Back home in ATL, I am surrounded by 30+ post-grad singles within my church community alone. But out here in Fort Collins, CO, I’m more aware of my relationship status than I’ve ever been in my 26 years of singleness.
How do I make the most of being surrounded by a Christian culture where there are countless couples and families? How do I integrate without idolizing?
This summer I have the incredible opportunity to invest in Cru staff students as a part of Cru’s Jr/Sr. high school program for eight weeks. This program consists of six staff (including myself), 17+ college leaders, and over 600 registered students.
Last week, one of our college leaders spoke on the “Freedom to Experience Joy.” He said, “We look to certain things to give us joy, but end up feeling disappointed.” And even though his message was meant for middle and high school students, his words impacted the way I perceive idols:
An idol becomes an idol because of where it is, not what it is.
My prayer is to have someone to do ministry with. And that prayer has never been stronger than summer ’17. I desire:
- A best friend to challenge me in my faith
- A partner to grow together in the gospel
- A protector to point out my sins
- A companion to love me unconditionally
And that desire is valid. But when my desire for an earthly relationship becomes greater than my heavenly relationship with God, it becomes an idol.
Because a relationship with God is the only one that truly satisfies.
I’m frustrated with feeling unloveable. I’m frustrated with how easily entangled my emotions are when I’m initially attracted to someone and constantly experiencing rejection when they don’t reciprocate the same feelings or they are already in a relationship with someone else.
“Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.
The troubles of my heart are enlarged; bring me out of my distresses.
Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.” -Psalm 25:16-18
Give me eyes to see what you have already so graciously blessed me with. I desire to have a thankful heart, a contentment and rest in you alone. Help me to make the most of where you have me right now. Comfort me in my loneliness. Protect me from jealousy and comparison. Break me free from feeling like I’m missing out by not being in a relationship or having a spouse to do ministry with.
Help me to not miss this opportunity to invest in others this summer.
“Give ear to my prayer, O God,
and hide not yourself from my plea for mercy!
Attend to me, and answer me;
I am restless in my complaint and I moan…
...But I call to God,
and the Lord will save me.
Evening and morning and at noon
I utter my complaint and moan,
and he hears my voice.”
-Psalm 55: 1-2, 16-17