Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Redeem the Time

I actually wrote this to be submitted to a website who is feature this month is singleness. I figured I would post it here as well... Hope you enjoy.

It’s one of those days. The ones that sneak up on you out of nowhere and you are in no way prepared. Before you know it, your roommate walks in, the donut powder all over your tear streamed face, as Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet replay their drama for the twelfth time on your laptop’s dvd player. You had just gotten asked to be in your 9th wedding and if one more person questions when it’s “your turn” you might slap someone. Sounds pathetic, but lets be real, you’re chuckling because you know exactly what I am talking about. (Maybe I’m the only one that reaches for the donut holes, and maybe I’m more dramatic than others, but I doubt it.)  We all have our “moments” here and there- sometimes it our current relationship status, other times its frustrations, fears and worries. But alas, they are there. These "moments" may not happen often but, when they do, they result in what I like to call a “cry fest hangover.” I wake up the next morning and think, “Wow. I did that? That was pathetic. So glad no one witnessed it.” I then proceed to shove all of those repressed emotions  back into the little closet in my mind, hoping they won’t resurface for awhile. The issue is they exist. My tears, my worries, my emotions and outcries, they are alive and no matter how far I try and shove them back, they still resurface.  So what do I do about them? 

In in the midst of single year 23, I have been given every book, heard every teaching, read every scripture and been fed all the relationship hot air you can imagine. I’m grateful, really, however I can save you some time in case you have not developed your own storehouse of knowledge, they all say the same thing. 


“Ok, I can do that. Waiting doesn't sound too terrible.” Yet, after giving yourself, oh, thirty seconds to digest that four letter word,  a faint terror starts to bubble up as the realization there is no actual time frame promised starts to hit home. Then full blown panic sets in and you suddenly become that girl and take on the mantle of crazy-chick status. You know- the one that when you see or hear her name, the only thing that pops in your head is how desperate she wants to get married. Your name goes from what is on your birth certificate to “the chick who is husband desperate.” 

“Then the time came when the risk it took to remain in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” -Anais Nin

One of the best pieces of advice anyone has ever given me is to not be idle. In the book of Nehemiah, we see a man who was heart-broken over what was happening to his hometown. All he wanted to do was get there and help his people. Yet he couldn't. So what did he do? He prayed and fasted on behalf of his people, imploring God to show him what he could do to help. So, when the time came for him to actually do something, he was ready! God had been preparing him for  that day  and Nehemiah was willing and able. And ready. Not only was he physically prepared, but emotionally, spiritually and mentally as well. He was where the Lord needed him to be. He had been obedient in the season he was in, and the Lord blessed him for it. 
I look at that story, and can’t help but look at my life and how God has (and is) orchestrating every minute detail with my heart in mind. I look back at certain events and when I am blessed with the clarity to understand why it all happened, it makes me laugh. Hind sight truly is 20/20. 
The mistake we all make is getting caught up in the future. There is nothing wrong with having desires and wants for your life. God gave us emotion and a brain for a reason. However,- it is the “one day” thoughts that become crippling. As a single person, this is a season of my life when I have ultimate freedom. A time I will never get back and I need to redeem it! Go on mission trips, work for a non-profit, travel, stay out way too late with friends, go skydiving, move! Be aware of the Holy Spirit that is in me and listen to what He is calling and asking me to do. Right now. All those weird, crazy ideas that I have swarming in my head? Now is the time to do them. But in that process, I must be aware that the Lord is working in  and through me. This is not a season of pointless idle chatter, I need to know He wants to move in me, speak to me and reveal things to me. I must be aware and awakened to the current process, knowing it is happening for a reason beyond what I can fathom.
One of the things I have to continue to remind myself is where my identity lies. There is so much more to me than my relationship status. My identify is not weather I am married or single. Did you know I have brown curly hair, have a constant desire for adventure and travel, love to dig into my creative side and have a regular craving for anything fried? Did you know I am the definition of a “social bee” and the desire to see God do amazing things through my life...single or married.  I am not single. I am Laura Jean. 
I have to trust that the Creator of the Universe is able to handle and create my timeline. The question is, how much are we going to fight the process  because we don't understand? 
Below is a fairly common verse, but it has so much depth and truth that there is a reason why it is so applicable. We hear it, and, yeah, we nod our head in agreement, but it usually goes in one ear and out the other. This time when you read it, take a deep breath. Slow down. Break apart what it is saying and digest it.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart. (Breathe)
Lean not on your own understanding. (Breathe)
In all your ways acknowledge Him, (Breathe)
and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Proverb 3:5 (Relax)
  A (Not so Simple) Prayer

God how can I serve, love, grow and be faithful… today?


  1. Laura, this is just what I needed today. I am a worrier...about every single thing, just ask anyone. I keep on having to remind myself daily to calm down and chill out. Today was one of those days, so thanks :)

  2. If only I was as wise as you are at 23. You are inspiring, beautiful inside and out and amazing!