Dirty socks and underwear strewn on the floor. Toilet seat left up. Bad breath. Drama with in-laws. Less “me” time. For the single person, the aforementioned is the abridged version to a longer list of scenarios that might make you ask “why would I want to get married?” For the single woman who delights in finding her clothes, dishes and other items neatly placed where she last left them, enjoys her drama-free life, and is content with her own company, there’s also great comfort in knowing the toilet seat will be left down.
As a single lady, I’ve been highly effective, efficient, and organized. My singleness has allowed me to sow concentrated time into the areas God has called me. This sacred time protected from many worldly distractions has accelerated my personal, professional, and spiritual growth. While not easy, I’ve been afforded the time to trust Jesus to be the Architect of my life. Jesus Christ has become my first love. He has been more than enough, my devotion for Him deepening daily, enjoying time in His Presence. I’ve placed my heart and life in His very capable hands. He keeps His Word. A bonus: Jesus isn’t leaving toilet seats up. He is perfect.
Seeking it in every place possible, we live in a society hard-pressed to secure its engaged or marital status. However, I’ve been perfectly content to wait. One of the Bible’s most poetic books on love, Song of Songs 2:7, suggests that we “not stir up nor awaken love until it pleases.” Many people rush into love, only to learn they’ve awakened love before its time and haven’t undertaken the personal and spiritual work to ready themselves. Though I’ve successfully navigated the safe terrain of my single, independent life, circumstances had not fully tested my ability to submit to a life-partner. Could I entrust my heart to an imperfect being whose human frailties are subject to bring disappointment? By “jumping the broom,” how would I handle married life’s “messiness” not easily resolved with soap, water, and paper towels? I am by no means perfect though it’s easier to mop up my mess than another’s.
Given my shortcomings, I asked Jesus to be the Broom to sweep untouched corners and crevices to prepare me for married life.
About a year and a half ago, I asked the Lord to further develop me in the nine fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). Of the nine, I desired a deeper capacity to love and extend patience to others. I knew this was necessary should God prepare me to receive my husband and everything that comes with such a union. I desire to be the best wife to my husband. As the months passed, I noticed these traits deepening within as God placed me in various situations to extend greater love, patience, and kindness toward others. This time of preparation and what I call “being in the lab” as God shaped me, has been necessary.
It’s unknown what “messiness” we’ll endure in sharing our lives with another imperfect being. But I know One who is Perfect and excellent at cleaning messes: Jesus Christ. Therefore, I can ‘jump the broom’ when Jesus is the broom. If we allow Jesus to sweep those cobwebbed corners to ready us for marriage, and if we operate in love as He defines, we’ll be fine.
In this season of love, whether single or married, have you invited Jesus to sweep the untouched corners of your life, so you’re prepared to give and receive love as He desires?
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)