You’re scrolling through social media, and as you see proposal after proposal, your growing question becomes “Who’s not getting married?” When adoration and commitment seem to be falling into the laps of those around you, you start to question, “What’s wrong with me?” or “Am I lovable at all? If so, why haven’t I been chosen?” These are real feelings to have. However, they are your insecurities speaking, and insecurity will always be self-consumed and continually focused on what you don’t have.
Sister, your fight is not with your journey. It’s with how you’re viewing yourself along this journey.
Can I tell you a not-so-secret secret? The difference between being content and feeling “less than” is really a matter of perspective. It’s so easy for our hearts and minds to slip away from us in a moment of vulnerability. You’re entirely human for doing so. Having the desire is very natural, but it must be put back into context for the sake of our spiritual and mental health! That said, here are three things to keep in mind when it seems everyone around you is getting married.
1. Your worth isn’t dependent on your relationship status.
Since many of us have struggled with embracing and loving ourselves for so long, we’ve spent our lives looking around instead of within for validation. We wait for others to show us the love and acceptance we haven’t securely acquired for ourselves. This is especially the case when it comes to determining how valuable we are based on male attention.
If this sounds like you, then it’s likely that relationships and marriage have become the measurement by which you determine acceptance and lovability. It would say if you’re married and someone had chosen to commit to you, then you’re worthy of being loved and accepted. If not, then there’s no external proof you’re worth loving, which puts into question if you’re able to be loved and committed to at all.
I wanted to lay out these deeply flawed core beliefs because until you change the way you measure validation, this will always be an insecurity for you. So let’s clear the air and shine some truth.
First, you don’t need a guy to accept you. You need to accept yourself—because when you haven’t accepted yourself first, you will settle for any relationship. You want your decisions to flow from a place of personal security, which allows you to make choices from a place of strength and clarity instead of settling in desperation. Trust me when I say building a healthy relationship with yourself sets the tone for how you enter the rest of your relationships.
Second and most important: Christ chose, set apart and called you as an individual. Your inherent value and purpose have nothing to do with a guy. You were born with them. In fact, His blood on the cross deemed you worthy of eternal love and security before you were born—let alone before you ever had the chance to enter a relationship.
It’s time to change your measuring stick when it comes to validation. Better yet, get rid of it. There’s nothing in this world that determines what your worth is. It came from your Creator and now it needs to come from you.
2. Trust your journey.
So much of our discontentment comes from comparing where we are in life to where someone else is. Comparing your life like this will only end in two ways: You’ll begin to idolize the relationship they have, or you’ll retract into a place of hopelessness about the relationship you don’t have. Every time you scroll past a photo of a wedding or newlywed life, little by little it will steal away your joy.
This happens when you haven’t accepted and learned to embrace where you are, and have stopped trusting God with your future. You can’t compare your stage in life to anyone else’s because life is not a straight path. We’re all on different courses. A different journey doesn’t mean a worse journey. It means God has a path that is tailored specifically to you—that is right for you. So just like your life has its own purpose, it also has its own timetable—and your timetable isn’t based on someone else’s. It’s based on the individual plan and purpose God has for your life, including when the right person enters the scene. What God has planned for you is meant for you and it couldn’t be better. Trust that.
3. Time is your friend.
Despite the longing and frustration you may feel, this time is actually your friend. Should you one day get married, you will never have this type of time again completely to God and yourself. This is the time you get to continuously focus on your self-improvement alone. This is the time you get to define your values and passions. This time is not meant to punish you. It’s meant to prepare you to be in the best place mentally, spiritually and directionally should the right person come along. Time is maturing you in these areas. Time is working for your benefit. So instead of fighting it, you need to adjust to working with it.
I get that adapting to these perspectives as a regular part of your thought life is easier said than done. When core beliefs such as “I’m unlovable” or “I’m not worth choosing” have ruled the depths of our hearts for so long, it takes practice to renew our minds. So that’s what I encourage beyond this article. Work on renewing those core beliefs, whether it be in prayer, with a pastor or a counselor, or even journaling in your personal time. Instead of focusing on everything around you, it’s time to start focusing on what’s going on within you and getting to a healthy place.