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The Loneliness Epidemic- 2- The Loneliness of Singles

The Loneliness Epidemic
Day 2- The Loneliness of Singles
Ruth P McDonald

“Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4, ESV)

Married at the age of 23, I cannot pretend to know the loneliness of those who have been single for a large portion of their adult life, some never to marry, yet longing for it. This is different than those who are voluntarily single. It must be incredibly hard to lay down your dreams—love, marriage and a family to fill your heart’s deep longing. As challenging as romantic relationships can be, it’s still so nice to go through life having that “someone” by your side.

The life of a young 20- or 30-ish single has its share of heartache. Your friends all seem to find the person of their dreams, marry, have babies, buy new homes and seem to be thriving. You, on the other hand, feel like life is passing you by, and while you celebrate your friends’ joys outwardly, you feel discouraged and lonely inside. For the Christian single especially, you are likely surrounded by those who highly esteem married life and being fruitful and multiplying. And as we hold fast to our chastity, as Scripture commands, we may simply feel unfulfilled on many levels.

While these feelings are natural and expected, we must be careful not to allow them to guide us toward a poor relationship decision to fill our void. We must still wait patiently on what the Lord has (or may not have) for us. Rushing ahead in a relationship with an unbeliever to relieve our loneliness will only help temporarily. In time, a marriage outside of Christ will fill you with a deeper loneliness than no relationship at all.

While being lonely is a natural part of being single, it is still possible for you to thrive. In fact, without a relationship to pull you away and distract you, your service for Christ can be far more passionate and focused. The Apostle Paul highlights this in 1 Corinthians 7, putting the advantages of being single on display in his letter. When we are married, we are often looking at what will please our spouse and not giving proper consideration to what will please the Lord. Singleness allows us to focus on Christ in a way that being married does not.

Though we may find advantages in being single, loneliness can still creep in and cause us discouragement or depression. It’s wonderful that Jesus understands these feelings, as the only One He had with Him always was His Father—just like you have! Talking honestly to the Lord about our longings and our feelings can bring us great comfort and fill us with peace as we wait.

While Scripture reminds us to be content in whatever circumstances we find ourselves, it’s still not sinful or wrong to desire something different. I like this quote from John Lee in

“Desire and contentment are two different realities. You can desire marriage while still being content in seasons of singleness. If you are single and desire to be married, then don’t feel guilty about that desire. Proverbs 18:22 says, ‘He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.’ Enjoy your singleness and look for a spouse!”

Prayer is a blessing, isn’t it? As we pray for God’s leading and wait for Him to show us if it’s His will for us to marry, we also know our prayers can connect us to the One who will never leave us alone. We always have the faithful love of our Savior, and He can fill us in ways no human ever could.

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