’d encourage you to be proactive in meeting new people in new settings as well (if it’s possible for you where you live). You’re stronger than you think! You’ve got it.

Q5: How do you deal with waiting for the right guy?

A5: I just don’t worry about it too much. Through my experience I’ve started to recognize what I find most important. I focus on building my own character until that time comes. When you find the person who complements you well, and is looking to take that next step with you, it’ll be worth your patience. I’ve seen my friends around me find awesome people that they’re now married to and it’s encouraging to me! 

Q6: I’m a college student and need some encouragement waiting for Mr. Right.

A6: Ah, my college girls. You. Have. So. Much. Time. Don’t even worry about it. I know it’s tough to see friends couple-up during college years. I went to a Christian university with the “ring by spring” thing. I get it and I struggled with some major insecurity for a minute there.

Focus on your friendships because you’ll miss them when you all graduate. All of my best friends (except for one) live in all different states and I look back at my college years and wish I could get that time back sometimes. Invest your time there because you only get it once. And if you happen to find your forever person in college, that’s amazing! 

Jesus First

Q7: How do you shift your focus to Jesus when you’re wanting to be in a relationship with a specific person?

A7: I encourage you to read your Bible. I know that sounds simple and you’ve heard many other people say it, but OPEN it. Truly study it and pray. It takes effort, just like any other relationship in your life. I follow a woman named Phylicia Masonheimer on Instagram who shares so much wisdom about what it means to truly follow Christ (she gives dating tips in one her Insta highlights too!) She shared that some of us have been taught to see the Bible as a manual, when in reality it’s a way for us to learn and understand the heart of God…this helps me shift my focus so that I don’t view the Bible as a school book, or some book of “life rules.” 

God loves you tremendously. You don’t have to wait around for Him (like the way you’re waiting for the guy you’re specifically wanting to be with right now0. That time will come, but Jesus is already with you. So talk to him, love him, and be accepting of his love for you.

This goes back to trusting that God’s plans are better for you. When you finally surrender to that, I promise it becomes easier to just let it go if a romantic relationship isn’t happening in that moment. Even when it feels so close.  

Q8: How do you pray for your future significant other in your time of waiting?

A8: I sorta felt weird about doing this for a while because if I’m honest, I felt like Christian girls put such a huge emphasis on praying for this future husband that’s out in the world somewhere. It’s not a negative thing to pray at all (I’ve definitely prayed about my future, including a possible future husband), but I’ve seen it explained in cheesy ways, so maybe I can be the opposite? I mean, I hope I don’t sound cheesy in general lol like, ever.

Audrey Roloff wrote a great blog post, where she explained how she prays for her husband Jeremy. She prays Ephesians 6:10-18 over him. This is the scripture that talks about putting on the Armor of God. I feel like this would be a great place to start, because it’s scripturally based, and you can pray this over yourself too, as you walk through life on your own first.  

Q9: I’m newly single and need advice on how to best use this season! What should I aim for?

A9: I’m sorry to hear you had a breakup. It’s tough for the first couple of weeks, maybe even months. However, I’m also excited for you to experience new things! 

I would aim for loving Jesus well. I think that loving Jesus well means loving his people well and acting in obedience. Serve your friends and family, pray over them, grow in wisdom, show grace even when you don’t feel like it, and let forgiveness flood through your heart. It’s easy to let some bitterness creep in after a breakup sometimes (even if it was the right thing and you feel good about it). This is the perfect time to learn how to love well!

Contentment

Q10: How to stay content and not be envious of other people getting engaged, etc

A10: Honestly this was really hard for me when Tay got engaged. I was SO excited, don’t get me wrong. But I went to a selfish place and wondered why God didn’t pick me first since I am the oldest sister of the three. Hate to admit it, but it’s true.

I had people come up to me multiple times and say, “Your little sister is getting married? But why not you, where’s your boyfriend? You should be getting married first!” And then they’d laugh, as if they just came up with some hilarious joke. I don’t think anyone realizes it’s actually kind of awkward, but I know their intention was not to be weird, or possibly a tiny bit rude. Plus I was extra sensitive at the time because of my own insecurities.

I think my mindset switched when I decided to be one of Tay’s sources of encouragement. I looked for a way to serve her, rather than wish I could be in her position. I participated in her joy. 

Q11: How do you stop yourself from imagining what it’s be like to date/marry any single godly guy. Like how to view him as a brother in Christ and not think “what if he were to pursue me?”

A11: I think most guys and girls question at some point or another if they’d ever be interested in the other one. That’s natural. But then when it gets into an obsessive thought process, it’s then time to check yourself and ask the Lord to help guide your thoughts to a place that puts your focus back on Him.

Maturity and discipline are a part of our faith, right? So when we are mature in our relationship with Jesus, I think we go in to relationships with a mindset of loving others in a Christ-like way. And while a single godly guy may have many of the qualities you’re looking for, it doesn’t mean that every single guy is an option to date or marry. I would pray and ask that God would give you the wisdom to know and trust that He ultimately has the best plan for you, so you don’t have to constantly wonder if one of your godly guy friends is going to “pursue” you (“pursuit” is a whole other topic…maybe we’ll get into that in the future).

Think from a place of being content with God’s plan for you, not from a place of looking to fill an emotional need with any godly guy. Plus, godly guys aren’t all just clones… They’re all going to have different personalities, struggles, backgrounds…so it’s possible some may be more suited for you than others anyway, yeah? Set your mind on Him and realize that the larger percentage of the “godly guy population” are truly, just your bros.

Q12: How can I handle being touch-deprived when all I want is a hug but have no one to turn to?

A12: I’d encourage you to develop friendships where you can receive physical touch without it being awkward or weird. I have girl and guy friends that greet me with hugs. So I know it’s something you can incorporate into your life in a healthy and appropriate way. 

Q13: Does the church ever frustrate you when it comes to being single? I feel like the church handles singleness in extremes–you’re either “called” to being single and are viewed as a special kind of holy, or you’re created to be a pariah of some kind, getting excluded from groups or communities because you’re single. Any thoughts?

A13: I do feel this sometimes! I think many Christians refer to the verse where Paul says it is better to be single, especially when you’re in ministry to serve Christ (1 Cor. 7:8). 

I do think that there are individuals who have felt a clear calling on their life to never get married. I think where there could be a problem is when there is a man or woman who is feeling sad because they’re growing older in age and haven’t found a spouse yet. So the automated answer is “God may be calling you to singleness.” If they haven’t received this word from the Lord in their own life, this can feel like some weird life sentence. And then some others, who have received word from the Lord like this, feel affirmed! So it takes strong discernment before telling someone what they’re called to and we should definitely recognize that.

At our church, we’ve had groups that are open to couples to get together in their season of marriage. My sister and my best friend from high school went to together with their husbands, and I didn’t go. At first it felt so weird being “excluded” (they’re not excluding anyone, it’s just primarily for couples) but at the same time, I totally understood. To be honest, I wouldn’t be relating to anything they’re struggling with. BUT we’ve also opened up another group to people who are interested in being married one day. There are many things we can learn from the beauty of marriage while we’re single. 

The amount of times my married friends told me to read “The Meaning of Marriage” by Tim Keller, even though I’m single, shows that we are called to holiness no matter whether we’re single or married. Are you selfless when you’re single? Are you serving others around you without expecting some reward? I’m giving a really simple answer here but this was such a good question and I’m sure there are some deep articles on it. I have a certain word count I can reach sooo 

Q14: What has been the most interesting thing you’ve learned about yourself in your season of being single? What have you discovered to be surprising about yourself, if anything?

A14: I think the most surprising part is that I genuinely like being single! Of course I hope to find someone one day, and I’m totally open to it. I just thought I’d be so sad after being in a long relationship. 

Most interesting thing I’ve learned…I am truly ok with not knowing my timeline and also being ok with the fact that my “perfect plan” isn’t happening. When I was 18, I had a perfect plan to get married at 24 years old, have babies at 26 years old, and then go from there…God KNOWS. I am not in a mindset at the moment, or in a place, to have babies…next year. I think I’ve truly been growing in my trust with Jesus. I believe His timing is perfect.

Q15: How did you manage a peaceful break-up without a lot of deep hurt? I assume you cared very much for each other during the two-year relationship. Was it the long distance that was too difficult to maintain? Or did you mutually agree that this was not the right pairing or God’s will? I think talking about how to have a mature break-up (and how possibly to remain friends) also would be helpful to hear. You express your thoughts so well.

A15: I decided to include this question that I received as a comment on Part 1 of this blog. Thank you for the kind compliment at the end!

We did care very much for each other, which is why I believe our break-up ended in a mature way. Without giving too much detail to respect the guy, we basically just weren’t on the same page about what we wanted our future to look like together. Which is totally fine. We mutually agreed it was time to go our separate ways. 

We actually thanked each other for certain things we learned from one another during our break-up, since the last two years of our lives were spent with each other. Obviously we both grew through those two years and came out of the relationship a little differently than when we entered into it. I knew that this was a moment for me to truly practice what it means to reflect the character of Jesus by being kind, but honest. I wasn’t interested in bashing him or fighting. The fight was over, and it was time for us to finally rest. I also truly believe that God gave us both a tremendous amount of grace to get through it. 

So my piece of advice, if you’re possibly about to go through a break-up–always, always remain kind. Understand that there’s another person with feelings involved too, and eventually your hearts will heal. There’s no reason to hang on to the bitterness because it’s just exhausting. And even if the other person isn’t receptive to it, be kind anyway.

Guys! Thank you so much for sending in your questions. I know it’s a pretty vulnerable thing to submit questions that are sometimes scary to ask. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions (Instagram @aubrieshuler). My prayer for you is that during this time of being single, you’ll continue to understand the heart of God in a deeper way, love your people well, and enjoy where you are right now. 

Until next time,

Aubrie

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