Now that we have processed Gratitude, let's go one step further. No, this isn't going to be easy. It wasn't easy for me when I first started, but, as with anything, the more you practice, the better you get! In fact, God is still working on me in this area, but it is getting easier and it is even starting to feel good.
Let's go back to the group of friends that are in new relationships and/or newly engaged. You are still single.
Option 1: Whining
"God, whhhhhyyyyyyy not meeeee!" Inside you are jealous and mopey. You start thinking a million things: "Why not me? What's wrong with me? Really God? I know I'm not perfect, but I'm not that bad!"
It is quite an ugly sight. You start eating poorly, treating yourself badly, and thinking that you aren't worthy of a good healthy relationship.
"Eat not the bread of him who has a hard, grudging, and envious eye, neither desire his dainty foods; For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. As one who reckons, he says to you, eat and drink, yet his heart is not with you [but is grudging the cost]." Proverbs 23:6-7
Notice that I put in bold "For as he thinks in his heart, so is he". When you are whiney and start down the path of self destruction, much like the person with the hard, grudging, and envious eye, your actions will reflect this. People who are happy and in new relationships or are planning their marriage don't want to be around others that are bitter and resentful. You will find yourself alone. What do you say to yourself? "See!?! NO ONE wants to be around me! I'm wretched!"
Check your attitude. People who are happily in a new relationship and/or are about to get married don't need a million pounds of depression and self pitty falling down on top of them. If they are smart, they will distance themselves until you realize that you are your greatest demise.
Option 2: Not Whining
You congratulate your friends (to their face....with a smile....and MEAN IT), praise God for their good fortune, and give them a gift or other token of celebration for the new relationship/pending nuptials.
This stretches you. The first time that you step outside your comfort zone and do something for someone that they are getting but you want may even make you cry, but it will get easier. You may even start seeking out people who are getting what you want in order to bless them.
As a note, this doesn't mean that there won't be pain while you are in the in-between-time. God never promised us that the road would be easy, but we can make it easier on ourselves if we learn to accept God's plan for us and praise Him for what He does for others, and go one step further and bless them.
I need this post as much as anyone who will read it. I have recently been on that downward path, and I'm done with letting the devil win. I know that I am where I am because God needs me here now. He's not only working on me, but on my situations that I am struggling with.
Face it, if we always got what we wanted, we wouldn't need God. If we never faced adversity, how would we ever know God is a deliverer? There are TONS of verses that say the same thing (and I've always been told that when something shows up in the Bible multiple times, you'd better pay attention!), but this is the one that my heart rests on:
"The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." Psalm 18:2
God bless you my friend. <3