See Me: Defiantly Single (pt. 2)

Can I be brutally honest for a minute?

If you ask me why I’m defiantly single, I’d say it’s because I fear choosing the wrong partner. Yes, I believe in God. Of course, I trust that He will confirm the man He desires me to be with in more than one way. Yes, I have a community of trusted people who will step in if they believe the man I want isn’t deserving of me. While I recognize that all of these safeguards are in place, there’s a part of me that thinks it’s still not enough.

Let’s be real. How many times have we heard of stories where a God-fearing woman married a God-fearing man and ended up dead or in jail because that man was a wolf? For those who don’t understand the reference, Matthew 7:15 talks about false prophets appearing as wolves in sheep’s clothing. Don’t get me wrong, men aren’t the only perpetrators. There are women who fake it, too. The point is that people may pretend to be charming, humble, and just about everything we desire in a spouse—that is, until after the wedding day.

I don’t mean to be a cynic. Because I believe marriage is a beautiful thing, I want to trust that mine will be all I’ve ever hoped for and more. But I have come to terms with my reality that I’ve made poor choices in the past. My sister (in Christ) will tell you that, after years of listening to my “boy stories,” I’m drawn to fixer-uppers. That is, the men with potential who don’t seem to be doing much with themselves. Looking past the physical, I pay more attention to the possibility of what a man can become (with the right woman by his side). I egg him on when he talks about his lofty dreams, even though he doesn’t take any steps toward accomplishing them. I support him when he makes otherwise reckless decisions, although I don’t agree with them. I praise him when he excels in one unrelated area, despite making no progress in the things that get him closer to reaching his goals.

When I think about it, I have been just as complicit in the failure of these past relationships because I ignored the obvious warning signs and chose to believe my own narrative, not what was in front of my face all along. Why? I don’t know. I wasn’t blinded by love—not even close. It’s not that I didn’t know my worth. I think I just got too caught up to want to do anything about it—but that’s a different post.

I thank God for my sister being truthful and telling me about myself because she saved me a lot of wasted hours, days, weeks, and months remaining with someone who didn’t deserve me. I wish more of us would do that for those we love. Yes, the person may get angry and not speak to us for a little while. But, I believe, they will eventually realize the error of their ways to see that we acted out of love.

Ok, back to the issue at hand. I stated in a previous post that I don’t believe my generation views marriage through the same lens as those who came before. Somehow, we’ve accepted the notion that a lifelong commitment is not something worth entering into with anyone. For me, thinking about being with someone for the rest of my life sounds lovely, but it’s also really scary if that man wakes up and decides he’s going to become someone completely different. That’s one of the reasons I don’t believe in putting up a front in the getting-to-know-each-other phase. I want my potential suitor to see the good, bad, and crazy from the get-go. That also sounds like it might be a future blog post.

But I have come to terms with my reality that I’ve made poor choices in the past.

— Ethleen Sawyerr

Although I’m afraid of picking the wrong person to spend the rest of my life with, fellow navigator, I still welcome the thought of marriage with open arms. I trust that my parents have raised me well enough to know what I should and shouldn’t accept. I believe I’ve seen enough couples succeed at married life, despite the obstacles that were in their way. I rest assured that God speaks to me in ways others may not understand, so He will prevent me from choosing a spouse who will not honor Him. I am confident in the fact that my intuition is almost always on point (when I listen to it) and will go off like a bullhorn if I’m about to make a mistake.

Fellow navigator, there’s an amount of risk involved in getting married. It requires a level of vulnerability and trust that you’ve chosen someone who will love, honor, and cherish you until death. That’s heavy. Be honest, are you like me? Do you choose to remain defiantly single because the thought of possibly picking the wrong person troubles you? Tell me about it!

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