Author's Note: This was originally published as an article in the Southern Accent on January 2015.
In case some of you did not know, our school has a popular nickname that plays upon all the dating, marrying, and lovemaking that our campus fosters! (Just this past Winter Break, two couples I know got engaged.) This is wonderful. Romance is pure and sacred, and holy, and worthy, but not all the time.
I am currently outside of those times when romance is healthy. One of my closest friends agrees with me; in fact, for the past several months he has become something like a father to me in regards to my female friendships. He’s constantly checking me. So much so, that there have been a few moments when I feel guilty from simple innocent interactions! But I'm not upset about his behavior because I agree with him. I am not in a position to pursue someone; between all my activities and my emotional fluxes, I know that a season of singleness will be best for me.
Summer evangelism programs and college semesters have taught me about life's fluidity. They have made it clear: life comes in seasons, often with divine reasons, and one season will never replicate the previous. Thus, it’s important to be prepared for newness. Though I think college exaggerates the fluidity, I think life is like that—fluid and seasonal. Periods come and go; the key to joy is to let the old out and—with open palms—embrace the new. Change is uncomfortable, but we might be surprised by joy.
This college semester brings me a new experience; for the first time, I have entered a semester without expecting the special presence of a woman. I am not just Facebook single—I am mentally single. It's weird. It's uncomfortable. And if I'm honest, I don't like it. Friday nights and Saturday afternoons can get dry sometimes without a special someone to provide the ecstasy of boy-girl interactions. Mrs. Patterson’s Talge Hall emails include a friendly reminder to take a girl out on a date—friendly reminders which I am intentionally declining. There are many wonderful people here on campus, and the person who commits to singleness for a season is saying no to all the potential relationships surrounding him or her. Is it even possible to make such a commitment at this school?
I think so. This semester, I am making the commitment to swim against the tide of Southern Matrimony College. I will not have many vespers dates stories to share, but that is fine with me; I have a hunch Jesus and I will have lots of fun this semester because I will be all His; all my time, and all my emotions will be His.
So I welcome this season for a reason.
Who knows, perhaps I discover a Pauline celibacy vow...or may be not. Either way, I'm ready because seasons come and go, but the Lord remains and redeems the changes. Whatever seasons await us—whether desirable or not—my opinion is that we enter willingly because the best pleasures are the ones we did not expect.