When people ask Lisa where she is from, she says she’s from heaven. She currently lives in Arizona where she’s working on a Ph.D. in educational psychology. Previously she taught elementary computers where her students nicknamed her Miss Giggles. She loves elephants, quilting, running marathons, and reading children’s literature. Throughout her life she’s frequently been compared to a butterfly, either because she’s graceful or because she likes to float along in her own world and occasionally touch down on reality. She can be found blogging at Random Giggles
If we are all being honest, we have to admit that at some point we have at least thought it about someone we know who happens to be both single and, oh, say, over the age of 22. They must still be single for a reason.
Rarely is that reason ever stated, but the implied reasons are never good ones. He’s still single because he’s too immature, because he’s lacking in social skills, because his priorities are mixed up, because he’s addicted to pornography. She’s still single because she’s too focused on her school/career, because she could stand to lose a few pounds, because she’s too much like one of the boys and isn’t feminine enough.
Admittedly, we usually say it differently for women. With them it generally comes out more as, “you’re so pretty, I’m sure you’ll be married soon,” or some other half compliment. Half because you have to remember the other side of it. While such a phrase may be well intentioned the unsaid implication is, “there must be something terribly wrong with you I am not aware of or else you would be married.” I love Elder Holland’s talks, “The Tongue of Angels” in the April 2007 General Conference. He addressed parents and how they talk to their children, yet I’ve seen the same happen when two adults converse. He says, “You may say most positively that ‘Susan is pretty and Sandra is bright,’ but all Susan will remember is that she isn’t bright and Sandra that she isn’t pretty.”
Having reached my thirties as a single member of the LDS church, I’ve heard my fair share of these “reasons”. In a few months, at the ripe old age of 31, I will be marrying a man who will turn 34 one month later. He’s heard quite a few “reasons” as well during the last decade. Yet neither one of us would change the timing on how things have worked out. For reasons known only to God, this is how He timed things for our lives. There were things we needed to learn and do before we married.
For me some of those things have been a mission, graduate degrees, travel, community theater, belly dance classes, learning to rely so completely on God, and growth and service in the Church that I could not have had otherwise. I know there have been things I learned that I would not have otherwise, blessings that would not have come in the same way, and paths I would not have traveled if my life had gone according to the time table of “well meaning” people around me.
Yet the fact remains, the main reason I’ve remained single for so long is because I have not yet married, because that was not the plan a loving Heavenly Father set up for my life.
And that’s a good enough reason for me.