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Archive for May, 2010

Hello, everyone. I hope you had a nice holiday weekend (those of you in the U.S.) and an excellent start to the week.

Very often God provides answers that I need to hear, not necessarily ones I want to hear, or ones that directly answer my questions. My last post was a plea for help and advice in figuring out how important physical attraction is in a relationship. Recent messages at church, my prayer time, blog posts from others, and insight from the Holy Spirit have yielded a number of answers—none of which answer my question per se, but are far more important.

Here they are:

1. If physical attraction to my Hypothetical Future Husband is my top concern regarding my maybe-someday-future marriage, then my heart is not in the right place, and I have bigger problems than that.

2. God calls us, as Christ-followers, to love without prejudice, discrimination, expectation, or selfishness. Whatever guy (or girl) enters my life for however long, I need to love him (or her) anyway, no matter how attractive (or not).

3. I Thessalonians 3:24: Faithful is He Who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.

Have a blessed start to your week.

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You guys, I’m in a bit of a quandary. Or probably a lot of a quandary, actually. I could use whatever input or advice you would be willing to give on this matter. But it involves me being publicly vulnerable in a way, which I hate.

So here’s the deal. Essentially, physical attraction: how picky are you allowed to be?

Here’s what I already know:

1. Physical attraction or appearance cannot be the basis of one’s judgment of a person’s character, beliefs, personality, health, intelligence, etc.

2. It also cannot be the foundation of a solid, lasting, Christ-honoring relationship.

3. It can also fluctuate.

4. “Looks can be deceiving” and “You can’t judge a book by it’s cover.”

5. Novels, movies (BOLLYWOOD, I’M LOOKING AT YOU), and TV shows are not real life, and not relationship examples to follow.

6. Henceforth, when I refer to guys as “unattractive,” I mean in my eyes and my eyes only. Beauty in the eye of the beholder, etc. etc. etc.

Sometimes I think I am a lot more visual than most other women. I know I’m not unique to all of history, but when I hear some story about the “conventional wisdom” of men being more visual than women in some way, it’s difficult to understand how womenaren’t. Maybe I have fewer female hormones, or maybe it’s because this particular piece of conventional wisdom is utter crap anyway. However it happens, it happens to me.

I’m single, and I want to get married someday. There, I said it. And like most other people, I want to marry someone to whom I’m physically attracted—after the other prerequisites such as spiritual, emotional, and intellectual compatibility.

Recently, I started thinking about this a lot, mostly because I started to try online dating again. I’ve kicked eHarmony to the curb and decided to try OKCupid, and so far it’s at least been fun and interesting, and I’ve gone on one nice-not-great-but-not-terrible-either date via that site. Here’s the deal, though: the only guys interested in me are either not Christians (and therefore not optional as future-spouse material), or are not in any way physically attractive.

This has been kind of a theme my entire life, both on and off the Internet. I’m attracted to guys who end up not interested in me, and I’m just not attracted to most guys who find me attractive. I am not talking about the classic “I’m attracted to jerks” dilemma or “why don’t nice guys like me?” I have been attracted to genuinely wonderful guys that just aren’t interested in me, and there have been total jerks who have found me attractive despite my lack of interest in them. For the sake of this particular blog post, I am ONLY talking about physical appearance/attraction.

Although I have a particular “type” that I prefer, I have found many different guys attractive, and I am completely reconciled to the fact that I may not marry someone who fits my ideal. And because I myself am not conventionally attractive, I already know I need to have realistic expectations overall.

Also, there is a “range” of how attractive I find someone, which I think I’ve talked about before. I don’t quantify it when I see someone, but for the sake of clarification I will use the 0-10 scale. Anything below 3 I consider “unsalvageable,” meaning that no matter how awesome he is and how compatible we might be, I just can’t get past how unattractive I find him. Anything between 3-4 and 6, and I will find him much more attractive on closer acquaintance, if he’s the right kind of guy. If he scores an arbitrary 7 or more, then he pretty much meets at least most of my ideals, so physical attraction is a given, although what remains to be seen is what lurks below the surface AND I AM TOTALLY AWARE OF THAT.

Now, I do try to have an open mind about it. The guy I went on a date with? Not attractive to me (to someone, I have no doubt; just not me) at all, but I went and had a perfectly fine time. But even when I try to have an open mind when I find guys unsalvageably unattractive, it still doesn’t change anything.

What bums me out is that if only guys I’m not attracted to are attracted to me, then I’ll never find someone I’m attracted to. I don’t know if it’s that unattractive guys find me more approachable, or if I’m sending out some kind of vibe I don’t even know about, or if I’m really actually just that unattractive myself and I should lower my standards. And even thinking about not being attracted to good guys makes me think, “I’m a horrible, shallow person and I don’t deserve nice things anyway.”

BUT AT THE SAME TIME, I’ve never met a married/dating couple that didn’t find each other physically attractive somehow. And most “how we met” stories involve noticing some good-looking guy/girl hanging around/pouring coffee/in the same church pew/across the cell block.

I’m basically asking the same question I asked a few weeks ago: Am I being too picky? Unlike last time, however, my conclusion is a resounding, “I DON’T KNOOOOOWWWW!!!”

Bethany’s advice has been, “Hold on to what you want, but keep an open mind,” and I think that’s spectacular advice that so far I haven’t been able to improve upon. This is where any input from you guys comes in: what you’ve learned through your life experiences, advice for me, scripture references, anything. And if you’re struggling with the same question, please do share that too.

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Unless you still live with your family (or a family of some kind), as a single woman you have, at some point, dealt with the issue of cooking for one. Although it can be a fun time to explore options and creativity and try new recipes with only your own health and taste buds to worry about, it can also get tiresome. Of course, you could eat out and get take-out for every. single. meal, but that gets quickly, ridiculously expensive.

I was doing some research to find ways to save on groceries that wasn’t the already-heard-fifty-times “Use coupons,” “Buy generic/on sale/in season,” and “Don’t shop when you’re hungry.” I found one great post on the site Wise Bread (which I had admittedly never read before) called, “Grocery Shopping for the Cheap and Lazy.” Despite its (honest) title, the advice is also good for singles, even if they are neither cheap nor lazy.

The article includes such gems as:

Sure, maybe I use too much salt and vinegar, but hey, it’s my palate, and if I want everything to taste like dill pickles, so be it. I’ll worry about someone else’s palate when the time comes.

Also, “Do not fear butter. It makes everything better.” I’m pretty sure I want that on a bumper sticker for my car someday.

Some of the advice is common sense: don’t buy things in bulk if you won’t use it all, and cook foods that will taste good as leftovers. Some of it is less conventional, but still makes sense: be sure to try ethnic foods and shop at ethnic stores, allow yourself one indulgent item that will make you happy to cook, and if you must drink, booze it up at home for cheaper.

Be sure to check out the entertaining article, and many of the links from it. You’ll learn something.

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Oh my gosh, you guys … It has been QUITE the weekend.

What’s that, you say? It’s only Saturday morning? Wow.

You see, what happened yesterday is that I telecommuted from home, which you would THINK made it easier to post FF, but no. My editor and boss gave me a crapton of work to do, and I had to scramble to finish it because I was also moving apartments. Praise the Lord, all moving got done yesterday, when I thought it would take the entire weekend. My dad rolled into town to help me out, and we got so much done, I would think I had dreamt it if it weren’t for the massive headache and sore muscles telling me that no, it did happen.

This marks the fourth apartment I have lived in within the nearly-two years I have been in the DC area. That’s if you count my first three weeks of couch-surfing at one apartment—and I do count it. So I’m ready to be settled for a while. (Please, God. Please. I think I’ve earned it!)

Oh, sorry. This was just supposed to be FF a day late. Did you know that Justin Bieber has dark powers made of cupcakes, ice cream, and flowers? Oh, it’s true.

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