Thursday, October 20, 2011

Men: We need you.


We need you.

Did you know that?

Even as single women, we need you.

We need you to be honest.
Did you know that we think REALLY differently?

Things get so lost in the translation between men and women.

The mysteriousness of that lies completely in God alone, but down here on this broken, broken earth… it becomes so easy to hurt each other with what lies between what is said and what is not.

So we need you. We need you to be honest.

We need you to tell us when you just want friendship. With us and in general.

We need you to tell us when you care about us, when you want to pursue us, when you want to be with us.

We need you be open, upfront, and not threatening.

We promise to respect your decision when you do this.

We promise to pray for you to have clarity when you are seeking what God wants for you.

We promise to pray that you will have tactfulness, gentleness and patience with us. We know we are confusing, we know we are tough, we know we are emotional.

We are different.

We need you to be understanding.
Friendships between men and women are sticky.

We may not be able to be friends.

Please try to understand this.

Men in our pasts have made us fearful, have hurt us, have caused us to put up walls.

We cannot guarantee that we can be friends with you because of this.

I realize this isn’t fair. But if we are to guard our hearts, to keep ourselves safe and pure for Christ and for our future husbands, we need you to understand.

The truth is you may feel the same way about us.

This is why we need to be honest. Both you AND us.

We must communicate intention up-front and if that changes, we MUST communicate that.

If there is one thing I have learned as a single woman, communication can make you or break you.

We need you to be manly men
I do not have an eye for anything around the house.

I cannot fix a leaky faucet. I cannot drill holes in the wall.

I cannot hang curtains by myself. Don’t even get me started on my TV.

We need you to be manly men.

We need your help in doing the things God did not make us capable of doing.

We need you to offer.

We need to know you will help.

Even as friends, we need you. We cannot do all of this on our own.

And women, stop being afraid to ask. If he will help, let him help.

We need you to be respectable
The bible tells us that women are to respect their husbands and husbands love their wives.

We’ll make you a deal: you be respectable, we’ll be loveable.

We aren’t perfect. There are going to be times when this is not easy, when it’s not doable, when we just can’t.

However you can do these things, at all times:
  • Do not talk down about us behind our backs. Even to your guy friends. Especially to your guy friends.
  • You can practice the Fruits of the Spirit in your every day relationships.
  • You can be love as described in 1 Corinthians 13 to every single person you meet.
  • You can strive to become more Christ-like.
  • You can become a leader.
  • You can have integrity.
  • You can pray.
  • You can be honest and understanding.

This goes for us too. We can’t expect you to do all the work.

After all, God made us to fit together.

We need you to set the boundaries
Sexual sin isn’t a male issue. It is a human issue.

Did you know that?

Go read chapters 2 and 3 of Song of Solomon. Who set the boundaries? Who tried to break them?

We need to know that you will be the one to set, keep, and lead us away from those boundaries.

Doing that now will set the tone for a relationship, a marriage.

Lead us not into temptation.

This will build incalculable amounts of trust and respect for you.

We need you to pursue
I know the gender roles have become so unclear in our world.

Women ask men out.

Women pay.

Women step up and take the lead.

Christian women don’t want that.

Let me repeat:

We want you to tell us that you want to pursue us… and then do it.

We want you to ask us out.

We want you to be the first to take that move.

We will be the first to serve. We will be the first to be gracious. We will be the first to respond…

But you have to give us something to respond to.

Remember, we have been hurt. We have been abused. We have been broken so many times that most of us feel unworthy, unloved, and invisible.

We NEED to know that you want us, that you would fight for us, that you will pursue us.

We need you to love Jesus
I love Jesus more than I could ever possibly love you.

And I plan on loving one man, a lot.

I expect that, I need that, in return.

We need you to love us like Christ loves the church
I know at least 15 single, Godly Christian women.

I know less than 8 single, Godly Christian men.

The ratio is off.

We need you.

We need you to love the way God has commanded... COMMANDED... you to love. (not optional)

We need you to treat us like daughters of the King.

We need you to respect us, even if you don’t want to date us.

We need you to treat us like this, even if you don’t want to date us.

There is a difference in liking us and wanting to be with us. (Like I said, sometimes, we just can’t be friends).

Did you know that if you do this, our faith in men can be restored?

Even if you are not the man God has created us to be with, you are an example, and you are proof that these men exist. You keep our hope, our faith, and our love alive.

We need you to know what you want
Ask God.


Seek Him.

We promise to pray for you to have clarity when you are seeking what God wants for you.

And please, don’t pursue us until you do this.

We don’t want you, unless God wants you for us.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Pretty is as Pretty does

Growing up my dad always told me before I left the house “Pretty is as Pretty does.” 

He used to make me repeat it to him before I was even allowed to move out of his sight. 

That thought has been engraved into my brain. 

Pretty is as Pretty does.

What that statement has come to mean to me is this:
Beauty, is not just good looks, but is beheld within the person that you are to your very core.
Beauty is the person you radiate, it’s that inner thing that people look at you and say: “There is just something about them”.

Beauty is how you treat others, how you carry yourself, how you behave when no one is looking.

Beauty is Jesus Christ over flowing from every cell in your body into the world. 

Beauty is you.

I have never thought of myself as a beautiful girl. If compared to this world’s view of beautiful, I do not fit the most commonly thought of boundaries.

I am not a size 2. I have curves. I get break-outs. My hair rarely does what I want it to. There are features about myself that I would love to change. I work out, I like to have nice clothes that flatter me, most days I don’t even like to leave the house without make up on. I tend to pull my hair up about 10 times before I actually like the way it looks and quit messing with it.

I am your average, every day girl. 

Some days I am confident in the body that I was given and the beauty that it holds.

Some days I don’t want to leave my house because I feel so uncomfortable in my own skin.

Yet my dad constantly reminded me… Pretty is as pretty does. 

That’s because beauty… might not have much to do with my outer looks and the body I have.

Confidence has never been something that comes easy to me. I’m an over-thinker. Even if I think I’m good at something, I can usually think about it enough that I convince myself I’m going to screw up and usually don’t even try. I mean, what is the point if I am just going to fail right?

I’ve never really been that confident in my beauty because I felt I was inadequate to the world’s standards.

And I am. 

By the world’s standards. 

By human standards.
Here is the incredible, amazing, wonderful thing though:
I am not held to the world’s standards. I am not held to anyone’s standards. I am not held to your standards.

I am held to God’s standards.

I am a daughter of the King. 

And because of this, my beauty, true beauty, reflects Him.

Did you know that God created woman LAST? 

He created everything else on this earth, including man, and then decided it wasn’t good for man to be alone and created woman.

Woman reflects the true nature of beauty that lies within God.

Man and Woman were both made in the image of God and that is why in relationship, they can bring the greatest honor to God, because they reflect the entire being of God.

My standard of beauty is God. 


That is a lot to think about. That is a lot to take in.

 The stars, the ocean, the radiant colors of fall, the waterfalls, the most gloriously beautiful moment of your entire life… is the beauty of God.

And WE—WOMENWE are the height, the masterpiece, the final crescendo of His work.

So why do we continually try to prove that we are beautiful? 

I’ve done this. I’m not going to pretend that I’ve never tried to be funny, witty, sporty, sexy, super-christian-esque.

I have. 

Multiple times.

But when I think about all of those facts and truth about beauty and God’s creation… shouldn’t it just flow from me without trying?

Truth is, the more intimate my relationship with Christ becomes, the less I care about my outer beauty. My focus has shifted from my appearance to my heart, to how I serve, think, feel, interact, and love to the fullest.

Of course I still have issues leaving the house without make-up, I still want to be beautiful and feel pretty. I still like to dress nice. I don’t think that wanting those things is bad, in the right context

However, when we become so consumed with it, that all we care about is how we are perceived to OTHER PEOPLE, we are committing a terrible sin against ourselves and our precious, precious Savior who died to make us gloriously beautiful on the inside. 

When I think about that fact, I don’t care if anyone ever tells me I look beautiful again. 

My standard is Christ. 

He knows my heart. Way deeper than anyone else ever could. Even more than my future husband one day will hopefully.

And as much as my future husband will think I am beautiful (hopefully)… It won’t even compare to how Christ sees me. 

So I want to be beautiful for Him. I want to reflect His glory, His humility, His love, His sacrifice, and His holiness from the inside of my heart to my outer beauty that He has blessed, yes-blessed, me with. 

Every. Single. Day.

Let’s stop striving to be beautiful, and be who we were made to be.

I think we’ll all be a lot more joyful, content, and less self seeking if we do this.

Who’s with me?