Falling in Love

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Photo credit: Pinterest

This is a post I wrote for my Tumblr account, yet thought it might encourage you. Our culture worships being in love, feelings, and sex. God is the true source of love. If He is not, the things I mentioned become idols (demigods) in our lives. They lead to chronic disappointment and addiction; addicted to relationships, addicted to trashy novels, addicted to pleasure, addicted to romantic movies, addicted to sexual images or engaging in inappropriate sexual activities. God’s love produces life. Human love fails. Here’s the post. Blessings to you!

Falling in Love

Have you ever noticed in the movies people “fall” in love. The term is linked to passion, attraction, butterflies, and increased hormones. People fall in love, then they live happily ever after…I wish someone would write a real love story.

I want to see the “after”, after the hormone high fades. What happens when life doesn’t work out exactly as planned, when older parents become sick, when having kids puts a strain on your marriage, when the butterflies are gone, when there’s a job loss or betrayal, or you simply can’t stand the sight of the other person? That’s normally when people fall “out of love.”

I hear people say, “Our chemistry is gone,” or “We grew apart.”

These are real possibilities. If you fall in love, you can fall out of love. However, if you choose love, it’s always available.

Here are some things my parents who were married many decades taught me about love. My mum passed so that’s the only reason they aren’t together. I added some from other couples too!

Love:

1. You’re not always going to feel loving towards people. You choose to love them because God loves you.

2. Treat people better than they deserve because of who you are.

3. You can’t change people, nor should you try. You are only in control of you.

4. Don’t make your spouse God. They can’t save you or meet all your needs.

5. Love yourself!

6. Be a good friend. After years together, what will keep you hanging on and thriving is friendship.

7. Forgive. Forgive again!!! And again! And again!…

8. Don’t be a doormat. Every relationship needs boundaries.

9. Speak well of and show honor. Present them in the best light possible.

10. Work on you! Become the best person you can be. Don’t make a spouse your entire world.

11. Selfishness leads to misery.

12. What you nurture grows. What you starve dies. Relationships require mutual investment.

13. Tell the truth! Even if it hurts. Be a person of integrity.

14. Communication is important.

15. Settle disagreements quickly.

16. Protect your investment.

17. There’s always going to be someone with traits you like that your spouse doesn’t have, your job is to nurture your relationship. Don’t leave 80% for 20%.

18. God first, people second. If God is first it will help all other relationships.

19. Guard your eyes and heart. Affairs are prevalent in our culture. It starts with a thought. Cast it down. It’s not worth it.

20. Be your mates cheerleader and advocate. It’s a partnership. It’s a team. Both members are valuable, powerful, and need support. Share the workload.

21. Don’t put your kids above your spouse.

22. Don’t let yourself go! Take care of yourself for your spouse and yourself.

23. Find out what the other person likes and do it!!!

24. Don’t focus on finding the right person. Focus on being the right person.

25. Marriage is a covenant that’s meant to be for life. It’s joining two people together as one. It’s okay to truly evaluate if it’s the right decision. Pray, seek wise council, and investigate a person’s character.

26. Talk to God about your mate. It works better than nagging or holding grudges. God can do more in a moment than anyone can in a lifetime.

27. Marry the person who draws you closer to God and is a best friend.

28. Have fun!

29. During hard seasons pray and don’t rely on feelings.

30. Seek God for identity and security. Make Him your primary Source to prevent burnout.

Love is something we feel and choose…choosing to love a person is far more beneficial. Feelings are fickle and change like wind. People also cannot meet all our expectations. People change. People hurt us. If we are not choosing love, then we will only love when we feel like it, when it benefits us, when our needs are being met, or until someone shinier comes along. Granted if you’re being abused, seek help. Love sets boundaries and requires respect, honor, and it protects.

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The Best Yes

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My friend and I are reading the book, The Best Yes, by Lysa TerKeurst. It’s so rich and so good. I highly recommend this book. I started to think, what is the best yes? What is my best yes as a single person? The Bible says a single person has undivided attention. Meaning they can spend as much time with God as possible. They can go wherever God calls them to go without hindrance or having to check in with someone else. They donate as much of their time, money and resources to the Kingdom as they want and their focus isn’t pleasing a human spouse, but solely pleasing Christ. Married people have the priority of caring for a spouse and maybe kids. Their focus is divided as Paul stated. Neither is better than the other, but it’s easier to see priorities when they are set for you.

Married people: love God and please your spouse/take care of and disciple your kids.
Single people: devote your life to God. Be sold out for Him. What does that mean?

Here are my responses to that question.

Start each day with God
Cultivate intimacy with God
Invest monetarily, gifts, talents, and skills for Kingdom purposes
Seek God about relationships, how to spent time, resources, gifts, and talents. What will bring Him the most glory?
Be discipled by the Holy Spirit and other believers
Disciple others
Study God’s word and know it well
Soak in God’s presence often
Worship God and give thanks continually
Pray without ceasing…
Be salt and light everywhere I go
Share the Gospel with others
Feed the hungry, clothe the naked…
Be with Jesus and do what I see Jesus doing
Bless and encourage people daily (1 a day is 365 a year-14,600 in 40 years if you just bless one a day)
Pursue purity in thought, heart, and deed
Enlarge heaven

My best yes is relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The most important yes is to cultivate intimacy with God which doesn’t always mean doing for Him. It’s mainly being with Him. Being with Him leads to doing for Him out of love, not to establish identity or check a box. It’s not about perfection either. It’s about purpose.

Why are we here? What did God create us to do that only we are designed to do? What are we doing to be in alignment with our divine destiny?

Being single is the time in life to spend as much time with God as possible. To find out who He is, who I am in Him, and have unhindered fellowship with Him. No husband to check in with, no kids tugging at you, no restrictions in what you can do for Him. I am not against marriage. It’s a good thing too. I am pro living content in the season I am in. Enjoying today. I am pro not believing a wedding day is the best day of a person’s life. The day a person gives their life to Jesus is the best day of any person’s life. No person can do what God can do. He’s transformed and continues to transform my life. Only Jesus saves…so you don’t wait for the next thing to feel that’s what gives you purpose. Jesus gives purpose. God gives identity. Contentment is found in Him alone.

We also don’t live aimlessly and allow people to decide what we are doing. Jesus wasn’t driven by the demands and opinions of people. He only did what He saw the Father doing. He offended many by not doing what they wanted Him to do. He wasn’t a people pleaser. He pleased the Father.

For the married people. Loving your spouse and/or kids is loving God. It is honoring God. Teaching your children about Jesus is awesome and a best yes. Being a light to your spouse and family is so honorable. You don’t have to go across the world to do missions, though you may. Marriage was God’s idea and it’s noble. It does not replace God. A spouse and family are not God. He still wants to be first in a married person’s life as well as a single person’s life. He still want’s married people to disciple others, put Him first, give, be generous, encourage others, be with Him, study the word, worship, know Him, enjoy Him, and be led by Him. It’s just in ways different…

Lastly, God alone gives purpose. Only the Creator can tell someone what they were created to do. No marriage, friend, job, ministry, family, or anything else can give someone identity that is solid. When our lives are over, we will stand before Him alone. The most important question is, “What did you do with my Son?” for salvation. He will assess also what we did with what He gave us; time, talent, money, gifts,…see parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30). God is the Best Yes.

What is your best yes?

What are you living for?

How are you spending time? There are 168 hours in a week…what are they being used for? Lysa has this great assessment tool. See link below. I highly recommend her book. It’s not adding more things to do. It’s assessing what we are doing that it’s aligned with the best yes. God gives each person the grace to be and accomplish what He created them for. I can’t be you. You can’t be me. We are unique creations designed to fit into our nitch to give Him glory.

Time Assessment tool: http://thebestyes.com/time-assessment-tool