My parents are still married. Given the divorce statistics that float around these days, this is pretty impressive. One of the best examples that my parents have set for me is how to be a happy married couple post-kids. Going back home is fun, because it is fun being around my mom and dad.
My brother and sister-in-law are still married. They have one son, with another on the way. To me their marriage is an example of how it's "supposed to be." My brother mentions how much fun it is to be married, and how much he loves his wife. My sister-in-law writes about how much she loves her husband (and their little guy). Every time I see them I can't help but be proud of what they have earned through their hard work.
I am 23, single, and live in Nashville (566 miles away from family) with two male roommates. I have a full-time job, with benefits. I have very good friends to hang out with. And because I am single I have the freedom do to whatever I want whenever I want. If I want to take a weekend trip to Boston I do. If I want to go skiing with my friends in February, I do. If I want to sleep in until noon, watch the Chiefs and Jayhawks, and play video games for the rest of the day...I do.
Things aren't the way I thought they would be partially because I was sold a lie in church. The lie was that, in order to be a good Christian, I had to find a woman and get married. Have some kids. Take them to church. You know the drill. Example: when a pastor was preaching about singleness (this pastor was married) he gave an example of young lady who had a stable job but no man. So she decided to adopt a child. And because of this act, God blessed her with a husband.
Think about that.
What this teaches us single folk is that the greatest blessing God can give us is a mate. A spouse. It teaches us that if we just "go along with the program" eventually whatever is "wrong" with us will be blessed away by the magical matchmaker that is this god they talk about. This is the wrong message to be sending people who are aware of what they are lacking. Talk to any single person, you don't need to tell them they need someone. In fact, if you aren't single, you probably do it anyway without even thinking.
Things aren't eh way I thought they would be because I thought by the time I was 23 I would be married. I thought I may even have a kid on the way. But I am not married, don't have any kids on the way, and don't even have any "leads" on someone to date. And that is ok. I could become bitter at the church and the pastor for selling me a false message. I could decided that everything that (true) Christianity is about is just bunk. But I know what the Bible says, and I know that if it's in God's will I will have a spouse. And if isn't, than that is what the plan for my life is. I'm slowly coming to terms with that. I'm enjoying being able to come home and not have to do anything for anyone. I'm aware of the bad habits I may be encouraging by doing this and doing my best to fight against them.
All this to say: whatever station you find yourself in, make the most of it. It is trite, and it probably doesn't help, but God has you here for a reason. "Think of the sparrows." And if you are married, don't ask someone if they are single and have the tone of voice that says "what's wrong with you?" Be encouraging, lift up.
Thanks for reading, feedback is always welcome.