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Archive for July, 2010

Hey all…

OK, here’s the deal. For several weeks now, I had been planning in my head some sort of “final post” for this blog, because I can’t keep it up on my own (Bethany has gone AWOL, but not in real life, thank goodness!), because I already write for my day job AND for the novel I hope to publish one day, so I can’t write for a public blog either, and because, to be honest, being single has kind of sucked for me lately, and I haven’t wanted to address that to a wide audience.

Before I could write that post, however, God gave me another spark of insight, and I knew in an instant that I had to share it.

If you’ve been reading this blog from the beginning, you know that I’m pretty much anti-“settling” when it comes to finding that life partner. But there’s a difference between settling and having realistic goals. Settling is a defeatist, “I guess I can’t do any better” attitude that can be downright dangerous. Having realistic goals/standards is healthy, honest, and gracious toward yourself and the other person. I believe that it’s just fine and dandy to have an idea of the “perfect” mate and to have a list of ideals traits that he/she would have — but ONLY if you are aware that 1.) NOBODY is perfect, and 2.) God may have a different plan for you.

My church recently completed a series about relationships, sex, boundaries, and the (different) roles of men and women. At one point, my pastor said that, whatever the foundation of your relationship is, you have to keep doing that to maintain the relationship. If your relationship is not much more than sexual attraction, you have to keep having sex and being sexually attractive for your partner if that relationship is to last for any amount of time. If a relationship is based on having a rich partner, they better hope they will always have money, or someone is going to book it when times get hard. If your relationship is centered on Christ, then focusing and growing in Christ will keep you together.

Tonight, when talking to a friend from my small group, we were discussing people (mostly guys, but this applies to girls as well) who have an idea in their head of the perfect mate. They are not going to let go of any particle of that, and they will not “settle” for anything less. (Think Mr. Elton from Jane Austen’s Emma, if you’re familiar with that story.) In some ways, that can be admirable to hold out for the right person, but not if they refuse to be at least open to the idea of someone different. And if they do find that perfect person, guess what? If the relationship is based on that person being perfect, then that person has to KEEP being perfect if that relationship is to be maintained. The moment that the “perfect” mate ceases to be perfect, even if it is just for a moment, that will shake the foundation of the relationship. How sad is that? One little slip-up, and your entire relationship is in danger? That leaves little room for grace, patience, basic human frailty, and—well—love. (This is kind of a lesson you learn from watching The Philadelphia Story, I just realized.)

So what do you do? By all means, hold on to whatever non-negotiables you know you must have: A Christ-follower, someone with a job, someone who loves his/her mother, etc. But be aware of differences and imperfections, and love everyone as Christ calls us to do.

ETA: This post also means that I’m not giving up the blog entirely. I never intended to remove it, and now I think I will plan to post more in the future. It just will be more infrequent, since it still does have to be put aside for the sake of the bigger things I’ve mentioned above. But whenever I am so inspired, I will be posting again sometime.

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