‘It’ll happen when it’s the last thing on your mind!’ ‘You’ll fall in love the second you stop looking … ’ If you’re single you are probably well familiar with this kind of wisdom.
Let’s be honest, those in relationships love to impart to us singles their divine knowledge and their experience of all things romantic. And while these friends probably have
great intentions, a lot of what we hear can be unhelpful and potentially even damaging!
Here are five myths that both the lone rangers and loved-up members of War Cry think single people buy into far too often.
1. You will find someone when you’re not looking/least expect. Plenty of single people will probably tell you they hear this on average of at least once a week. But, the truth is, if people only found love when they weren’t looking, dating apps such as Tinder would’ve gone out of business years ago. Instead, the app that revolutionised online dating is now worth a whopping $3 billion! I think this idea is dangerous because it can leave us feeling guilty for desiring something that not only comes from God, but is also a part of what it is to be human. We can then attempt to suppress this desire; a resistance which inevitably creates more problems than it solves.
2. You will find someone when God is ready for you to be in a relationship. This creates the idea that you need to ‘arrive’ at a place where you’ve completely worked through all your issues and imperfections. Yet hundreds of people get married every day and you can be absolutely sure none of them are perfect.
3. You need to be completely happy being single before you can truly love someone else. Now this is a complete load of tosh! Like sadness, anger and despair, happiness is an emotion and, like all emotions, our happiness will come and go. While it’s healthy to be comfortable in our own skin, it’s absurd to think we’ll only find love when we’re living in a state of pure bliss and contentedness.
4. God has got ‘one’ special person saved for you. There are plenty of Christians who believe this—and that’s ok—but, in reality, there are probably hundreds of people on this planet who would be compatible with each other. This kind of thinking becomes dangerous because it can mean we start to question a good relationship if we’re not sure our person is ‘the one’.
5. You will know instantly if a person is right for you. I think Disney and Hollywood could be to blame for this one. This can lead us to believe that relationships just happen with minimal effort but, in reality, all romance has its challenges and hurdles to work through.
There are no rules to finding love! Every romance has its own unique story—some couples will find each other with minimal effort, others will have dated 50 different people back-to-back!
Let’s ensure we don’t bog ourselves down in black and white thinking and remember that whatever season of life we find ourselves in has its own gift.
'War Cry' magazine, 22 September 2018, p10 - You can read 'War Cry' at your nearest Salvation Army church or centre, or subscribe through Salvationist Resources.