Can anyone else relate to that?
As I grew older… I found myself, more often than not, spending Valentine’s Day as a single girl and just wishing for the perfect man. He seemed so far away and I was starting to wonder if he was even out there. I wondered if there was something wrong with me. I found myself thinking, “Maybe I’m not pretty enough, smart enough, or even lovable…” Granted, I was still young… but I questioned if there was a man out there that was specifically designed just for me. I had been through a lot and was unsure if someone could love me as I was… I was unsure if I could love me as I was.
There was a season of life where I found my value in whether or not I was dating and being pursued. There’s nothing wrong with being pursued by a pure heart - in fact, that’s what men should do. However, as women… we cannot find our value or worth in another person’s willingness to pursue - opinions - or thoughts. I began praying that God would heal my heart and that I would find my worth and value in Christ alone. God was faithful to fulfill His promises and I began to see my heart mend. I was no long desperate to be loved in a relationship, I knew I already was. I was running toward Jesus with everything I had.
Shortly after my heart had been stirred in the best ways about relationships, I began to pray for my future husband. I didn’t know who he was or where he was… but I trusted that he was a living breathing person and that God saw him. I prayed for his relationship with Christ, that God would prepare him to lead our family one day, that he’d find joy in each day, that he’d be fruitful in his workplace, and many other facets of his life… I loved him so much and I hadn’t even met him yet. I pulled way from any toxic friendships or relationships and just waited for my future husband. Some nights I would look into the sky and wonder if he was looking up at the sky at the exact moment. I knew where my value came from and I knew that no other relationship could validate me. I had to understand that I was beautiful - treasured - and enough… exactly how I was. Every Valentine’s Day was forever different because I realized I had already received the greatest act of love - Christ. His life, death, and resurrection is better than any coffee delivery or Valentine’s Day card.
Once my heart grasped onto that truth, God began doing what only He can do and gave me the man I had been praying for. God used my season of singleness to prepare my heart to be the kind of God-honoring woman, wife, and mom I was called to be and deeply desired to be. I would not be as firm in my value without the many seasons God has walked me through - the eating disorder, pure happiness, heartbreak, health challenges, singleness… each one was so beautiful for different reasons and so intentionally designed.
Whether you’re single, dating, engaged, or married… I want you to know that you are beautiful and fiercely treasured. This Valentine’s Day, let’s celebrate loving ourself and those that have been placed in our life. Our beauty is not more or less true based on someone’s ability to love and see it. Of course it’s nice to have acts of love expressed… but we have to love ourself before we can unconditionally love others and accept love.
If you’re challenged during a season of singleness, remember that it doesn’t define you. You are treasured, loved, and beautiful with or without a man. I encourage you to begin praying for and writing letters to your future husband. He’s out there and it’s a beautiful thing to wait for him.
If you’re happily dating - engaged - or married, remember that your status doesn’t define you either. It’s amazing to have someone pursue your heart, but let’s first find our beauty and value within ourselves… allowing us to better love our significant others and the world.
I pray that you all have a wonderful day - filled with unconditional love from yourself, chocolate, and the best cup of coffee you’ve ever had! You are treasured.
Redefining Beauty Worldwide,
Miss International 2016