It takes a strong, secure woman to be a single woman of a certain age and love Jesus. And, I love Jesus. I really, really do.
It takes strength and security to watch all of your friends walk down the aisle on their wedding day and not be jealous and angry that it's not you. It takes a lot of strength and security to realize that the only single people available to hang out with are at minimum five years younger than you and that means that the relationships you have with them will be on their terms, not yours. It takes a lot of strength and security to recognize that your married friends with kids will also be friendships on their terms, not yours. It takes strength and security to continue to put yourself out there, day after day and remain hopeful and joyful over your circumstances.
It takes strength and security because everything about singleness at later ages in life speaks to every single insecurity that a woman has: is there something wrong with me, am I beautiful, does anyone want to truly know me, will I be loved...etc, etc. And, yes, Jesus fills these needs. But, there is a real dimension of the heart that cries out for earthly relationships too.
And, the longer hope is deferred the easier it feels to look everywhere else for those answers.
This is why it takes strength. It takes strength to stand firm in your convictions and your devotion to Jesus. It takes strength to fight against the lies that plague you and continue to hold on desperately to the truth. It takes strength to say that "It is worth it" and mean it. It takes strength to stay joyful and peaceful and grateful in the face of circumstances.
So, if you know a woman who is single and older....pray for her. Pray that she would be strengthened and not give up. Pray that she would cling to Jesus.
And, if you are so inclined, embrace her, invite her into your life, check in on her and make sure she's OK. Make sure she knows she's wanted and needed and important.
Those little gestures go a long way.