Dear Single Christian Woman,
If there was ever a woman who did not have any hope of getting married, it was me. My first husband was dead. I did not have a penny to my name. And I was going to a land where people from my country, especially the women, were not welcomed.
If you are wondering why our women were not welcomed, let me take you back in time:
A few hundred years back, women from my country, Moab, were sent to the men of Israel to seduce them with sex and idolatry. Although hidden through fancy words, the women basically propositioned the men with this: I will only allow you to sleep with me if you turn and worship my idol.
This proposition was part of a strategy executed by the King of Moab to keep Israel weak because he was afraid Moab would be conquered. See, the King had been advised that if the men turned away from God, God would not protect them.
The strategy worked!! Many men slept with our women and those men were slain. Since that episode, Israel has looked at people from Moab with much suspicion, especially the women.
With such history, I was sure that no man in Israel would be interested in a me, a newly converted Moabite. I mean, what was I going to say to any man I met?
Hey handsome, I am from Moab. I am new here. My mother in-law and I came here after my husband died and also because we heard there was food. I know you don’t think highly of Moabites, but I am different. I turned away from my idols and converted to your religion right before coming. So, know that you don’t have to worry about me worshipping idols. And since I am being honest, I want to tell you one more thing. I am broke and have to beg just to get by in life. That’s it. How would you like to take me out on a date?
With the odds stacked against me, I put the idea of marriage far away from my thinking, though I secretly desired it. Instead I focused all my attention on providing for my mother in-law and I. This I did by going from field to field, day after day, picking up any leftovers the ground keepers were kind enough to leave behind.
Though I was first largely left to myself in these fields, people started to warm towards me as they saw my industry, tested my character, and learned of my story. Then I happened upon a field owned by a man called Boaz. I collected more grain in his field than I had collected in other fields. I was grateful for his kindness but thought no more of it.
Thankfully my mother in-law was more discerning than me. She explained to me that it was unusual to come home with such large amounts of grain. She explained that Boaz must have taken an interest in me. I doubted her and said: Of all the women he could have, why would he be interested in me? And if indeed he has taken an interest in me, then why hasn’t he pursued that interest? Why hasn’t he at least mentioned something to me?
My mother in-law simply laughed. She explained that there are men who can hardly speak to women because of shyness or for fear of being rejected. She said: You know how successful and well-respected Boaz is in the community. I am sure many women have been interested in him, and I am sure he has been interested in some of them. But I bet those women waited for him to approach them and pursue his interest in them. But you know his demeanor. He is quiet and unassuming. After waiting for a long time, these ladies either lost interest, felt rejected or simply thought of him as not being serious. They might have even thought he was not interested in marriage.
Undiscerning women! They waited for him to act in line with cultural norms and tradition, but he never did. Don’t be like the other women. He has shown interest in you. Now you have to leave no doubt in his mind that you are interested. He is the kind of man who does not take hints well. If you like him, you have to pursue the interest he has shown in you.
Scared and fighting against my own fear of rejection, I followed my mother in-law’s advice. I showed him that I was available and told him what I desired. Instead of finding my actions appalling, he found it appealing. My honesty and openness gave him the boldness and confidence to pursue what he also desired. Marriage.
I later found out that he had secretly enquired about me and thought the world of me. If I had not listened to my mother in-law’s advice; if I had not decided to do something out of my comfort zone, I am pretty sure I would still be single today.
If you are a woman who desires to be married, there is hope. If I could end up married with the odds stacked against me, then you can too. There is no predefined process to follow, so get rid of any picture you may have conjured in your heart about how it is going to happen. Whether he pursues you or you pursue him is inconsequential. The only thing that matters is that you are both interested in each other and that you are honest and open about your feelings and intentions.
Take a chance. Take a leap of faith. Don’t let religious traditions and cultural norms get in your way. In fact, feel free to break all the rules so long as you are not breaking any of God’s laws and principles. Remember, even Jesus broke many man-made religious rules without breaking God’s laws and principles.
Here are My 5 Love Lessons
- Don’t allow the things you can’t do anything about stop you from pursuing your desire to married. When the right man comes along, he won’t care about things such as whether you were previously married, have kids, how old you are, etc.
- Not every man is comfortable pursuing a woman. If you are interested in him, you may have to make the first bold and sure move.
- There is no full-proof process to follow to get into a relationship and get married. The most important thing is to make sure that you choose wisely.
- If you desired to be married, make sure you put your very best foot forward. And remember this if things don’t work out: There is no such thing as rejection, there is only redirection.
- Sometimes you have to break with culture and traditions to get what you desire. Don’t let that stop you as long as you are not breaking God’s commandments.
P.S: You can read my love story and how I got married in the Book of Ruth in the bible
This blog post was shared with permission from www.relationshipminibooks.com