11 But Jesus said, “Not everyone is mature enough to live a married life. It requires a certain aptitude and grace. Marriage isn’t for everyone. 12 Some, from birth seemingly, never give marriage a thought. Others never get asked – or accepted. And some decide not to get married for kingdom reasons. But if you’re capable of growing into the largeness of marriage, do it.”
Matthew 19:11-12 (The Message)
Truly, I confess, I must be in a giant shift. Despite being a blogger and social media user for over a decade, I’ve learned to write with “just enough depth” so that I can maintain, well…my life…so writing this has been an exhaustive process. So, here we go.
“Do you think, maybe, y’all will reconcile?” That was the question presented to me yesterday from a long-time friend about the most off-limits topic with me: marriage. If I had it my way, I wouldn’t be talking about this at all, but the way my Spirit and desire for obedience is set up…*chuckles*
I‘ve often said to a loved one that there is one area with God’s command over my life that I was unwilling to accept: the command to be married. I was married. In fact, at the time of this publication, I still am, but we’ve been separated for a substantial amount of time and permanent separation is the focus. My marriage did not come to an end because we were “so young,” or because we couldn’t handle the sudden deaths of two loved ones while newlyweds. Nor did it come by the struggles of layoff, underemployment; entrepreneurial or academic endeavors; health scares or the battle between who needed to do laundry. No, these were highs and lows that we vowed to face together. The path to a long(er) lasting, happier and healthier marriage–religion/spirituality aside—was not obtainable for us because we did not have a common desire to succeed as a couple. Our individual paths weren’t crossing and our humanness didn’t lead to the expected outcome.
Once separated, I made the resolve to stay single. I am fully capable of keeping myself entertained and I relish in my alone time. I balance time with family, friends and myself as best as I can; and I have much more time to serve God. By and by, people, with the best of intentions, would remind me that I’m young and I’ll change my mind. People, with the best of intentions, would impose their worries upon me—not knowing the difference between being alone and being lonely—but I’m inclined to believe that folks know I rarely listen to messages the first 14 times around. (Hey, I’m working on it.) It was not until God had to step in, had to stop using those around me, and get in my face about things that I realized I am not going to win with my resolve to be single.
There is a level of servitude the Lord has called me to that is bound to a man who needs it. *Clears throat* Me. God declares a level of “growing into the largeness” of it all that I wasn’t banking on in the least bit and I have to come to a point of anticipating this inevitable outcome. This is an extreme I cannot escape from and I’ve tried, trust me! I STILL want to fight it, but I declare that:
- I will begin to pray about my preparation again
- I will begin to pray for the man God designed for me
- I will continue my vow of celibacy and stay committed to it until the Lord says otherwise and,
- I will shut up, quietly nod my head and deal with my flesh about it all
It’s not about winning, it’s not about being right. It’s about obedience. The blessing, in the end, will be much greater than what I can see today.