The Joy of Singlicitude

Joy isn’t what you might think it is. It might not even be what you think you’re looking for. It isn’t pleasure or happiness—although it may sometimes include these things. Joy springs from a relationship with God (John 15:9-17). C.S. Lewis described it best in Surprised By Joy. Here he discussed his early search for joy, which he finally found through Christ. Lewis said joy is an unsatisfied desire. He had come to discover real joy comes from God. Other things can reflect it; nothing else can produce it.

Genuine joy comes from a real relationship with God. It is something all believers can and should know. The Bible is very clear joy comes from a hope and trust in Christ (1 Peter 1:7-9). With joy, we can glory in suffering. And suffering results in perseverance, character, and hope (Romans 5:1-5). There is a type of pleasure involved as well. It is not a temporary, worldly pleasure; it is an eternal pleasure (Psalm 16:11). We can rejoice knowing God gives us power over the forces of evil. However, a cause for even greater rejoicing is knowing our names are written in the Book of Life (Luke 10:20).

If you are a Christian, you are in a relationship. Christians are never single whether or not they have a human companion. I am NOT arguing against marriage—not at all. Marriage is a very good thing. Even more, it is a blessing from God. If you feel God leading you to marry, then do so. What I am saying is that personal joy and meaning should not be sought through relationships with other people. True joy is not found in these things alone. It is found only in God. The joy of that relationship will seep into our earthly relationships.

There are two timetables regarding marriage: The world’s and God’s. The world expects us to marry as soon as possible. They would have us believe there is no point to life without a significant other. God’s timetable is quite different. It is not hurried or desperate. On God’s timetable, we marry in His good time. It may be next year; it may be much later—it may even be never.

Keeping God’s timetable in mind, we need not worry about marriage. You can find meaning as a single person. There is no excuse not to do so as a Christian single. There is much you can do for God. Find peace in the fact that you are not married. There’s no reason to worry about it. In Luke 12:22-31 Jesus teaches the pointlessness of worrying. He gives the examples of ravens and lilies. They do nothing, yet God feeds and clothes them. God takes care of animals and flowers. Won’t He take care of His beloved children? Jesus urged them to seek the kingdom of God. Do that and don’t stress about everything else. With Jesus’ help, take joy in your singlicitude.

Author: Benjamin Plunkett

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