Biggest Lesson So Far

It has been 10 months since I’ve taken the vow to not date for a year and here’s the most important thing I’ve learned:
Getting married isn’t in God’s plan.
God would rather us be single than get married because marriage is a distraction from our relationship with Him. In Cru they teach us that we’ll never be less busy than we are now which is why now is the perfect time to build a strong foundation with Him.
But here’s the kicker that really hit home to me: every relationship experience has been my fault. Every heartbreak, every embarrassment, every mistake and every thrill, all me.
When I came to that realization I cried, and not just cried I sobbed because that meant all of my pain is my own fault, it wasn’t part of God’s plan for my life, not fate, not destiny just results of my own choices. It was only my positive outlook that gave me the illusion that they were God’s plan at work.
The reality is God has bigger plans for me, He’s not worried about my love life and &es not trying to find my mr right. He’s planning my walk with Him not my walk with some man. He’s not matchmaker, He’s the Lord.
Our relationships are our own business and our own faults. We have freedom to choose. We choose to ask someone on a date or to say yes or no to an offer, we choose to stay in a relationship and see through the rough patches or to get out of it, we choose to stay with or dump a cheater or liar or abuser, we choose to say yes or no to a proposal and we choose to say I do or I don’t. We choose to see a marriage through or to call it quits. Our heartache, our relationship drama, our loves, our losses, our thrills and our terrors are all because of decisions we’ve made.
I believe the reason we don’t see love this way (as a choice) is because it’s so logical and not very romantic and because when we get burned it’s easier to blame someone or something else rather than ourselves. When we get hurt it’s easier to say it was fate or in God’s plan or it was the other person’s fault rather than to take a look at ourselves and say I knew better or I should’ve said no, it was my decision.
So, after I realized that my relationship status and my pain are all my fault I decided to change. I believe the definition of insanity is to try the same thing over and over and expect different results, or so I’ve been told. And so I’ve changed the way I look at relationships. Relationships are not neccessary, and whether I’m in one or not is my own choice. So, I choose to fall in love with a man who has chosen to fall in love with me and with God.
In short, the biggest lesson I’ve learned so far is love is a choice and our pain is a cost. We get to decide if the cost is too high to stay in love.

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Is Love Overrated?

I was at a Cru meeting, the topic was dating and one of the members had a question for the staff, “if someone get pregnant is it okay to get married to them just because you’re having a baby with them?” One staff member said he thinks it’s okay and when we all looked at him dumbfounded he said, “now hear me out, I think our society puts too much emphasis on love. I think that sometimes we live in a fantasy land where we think all we need is love. Obviously they shouldn’t get married just because of the child but if that’s what pushes them then I think it’s okay.”

I think he was partially right, our society does put a lot of emphasis on love. When we were young we watched Disney movies that gave young girls the message that your dreams are only complete when you have found your prince. It is for this reason that we grow up thinking all we need is love to be happy. That’s a lie. Being married isn’t better than being single, it’s just different being single isn’t better than being married it’s just different. Problems are different, priorities change, and they both have their positive and negative sides. I think that through the music we listen to, the movies we watch and the people we surround ourselves with we acquire certain beliefs.

Yes, I do think we need love to be happy but that love doesn’t have to come from a dating relationship or a marriage. In fact, these things can sometimes bring despair when not exercised properly. What makes me whole, what keeps me going is faith and hope and love.

I have faith that current situations will get better

I have hope that things will work out in my favor

I have a love greater than anything I’ve ever experienced because it is perfect, because it is from The Perfect One

Love is not overrated, it’s where we seek love that can be overrated. Love between people, that’s overrated. People think that when they get married the problems in the relationship will dissolve and they will live happily ever after. Then when that doesn’t work they have children to mend their broken marriage. But they quickly discover children only put more strain on marriage so then they divorce and search again for their “true love” or their “prince charming.” You want to know why 50% of marriages fail? That’s why. There is no such thing as prince charming because prince charming is perfect and in this world there are only imperfections. The marriages that last, the ones that succeed are the ones where both people understand this, that their spouse will hurt them, make them angry, and be annoying because their spouse is not perfect. But you know what, they accept them anyway.

The marriages that succeed are the ones where neither person is putting the other up on a pedestal. The marriages that succeed are the ones built by survivors, the ones that tough it out and try and work at it because they know “I do” doesn’t me “I do…for now.” This is going to sound scary but it’s the truth, marriage is a life sentence, it should be treated as such.

When you say ‘I love you’ understand what you’re saying, you’re saying ‘I accept you, all of you.’ You’re saying, ‘you are important to me, you add to my happiness.’ You’re not saying, ‘I accept you as long as you stay perfect’ you’re not saying, ‘you are important to me sometimes.’

The word “love” is overused and abused and so is marriage, if you’re not in it for the long hall sit down, it’s not written anywhere that you have to get married.

Love in general is not overrated, when it is expressed correctly it is one of the best gifts man has.

However, we can make it overrated by saying the word when we don’t understand what we’re saying, jumping into marriage without thinking about it logically, and by searching the world for the perfect prince.

My Perfect Guy

Since I’m not dating right now I have time to think about my past and what I really want. I need to start dating smarter and instead of dating the guy with the most charisma I need to start dating the guy who embodies what I want. I wrote a list of things that I want, now I’m not saying he needs to be all of these things, but if I could construct the perfect guy for me here’s what he’d be:

  • I want him to be part of my life and I to be part of his. I want to meet his siblings and see them as mine too. I hope it’s as if we were already family but just got disconnected somehow and found each other again.
  • We won’t have to do anything sexual for us to have an intimate connection
  • He’ll take the time to get to know me before he “makes a move”
  • He’ll be a gentleman and the first kiss will feel sweet and timid instead of making me feel like a piece of meat.
  • But, he’ll call me out when I need to be called out and be blatantly honest.
  • When he hangs out with my family it’ll be like he was supposed to be part of our family the whole time and he’ll feel the same about me with his family. He’ll get along really well with my brothers and crack open beers with my dad, he’ll be respectful to my mom and play with my little cousins, niece, and nephews.
  • He’ll be head and shoulders over me and I won’t tower over him in heels! (I’m 5’9 and a half and in my heels I’m like 6’1/6’2, this has been a problem in my dating life)
  • He’ll be even goofier than I am so that we can be dorks together cause seriously, I’m tired of being the dorkiest person I know
  • He’ll care for others and care about helping people just as much as I do
  • He’ll have to have been an athlete and I’m not saying that for shallow reasons, I’m saying that because athleticism teaches you discipline, confidence, how to take care of your body, how to win and how to lose. And if he’s not an athlete he probably won’t mesh well with my family, we love sports and we breed athletes. Case in point, my cousin plays MLB and my brother is a varsity football player and he’s a sophomore and they’re teaching him how to be QB now b/c they want him to be QB next year (apparently that’s a big deal cause when I told that to some guy he freaked) he’s also gotten letters that he’s being watched by colleges, he has been invited to play in tournies in Hawaii and Australia over the summer, and he goes to top gun training for QBs. My other brother is only 11 and he’s close to surpassing me in height, he’s up to the top of my shoulder already! And the doctor says he’ll probably be 6’5! So he plays basketball. My older brother was also a basketball player. My dad played baseball, coached football, and played basketball as well. My mom…well she keeps saying she played volleyball in high school but that was gym class and gym class doesn’t count, she’s the only non-athlete of the family. Anyway, sorry, I like talking about my family, but you get my point, if he’s not an athlete, he won’t fit in.
  • He’ll be as competitive as I am
  • We’ll make each other better people
  • He’ll be intelligent enough to hold a conversation about current issues
  • He’ll look at me as if I’m the only girl in the world and like he has been waiting for me forever and I don’t mean that like in Rihanna’s sexual way
  • He’ll make me feel pretty
  • He’ll try new things and do things just for the hell of it
  • He’ll make me laugh, (as if it’s that hard)
  • He’ll love kids
  • He’ll be my best friend and biggest cheerleader and I his
  • He’ll won’t just tell me all the things I’ve heard before, “you’re special,” “you deserve a good man,” “you have my heart.” NO! He’ll SHOW me, you think I’m special, show me how special you think I am, you think I deserve a good man, be that man, show me that I have your heart; he’ll talk the talk AND walk the walk.
  • He’ll challenge me in every way
  • Most important, our relationship will glorify the Lord and we will build our lives and our family as a reflection of God’s love and grace so that we, like my parents, can have a sign across from the front door so that the first thing people read when they come in is, “the Lord has done this thing.”

I love this song by Adele, she describes the guy I think we all want and at the end she realizes he has been waiting for her too. Love! It’s called “Daydreamer” and it’s at the bottom of this post.

Another song that I’ve been thinking about lately is the song “Paper Bag” by Fiona Apple I relate to this song because of the heartbreaks I’ve gone through and how I’ve felt after them: just the feeling that you get when you think someone is what you’ve been waiting for and then you find out they’re not and you had all this hope and then, yet again, you’re heartbroken. I like this song because I relate to trying to be someone I’m not to fit in and be accepted by the guy I want to be with. I think this song is a perfect example about how sometimes we idolize people and it just ends up tearing us down and how we need to accept ourselves for who we are and not think of anyone as higher or lesser than ourselves. And, for me, I always see the guy I’m with as higher than myself which just makes me feel inadequate and that’s not healthy at all. It’s like the story of Jacob and Leah, she was only able to be happy when she realized she needed to stop chasing after the approval of Jacob and instead look to the Lord to fill her void. When Leah was finally able to say, “this time I will praise the Lord,” her relationship with the God was stronger and she was happy because she was no longer looking at Jacob as her lord. I’m beginning to see Lord as Lord and man as man, just like Leah.