As a young lady who recently ventured through the jungles of singledom myself, my heart goes out to all those good-hearted women and men searching for their vocation and trying to date. It can be rough out there. Dating is hard enough, but trying to date as a Christian in a world that is consumed by sex, money and selfish desires is a beast all its own.
Just the other day I was on a plane heading to one of my missionary teammates’ wedding when I overheard a gentleman sitting next to me complaining to his friend that “sometimes I just like to go out without her, have a few beers with the guys and check out other women.” He was speaking about his long time girlfriend, who he wasn’t sure he wanted to marry.
Now before I pick this apart, I must say that I do agree with half of his statement. Men should be men and be able to have man time without feeling guilty. I believe the same to be true for women. At its best, this type of fellowship can make us better people. I think back to some advice a professor once gave me. He told me that as a woman you can tell a man when he is not being a good man, but you can not teach him how to be a better man. He can only learn that from other men and vice versa.
With that said, this man’s overall attitude toward his girlfriend saddened me. It was obvious by his comments that he viewed relationships in a completely different light than I do. At one point later in the conversation he advised his friend, “marriage is when two people can be together, make the least amount of compromise and still be happy.” Of course because compromise would mean we take the risk of actually becoming more selfless creatures.
Now I’m not trying to bash this guy. After all who knows the experiences he has had that has brought him to his current opinion on this point? Either way it is this type of outlook that our world seems to grip so tightly, that disheartens me and at the same time reminds me how incredibly blessed I am to have found a man like Patrick.
He is a man who loves God more than me, a man who cherishes me and might be more anxious than I am to plan our wedding. What a gift, a completely undeserved one at that? But for as much as Pat loves me and as incomprehensible as that love can be at times I know that God loves me more, which is super crazy.
This is my hope for our culture that all may know the love of Christ and let that love dictate their relationships with others. Praise God for good men and women, healthy relationships and opportunities that remind me how blessed I truly am.