A Letter to a Single Mom
I was barely 22 when I became pregnant by a guy that I wasn’t really dating at the time. I was scared, confused, lonely, and felt like I let everyone down. The world told me that marriage or abortion were the only solutions, and at least with abortion nobody would have to know.
I became a Christian three months earlier, but I had no idea what that looked like in my life. I continued to look for fulfillment through the affection of others. I desperately wanted to be in fellowship with women who could pour truth and love into me, but I didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere. Some friends and clients from my church left after I told them I was pregnant, but God showed me repeatedly that I was going to have this baby and I was not alone. My son was not an accident or mistake but was chosen for me to raise. God showed me through his eternal perspective how damaging sexual sin is outside of marriage. He never wanted single-parent homes—that wasn’t his design.
I could write a book on all the ups and downs that went along with my journey, but the thing I see most when I look back is God's grace and faithfulness to me in the everyday messy single mom life. Yes, it was lonely and people said appalling things because of "my situation” (even in the church). But I knew where my identity lied! I was cherished by my Father. At that time in my life, when I didn't have anyone else to lean into except for God, I find joy in my suffering. I would not be the woman I am today without that suffering. He refined me through this process. Does it ever get easier? No, but I now have a community in my church family that surrounds us and points us to truth. I truly desire for all single moms to experience this kind of community.
My dear single mom, I know how hard it is. I know what it is like to have to be the mom and dad for your child. I understand not having anyone to talk to about your rough day, or give you a much-needed break. I know what it’s like to have no financial help with daycare, food, insurance, and so on. I have been the disciplinarian, spiritual leader, financial provider, and emotional support. I know the frustration of wanting justice for your child but trying desperately to see it through God's grace-filled eyes. I know the feeling of a hole in your heart when your child leaves for visitation. I have walked all these struggles and want to encourage you. I desire to form a community of moms together that points each other to the gospel and how it gives us hope in our lives.
I want you to know you have a place in the church and you are loved! God is "a Father to the fatherless, a defender of widows" (Psalm 68:5). We as your church want to support you spiritually and emotionally as you walk along this path. My desire is to form a community of moms to hold each other up and support one another in this difficult journey. "For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others" (Romans 12:4-5).
Church, we are called as believers to walk alongside each other and are to "bear each other’s burdens" (Galatians 6:2). Did you know that one-third of single moms live in poverty, or that children from single-parent homes are five times more likely to commit suicide? Or that 78 percent of the current prison population was raised by single parents? What would it look like if we as the church truly saw those families as our own? We can do this by speaking truth to them and loving them the way Jesus has called us to do. How amazing would it be if people saw the gospel lived out by our actions towards these moms! What a beautiful picture of the Gospel that is! Jesus loved us self-sacrificially and calls us to love the same.