This is a continuation from Part 1. If you haven’t read that part yet, please do before starting here.
I’m writing about singleness. However, I don’t particularly like to be singled out (pun intended) for my marital status, either for the good or the bad. Calling attention to singleness in juxtaposition to marriage breaks my internal concept of community. Not that we can’t intentionally fellowship with those of the same marital status, but when we start “us”ing and “them”ing, we lose the value of others’ perspectives.
Yes, I’m single and singleness, like any other status in life, has pros and cons. So could we talk about the pros and cons as if we’re talking about life rather than opposite sides? (Note to self!)
Despite the trials of any marital status, marriage and singleness each come with a healthy dose of blessing. (Other statuses come with blessings too, but another day, another time, another blogger.)
We should never resent each other for enjoying our blessings.
I have been there: that twinge of resentment while watching a husband and wife share a look with layers that no one else understands. Loneliness crashes over me as I momentarily want–no, crave–that same level of companionship.
If I resent others their blessings, I shouldn’t freely enjoy my own blessings. If I resent the mother who tucks in her footie-pajama-ed children with Goodnight, Moon and then crawls into bed next to her warm husband, then neither should I enjoy my uninterrupted nights of sleep or the freedom to read late into the night without the light bothering anyone. Neither should I enjoy the spur of the moment trip to who-knows-where without packing diapers, changes of miniature clothing, and a pack-and-play. Neither should I enjoy… Well, you get the point. Go make your own list.
Instead of resentment, I want enjoyment of the blessings of my today calling. And one step further: I want to encourage others to enjoy their blessings, regardless of their marital status.
The truth is that it’s hard to step into someone else’s perspective. We will probably never quite “get” each other unless we’ve been there. And even then…
Yes, all of us want to be known and understood, but I wonder, in those times we don’t understand, if extended grace can be just as beautiful as empathy.