A confession of longing does not indicate a lack of faith. I will say it again. A confession of longing does not indicate a lack of faith. It is simply honesty.

Many of us who are single encounter this accusation in speaking with those who have forgotten their time of trial—if they knew a time of trial. It is as though to suffer in silence is more noble, to live with pretence more spiritual, and to smile through the pain more righteous. I smile through the pain. I give and love and serve—but I am also honest.

We are allowed to confess our pain and our sorrow in the same way that David cried, “How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me” (Psa. 13:1)? God is not hiding His face. We know this. As His children, as His beloved Church, bought at the price of His Son, we are His treasure. He is ever attentive to our needs and there is an emptiness that is best expressed in honest words to the One who cares.

We are allowed to admit that life has not turned out as we planned. We are allowed to do this because God is not afraid of our honesty and He cares. In fact, it is this very honesty that allows the body of Christ to shed the accusation of hypocrisy. What misery to have neither spouse nor fellowship with believers. What misery to be unable to admit the “blessing of singleness” at times feels more like a curse.

We are not a people free of pain and sorrow, free of longing and desire, and we need not pretend otherwise. To be unable to admit where it hurts is sometimes more troubling than the pain itself. We confess our need, our longing and we end our prayer as David ended his, “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me.” (Psa. 13:5-6). He has been very good to me.

A while ago I wrote what I imagined as my conversation with God.

 At Last Honesty

God: “What’s the matter?
Me: “I’m lonely!”

God: “I know! Don’t you think I know that?”
Me: “Yes Lord.”

God: “Then what’s the problem?”
Me: “I’m lonely.”

God: “What do you want?”
Me: (Repressing the honest answer I speak:) “I want what you want Lord.”

God: “You have it.”
Me: (dead silence)

God: “Something is still bothering you.  What is it?”
Me: “I’m alone.”

God: “Why is that a problem?”
Me: “I’m not happy.”

God: “And why not?”
Me: “I don’t want to be alone.”

God: “You said you wanted what I wanted.”
Me: “Yes Lord.”


God: “You have it.”
Me: (silence)

God: “Isn’t that what you wanted?”
Me: (at last honesty) “No Lord.”

God: “Then you do not want what I want?”
Me: “I do, but I also want to be married. I also want what I want.”

God: “The problem is not your desire to be married. That is a good desire. 
          The problem is that you expect that I should give you
          what you want when you want and how you want.
           If a sparrow does not fall without my knowledge...
           If I dress the lilies in such splendor...
           If I cloth the grass of the field which so quickly withers...
           Do you imagine I have forgotten you...my beloved?
           I have not forgotten you...do not worry.

God: “You are still troubled...why?”
Me: “I’m lonely.”

God: (gently) “I know.”