Growing up, family Scripture memory revolved around reminders of our identity as ambassadors for Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20), our commission to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20) and passages that highlighted what it means to live between eternal security and being a part of God’s kingdom expansion now. These truths became ingrained in me on a level that is identity in Christ, for His glory in my life among all peoples.
Call it a “mission-bent” perspective, or whatever, but throughout the pages of Scripture, we see that God is about His glory. And His mission is specifically to see Himself rightly worshiped among all peoples throughout the earth.
John Piper has famously said, “Mission exists because worship doesn’t.” On top of that, there are nearly 500 passages in Scripture that highlight the nations. If we were to take the cliche saying about fear being mentioned 365 times in the Bible, “one for each day of the year” and apply it to our focus on the nations and His glory among them, we’re given the amount of reminders that surpasses the number of days in a year. What does that say about God’s heart for the nations and His glory among them?
More specifically, how are those of us who are single specifically positioned to exalt His glory among the nations in the season we are in? Although the battle with distraction of discontentment in disappointments, yearning for what has yet to come, or perhaps even grief is something that must be faced daily for many of us, let us press into the realities that Christ’s grace is sufficient in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). Let us ask Him for wisdom and grace enough to give us eternal perspective towards what matters most in this season, regardless of what our own wisdom in unfulfilled desire wants to scream (Proverbs 3:5).
The reality is that we’ve been given a unique position both in this season of life and in the point in history in which we live. While there are many who may be called to move to the least-reached places on the globe and have been given opportunity to do so, Acts 17 reminds us of the great reality that God has specifically allowed many of the least-reached people on earth to make their home among us, giving us incredible opportunity to love and share Christ with them where we have already been planted.
Whether it is through simply opening up your life and time to befriend someone who has just moved to the country, we do know that sacrifice will be involved. Loving and persevering with people from a different worldview and culture is not easy. Therefore, this journey of obedience in loving the sojourner requires that we remember where our strength comes from and hold fast to Him in every way and watch Him work (Deuteronomy 10:19-20). Not only will we see Him working to soften their hearts and draw them to Himself, but we are also transformed into the likeness of Christ as we press into Him through obedience.
For some of us, this obedience may look like a complete change in life trajectory, all for the sake of following Christ. Because as we obey Him and love as He has loved us, regardless of differences, fears, uncertainties, or anything else that might get in the way, our hearts and lives can’t help but be changed. So, friends who find themselves in this season of singleness in a country and state that continues to be significantly impacted by globalization, are we going to waste this season on our own passionate pursuits or see the opportunity we’ve been given to know Him more in obedience by pursuing it for His glory and His heart for all people to know and experience Him through repentance (2 Peter 3:9)?
Here are a few key things about our singleness to regain right perspective:
- We were created for one purpose: to know God and make Him known to all people.
- Ask for an eternal perspective and remember it’s not about us, but about His glory.
- Our good Father has purpose and glory in every season.
- Remember that marriage is not the end goal.
- Trust His plan and obey in love.
- Let us taste and drink deeply from the well of His love so that all who see us, no matter the season we are in will be drawn to Him through the broken jars that we are (2 Corinthians 4:7-10).
While the truths of Scripture bring encouragement to us, I know that we still face challenges that come with the reality of disappointment, unmet expectations and perhaps even grief over what has not been. Yet we have a greater purpose and higher calling than to remain inwardly focused, regardless of what life circumstances we find ourselves in.
As we treasure and seek to know Christ more intimately ourselves and make Him known, we see the endless opportunities to invest in the things that are of eternal value by pointing others to Him and creatively connecting the gifts He’s given us to His kingdom purposes for us.