By Fern Horst
I had someone tell me, just the other day, that one is not complete without a spouse. It made me wonder: How do I, and other single adults, gain a sense of confidence and self-worth in a society that believes such a statement to be true?
Many people believe they cannot truly live until they find their significant other. They are unable to believe in themselves until they find partners who believe in them. Some people do not feel they have worth until they find someone to give them a sense of worth. And there are many who gain confidence from a dating or marriage relationship. But is this the only way, or, more importantly, the best way, to find oneself?
This type of belief systems indicates a dependency on something or someone other than God. Any time we look to anyone or anything other than God to give us meaning, to meet our needs, we are creating an idol. We are allowing something or someone to take God’s place in our lives. This is serious business to God. Idolization is adultery to Him; it hurts Him as much as we hurt when friends betray their loyalty to us. He wants to have that place in our lives. He will give us more meaning and worth and acceptance than any “significant other” ever could.
Both Christ and the Apostle Paul taught in the Bible that remaining dependent on God is easier when one is single. When one is married, it is easy to put one’s spouse in God’s place, to expect him or her to meet the needs that only God can fill. Marriage does not legitimize idolization. God still wants His rightful place in our hearts regardless of our marital status.
Should we avoid marriage then? Of course not! God calls some to serve Him in a marriage relationship. He chooses to meet some people’s needs through marriage. But not all. For some He chooses to meet needs through a variety of people. God wants some of us to be single so that we can serve Him in ways those who are married cannot.
But we can be sure that God will meet everyone’s needs, married or single. We can also be sure that God wants all of us to commit our lives to Him, married or single. Singleness is not an excuse to live our lives for ourselves, or to sit around waiting for life to happen. It is happening, and we are each responsible to take what opportunities God has given us and use them to their fullest advantage.
Yes, I’m complete. You’re complete. And it has nothing to do with whether or not we’re married. It has everything to do with the fact that Christ lives in us and with Him we are not only complete, we have everything we need to live the life of a fulfilled, successful adult.