Thursday, May 8, 2014

Single and a Stay-@-Home-Daughter

Over the last 2 years or so I have struggled with "singleness". My fear being that I would be an old maid, never have a husband to serve, and never having children of my own. But then the Lord showed me how much singleness is a gift and how it wasn't a "curse" or a "waiting time"...That's also when I realized that the fear of being single was just pride.  I was afraid of what people would think of me if I never got married. And that was wrong. For me, fixing this problem meant reminding myself what the true purpose of marriage was (marriage wasn't only created to fulfill loneliness) and why God ordained it. Also to search and understand why God gave us our single years. What could I do that was glorifying to God while I am single? And how could I do this while staying at home. The Lord seemed to be sending me messages through so many things.... It seemed to pop out of every blog post and every book, and even the sermon that Sunday was on singleness. The Lord was definitely teaching me everywhere I turned that singleness is a gift. The only thing I didn't see was how to use this gift...
In our culture, singleness is viewed as a time to have fun by yourself and pursue worldly things that have no importance. While I believed these things were wrong and I knew that was not the direction I wanted to take, the singleness view of the world was creeping into my thoughts and I knew I didn't want it there. I didn't want to chase after boys and waist my single years. I wanted to make my single years count. The Lord had showed me that singleness was a wonderful gift through 1 Corinthians 7, and through a book "Singled out for Him" by Nancy Leigh Demoss. Reading Nancy's book was very helpful. It helped me realize that no matter where you are at, no matter what situation you are in, there are always ways to glorify God. But in another way, they were talking about using your single years for going out and DOING something great for God. Like being missionaries over seas, or watching people's children so the parents could get a break, or ministering to people in your college. While these things may be well and good, I found that they were not useful for me. I couldn't afford to go over seas and as a single woman, I believed it wasn't my place. Babysitting children is not something I can do often (at least not for others). I don't go to college and so I couldn't minister there.... My point being here that all the articles and books I read were always wanting you to GO outside your home and BE something"... They were basically saying that you could make something of yourself while also glorifying God.... the opposite of what John the Baptist says in John,
"He [Christ] must increase, but I must decrease." John 3:30, (Brackets by me. I encourage you to read all of John 3.)
 I am a Stay-@-Home-Daughter. This means that I believe in the Titus 2:3-5 command to be a keeper at home and I believe that the head of my family (my dad) is my protection and that the only time I will permanently leave that protection is when my future husband becomes that protection. As such, I needed to ask the Lord how He wanted me to serve Him inside his laws and my home. What he showed me was quite simple. Singleness was given to us as a time of growing in Christ. It's the best time to learn that putting others, esp. your family before yourself is more important. Learning this and mastering this is to be like Christ. He also showed me in many ways how to be a missionary, to serve parents, to tell and train others in Christ, and all this inside my home. How did he show me? He showed me the little people and big people in my house. They were the ones I could be missionaries to. I -with Christs help- could use my life as an example to them. I have two wonderful parents that I can serve and help. How? How do you help your parents? There are many ways. Cleaning is always helpful for the whole family. Keeping the children busy when Mom and Dad are having important conversations, or when they are taking care of financial things is always a way to serve. It is different in every family when it comes to tasks you can help with. Discover those things and do them to the best of your ability.
There is a story that Martin Luther once related from his own experiences. A shoemaker newly converted to Christianity had come to him and asked how he could glorify God. Martin Luther answered with the question: "What do you do for your living?" The shoemaker said, "I make shoes." Martin Luther replied, "Then go make shoes, make them well and sell them for an affordable price."
Just because we are Christians doesn't mean we have to leave the place God has placed us in to glorify Him. Glorifying Him can simply mean that when you go to wash the dishes for the millionth time you don't grumble, you say something like this, "Yeah! I have dishes to wash! I can clean these well and glorify God in the midst of it!" Many times when we are supposed to be glorifying God and are not, is when our attitudes need changing. Glorifying God doesn't always come as something grand to perform. Sometimes, what he wants you to do is to be "faithful in the little things."  When the little things of everyday life are glorifying God they become just as valued as the big things.

 It may seem to simple (but it is a simple Gospel) and sometimes it may seem like it doesn't have purpose. But there is ALWAYS purpose for our lives. God has placed you where you are for a reason. Where you are in your home is where you should be. May the Lord grant you peace and may these words help you to realize that the little things are just as important as "doing something great for God."

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