One single mom asked:
“My biggest question is why this journey? Why a single mom? Why is it so hard? There is no light at the end of the tunnel, one problem is solved and then a few more spring up. There is no Mr. Right in sight, around the corner, not even around the block, or over the horizon. And yes I have made it this far with God and I thank him for that, but it is so hard!”
Why me? Why this journey? In the beginning of my single mom life these questions stayed at the forefront of my mind. The day I realized my marriage was over was during the time in my life where I believed my faith had been the strongest. I was on fire for the Lord. I was raising my children to understand Him. I was the co-leader for the women’s ministry at our church. I was taking seminary classes and considering going into full-time ministry. And I was writing for Christian parenting magazines.
The shock of what had just happened was beyond explanation.
Why didn’t God save my marriage when I was so dedicated to doing everything His way?
Why didn’t God change my husband’s heart when I had prayed for so long and held onto the marriage as a possible avenue for that change?
Why was God allowing my life to be one long continuous train wreck when I was trying so hard to walk in His will—to the point of living in a situation that I hated with every bone in my body?
Before my marriage ended, I fully trusted that one day, my husband would come to know Christ and we would begin to serve Him as a team. That his heart for kids would blossom into ministry that involved them. That our marriage would become an example of what faith looks like when you follow God.
I could not believe or even accept that single motherhood was going to be my future. Growing up in a family of (a difficult) divorce, it was the single thing I wanted to spare my children from experiencing. During the last months of my marriage I turned a blind eye to things that were wrong because it felt like death approaching. I could not believe that I would have to admit defeat on something that I was so sure God was going to fight—and overcome—for me.
It was crushing to my spirit.
It’s as if I’d been passed over by the One person in my life that I’d fully believed had my best interests at heart. And that, sweet friends, hurt far worse than anything else.
But God never passes us over. In fact, the only pass over we will ever receive from God is akin to the first Passover, where God looked past our sins because we were covered by the blood of Jesus. Not because we were good people, or lived perfectly. Because we were covered by the blood.
The hard-to-face truth is, we made choices that got us here. And we can make choices to get us out.The kicker is whether or not God is in it.
Are we allowing Him a voice in our journey?
I wasn’t a Christian when I met my husband, got engaged, or married him. It never crossed my mind to consult God about who I would marry because I didn’t know Him at all. But, this time around? I can make a choice that will drastically change the outcome of my future. And so can you.
This time, things are different.
So how do we get to that future (and fast!)?
Admit where you are.
God’s plan for each and every one of us is redemption from our pasts, and a relationship with Him for our future. We are either working on one or the other. If we are still in pain, being held in our past, then you can guess the part He is working on now. The more we resist it by getting stuck in wanting our whys answered, the longer it will take Him to work in us.
Listen to the Father.
Seek His advice, His wisdom, His path—not our own. Stop at checkpoints along the way and make sure we’re still going the way He’s directing. If not, retrace our steps and get back in-line with Him. God speaks to us through the Bible, through prayer, through our circumstances, and through other believers. We need to be actively seeking an audience with Him throughout our single mom journey if we want an outcome for our future that is different than what we have now.
Deep healing that goes beyond meeting the day-to-day necessities, the kind that can only come from God. So that you become the healthy and purposeful woman of God that He made you to become. So that the people you touch in life will be touched by your story of redemption. So that you are able to move onto healthy relationships in the future. Put bitterness, anger, and pain to the side—crawl to Him if you have to—and actively ask for healing from your past so that you can embrace the future He wants for you instead.
Nearly four years down the road I don’t see all the answers. But I’m beginning to get glimpses of the whys behind God’s movement. These are the things I feel He was showing me:
- There were four other people in that home that mattered to God as much as the one I was hoping would change.
- As a follower of Christ, I am not to live a sin-filled life—even if that sin is not my own. I am to withdraw from sin around me and repent from what sin is within me.
- A hardhearted person cannot be changed by me—only God can reach them.
Is the road we’re on hard? Yes. Harder than any other road I’ve known. But, it can also be a beautiful road that not many will experience. Many women (and men) will never understand the complete and utter reliance on God in the way that single moms do. Many will never feel the intensely close relationship that can be formed when God is all you have remaining in your life besides your children. Many will never get the opportunity to restart their lives with God from day one, guiding them onto the path He intended for them instead of the one they’d become stuck on unintentionally.
There are blessings in every struggle.
And this could be the start of something incredible for your future.