Singleness, Sisters and Babies

By Rachel Empey

 

A few weeks ago, I sat in the room with one of my sweet sisters while she was laboring to give birth to her first child. Thankful to be by her side, I quietly prayed for God’s grace, and thanked Him for His unfailing faithfulness. This wasn’t the first time I had the incredible privilege of being there when one of my nieces or nephews took their first breath – I hoped it wouldn’t be the last. Being an aunt is one of my favorite roles in life; being a sister is the only thing that compares.

 

Beneath the soft sounds of heart monitors and hushed voices, however, came the tender reminder that I would never be on the other side of this scenario. The option to have children had officially passed me over two years ago when I lost a ten-year battle with endometriosis. No matter how determined I was when walking into these sweet moments of celebrating others, I still hadn’t mastered the art of avoiding that small twinge of grief that inevitably surfaced at some unexpected moment.

 

This time, instead of being frustrated at myself for not being focused enough to numb all my emotions, I exhaled slowly and just let it come. I didn’t run through old thoughts of, “Lord if you would have just sent me a husband, there would have been hope.” I turned my eyes towards Him and whispered in my heart, “I know you have a plan Lord, but sometimes it still hurts.” A few moments later, I felt His peace and comfort wash over me.  I took a deep breath, gazed across the room at my precious sister, and went back to praying for her pain to pass quickly.

 

The frequency of “Single Awareness Moments” seems to be one of the few downsides to living in the joy of community. Budding courtships, exciting engagements, joy-filled weddings, precious new babies, and the showers and parties that accompany each of those – we are rich with special moments to celebrate.

 

Anyone who is single and living in community will have plenty of opportunities to celebrate with others as they receive the gifts and blessings that we continue to pray for.

 

It is completely acceptable to have moments of grief or questioning. The key is to point the focus of those moments toward the Lord, and not inwardly. God’s merciful heart is able to supply the grace to walk through each of those moments.

 

Tell Him of your pain, but don’t dwell there. Be willing to allow Him to give you perspective. Be willing to have a grateful, selfless heart. Above all, be willing for those moments to be about the people who are being celebrated – it’s not all about us.

 

Nothing ruins a moment faster than a good old-fashioned pity party. That self-focused perspective will completely rob us of the exceedingly abundant blessings of this life in the Lord.

 

And honestly, nothing compares to the authentic, uncompromising joy in celebrating the blessings of others.

 

 

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