On Sunday I will officially become something I’ve been trying to avoid for many years -“that Single girl”.
It was over 8 years ago that God first spoke to me (prophetically through a ministry friend) about writing a book on Singleness and God’s family. For the first year or two after that the idea was spoken about as a bit of a joke – “when you write that book …” or “that’s a story for your book!”
Alongside my general propensity for procrastination, one of the reasons the project didn’t happen for so long is that I didn’t want to be “that Single girl”. I didn’t want my “life’s message” to be about singleness. I didn’t want to be some sort of singleness expert. Even as my experiences accumulated and my understanding of the Single life (mine and other’s) deepened and even as I saw (from both positive and negative examples) the significance of the interactions between Singles and the Church family – I didn’t want to be the one to champion or steward the message. If I’m going to be the “voice” of something couldn’t it be marriage or parenting or … or … underwater basket weaving!?!?! Anything but singleness!
Last year, God’s long-suffering and gentle prodding shifted gears and He came at me with a multi-fronted attack – “Write the book already!! Just do it!!” So, while I may be good at procrastinating and excuse-making, when it comes to wilful disobedience I’m no dummy! In fact, another friend prophetically declared it my “book of obedience” and as I followed God into the project He opened all the doors and His provision was generous and sure.
The book was published in March and has been seeping out to various individuals, leaders and churches since then. (Order your copy HERE) I am so encouraged by the feedback it’s received. God is using it to bless, encourage and challenge His family. I love that God works that way – He takes our humble offerings and breathes His Spirit of grace and truth into them and they bear fruit in the lives of His children and for His Kingdom purposes. And we get to participate with Him! It’s been such an exciting project to be part of.
But now, as I prepare for my first book-related speaking opportunity, I find myself needing to process a fresh wave of …well, I’m not exactly sure what it is. Grief? Disappointment? Resistance? I have to step on the platform and be “that Single girl”. You know, the one who is so Single she’s written a book about it!? While there are some potential positives to such a public declaration of singleness (my mum has long hoped for me to make my status part of my introduction anytime I’m speaking to a new audience) there’s a work to be done to sort through the “stuff” to get to a place of greater celebration and expectation.
I’ve rarely been as sure of God calling me to a specific assignment than I have been with this book. I am thoroughly convinced of the Church’s need to hear and respond to the message it contains. I am 100% committed to seeing this book reach the full intent for which God commissioned me to write it. But the reality is there’s a cost. There’s a surrendering required. There’s a setting aside of my own agenda, pride, embarrassment, or disappointment in order to free my hands to embrace all that these opportunities will no doubt contain.
So I will be “that Single girl” …and anything else He would ask me to be … trusting His timing, being confident in His calling. Even if I’d have chosen something else, I know He has chosen me for this and this for me.