rebelling against low expectations

How To Be Single (For All the Wrong Reasons)


This morning I found myself reading a blog post from a teenage girl who was currently in a relationship yet wanted to give reasons for why she wished she was single.

While I’m sure she thought herself to be very insightful, the post only projected the lifestyle my generation is and will be living. Her reasons for discouraging the pursuit of a romantic relationship included:

1. “Relationships require time, which you don’t always have.”

2. “Relationships require sacrifices that you don’t want to make.”

3. “Relationships require commitment.”

As I read her blog post, my heart literally began to grieve for my peers who are being taught by our culture how to pursue a relationship without sacrifice, time, and commitment.

Without these things, what’s the point of a relationship or marriage? Pleasure? Or maybe because we’ve been given someone satisfy all our wants and needs?

If this is the case, I can promise you that this ache will not be solved by earthly things or sinful people.

A pivotal point in my relationship with Christ happened one afternoon while I was sitting in my sun porch contemplating the possibility of singleness. I knew I wanted to wait to date until I was ready for marriage (I was only 16 at the time) but what if God didn’t have marriage planned for my future at all?

Would I spend the rest of my life pining after the couples I saw in parks, coffee shops, and church services?

A quote by Corrie Ten Boom came to mind as I worried about this:

“Marriage is not the answer to unhappiness. Happiness can only be found in a balanced relationship with Christ. When you belong to Christ you can be happy with or without a husband, secure in Christ alone.”

Christ, in His perfection, fulfills and exceeds the role of a boyfriend or husband (girlfriend/wife).

And if being single means spending the rest of my life engaging in an intimate relationship with my Maker and Savior, I will be content. But if I pursue singleness for the sake of making fewer sacrifices and being committed only to myself, what then?

Loneliness can’t even begin to describe the symptoms of a starved soul.

We Were Created for Relationships

The fact is, we were created for relationships — one in particular, with God. And if I ever do get married, I recognize that my relationship with my husband is to exemplify the relationship between Christ and His church.

Because you know what He did?

He proved His commitment to us by spending time here on this Earth, healing, teaching, giving, and ultimately sacrificing His own perfect life so that we might have access to the most divine romance.

I don’t want to think that my “single years” are an opportunity to focus on myself. Instead, I want to think that these next years are “singled-out” for pursuing Christ as an example of how I am to create a relationship with anyone in my present and future.

Philippians 2:3-5 says:

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others as more significant than yourselves. Let each of you not look only to his own interests, but each of you to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.”

Obviously this attitude is completely against the status quo, but Paul is convinced it’s also completely attainable — it is ours in Christ. But please don’t think this will work as a magic formula for getting a boyfriend or girlfriend because that goes right back to Philippians 2 when it says, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition.”

Do it for the benefit of becoming closer to God and giving Him the glory He deserves, because in a self-serving society such as this people will notice if you are committed to “counting others as more significant than yourself.”

So, while you may be considered “single” in this upcoming endeavor, you are not alone — let’s chase after Him together!

Photo courtesy of Lauren Rushing and Flickr Creative Commons.

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About the author

Anna Baker

is an 18-year-old “Cyclone” at Iowa State University and is confidently “undeclared” for the time being. She loves to run, bike, read, and write and she hopes to someday submit her interests and abilities to God’s work overseas. Her favorite verses are Colossians 3:1-3, “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is. Set your mind on the things above, not on things of this Earth for you have died and your life is hidden in Christ, with God.”


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  • Thank you for this Anna! I have recently been contemplating my motives for singleness as well. This post came at a most in coincidental time. (:

  • This is vital. If your reasons for being single are because its convenient for you, you’re missing the point entirely.

  • This is such a great post. You beautifully worded my beliefs that I have been explaining to people over and over again. I am glad that I can recommend this post to those who are in a relationship or considering it. Thank you for such an amazing word.

    • This topic (dating/singleness) has always been a passion of mine so I was super excited to finally get a chance to encourage others (like yourself) with what God has been laying on my heart. It’s comforting to know that others are striving to obey God in this way too 🙂 Thank you!

  • I am guessing God wanted me to see this article, since for most of my life, I have been putting the need for a romantic relationship over the need for a relationship with God. Your insight has helped immensely, thank you.

    • Hey Nick, I’m SO glad that God could use this article to speak to your heart! Never too soon to begin an awesome relationship with Him 🙂

  • This is a very thoughtful article, Anna! thank you so much for taking the time to write this beautiful piece and share it with us 🙂

    (btw I have a good handful of friends who are Cyclones fans 😉 Are you originally from Iowa?)

  • Hiya Anna! Great article, I really like how you’ve done this! Is there any chance you can tell me what that blog was called?

    • Thank you, I’m glad you found it encouraging! Ummm I can’t remember what the blog was called, it was posted on my ISU Facebook feed a couple months ago, sorry!

  • A couple of weeks ago i was talking to my youth pastor about dating. I have never dated and was interested in relationships. He shared some advice which was incredible. “Don’t start dating until you know who you are in Christ, If you don’t know who you are in Christ you will put your girlfriend/boyfriend in Christ’s place and it will have devastating consequences for your relationship”

    Thank you so much for posting this Anna

    • Wow, your youth pastor summed up perfectly in only a couple words what I wanted to say in an entire article. Thank you for sharing this awesome piece of wisdom!

      • Yeah and in those sorts of instances, one would be doing a major disservice to the other. In other words, not having your own relationship with God straightened out is not just setting the relationship up with a faulty foundation, but it is also damaging the other person. That’s not to say God won’t work a miracle out of it, but we should still make decisions as best we can!

  • 1000% well said! Culture is always about “me” — the notion of truly selfless living is a foreign concept because there is no philosophical rationale for selflessness in an internally consistent secular worldview. So many people start relationships for the wrong reasons — and end them for the wrong reasons. We better treat our relationship with our Maker more seriously first before we even consider a relationship with someone else!

  • So glad i found this post! I think God just answered my prayers through this article. Thank you so much for this x

  • This is a great article full of many insights that I need to consider in my own life. You have pointed something out that I think many Christians tend to skim over–that it is not as much whether you are married or single as why and how you are making the choice.
    Thank you for this! 🙂 Please keep on writing!

By Anna Baker
rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectations—a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More →