I am currently engaged and won’t be for much longer, so I want to write this while it’s fresh on my mind. This goes out to the engaged woman who considers herself to be pretty young. This goes out to she who has fallen into lies in her engaged season.
This is me:
I am 21 years old.
I got engaged a few weeks after my sophomore year of college
at the mere age of 20 (and a half..!!).
I’ve now been engaged for 273 days.
I was pretty insecure about my young age for the first several months of engagement. People kept saying things such as, “But you’re only 20!” and “Y’all can’t be getting married- y’all look like babies?!” Along with this came some lies I fell into either due to my age or due to being engaged in general. I want to share my experiences in the hopes of helping other young women navigate engagement in a way that is honoring to the Lord.
Being engaged young has its benefits and its pitfalls.
I want to warn you of 7 lies that you need to look out for:
1. “I am better than my friends because I’m engaged (and they’re not).”
If you’re like me, most of your close friends are either dating or single, and almost none are engaged or married. You probably feel a bit distanced simply due to your different season. But please do not fall into the lie that you’re above others. Right now, we need our friends- maybe more than ever. Putting up a wall is the last thing we want to do. Our friends are one of the most valuable gifts from God. He has a different plan for everyone’s life. Don’t judge your friends for something that is simply not in God’s plan for them right now.
-On another note, don’t let this lie go the other direction. Don’t assume that your single friends hate you because you’re engaged/”have a man.” In the unfortunate event when we have friends that are not supportive or excited, we can pray for them and the friendship, but don’t feel guilty for being engaged. That is God’s plan for us!
>>Philippians 2:3 “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.<<
2. “I am not going to be a good wife because I’m too young and unequipped.”
I met with a woman from my church who has been married for 6 years to discuss this specific lie. She had some incredible insight for me when I asked her about feeling unequipped. Here are some points I got out of our conversation: I’ve never been married. So I’ve never been a wife. Therefore, I cannot know how to be a good wife. I’ll learn as I go. I have head knowledge about marriage, but no experience yet. Growth will come in waves once we each become a Mrs.! And that’s not something we should stress over right now because we can’t be 100% prepared. We who trust in Jesus are being prepared. He will bring us to where we’re supposed to be by the day we say “I do.” Do we believe that? Do we believe that we have all we need in Christ? He truly is enough.
>>2 Peter 1:3 “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence”<<
3. “I have to look PERFECT by the time my wedding rolls around.”
This is a big one for most of us ladies. Of all days, I want to look best for Leo on my wedding day. This is good! Our future husbands WANT us to care about our looks. Now hear me right, I didn’t say they want us to be 110 pounds or have great looking legs. They just want us to put in some kind of effort. It’s so good to take care of our bodies, but it is not good when that begins to mess with our emotions. It is not good when our looks become a greater priority in our lives than it should. We don’t have to meet that ideal picture in our heads for our husbands to love and want us. Throw off this lie right now. Focus more on your heart. Let your spirit be the most beautiful part of you on your wedding day.
>>1 Peter 3:3-4 “Do not let your adorning be external-
the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear-
but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart
with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit,
which in God’s sight is very precious.”<<
4. “Engagement is going to be nothing but fun!!!!”
Prepare your hearts. It’s likely going to be so so much fun for those first few weeks. But then reality sets in. And it feels like running 100 mph with absolutely no IDEA where we’re going. Talk about overwhelming. Decisions must be made not only about the wedding, but about our new lives with our soon-to-be husbands. Making big decisions together is tough. Conversations are tougher. Engagement should be lavished in prayer. It’s going to be hard work. But it is so, so good. We have the God of Heaven to depend on in this season.
>>1 Corinthians 7:28 “..yet those who marry will have worldly troubles”<<
5. “Since I’m engaged, physical boundaries can be more flexible.”
We are still single. We do not have a husband. This is so important to remember. Yes, we know who our husbands are probably going to be. But these men are NOT our husbands. The verse below refers to the righteous wife. She brings good to her husband every single day of her life. Every day- even before marriage. Respect your husband now by not being too physical with your fiancé. It will be beyond worth it come our wedding nights.
>>Proverbs 31:12 “She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.”<<
6. “I’ll just try to grow myself up.”
I have caught myself trying to act more mature on several occasions. I have tried to sanctify myself and be more ‘grown up.’ But the thing is, we are young so why can’t we be young? Now I’ll be careful with this one because in some ways, we do need to grow up a little. This is not an excuse to pass up opportunities to learn how to balance a checkbook, cook certain meals, and learn more about God and His Word. Those things are going to be important for us to know in marriage. This is not an excuse to be stubborn against change. There are some steps of responsibility we need to take. But we are free to be who we are and we can be patient with God’s work in our lives. We can ask God to help us grow and mature, but we need to be abiding in Him, not trying to grow apart from Him.
>>John 15:4 “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.”<<
7. “I shouldn’t have these problems.”
But remember that we’re human. We are going to blow up at our fiancés in the stress of planning and preparing. We are going to have a few mental breakdowns along the way. And we will need to ask for forgiveness maybe more than ever. Expect this. Don’t give up fighting against these sins, but realize that it doesn’t mean you are the only one. We’re going to struggle in this time and that’s okay. Engagement is a good season to be humbled and realize our sin areas. Rather than getting so upset at ourselves for being imperfect, let’s work at improving in those areas. Search God’s Word for truth and reach out to wise Christian friends for encouragement.
>>1 Peter 4:12 “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.”<<
I hope these words have helped you in some way. Some of these lies may never be a problem for you, while others are your main issues. Also, this is not an all-inclusive list. Pray for alertness to the enemy’s lies. Expose him before he gets a hold of you. Pray for strength and wisdom to combat the lies with God’s Truth, His Word. And put on the full armor of God.
“In all circumstances take up the shield of faith,
with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;
and take the helmet of salvation,
and the sword of the Spirit,
which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit,
with all prayer and supplication.
To that end, keep alert with all perseverance..”