Yes, I know that Mother’s Day is a couple of weekends away, but there is something that my mother shared with me on yesterday, that has to go to the masses just as soon as possible.
My mother and I could write an entire book on our relationship (heck, we’re actually considering it), but long—very long—story short,Â I would have never dreamed that we would be at the place we are now.Â Sometimes, when there are generations of abuse in your family, you don’t really know how to give the kind of love that you want to receive and so people end up hurting one another.Â Anyway, she really has become one of my best friends and I’m thankful because in this season of my life, a best friend who loves God and isÂ in the manifestation of a mother is exactly what I need.
Another long story short, I semi-recently got out of a relationship with a wonderful man.Â A man who was a good friend to me for almost three years and then a boyfriend for four.Â I love him.Â Very much.
You would think that would lead to marriage, but over the past year, it’s actually sent us into another direction:Â The highway of uncertainty.Â Now, I don’t want to get too much deeper than that because while my life is pretty much an open book, he tends to go the “must get a subscription at a pretty high price” route (my poetic way of saying that he’s very private).Â But, I will say this:Â When it comes to marriage, you have to love the other person, yes, but you must love yourself as well.Â You know the old “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 19:19)Â thing?Â This applies to covenant relationships…although the ratio of divorce tends to make me think thatÂ make many of us forget this fact.
Moving on, this week has been very difficult for me as I’ve been shedding blood, sweat and tears to learn how to really love myself so that whether it’s him or another man, I am not doing them any emotional orÂ relationalÂ injustice.Â As I was sharing this with my mom, she listened (just what I needed at the time).
But then, I got an email that changed my life—more specifically, my perspective on this season of my singleness.Â I won’t share all that she said because a lot of it was for my eyes and ears, but I will give you this pearl, no block of gold, of wisdom:
“Pray to be the ANSWER to someone’s prayers, not the REASON for someone’s prayer.”
I don’t know about you, but that hit me like, well, a block of gold!
Just like some of you reading this post, I desire to be married.Â I desire to have children.Â And, I have absolutely no idea how or when that is going to happen.Â But, in this potently simple sentence, I realized something very special.Â Have you ever seen the Match.com commercial where Dr. Phil says (and I’m paraphrasing), “…and boom!Â You meet the person who’s been waiting for you since the day that you were born”?
So many of us pray for a husband.Â So many of us pray for a wife.Â But how many of us actually pray for THE HUSBAND or THE WIFE that God desires for us to have?Â Amidst all of the other writing that I do, I send out a series ofÂ devotionals 1-2 times per week (if you want to join up, send me an email).Â This week, one of the things that I’m going to share is how so many of us treat our relationship with God like an arranged marriage.Â We don’t do things for himÂ because we necessarily want to, but because we believe that we have to.
Since God is love (I John 4:8), I guess that is why he says, “If you love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:21).Â He could have said if you “respect” me.Â He could have said if you “fear” me.Â But no, he said if you love me.Â The things that God wants us to do for him should be out of love.Â Sadly, within the Church, far too often we are told that we should do things out of obligation or service, but the truth is that if you love someone, service will follow.
This is no different in a romantic, covenant relationship.Â Do you know how many men struggle with remaining faithful to their wives?Â The struggle is because many of them are told that not committing adultery is something that as a husband you are obligated to do.Â Do you know how many wives do not enjoy sexual intimacy with their husbands?Â It’s because many ofÂ them were taught that “giving it up” is no more than a service; something that has to be done.
But when love, real love,Â comes into the picture, these are non-issues.Â I know this because my mother is in love.Â One of my closest girlfriends is in love.Â One of my ex’s parents are in love (so in love that afterÂ 30 years, we have to beg them to take it to a hotel when they are making out in front of us).Â
So many of us are praying for a husband or wfe because we think that’s what we are supposed to have like it’s an obligation or service to society.Â But how many of us are praying to share our hearts with the one person God has designed just for us.Â The only who, in their singleness, is full and complete,Â and by bringing us along, it only adds a surplus to what’s already there?Â How many of us are petitioning God for that soul who wants not just a spouse, but us specifcially?Â And, most importantly, how many of us are willing to wait until we get that answer?
God never said that waiting would be easy, but he did said that it would be worth it (Proverbs 20:22, Isaiah 30:18, Isaiah 40:31, Lamentations 3:25-26, Micha 7:7, James 5:7).
There’s a prayer that I wrote a long time ago to my husband that I don’t know but am believing God for.Â I invite you to apply it to your life and watch God work as he brings you your ANSWER, not your REASON; as you become the ANSWER in due time’s season.
I love you, Mommy.Â Thank you.
I stand here entrusting that you will hear the words that I say
And then by a miracle manifested you will send this message to the man whoâ€™s on the way
Until now, I used to wonder the reasons why in coming he would hesitate It wasnâ€™t You or him, but me, Lord—Iâ€™m so sorry for the delay
In my own disillusioned discernment, there were several men I would meet and then date
Due to confusion, generational curses and my time clock, a life of singleness made me afraid
So I stepped out on my own terms and refused to be patient and wait
Lending to others what belongs to him all because of my carnal faith
Which left my heart totally broken, my life in total disarray
I now ask that you would stop time while Iâ€™m in preparation—Iâ€™m so sorry for the delay
Iâ€™m sorry for the times when I shared the secrets that only he was supposed to know
Iâ€™m sorry for the days I have wasted in doubting, hanging on to myths instead of the truths I was told
Iâ€™m sorry for making him wait so much longer than ever was heavenâ€™s goal
All because of my dating rebellion and my panning for what I now know is foolâ€™s gold
Your Word says patience is a virtue and virtue is what I now ask you to restore
So that I can be the kind of woman that I know my husband is praying for
A king deserves no less than pure royalty—a queen, Lord, please make me much more
I ask that you would be merciful and make me as honorable as I was before
So tonight, as he is on his knees Lord, soothe his spirit with these words that I say
Reassure him of your faithful promises; give him a glimpse of that wondrous day
When our eyes will meet for the first time, the initial smile and the first words I know I will say
â€œIt took awhile, but Iâ€™m now here forever. Love, Iâ€™m so sorry for the delay.â€