When I thought of my 20’s, especially my late 20’s, I never thought it would look the way it does.
What 16-year-old Becca thought:
I’ll probably be married. With a kid or one on the way. I’ll have figured out my career and be financially stable. I will have bought a house in a city I love. My friends and I will be living similar lives swapping stories about our kids and husbands, maybe taking vacations together. Stability will be the name of the game and I’ll have it all figured out.
I live in Los Angeles. Although I have grown to love this city, it isn’t where I would have picked to have lived independently of the opportunities it presents. I’m single and have been for years. No man or kids in sight. I have a job that I love but financial stability and owning a house in this town are high achievements. My friends are starting to get married and have kids and our lives are starting to look very different. Although I have an apartment I love, a community, and a great job, I can’t shake the feeling that I’m supposed to do other things, outside of this city and this industry so it looks like stability is a long way off.
Overall, I’m happy. I love the people who are in my life and am so incredibly grateful for what has been given to me in this chapter of my life. But oftentimes as I get ready for bed or for a wedding or want to explore somewhere new and everyone is busy, I feel lonely. I want to share my life with someone even though I’m happy on my own. It’s two sides of the same coin. It’s hard to feel like I can’t get to the next “predetermined” step. But I continue to have hope because there’s the truth.
“‘For I know the plans I have for you’, declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” Jeremiah 29:11
You can operate out of your truth which oftentimes is fueled by fear OR you can operate out of faith. The hard truth is we don’t know what the future holds. There is no way for us to predict it.
I have a huge life decision that I’m going to make in 1-2 years. It will change every single thing about my life. Lately, I’ve been living in a state of fear and what-ifs. What if I do make this choice and still don’t get x, y, and z. While staying logical in our choices and thinking things through is very necessary, overthinking is one of my biggest enemies. I have prayed over this decision. I know what the Lord is telling me to do. But what if I make this choice and my life still doesn’t look like I think it should? That is fear and fear is of the enemy.
You don’t know how your life is going to turn out or how or when. Neither do I. The truth is that God has a plan for my life. A plan to prosper us. To give us hope and a future. A plan to glorify His kingdom. You are right where you are meant to be. We are meant to turn our tests into our testimonies.
I hear you, see you, understand you because I am you. If you are not where you thought you’d be, if it doesn’t look like you dreamed it would, it feels like your friends are outpacing you and maybe even leaving you behind in the last stage of life, you are not alone even when it feels very much so like you are.
Often times when I feel alone, I imagine myself in a metaphor to illustrate my loneliness. For instance, I imagined I was driving a car and was lost. Having the imagery made me feel like I had a better grasp on my emotions. As I thought of this scenario, God filled my mind with the thought that He’s in the passenger seat holding the map, if only I’ll listen. I’ve held onto this for a long time.
Today felt different. I had a situation in my life that hit me hard with loneliness and the feeling of being left behind in the stage of singleness. I thought of myself in a boat with an oar. I imagined myself paddling and paddling and getting nowhere. Then, my boat started going straight. I looked behind me. God was steering me, all I had to do was paddle.
Even when we feel alone, we aren’t. We have people who feel the same (hi!) but even if that feels like a far fetched idea, we always have God, our Father. He loves you and wants the best for you. He will never desert you. He has a reason for everything, especially His timing. Every time I look back on my life (which also didn’t look like I thought it would) everything makes sense. We hear that with our heads but it can be hard for the heart to feel.
When there is nothing left, we have to hold onto our faith that our Father is there and cares and for us and is not against us.
My prayer for you:
That you feel Him and know you aren’t alone. That you make peace with where God has taken your life. I pray that we can recognize in each other our need for our communities, no matter what state in life people are at. I lift you up to God that whatever is on or in your heart that He would glorify or change if that is what He intends. Every day, I will pray for your protection against fear and for your openness for hope.
When I say, “you’ve got this”, it isn’t just because I believe in you even though I do. I know you’ve got this because I know who your back up is. So hear me when I say, you’ve got this. And I’ll keep reminding myself too.
hopeful for you,
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