Learning to be content
By Pastor David Baudoin
I wish everyone could get along without marrying, just as I do. But we are not all the same. God gives some the gift of marriage, and to others he gives the gift of singleness. (1 Corinthians 7:7 NLT).
Did you know that being single can be a gift from God? Many times this truth is drowned out by the propaganda of this world. Our society often suggests that we are incomplete or that something is wrong with us if we are single. Don’t believe that lie!
There are benefits that come with both marriage and singleness. As a single person, you have freedoms and opportunities that you’ll never have again. So, enjoy your life right now and take this time to prepare yourself for the next season of life.
Learn to be content
Learning to be content in life is central. Paul said in Philippians 4:11 (GWT), “I’ve learned to be content in whatever situation I’m in…” Contentment is something that is learned and is a mark of maturity.
Contentment means we are no longer waiting for circumstances to change in order to be fulfilled. For example, we might think, “When I get married, then I’m going to be happy. When we have kids, then I’m going to be happy, etc.” That kind of thinking never brings contentment and joy.
Live beyond yourself
The most dissatisfied marriages are with people who married looking for fulfillment. The reason many singles are unfulfilled is the same reason many married people are unfulfilled; they’re using all their freedoms on themselves (Galatians 5:13). Living just for our own happiness will never satisfy us because God created us to live for something and Someone bigger than ourselves.
Although most couples marry with a desire for a happy marriage, many make wedding promises they’re not prepared to keep. It’s not that they don’t intend to keep their wedding vows, it’s just that they haven’t made the necessary preparations.
Preparation is what determines the success of a marriage, not just a desire to make it work. Following are some important things to remember concerning marriage:
1. Don’t rush into marriage with someone you don’t really know. I Corinthians 13:4 (NIV) states, “Love is patient…” Love doesn’t pressure. So, if you’re in a relationship with someone who is pushing you, then they’re not loving you.
2. Don’t fall into the “right person” trap. Too many people are convinced that if they find the right person then everything will work out. Don’t spend your time looking for the right person; spend it on becoming the right person.
3. Love is a decision you make — it’s a choice and not just an emotional feeling.
4. Don’t sabotage your marriage with pornography. This only leads you down the path of frustration, shame, and dissatisfaction.
5. Women, don’t use your body to find a man — you’ll only attract body hunters. There’s more to you than your body.
6. Get out of debt. You can get out of debt a lot quicker as a single person than you can as a married person.
7. Keep your physical relationship in line with your commitment. Self-control before you’re married will benefit you after you’re married.
8. Don’t live together.
9. Don’t be unequally yoked — especially when it comes to your faith.
So, whether you’re single for life or just for a season, embrace and enjoy this time of your life. Fulfillment comes as we live out our calling as believers and not whether we are married or single.
David Baudoin serves as the executive pastor at Crossroads Church. He and his wife Tara live in Lafayette, and have three daughters.