Ugh, I know that feeling well, my friend.
Most women who have been down this road know the painful uncertainty of trying to do the right thing while simultaneously longing for that love and connection with an equally yoked husband.
In this episode, we're going to talk about how to trust the voice of Christ within and stop worrying about what everyone on the outside will say.
We will cover 3 main decisions you need to make and how to begin to follow through.
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Forever Love Podcast Episode #41 | Transcript
There comes a time in every woman’s life where she finally believes wholeheartedly that she is going to be a wife.
Sometimes it happens on her way up down the aisle.
But usually, it happens somewhere between heartbreak and daydream.
For me, it happened while I was still very young and naive. I just knew that I was meant to be married. That the best version of myself happened to include being a wife and mother.
But that awareness was often also driven by fear.
Because I also thought that being a wife and mother was somehow better than being me here and now. That it was better than being single.
As a result, I had a tendency to rush. I threw myself into relationships and went on crazy wild searches for my better half.
You must be wondering, how did I make that transition from desperate searching to solid Christ-centered relationship?
Well my friend, it all started when I learned how to listen to and trust Christ within, instead of all the voices on the outside.
It all boils down to this…
My mom, friends, mentors, and pastors all love me deeply and want the very best for me. There are books and sermons, Youtube videos, and courses that will teach you how to prepare for marriage.
But at the end of the day, there is Christ on the inside who is willing and able to direct your steps.
In today’s episode, we’re going to talk about how to stop listening to the world and start listening to Christ within.
Hi, Welcome to the Forever Love Podcast; I’m your host and Christ-centered relationship coach, Lily Mtongwiza.
Today we’re diving into one of my favorite topics, listening to Christ within.
This is a huge challenge because there are so many well-meaning outsiders who want to help you.
And to be clear, I’m one of them.
I am one of the voices offering advice and giving ideas about what you can do to make your journey towards marriage a little smoother, safer, and more fun.
But at the same time, I also want you to listen to what Christ is saying.
I want you to know and honor your God-given desires.
And in order to do that, you have to be willing to fail. Yes, Fail!
Stick with me here because this is where good Christian ladies tend to get anxty and back away slowly.
Which makes sense because we’re told that if we just do the right thing and put Christ first than everything will work out. No failure required.
And we think that failure is evidence of doing something wrong. Not being prayerful enough, discerning enough, vigilant enough or good enough.
But I’m here to tell you that’s bull-ony.
On your walk with Christ, you will continue to be human, which means you will continue to fail.
You will fail morally, spiritually, physically, and emotionally. You will fail financially, and you will fail metally. In all the ways there are to fail, you will probably experience about 90% of them.
And guess what…
The point of life isn’t to avoid failure, the point is to try, fail and get up again. Not through your own strength but through Christ who redeems all things to Himself.
So when it comes to successfully following the path to marriage you have to actually decided that that is in fact the path you want to take.
Because a lot of women get stuck at the crossroads, they get to a point where they have to choose between being single or getting married, and they wait for a man to come down the road and pick them up. - or not.
They don’t see this as their choice.
They believe that someone else can and should decide for them. Preferably God or maybe a man.
But they don’t trust themselves to make that choice, and so they spend months and even years waiting on the Lord to bring them a husband so that they can see if they’re meant to be married.
As if marriage is something that will happen to them.
But if you’ve been listening to me for any length of time, you know that I do not prescribe to that idea.
Marriage is not something that happens to you.
It is a choice and it is a choice you are responsible for making for yourself.
So the first question is, What Do You Want?
You’ve got to choose your destination. Do you want to be married or not?
Please know that both the decision to marry and the decision to be single are valid and equally blessed. One is not better than the other.
And choosing the path of singleness does not mean you have to be alone forever. There are times in life when you need to take that path for a few seasons and then, when the time is right, find a joining intersection where you can make a different choice.
But for the love of all things holy, please stop saying, “I don’t know what God wants me to do”.
God is not trying to force singleness on you.
Please begin to regard singleness with the same reverence and intention with which you regard marriage.
It is not meant to be the default choice for those who weren’t good enough to be married.
Singleness is a sacred and intimate walk with God. Not something to be resented and pitied.
Sadly, far too many women are on the path of singleness simply because they were afraid of failing on the path to marriage.
They are sulking their way along the road and feeling far from God, alone and unloved.
As a result, they fail to be married, and they also fail to thrive as a single person enjoying a rich and rewarding life in Christ.
So let’s review.
Step 1. Choose your destination. Are you going to get married or are you going to stay single?
If this is still hard, try putting this question into the context of the next 3 to 5 years.
Are you going to stay single for the next couple of years, or are you going to pursue marriage?
The next thing you’re going to do is start walking.
Once you’ve decided which path you’re going to take, you have to begin putting faith into action.
Faith believes that if you choose the path to marriage, you’re going to get married.
Action means walking down the road and seeing who you meet.
For the sake of this episode, I am going to assume you’ve chosen the path to marriage.
But you might be asking yourself, how do I know that this path leads to marriage when there appear to be so many wrong turns, dead ends, and warning signs along the way?
It seems like the path of singleness is pretty straightforward.
But that, too, is an illusion.
Trust me, those who commit to singleness are faced with as many obstacles, and they experience all the human emotions and their own host of failures as well.
Here’s what it looks like when you start walking down the road to marriage. You experiment. You make mistakes, you face rejections, you fail, and you get your heart broken.
Ultimately, it’s painful.
It’s painful to be a human trying to do something worthwhile.
I have a client who always says, “why isn’t any of this in the movies?” This is not what I was expecting. I thought I would be there by now, and I thought it would be a bit easier than this.
We are supposed to fall in love, get married and move on, right?
This is real life, my friend, and it’s messy, raw, and full of the unexpected.
There are detours and blisters, and sometimes you just need to stop and catch your breath, but that doesn’t mean you’re on the wrong path.
Here’s the main problem I see, though.
Many women will get into these unexpected situations and start beating themselves up for ever having chosen this path.
They think that these obstacles are punishments and that they have to surrender to the will of God and go back to the single road.
And honestly, I think that’s so sad.
It breaks my heart that so many women see God that way. As a Father who denies his daughter’s free will and punishes them with heartbreak and rejection when they attempt to pursue love.
My friend, that’s not God.
And you might be saying to yourself, yeah, but I messed it up, Lily. You don’t know what I’ve done. I’ve sinned, and I’ve failed, and I’m no longer worthy.
And to that, I say… Bull-lony.
Here’s the main issue with that line of thinking.
First of all, it turns singleness into a punishment which it is absolutely is not. And it denies the sacrifice of Jesus, which is our true and only source of purity.
Your purity comes from what Christ did with His body, not what you do with yours. And your worth comes from the one who created you, not what you do or don’t do.
This is a truth that I hope you will commit to believing because it will set you free from the shame and condemnation that Satan would love to cast upon you.
Please do not receive that garbage. Christ paid too high a price for you to be smeared in such ungodly and ugly lies.
So, once you make the decision to follow your God-given desire for marriage, please stop going back and forth wandering between the woods of the two paths.
Stick to the path and make all your decisions based on the fact that you are ultimately going to be enjoying a Christ-centered marriage.
If you happen to get off track and head down an unexpected detour, please know that God in his infinite wisdom, knows how to account for your missteps and get you back on track.
Not only that, be He will use your detour for your good and his glory.
Finally, believe in your own success!
The last bit of advice I have to offer is don’t worry about how long it takes.
So many people get discouraged because they thought they should have been there by now. Or they’re upset because they’ve had relationships fail.
Listen, some relationships will be great, and some won’t. But in each and every relationship, you can learn something that will help you grow and be more christ-like.
When you realize that a relationship isn’t capable of being equally yoked and Christ-centered, don’t beat yourself up for trying. Simply acknowledge the facts and move on.
We tend to want to add a lot of drama to these things, but I would encourage you not to.
Keep it simple and honest.
You want a Christ-centered marriage.
Not a person, or a feeling or an illusion of what “could” be.
When you find yourself in a relationship with someone who doesn’t want the same things, don’t try to compromise and make things work; give yourself permission to have what you really want.
Don’t hold onto people or fantasies.
And know that letting go of the relationship does not mean letting go of the desire for a Christ-centered marriage.
Now here’s what I want you to do next.
Start with the very first and most important question.
What is my God-given desire?
Has God given me the desire to get married or to remain single?
And then ask yourself why you believe God has given you this desire.
Get out your journal and prayerfully decide which path you’re going to take.
Once you’ve made your decision, ask yourself, what’s the next step?
What can I do today to put faith into action and start my journey down this path?
I would encourage you to make a list of at least 10 things you can do to take action and then schedule a time to do the first one on your calendar for this week.
At the beginning of this episode, I told you about how I’ve always known that I would be a wife and mom.
But I want to assure you that there were many days when I felt confused, unsure and discouraged as well.
Just because you believe something doesn’t mean you never experience doubts. Especially when there are setbacks.
Before Lovingson and I got married, there were a couple of months where everything was super ambivalent. Nothing seemed to come easily, and I often thought, maybe God just doesn’t want me to be married.
Maybe I’m supposed to stay single, and I should just surrender this desire and embrace whatever God is trying to do in my life.
And at the time, that seemed really justified and sacrificial.
But looking back, I can see that in reality, I was just scared. I wasn’t trying to be courageous; I was just trying to avoid failure and responsibility.
I know that the church is often giving us the message that we are supposed to sacrifice to God or else, but God says that obedience is better than sacrifice, and obedience usually comes down to trust.
Trust me in the midst of the storm.
Just because you’ve got Jesus in the boat doesn’t mean there won’t be storms.
Be courageous and stay the course.
Until Next time.
God Bless You!