Monday, February 10, 2014

Worshiping Types and Shadows...

“I will never find love!”

Really?  And I thought I’d left the overdramatic high schooler, well, back in high school…

“I am totally content being alone.”

Seriously?

"She's getting married?  But God…but…but…that's not fair!"

Sometimes I feel like I’m multiple people; one minute thanking my "lucky stars" I can have a Sunday afternoon nap with no children or spouse to demand my time...and the next minute shaking my fist at the heavens, bemoaning the “curse” of “not being loved”, not “being chosen”...

…Hmm, maybe it’s the multiple personality disorder that’s scaring the men-folk away…(not to mention my girl friends…seriously guys, stop moving away to stupid places like Norman and Midland!)

Oh look!  One of the girls I mentored four years ago just got engaged!  And there right beneath her on my Facebook feed is a chubby cheeked child sound asleep on his daddy’s chest…

Roses…

…hand holding…

…teary eyed engagements…

…wedding dresses…

…baby belly pics…

Maybe I should quit Facebook.  Part of me rejoices - I’m so happy for my friends, for young people taking the difficult step to commit to one another before the Lord…but part of me aches, longs for the same, ponders what my dysfunction must be that I’m still alone when so many of my friends have broken “out of the cocoon of adolescence and [gotten] going with their lives”. 

...Netflix, you will be my boyfriend…oh wait, did they just add “Say Yes to the Dress”?  Maybe Pintrest…ooo, is that a wedding board?

Rats.  I must be a glutton for punishment.

You’re too picky.

It’s just coffee, so what if you don’t like him.

You’ll miss singleness once you are married.

“…do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…”  Romans 12:2 

My problem isn’t Facebook.

It’s not that that girls I once discipled are getting married or that my peers are on baby number 2.

It’s not that there is something so screwed up about me that no man could possibly love me.

My problem is that I allow my mind to be conformed to this world.  If I can’t have something, frankly, I’d prefer that no one else had it either.  I cringe just writing that sentence, but sadly it’s true.  Worst still, I have made the love of an earthly man my ultimate goal.  Again…I cringe.  I have many married friends whose stories alert me to the fact that not only is marriage hard, but guys, like, think different…and I have a younger brother to prove that guys can be, like, gross…Yet I’ve elevated earthly romantic love to this pedestal that can likely only be found in some sappy romance novel…
Anybody know where I can get a dress like that?


Yikes.

Why can’t I remember the fact that I’m infinitely loved by One Who has no reason to love me at all?  Whose love I forfeited?  Why do I long for a stinky earthly guy who will in all likelihood leave his unmentionables on the floor and the toilet seat up when Christ died for me the ungodly, while I was still a stinky Sinner (Romans 5:6, 8)?  I need to be transformed by the renewing of my mind, to meditate on the greatest act of love imaginable…I think that’s the only way I’ll ever stop celebrating half-heartedly the joys of my friends, and truly be able to say with Paul “…I have learned to be content in…any and every circumstance…I can do all things through Him Who strengthens me.”  (Philippians 4:12, 13)

Still, just after this verse Paul tells the church at Philippi that they had done well to share with him in his affliction…so pray for me, friends, call me out when I complain and chose to dwell on the bitterness of this life rather than the joy to come, help me remember the love displayed on the cross and to stop worshipping the types and shadows instead of their fulfillment.

I STILL HATE PICKLES

Happy Valentines to you all.

11 comments:

Katie Murchison Ross said...

Thanks for sharing, Courtney. I have a very close friend who often shares similar sentiments. Thanks for being vulnerable. I think you captured really well the contradiction between the many feelings and thoughts you have on being single.

Also, incidentally I just discovered sweet potato gnocchi in your blog and that looks amazing :)

Marianne @ White Peach Potter said...

Wow - such a great, honest post. I think we all go through what you describe, even if we don't openly admit it. Social media opens us up to all sorts of comparisons, and that can lead our minds down a dangerous path. What a great reminder to refocus ourselves on God!

Kirsten Oliphant said...

That's so hard, Courtney! And yes, while marriage is hard on the other side of the altar, it's also not really a comfort to single people to say that, so let's STOP DOING THAT, MARRIED PEOPLE. I do think people tend to miss the things like freedom and being able to be autonomous after marriage (and esp after kids) but most of them also wouldn't wish themselves back into that time where things were a question mark. And that's what it feels like. I know my singleness ended some time ago, but in the midst of it, after years without a date or anyone even asking, it was like God brought me to this place of realizing: if this is it, I will be okay. But that's a place you have to return to again and again, and I think his graces come fresh each morning like manna. The hard part is the not-knowing. ARE you going to meet someone and get married? Or should you just realize you'll be single until age x and forever so you can get your head in that space? But you can't know those things, so singleness is often like a big question mark that people stigmatize. So, thanks for sharing so honestly about this, and I very much empathize from my lonely pre-Rob days. Um, I just wrote a lot. Thanks for linking up!

dayebydaye said...

Oh, we all long for those things we don't have, don't we? And meanwhile, Jesus is saying delight in ME, desire ME, find joy in ME. And when we do? We realized that our desires and our longings have changed. And our eyes are opened to the beauty right here, right now, not over there and someday.
Thank you for sharing so vulnerably! Blessed by your perspective. Praying that you will be blessed in return!

Courtney Lott said...

Thank you ladies so much for your input! I look forward to reading your posts later on today.

And the sweet potato gnocchi was a success! I didn't make it all at once and the dough held up really well in the fridge. Hope you like it!

Kami Huyse said...

I remember feeling just like this in my early thirties thanks for the reminder. no matter what our marital status, we have to remember who is our true love.

blestbutstrest said...

You're on the right track--keep developing your relationship with your one True Love. Everything else is gravy ;).

Kelli H said...

Thank you so much for your honesty. I wish I had some wise words for you, but honestly I'm dumbfounded at the number of gorgeous, witty, awesome, Christ-loving gals who haven't been snatched up yet! My church is full of them!
I'm saying a prayer for you right now- and sharing your post with some friends. :)

Jenny Mac said...

Oh wow! So honest. And it might surprise some (not you, judging from your intuitiveness) to find out that you and I (married, two kids) have similar thoughts about our respective situations in a weird way. But you're right. Both miss the point. Good reminder for us all.

Courtney Lott said...

Thanks so much for your comments and prayers ladies!

grrfeisty said...

while i am married, i do wonder about the whole baby thing. so many of my friends have kids now - and some have multiple children! the photos and posts kind of stress me out and put a weight on my shoulders like maybe the marriages ones do for you? not sure, but either way, i like the way you write.
i hope you have a great FRIDAY - no matter the holiday. :-P