About the Author

Bianca Olthoff is an (in)courage alumni who spends most of her time working as Chief Storyteller for The A21 Campaign, a global anti-human trafficking organization. By day she's a freedom writer who advocates for justice, but at night she's a step-mom who loves to have dance parties with Parker, Ryen, and Ricci [a.k.a. The...

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  1. Oh my word! How stinkin’ cute are you??
    I am also a self-professed matchmaker, and I will remember these 5 tips for my single Sisters. Also, I will remember these for my daughter! Wonderful, wonderful advice.
    Thank you for this!

  2. Hmmm, yes…the “enJOY your singleness!!” comment can be quite frustrating (esp. when you hit 35). Mostly I just nod and smile b/c I know if they were in my position they would most likely be *freaking out*. Ha!
    On to the suggestions…yes, all important esp. #1. I guess I can only speak from experience…God did introduce me to an amazing guy, but some major issues of my own surfaced that I need to deal with before we can move forward. So we are taking a break, and he gave me the freedom to do so b/c he knew that God’s work comes first. He put my needs before his own. (Jaw on floor) I was floored. Meeting after not seriously dating anyone for TWELVE years = awesome. Having to take a break = Not Awesome.
    But God never makes compromises when He takes after his children.
    Second, I had the great experience of meeting several of his friends from his hometown over Christmas. They were awesome. Truly you could tell they had a heart for God, and they spoke highly of him. And now, where he lives people like and respect him.
    Will we end up together? I don’t know. Only God knows and as PaInFuL as this journey has been, I have to trust that this path is leading to God’s best for me no matter what it entails.
    My only other advice to them married folks is: BE INCLUSIVE! Have a single friend? Invite them over after church, or out to eat. Sunday’s after church can sometimes be really tough when you feel like THE ONLY person driving away alone (doubly so for those of us who don’t have family nearby).
    Please, please…include them. Call them. Check in on them. Love them. Invite them into your chaotic, loud, mabye-not-so-clean but loving house. We might even fold your laundry if you look desperate enough. 😉
    AH

  3. @Kristin: We need more match makers like you 🙂
    @AH: I-FEEL-YOU. Yes, yes, and amen. Your final point about being inclusive is fabulous. Great insight!

  4. Bianca,
    Thanks for that. And I’m right there with you, love those movies and can quote them too! My situation is a bit different then yours but I can relate. You see my husband and I are separated, I’m currently living with my parents and am unemployed at the moment. Even though I live with my parents I still feel lonely and miss the connection I once had and the feeling of security I once had with my husband. Things are not well, I think we are headed for a disallusionment since he still wants to continue relations elsewhere and my fear is that I will never find that sense of oneness and security, that warmth and love again. I miss that and thought that forever was forever. But I guess that’s where faith comes in. I have to know that God gave me the dream of a family for a reason and that in his time he will make that dream come alive. Right now I believe he is teaching me what it really means to rely on him! And I have made new connections and grown in my sisterhood of Christian gals!
    Well good luck all you single ladies and God bless you with that man of your dreams that he has created for you!! And if your ever talking to me, I won’t tell you to enjoy it while it lasts, I’ll say have fun looking for your other rib!!! ;)Bless you all with fullfilling lives!!
    With Love,
    Bethany

  5. Woot woot, I hope the global Church is listening! While I don’t want church to become a meat market, I do LOVE it when someone who knows me and knows my values thinks enough of me to try to pair me up with someone similar. What a gift that is (when not done in a creepy or awkward way)!
    Go Bianca, preach it!

  6. Hey Bianca! Thanks for you being yourself on this 🙂 You inspire me to follow my heart and keep on speaking into young women’s lives! Great pointers!
    My hubby was my first date ever!! He met all these criteria that you mentioned… I had my eye on him!
    anyways…we don’t need to shun dating, but definitely need to encourage woman to wait until someone actually worth dating comes along:) Love how you said it!
    Charissa

  7. What advice is to be given to a woman who was married and now finds herself single again? With kids? Either by divorce or the passing of the spouse? Nonetheless single.
    I know it’s a topic that opens up many more doors but it’s existent. How should they be ministered to?
    As always, great topic!

  8. I haven’t watched the video yet(I’m at work), but I can tell you, as a married woman, that I don’t get sick of my hubby- honestly! The thing that I DO miss about being single is not being accountable for my spending. 🙂 I used to have the huge shoe collection and get my hair highlighted ALL THE TIME! Now, I color it at homy myself, but I have the love of my hubby, which is far better than cute(r) hair. 🙂

  9. Incredible, as always!
    I haven’t been single for a long time, but I can tell you that all five of your points are very valid! But number 2 really struck me.
    A woman isn’t a diva or a gold digger if she requires her man to have a job! This is not an unreasonable expectation! If he’s ever going to take care of her (and children), he needs a job and a good work ethic. As women, we shouldn’t be embarrassed or afraid to require this of the men we date.
    I’m sending this video to a friend whose hope has run out, because she’s started to believe she’ll be alone forever. I hope your words are encouraging to her! 🙂

  10. THANK you. Funny how God works. I’ve been down about this topic lately. A friend came home to visit, but mainly was spending time with her boyfriend. It makes you feel lonely when you’re around couples. You desire what they have, and soon find yourself envious.
    Then you have to say “Ah ha!” God has a greater plan for me than I can ever imagine.
    For all you non-single ladies, just take the time to see how your single friends are really doing. Give advice, because many people in relationships, were single for a period of time FIRST! It’s a battle I think girls always struggle with, wanting that partner, but just come back to the basics. God knows, plans, and sees the future. Hold on.

  11. Amen and amen. It can be super tough being single and a Christian. It’s become tougher now that I’m the only girl of marriage age in my church that’s single. I have a tons of good Christian friends that are married but I usually feel like people are looking at me with pity (i.e. “Oh poor girl, she just can’t get married). I’m almost 27 and around here (small-town Mississippi) I’m pretty much considered an old maid.
    Just in the past two years I’ve decided to do exactly what your first point in the vlog said…Does this man love Jesus? If not…he won’t be dating me. I’ve seen too many couples fall out of church or not be as deep in a relationship with Christ as they could be because the husband doesn’t make his relationship with Christ a first priority.
    Thanks for sharing Bianca! It made me laugh and it’s always great to see the single girls posting on (in)courage! 🙂

  12. I began to read your post in my google reader and then switched over to watch the video when I thought I recognized you. I did! You might have a sister who is a fabulous photographer but your writing and this video show that you are amazing as well! Thank you for this post. It’s so encouraging to read, especially when this line (I’d trade in my freedom and designer denim for warmth in my bed and the ability to cuddle with something other than my books. ) describes me to a tee. I want to spend my free time with someone that I can cherish and treasure and love. Not spending it going to museums and reading and taking vacations because I have all this free time. Yikes! I better stop now before I really get wound up. Thanks again.

  13. Hi Bianca! Thanks for your blog. I really struggled with accepting and embracing my singleness. I used to feel that there was something wrong with me…that the waiting somehow diminished me and wrote a verdict on my person. God is bring me down a path where He is showing me to appreciate this privilege of being single and having time to enjoy His love and to get to know who I am as a woman. As I’m sitting here in front of my laptop, still single, I truly feel at blessed that God is giving me time to become whole, and to become a strong & lovely woman. It’s so important for single women to not feel like their time of aloneness is a curse, because God is after something far more valuable and he really wants us girls to learn to find our validation in him instead of looking for it in a man. It’s awesome to see Christian women like you willing to talk about this topic so candidly. Be blessed!

  14. One of my very best friends has been single for a while, quite decidedly so, and I have loved my relationship with her. I refuse to pat her on the head and tell her she’s got to be content with her singleness – God help me, if He hadn’t brought my husband into my life, I’d still be single, and wanting to be married.
    It’s so hard when I see married girls looking down on their unmarried girlfriends instead of encouraging them, lifting them up, telling them they’re beautiful and hoping and dreaming and praying their desire with them and for them.
    My friend just recently landed in a relationship, and it’s going FAST – but it’s so beautiful. And because I didn’t shut her out, I get to giggle with her about love and learn all over again about the new – even though I’ve been married five years.
    Bianca, you go girl!

  15. The enjoy your singleness thing is pretty annoying especially when it kind of automatically cuts off an avenue of support. If that’s the response of friends or people you meet in small groups or whatever, it’s kind of like…”alrighty, I guess I can’t talk about being single here.” And that stinks. Particularly as you get older and less and less of the people around you are single.
    I’m working at being content as a single woman but I gotta say, it only gets harder the older I get. 🙂 I’m 34 and never dreamed I’d still be single at this point.

  16. I just got married (I’m 39) and how it used to irritate me that singles were always marginalized in churches. I was once told the following by a 22 year old…
    “I am so afraid I’ll never meet the man I’m supposed to marry – I just feel so far along in years. Gosh, I can’t imagine how you must feel”
    I was 34.
    Because of the years I spent alone I have a HUGE heart to continue reaching out to single women. They are so forgotten in the church! It is such a painful place to be! I try when I can to be ever mindful of the singles in my midst because of my years of singleness too.

  17. Great points!
    Let me just say… as someone who is unemployed due to layoffs at my last job… not having a job does not make someone a loser. I’d say it’s more important to know his work ethic, if he is a WORKER as opposed someone with a sense of entitlement.
    Almost everyone is without work right now through no fault of their own.
    My dear friend just became engaged to a wonderful man who has been unemployed throughout their entire courtship. (he found a job two weeks after she accepted his proposal!)
    I think the fact that she knew and understood my unemployment experience, she was able to accept him where he was.
    When I was first unemployed, she shook her head and told me not to file for unemployment ( she saw it as welfare – which isn’t – and didn’t consider me poor) I do work part-time (it’s called under-employed) and so did her fiance…
    Because of my circumstances, she understood this wonderful man better.
    Just saying… try not to judge someone harshly based on circumstances they can’t control.
    And lastly… that is right about INCLUSION! sing it sister!

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