Around a year ago I wrote a post about what God had taught me during the year-long dating fast I’d felt convicted to take. What I hadn’t expected when I began that year was that it would lead almost seamlessly into a second year. In August last year I began the Sion Youth Foundation Year, an 11-month program which, much like the Focus missionary program, advises fasting from dating during your first year (for both spiritual and practical reasons).
After discovering that I needed Jesus to fulfil me during my first year fast, I decided to take the opportunity to focus on journeying with Him and growing ever closer to the One who loves me more intimately than anyone else ever could. I decided to really invest in our relationship.
I want to share with you three things that I found helped me to journey closely and intentionally with Jesus and live out a fruitful singleness.
Coffee dates with Jesus
One of my absolute favourite things to do is grab a cup of coffee (a good one – I’m a humongous coffee snob!) and head to the chapel when no one else is around, or even just to my bedroom, to share some laid back quality time with Jesus. Sometimes I even bring Him an extra biscuit, but He’s always enough of a gentleman to let me have it. Sometimes I speak, sometimes I cry, sometimes I laugh, sometimes I just sit in His love. These are the moments He captures my heart, whispers over me, and I fall more and more in love with Him.
I’ll admit it: I find guys a lot easier to get along with than girls. They’ve just always seemed a lot less complicated! For most of my life I’ve naturally felt more like a brother than a sister in most friendship groups, but this year has taught me the true value of sisterhood. We women all need other women in our lives (just like men need other men) to share our hearts with, and to support us both in the joy and the pain.
More than anything it’s absolutely essential to keep Jesus at the front and centre of your heart and your life. As soon as you take your eyes off Jesus, you leave yourself wide open to jealousy and false attachments, because you’re focusing on what you think will make you happy rather than trusting in His bigger plan. It’s so important to keep Jesus front and centre in your mind and heart, and to allow Him to lead you along the path He’s laid out for you. In those moments when you become frustrated with your singleness, remember this: I can guarantee you what God ultimately has planned for you is far better than the ideal life you’ve mapped out in your head!
Know that Jesus sees you. He knows you. He loves you. And He has a plan for you. When you recognise the greatness of your Creator, you realise the greatness of His plan, and it becomes natural to embrace the moment and situation He’s put you in right now! He is everything you need, and always will be. Allow yourself to receive the gift of fulfilment He’s offering you right now.
Esther Rich has a bachelor degree in Psychology from Oxford University, UK, and is currently part of the Sion Youth mission team. She loves Theology of the Body, Papa Francesco and a good worship band. She is passionate about empowering women to be who they were created to be, and blogs at “For Such A Time As This.”