A Biblical Guide to Breaking Free and Finding Love
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His confession descended on my heart like an ominous cloud, so thick I could barely breathe.
“You did what last night?” I finally whispered, hoping against hope that I had misheard him.
The first man I had ever loved, my precious boyfriend, my Ricky, lifted his pain-stricken eyes to gaze mournfully into mine and reconfirmed my worst fear. I was so shattered I thought I was dreaming.
Wake up! I urged myself. Open your eyes. This is just a nightmare.
Our relationship had been going so well. Ricky loved me. At least that’s what I thought. I still had a fresh bouquet and love note from him on my nightstand.
This can’t be real! Ricky wouldn’t do this to me. Please, God, let this be a dream. Please let me wake up!
I didn’t wake up. This was my reality—my horrible, heartbreaking, faith-shaking reality. As Ricky continued to cry and beg for forgiveness, my mind began to replay our story, frantically searching for where I had gone wrong.
I had been praying and faithfully waiting for God to send me “the one” for years. I had read popular Christian culture’s relationship books. However, despite following their advice religiously, I still had not found the love story I was searching for. Instead, I’d had a few ill-fated relationships, but nothing serious, and I was beginning to lose hope.
As I struggled with my singleness, I was asked yet again to serve in another wedding. The old saying “Always a bridesmaid, never a bride” haunted my thoughts as we prepared for the big day. The bride encouraged me not to lose hope. She just knew that God would also bring me my Mr. Right soon.
On the evening of the wedding, I walked down the ballroom stairs with the other bridesmaids and spotted a handsome groomsman gazing at me. He had sandy-blond hair, a perfectly trimmed beard, and the most sparking blue eyes I had ever seen.
“Who’s that?” I whispered to the bride, intrigued.
“That’s the best man, Ricky.”
I couldn’t resist stealing glances throughout the ceremony, and I was pretty sure I had caught him looking at me too. During the reception, Ricky lost a bet with the groom and had to perform a solo for the guests. At the end of his performance, he burst into self-conscious laughter and looked over at me.
Heaven help me, his eyes are even more mesmerizing when he smiles.
When the clock struck midnight, the wedding was complete, and it was time to say goodbye. Ricky approached, smiling broadly, and said how nice it was to have met me. Our eyes locked, sparks flew, and for a few brief moments, we were the only two people in the room.
The next week I got an excited call from my newly married friend. I barely had time to say hello before she burst out with her happy news.
“Ricky said you are the most beautiful woman he has ever seen, and he asked for your phone number! I told you that God had someone on the way. You guys are perfect for each other!”
And we were, or so it seemed. Ricky’s love for God blew me away. He lived to tell the world about his Savior, Jesus Christ. I had never seen such devotion or love for the Lord. He made me love God more just by being with him. After spending a couple of months getting to know each other, he formally asked me to be his girlfriend. I spent some time praying and then wholeheartedly accepted.
We decided from the beginning that we wanted to honor God and each other in our relationship. We guarded each other’s hearts—no kissing and only brief side hugs. We kept ourselves sexually pure. We even made sure we were never truly alone to avoid even the possibility of temptation. We attended church together and even shared the Gospel together. Our relationship was everything it should have been.
Ricky’s voice cut into my wistful reminiscing and jerked me back to reality.
“I made a mistake,” he said through tears. “I didn’t realize what was happening until it was over. I am so sorry. Please forgive me.”
I did forgive, but I knew I’d never be able to forget. As much as I still loved him, a sacred trust had been broken. There was no going back. All my hopes and dreams of what could have been had evaporated like one’s breath on a cold day. It was over, and I was alone … again.
I spent the first few days after the breakup in numb disbelief. No matter what I did, memories of Ricky were everywhere. Eventually, I retreated to my room and opened social media. There he was again! His face smiled beside mine in my profile picture. I quickly switched it to the previous shot, a solo of me at someone else’s wedding.
How appropriate, I thought ruefully. “All by Myself” should be the theme song of my life.
I switched my relationship status back to its default setting—single.
Why do I always end up back here? Why can’t I find the right one despite my best efforts? Why does love elude me at every turn?
“I am sick of singleness!” I yelled into the darkness in frustrated anguish.
It was the first time I admitted it to even myself. I had been taught that to be discontent with singleness was to be discontent with God. I had not allowed myself to acknowledge just how miserable I was until now. The admission was freeing but also disheartening. What on earth could I do about it? I had tried everything. Or had I?
I decided then and there to find a way out of this soul-crushing loneliness. Others had made it out. If they could, so could I. There was something keeping me in singleness, and I would leave no stone unturned until I discovered what it was.
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About the Book
Popular Christian Culture’s narrative teaches singles that the key to finding love is to abdicate responsibility for their love lives to God. Slogans abound: Singleness is a gift - Wait on the Lord - God is enough - God will send you the right one in His time. Such mantras sound so spiritual but what if they are not true? What if they are not Biblical? What if the very things you are doing to find love are keeping you from it?
In Sick of Singleness, author Harmony Claire uses her own singleness breakthrough story to skillfully address the spiritual, cultural, and personal narratives that can keep Christians trapped in unwanted singleness. Her biblical and practical approach to the search for true love offers unique, refreshing and life-changing insights that will empower you to change your narrative and your story.
About the Author
Harmony Claire holds a Master of Arts in Christian education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. She spent the majority of her career in student ministry until she embarked on her most challenging of callings, becoming a wife and mom of three young boys. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee, where she is pursuing a second master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling.