Read part one here.
Elisabeth Elliot described loneliness as material for sacrifice.
“The loneliness itself is material for sacrifice. The very longings themselves can be offered to Him who understands perfectly. The transformation into something He can use for the good of others takes place only when the offering is put into His hands.”Elisabeth Elliot*
This is how I view singleness– it is material for sacrifice. I get to choose in how I handle it. I can be bitter that the Lord has not given me what I desire, or I can see the lack as something to offer back to Him.
God Wastes Nothing
God wastes nothing. When I offer myself, and my singleness, to Him I know it will not be wasted. He is not waiting until I am married to use me. Right here, right now, my life has value.
I have a purpose in my singleness because God has laid out good works beforehand for me to walk in. (Ephesians 2:10) He has said I will bear much fruit when I abide in Him. (John 15:4-5)
I do not always feel useful. But my feelings are not Truth. The Word of God never bases effectiveness on marital status. After all Jesus wasn’t married!
If we believe that we cannot be effective to God until we are married we will be ineffective. If we believe we can do nothing worthwhile until we are married we will waste our single years.
Ultimately these lies are rooted in not believing who God is. He does not use us because of us. Nothing we have and nothing we are– money, time, health, talents, personality, or gifts –comes from us. Everything we have has been given.
I did not choose singleness and you probably didn’t either. We don’t get to choose. Singleness, like everything else, is given. However, we do choose what we do with our singleness. As Gandalf, in the Fellowship of the Ring, said, “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
Singleness is filled with potential! There are so many things I can do right now, as a single woman, that I could not do if I were married. Throughout history single men and women have been used by God to do great things.
Let us, as William Carey said, “Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God.”
*Elliot, Elisabeth. Passion and Purity. Fleming H. Revell, 2002. pp. 67.