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A Woman's Worth

A Woman's Worth

As a single woman, I felt like a failure—until God helped me redefine ''success.''
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"You need to find a husband," my stylist announced, briskly clipping my curls.

Ignoring my silence, Janet (not her real name) bubbled about an eligible male customer of hers who was "just right" for me. There was a time when such comments about my single state would rub me raw.

To Janet and the others who meddled in my personal life, a woman my age should be in the happily-ever-after set—not still searching for Mr. Right. If a 30something woman hadn't tied the knot, folks thought something was wrong with her.

For many years, I agreed with them. The word single sounded like a disease to be avoided at all costs. Sometimes, the Bible's support for the single life helped me feel less weird. But if being single was so great, as the apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 7, then why did most of my friends constantly date in an effort to head toward the altar? And why did the few single women I knew seem like miserable misfits? I concluded marriage and motherhood equaled "success" for a female; singleness branded her a failure.

Thankfully, as I got older, I got wiser. God challenged my notion that a woman's worth is based solely on her marital status. Over the years he's opened my eyes to the many ways he considers me a success—even as a single woman. God can help change your definition of success, too. Here's how.

Holding Fast to God's Standards

Oddly enough, God began teaching me my best lessons as a single through a few forgettable dates. First there was "Richard," a college classmate, who took me to dinner and a movie, then cheerfully suggested we spend some time at his apartment since his roommate was gone. When I refused, Richard's easygoing manner switched to anger. He mashed down on the accelerator and abruptly drove me home. After I had a good cry, God pointed out that I'd protected my virginity, a counter-cultural move he considers a huge success.

Next was a blind date with a handsome, well-dressed guy named Hans. Unfortunately, the best part of our evening together was the movie we watched—two blessed hours in which I didn't have to hear Hans talk about himself. Our time together taught me how deceiving looks can be. Jesus' words in Matthew 12:34 proved true: "Out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks." Preferring inner beauty in a guy more than outer, God showed me, is success.

Influencing Little Ones

With the birth of my first nephew, Ryan, God began correcting another of my misconceptions. A successful woman isn't solely one who raises godly sons or daughters, but rather one who also positively influences the children he places in her life.

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Sabrina Messenger

October 14, 2012  8:38am

It's not always easy to be single in a world that seems to view marriage as a form of social mobility. Thank you for this article and the reminder that God calls us by our name, not whatever courtesy title the world attaches to it.

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March 10, 2011  10:52am

thank you for reminding me that God made each of us unique, and that true fulfillment comes from walking in the plan He designed for just me. Your story also reminded me that the relationship that is of eternal significance is the one we cultivate with HIM...

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Ed Maxwell

March 10, 2011  8:22am

Thanks for sharing the experience. Your walk with Jesus will inspire many. Also, your trust in God to see you through is to be commended and where we all need to be! God bless you

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