So I wrote this book. And it kind of initiated some conversations that I didn’t expect. See, when I wrote Finding Fireflies, I really expected to get to have a lot of conversations about human trafficking, and I certainly did. I still am. There’s a lot of education that still needs to be done in that area, and I want to be one of the people who helps build awareness.
But actually I had more conversations with people about Trisha Lee, the strong female character in the book who was okay with not being married. In Finding Fireflies, Trisha (the main character) is single and has never been on a date and is actually, honestly, genuinely 100% okay with that. That has struck a chord with people.
I mean, I knew it resonated with me, because I’m that 32-year-old strong female who’s never dated and is okay with it. But apparently Trisha Leigh Lee has extended her reach far and wide, across the United States and even into the United Kingdom and Australia.
I have posted before on my concerns about the lack (or misinterpretation) of strong female characters in fiction and on screens, both small and large, and I think it’s time that I start doing more of that. It’s actually a subject I seem to write about frequently, because even in my novels where the strong female character marries, it’s not something she does because it’s popular or even expected.
I fear that our culture (and this is even prevalent in the church) insists that everyone must be in a relationship. The church insists you get married, while everybody else is more relaxed on that topic (right or wrong, it’s the situation we’re in right now). Because everybody has to have a girlfriend, everybody has to have a boyfriend, we’re teaching our kids that they need another person to define who they are. They can’t be on their own and be okay. And if they get into their 30s and haven’t had a relationship, well, they should just give up. Because nobody will want them when they’re that old.
Jesus has been my best friend since I was 7 years old. That’s coming up on 26 years now, and He’s taught me a lot about myself and about Him in that time. The number one thing He’s taught me is that He made me the way He wants me, and I don’t need to go on a quest or go looking for a spouse to define me as a person. God’s already done that. I’m me!
I didn’t need to get married to learn that. Actually, I think getting married might have prevented me from learning that lesson.
Now I do believe what a good family friend once told us about relationships and being single: “There’s no pot so crooked you can’t find a lid to fit it somewhere.” And that’s true, whether you’re talking about friendships or marriage relationships. There’s somebody for everybody. But until you meet your somebody, you can be okay with You.
I’ve been pretty quiet about what it’s like to live as a single Christian woman, mostly because I didn’t think anyone really cared. I assumed (yes, I know what that means), and Finding Fireflies taught me that I assumed wrong.
I have so many stories I can tell about what I’ve learned living life single and following God as a single Christian woman, and most of them are just plain funny. Just saying. So I’m going to give this gut-level-honest storytelling thing a shot, and we’ll see if my experiences can help or encourage others.
And who knows? Now that I’m starting this, I’ll probably end up married within the year. God has a sense of humor like that.
But what’s great is that you don’t have to be single to grasp God’s purpose for your life, and you don’t have to be married either. You don’t have to be old or young, male or female, or right-handed or left-handed. All you have to be is humble–humble enough to listen, humble enough to do what God says is right. He’ll take care of the rest.