Valentine-less Valentine’s Day

And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

1 John 4:16

No…this isn’t a “Jesus is your husband” pitiful excuse to ignore a day that doesn’t apply to you because- you’re- a -single” blog. At the same time, this is not an attempt to “drown ourselves in self-love in the forms of bubble baths, wine, and selfies to prove it we’re okay “ post either.

V-Day, the day filled with lust-worthy photos and intricate captions anchored with hashtags like #BlackLove #ValentinesDay #Bae #InLove. The list literally grows to illogical lengths. I encourage you not to look at the day with a disgruntled demeanor. Don’t be bitter about the ex who mishandled you, reflect on taking back the guy that “wasn’t that bad” or loathe the look of love on the faces of others because you’re single for the 3rd,4th year in a row. Instead of giving into loneliness and pity while simping over some stranger’s relationship, reflect and ask yourself these questions.

What are you doing now to be prepared for a relationship or singleness?

I know, it sounds crazy to prep for both and yes, it seems as if prepping for both is conflicting but actually, they aren’t. As Christians, the core of our faith depends on building a relationship with Christ first and foremost. As your relationship with God grows, you’ll learn to discern who and what is for you. You’ll learn to align what the Bible says about both marriage and singleness (1 Corinthians 7) all the while becoming satisfied with God and His will for you. What should be done during this time?

  1. Learn the character of God. Knowing God helps us to find Him in places, situations and in people., including those that we may come into romantic relationship with. We should be able to recognize His spirit in His children. Galatians 5:22-22 speaks on the fruit of the spirit, listing qualities that believers adopt during their walk as a result of relationship with the Holy Spirit and these qualities should be seen in those we date as believers.
  2. Learn about yourself. Most people view singleness as a time filled with lonely, sexually frustrated nights, wallowing in pity and wiping away tears off of your phone after scrolling Instagram for the last 30 minutes. It doesn’t have to be! It’s all in how you think of and use your time. Getting to know your quirks and dislikes and reactions to that information all on your own provides a different level of understanding yourself. Within singleness, you not only learn what your preferences but how you process, appraise and assign value to numerous aspects of life. From academia, to building a business, family or even changing your palette, the discovery of yourself is a journey worth having alone. It helps to bring clarity into your perspective concerning your worldview without the responsibility of learning a spouse.

What have you learned about relationships so far?

What has been your experience with relationships? What are your thoughts on marriage and relationships? What do you think of your parent’s marriage? How has the media (social media, TV, movies, books, etc…) influenced your expectation of dating and marriage? Although this seems like an elementary step to take, confronting our first and most common examples of singleness and marriages is important to uncovering unrealistic expectations and unhealthy patterns passed down by family and our environment during childhood.

This can be done by examining marriages you were exposed to along the way. How did they cause you to reflect on being single or married? What did you see? What you’ve been taught paves the way for what you expect. How did the adults around you model singleness, relationships and marriages? How have you modeled these areas of life? Take the time to write your answers down and it’ll reveal correlations you may not have noticed before. Reflect on your own past relationships. Think about where you were in your life before you entered each relationship and what made you want to pursue a relationship with that person. This will show what you’ve learned about those you’ve dated. It reveals what’s important to you, your negotiables, and non-negotiables.

Your value expands beyond one day

I know I’m going a little off topic here, but I wanted to give some encouragement to those that become engulfed in the ascetic valentine’s day bring. You know, the bouquets of balloons and fields of rose petals that explode in hotel rooms. The extravagant gifts, cute outfits and expensive dinners that some of us won’t be receiving again this year. Yeah, it gets old, I can definitely attest to that, but be encouraged! Not only because Jesus loves you (LOL!) but because you’re becoming clear on what you want. It’s easy to lust after the lifestyle without understanding what happened before the picture was posted to Instagram. A healthy relationship with self is better than a toxic relationship with anyone and a healthy, slow-paced relationship is better than a harmful marriage. Take the time to learn, accept and love yourself first before committing to the frustration of the inability to stunt for the gram. Embrace the day, don’t hide from it! Love yourself big this year, without the hope of someone else joining in, but regardless of such. Be blessed and Happy V-Day!

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