“I never think of you as needing anything.” It was early February, and my friend was scratching his head, trying to figure out why I was teary over something fairly insignificant.
There is a point in the single woman’s life where she has to learn to do things–you know, plumb the water filter, get the car fixed, sort out the insurance, figure out how not to cry in church when the sweet family in front of you snuggles into their pew.
I guess I was getting pretty good at some of that. I have filtered water in my house, my insured car runs, and most Sundays, I can smile at you there with your arm around your husband and kids. I preach contentment to myself and others. I pray daily to recognize the hand of God in my life. I try to find ways to use my time and resources well.
But February breaks me a little, and I know I’m not the only one. If feels silly to even think about sometimes. The flowers don’t last, the chocolate is generally sub-par, and all my married friends roll their eyes about how overrated going out to dinner is. But there is still that thing about wanting to be wanted. I’ve written in past years about Valentine’s Envy. It’s real.
I’m not writing this to engender pity, but to remind us all that we need each other. In this Valentine’s season, check up on your single friends–the widows, the abandoned, the single moms, those caregiving for elderly parents, the ones who just suffered a break-up, the ones who haven’t had a date in a decade. They–we–need you to ask us to dinner, to deliver flowers, to send a text, to drop off sub-par chocolate.
More than that, though, we need to be reminded that “the love of God has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Rom 5:5); that we “are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with the saints, and members of God’s household” (Eph 2.19); that “the peace of Christ, to which you/we were also called into one body, rule your/our hearts. And be thankful.” (Col. 3:15)