Tag: single

My Boyfriend and the Beatitudes

My Boyfriend and the Beatitudes

This is for the ladies. What do you want in a man? What is something you refuse to compromise on? What are your must-haves and must-not-haves? Many women have been encouraged to write a list that spells out all that they’d want in a husband. I have heard stories of women who have done this and the man they married was “everything they wanted and more.” I believe this really does happen.

It’s important to note that “the list” is as individual as the person writing it. It’s specific to you, your purpose, and the man the Most High will present to you. I’ve written lists before and have found that my list changes as I get older. Some things have remained the same (8 years ago), but for the most part, it’s changed a lot. This is due in part to my coming into an understanding of who I am and what I need.

Many times, we make these lists identifying our wants, but not our needs. Don’t get me wrong, it is okay to ‘want’ something — but every desire must be qualified. Why do I want what I want? What will I do with it once I get it? Who will it help or serve?

There’s nothing wrong with identifying what you want, but don’t compromise what you need for what you want. Typically, the things we want are temporary things anyway. The things we need are things that our purpose and the very core of who we are cannot live without. ‘Needs’ won’t change — for the most part. ‘Wants’ will. So I’ve come to the conclusion that it would be of my greatest benefit to evaluate and desire a man based on something that does not change. The WORD of God.

Now, when I say WORD of God, I’m talking about Yeshua, the Messiah (many have referred to Him as Jesus–that’s a blog for another day). Although many refer to the Bible as the Word of God, it is not the WORD of God.

John 1:1, 14 says, “In the beginning was the WORD, the WORD was with God and the WORD was God. He was with God in the beginning. The WORD became flesh and dwelt among us…” See, the Bible contains words from God, but it is not the WORD of God. Moving on.

The WORD of God doesn’t change and I can be secure in who He is and who I am IN Him. Acts 17:28 says, “for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’” If we are the offspring of God, we are produced after Him — meaning, we look (and are) like Him.

So, if I have a relationship with the One who does not change (James 1:17), whom I’m created to be like (Genesis 1:26-28), it would be important to note what He celebrates and deems good — hence the purpose for this blog.

In Matthew 5, we read of one of the most powerful teachings ever taught to mankind. I’ve been hearing this since I was about 5 years old and am only now coming into deeper understanding of it. Verses 3-12 have been infamously referred to as the Beatitudes. It’s that passage in the Bible that each verse starts with, “Blessed are…”

Many of sermons have been taught on the Beatitudes. My church recently went through a study and it was mind-blowing. Before we had even studied it, I had decided to write this blog. I’m going to take a look at the first three verses and how they influence what I should look for in a relationship. (These are in no particular order — although they are numbered).

  1. Submission to God

v. 3 Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Yeshua was speaking of one who is crouched low before God (humility). One who is poor in spirit does not place confidence or value in their own human authority; they recognize God’s authority as highest and truest.

So, this verse encourages me to bless (praise) what Christ has blessed (praised) — which is a man that recognizes God’s authority and governs his life according to it. A man who isn’t submitted to God is a man unprepared to lead you or himself in God’s will.

A direct result of being one who recognizes and acknowledges God’s authority is the quality of being teachable. Being teachable allows you to be ready to learn because you aren’t under the impression you know everything. If you’re under the impression you know everything, you can’t learn.

2. After God’s Own Heart

v. 4 “Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.”

Like verse 3, this verse does not mean what it would appear to mean. Yeshua would always talk in parables and His lessons would always have a deeper meaning. The revelation I received when studying this was that the one who mourns what God mourns, will be comforted (brought near).

The one whose heart breaks for what the Father’s break shall be brought near to the Father. This means, an intimate relationship with the Father results in caring about what God cares about — which in turn results in greater intimacy with the Father. A man who cultivates an intimate relationship with the Father is a student of Love (for God is Love) and will constantly be growing in the fullness of who God created him to be.

3. Humility

“Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.”

Yeshua is speaking of humility again. This ought to be no surprise to us given how much God hates pride. (1 John 2:16; Isaiah 2:10; Proverbs 11:2). But He gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble (James 4:6).” 

The Bible is very clear that God favors the humble and hates pride. God hates pride because it is often at the root of any sin. Pride exalts itself higher than it ought. Pride says, “I know better than God.” Pride doesn’t allow us to accept God because we will believe there’s no need to.

A man that walks humbly before God and man will walk in the favor of God. To have the favor of God means to have God’s face turned toward you in approval. “The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein (Psalm 24:1).”

If God approves of you, He gives you what is His. He gives you influence and authority. It may not look the way we think it would, but it’s the kind of influence and authority that can only come from God. This kind of approval (justification) comes with intimate relationship (sonship) with God. “For they will inherit the earth…” You inherit because you’re an heir, a child of God. I want to be with a man that recognizes he’s a child of the Most High and is in pursuit of what that looks like.

So, as we can see, the Bible can inform us of what God values and help us make sound decision in our relationships. Since marriage is God’s, it makes sense to seek Him about His desire for it. Some questions I’ve asked God are, “what kind of person should I marry?” “What kind of person do you want me to be in marriage?” These questions are informing me of God’s desire for me in relationships.

I hope this blog encourages you to seek God about your relationships and to trust that He knows best!

 

Be sensible.

Be fools.

The Illusion of ‘Prince Charming’

The Illusion of ‘Prince Charming’

A little too often, I read these posts about the perfect man you’ll end up with. I wince as I read them. Granted, I applaud anyone who takes on the challenge of writing their thoughts and opinions in an orderly way so that others may benefit.

However, I think some of these posts are misleading. At least they can be. A lot of them start off describing how bad the previous guy was; how he mistreated you, how he didn’t appreciate you.

The majority of the time, they don’t say anything about how you both were not in the condition to be in a healthy mutually beneficial relationship. It’s usually all his fault. We paint this very extreme picture. While that may be true for someone, it isn’t everyone’s story. Then, in stark contrast, we begin to describe what we call Prince Charming.

Prince Charming is perfect. Prince Charming will never make you feel bad about yourself. Prince Charming will never make you sad. Prince Charming is a tall drink of water. Prince Charming worships the ground you walk on. Prince Charming will never hurt you. Prince Charming will always be there for you and support everything you desire to do. Prince Charming will never leave nor forsake you.

To function in a mutually beneficial relationship you should experience some of those things to some extent. Prince Charming, the guy you end up with, should support you. He should be patient, kind, generous, and compassionate. However, Prince Charming is not meant to worship you or complete you. He’s meant to complement you. The problem is many of us women are looking for a man to make an idol of us. We’ve confused needing to be loved with needing to be worshiped. We don’t understand the kind of detriment we cause when we shift the object of a man’s worship from God to us.

To desire a man who is good to you is not inherently wrong ladies. There’s nothing wrong with Prince Charming; but he usually requires a damsel in distress. The whole premise on which Prince Charming is built is faulty. The only means by which the princess lives happily ever after is for Prince Charming to intervene.

Ladies, if you have a man in your life who seems to be Prince Charming, ask yourself these questions:

  1. What sort of process am I in and in what kind of season do I find myself?
  2. Would I be better off allowing him to “intervene?”
  3. Do I expect him to rescue me from loneliness, embarrassment, or hurt?
  4. Have I taken adequate quality time to deal with my brokenness?
  5. Who has God said that I am?

God is doing a work in your life young lady. God will be certain it is brought to completion (Philippians 1:6). Don’t allow something good to mess up the God-thing God is doing in your life.

 

Happy reading!

Over and out.

Single and Ready to Mingle

Single and Ready to Mingle

So, you’re single. You know it. EVERYONE seems to know it. Your parents won’t let you forget it. All the engagement photos every two seconds on your Facebook feed won’t let you forget it.

Sometimes, our relationship status seems like the most important fact about us; as if it were telling of our value to society or in general. Sometimes, it feels like you don’t add any real value to your situation or context unless you’re in a relationship (cause hey, there’s gotta be a reason no one wants to be in a relationship with you, right?). If someone wanted to be in a relationship with you, it would mean you’re important enough, pretty enough, or ‘worth it.’

Honestly, if people weren’t so disappointed every time they heard you were single, you probably wouldn’t notice too much that you’re single.

Some of us don’t realize how single we are until we go to the movies with a group of friends and everyone is ‘boo’d up (cue Ella Mai’s song)’ while we’re all alone like Donkey from Shrek. Image result for third wheelSome of us realize how single we are around the holidays and it seems as if everyone has a special someone to spend it with, except you. Or, we have that annoying (God bless ’em) relative that’s asking or hinting, “When you gone get married? You ain’t gettin’ no younger!” (Grandma, chilllll).

It’s funny how we talk about “how” single we are as if there were degrees. (There’s levels to this).

While the opinions of others can greatly effect how we see our singleness, sometimes, we’re our greatest enemy. Before we move forward, I want to establish that singleness is not a process or season to rush out of. It’s not a holding ground, purgatory, or the DMV line. It’s an important lifelong process that we never escape, married or not. There is always work to be done within ourselves. We ought always to be seeking to grow and mirror our Father in all things.

If you’re single and thinking you’re ready to mingle, consider these things:

  1. Do you care a considerable amount about being single that it’s sucking the fun out of it? If you find yourself constantly thinking about the fact that you’re single, your answer may be ‘yes.’
  2. Do you have unrealistic expectations? Many of us want our significant other to ‘make us happy.’ We want them to fill every empty part of ourselves. They may very temporarily fill the empty parts of you; but beware. As they pour out, they become empty as well. That makes for a broken, unfulfilling, and unproductive relationship. Also, the reason some are willing to pour into you in that way is because there’s a codependency. They find fulfillment and identity in playing that role; because, truthfully, they’re broken too. Trying to complete you gives them purpose. Your purpose can never be found in another person. It can only be pursued alongside another person. Purpose is given by God and therefore found in God. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” God didn’t just accidentally create you; he did so with purpose. There are specific things to be done through you on this Earth. Image result for #relationshipgoals
  3. Do you have false expectations about what you can handle? ‘Huh? What does this even mean Darveiye?’ Have you considered that you can’t handle a relationship right now? Are you in a position or have you been given the green light by God to support someone as they grow? Sometimes, we want to support someone so badly because it gives us identity and a sense of purpose. This isn’t productive in the long haul. We should foster mutually supportive relationships in our lives that help fulfill purpose, not become it. Your relationship isn’t your purpose. It’s a vehicle and resource for it. This is why we must choose wisely when we link up with someone. We have to ask, “What would I be pulling from this relationship to facilitate the fulfillment of purpose in my life?” You’re only as strong and productive as who you link yourself up with.
  4. Have you first completely embraced being single? Some of us can’t stand to be single for very long. There’s nothing wrong with being sad after a breakup. That’s normal. There’s nothing wrong with going through a grieving process. The issue is we insert a new relationship before we can feel the pain of being alone. We invite someone’s company into our jumbled mess and hope they complete us. We hope someone sticks around long enough so that we’re never alone with our own thoughts. Therein lies the problem. Because we’re never alone, we never develop an intimacy with ourselves. We don’t learn who we are, our likes and dislikes. We simply learn who we are in relation to someone else. The relationship begins to shape your identity, character, and destiny. Hopefully, you’ve chosen well. It’s unlikely. Brokenness will distort your vision and cause you to choose for pleasure and not purpose. It will cause you to choose what you think you want and not what you need.

If your answers to these questions indicate you may not be ready to mingle, that’s okay. Sometimes, we feel like we have to be ready right now for everything we’ll ever want or have in life. This is unrealistic and places unnecessary pressure on ourselves. It’s okay to go through a process to get ready. Also, growing while you’re single, isn’t all about preparation for marriage. It’s about reaching wholeness and functioning in your purpose. If that’s your focus, being single will become so much easier!

For further study:

There’s a book I read a few months ago that has changed my life. ‘Wholeness: Winning In Life From the Inside Out’ by Touré Roberts. If you have found that you’re struggling with being single, struggling in marriage, in your career, you believe in God, you don’t believe in God, etc.; this book is for you. You can purchase it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Wholeness-Winning-Life-Inside-Out/dp/0310351944

Pastor Mike Todd of Transformation Church in Tulsa, OK did a series earlier this year called Relationship Goals. The first two sermons talk about singleness and it will wreck your life in the very best way. I recommend listening to the entire series. There’s something in there for everyone! Pastor Mike manages to deliver hard messages about relationships in a very honest, transparent, and fun way. It’s easy to understand and easily applicable to your current situation. Find it here: https://youtu.be/H7h5BHax06c

Until next time…

Over and out.