Monthly Archives: January 2014

What Match.com Taught Me

Part 1: Insecurity

Disclaimer: Before I continue on, it needs to be noted that I know many people that have had success at online dating. My intent is NOT to bash online dating, make people feel insecure, etc. I’m simply going to share my story. If I offend you, please contact me and let’s talk it out!

So, I tried online dating. For a short period of time. And I was “unsuccessful.” I put that in quotes because I didn’t meet someone to pursue a relationship with; however, I did learn A LOT, so that part I think is a success. The first, and probably biggest, lesson I learned was about insecurity.

Online dating can be insecurity’s biggest friend if we let it be. (Also, English/Spelling people…I used that apostrophe on purpose. Back off.) I don’t know how it works with other online dating sights, but with match.com you are able to see who has viewed your profile, how many times your profile has been viewed, and for a small fee, if someone has read the email you’ve sent them. I was too cheap to pay the extra for the email notification, but the other info comes with the base package.

I would view a guy’s profile, wait a couple days, maybe send a wink, and if I saw he’d viewed mine, I’d get a little excited. Especially if he was wearing camo in any of his pictures.

More times than not, I never received a “like”, “wink”, or email from the 225 guys that looked at my digital personality.

At the onset of this venture, when the viewers were closer to 15, I started to question myself. At one point I even said to a friend, I’m just not sure that I’ll find anyone that is interested in someone like me (or a version of that statement). I had let the not-so-friendly voice of insecurity creep into my head and tell me I wasn’t good enough, I wasn’t pretty enough, I wasn’t feminine enough, that a guy couldn’t possibly like a girl that enjoys softball and deer hunting.

I let a website tell me that how God had designed me was wrong.

Enter: Truth.

“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”-Psalm 139:13-14

Being a female that has grown up in the church, I’ve heard these verses quoted WWWAAAYYY too many times. I think it’s our go-to verse for girls, because let’s face it, we all struggle with self-confidence in some way or another.

The kicker for me is that, while I know this verse I don’t always believe it. If my soul truly knew this truth very well, I wouldn’t let a click on a profile bother me as much as it did. It should also be noted that my profile said something along the lines of, “if you don’t love Jesus, don’t bother.” That could have prevented a lot of further inquiry. More on that next week. 🙂

My prayer for us today, and this coming week, is that we will know it very well that God has created us to be exactly what we are supposed to be. That no man, woman, child, etc. will dictate our worth or rattle our identity in Christ.

Question: Has the world wide interwebs ever revealed insecurity in you?

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stuck in the future.

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So here I am, posted up at Starbucks yet again. (Side note: I really love saying that I’m “posted up” whenever and where ever I can. I always wanted to be a post player in basketball, but since I’m 5’3″ that only happened twice my senior year…I think…so I’m gona say it here!)

Anyways. Back to Starbucks.

The Bux has become my writing place of choice for a couple reasons: 1) I love coffee, and the other coffee place in town closes at like 6pm, so there’s that. 2) I get to eavesdrop on conversations while they think I’m typing a blog post. Jokes on you!

But seriously, I eavesdrop a lot. My bad.

In one of my eavesdropping/writing sessions, I overheard a distressed mom say, “I just feel like if I can get through these next couple of years and get the kids in school, everything will be okay and smooth itself out.”

I immediately wrote that down because I heard so much of myself in that statement. Sure, I don’t have kids to identify with her distress in that way. (And by the way, homegirl was STRUGGLIN. Made me feel for all the moms out there.) But I have experienced discontentment in the seasons of life that I’ve been through. I’ve often thought, “Man, if I could just get through this basketball season…”

“If I could just get through this class…”
“If I could just get through this semester…”
“If I could just get through this shift at work…”
“If I could just find a man…”
“If I could just____…”

I think longing is somewhat built inside of me. I long for the day that Jesus comes back. I long for the day that “the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.”-Revelation 21:3. I long for a lot of things. But where I think I get it wrong is when I put my ultimate hope in that longing. As I’ve mentioned before (and will probably always mention, because it’s truth), my ultimate hope is to be in Jesus. My longing should be for Him.

Sure, I think it’s okay to look forward to the day that I don’t have to get up for an 8am economics class (praise Jesus that season is over!!). But if I think my ultimate satisfaction will come with the end of that season, I’m setting myself up for disappointment.

It can become easy to get stuck in the future—in hoping for the next great thing. There will always be something better if I’m not fixated on Jesus.

Question: What are seasons that you long to come to pass? How can we face these seasons together and find hope & contentment in Jesus?

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Am I a pessimist?

Occasionally I read a blog on Christianity Today’s website.

As I clicked through recently, I came across an ad/link that literally made me laugh out loud. To be honest, it was more of a “are you kidding me?” laugh than a “man that’s hilarious!” laugh.

The ad/link said: “Waiting for a Wedding: Staying optimistic while waiting for your heart’s desires.”

First off, “heart’s desires” is such a girly Christian term I giggle a bit on the inside every time I hear it, not just in this context. Also I think I say it wwwaayyyy too much.

Secondly, is that all I’m waiting on? My wedding? If my ultimate hope and anticipation is in my wedding day, my actual marriage might struggle a bit. (As a side note, Fergie’s song Finally just started playing on my iPhone shuffle playlist. Well played, music.) 

I can’t read the Scriptures, Old Testament or New, and come to the conclusion that the epitome of my waiting is my wedding. Sure, I have a desire to one day be married, but my anticipation in life should not be ONLY for my wedding day. My deepest anticipation and desire should be for eternal communion with Jesus Christ.

When I see ads or links like the one mentioned above, it makes me think about how people may view my attitude toward this whole singleness thing. Unfortunately, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I think the overall culture of the American church is that, if I’m not married or pursuing marriage, there is something wrong with me, my life isn’t complete, or I need to be “fixed.” If my deepest desire and my constant thought isn’t on my wedding, do I seem like a pessimist? I would hope not. I would hope that my life still reflects optimism, but that the optimism is rooted in the fact that one day Christ will come again and make all things right. Including my attitude towards weird ads on Christian websites.

Question: Do you ever come across ads on websites that make you scratch your head or laugh in disbelief?

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I just want you to like me.

I haven’t always been single. I’ve never been married, but I have dated and been in relationships (one at a time, mind you). As I wade through the land of singleness, I look back on my past relationships and often wonder, “Where did I go wrong.”

I believe one of the first things we as women often think when a dating relationship ends is that exact thought. What did I do. Where did I screw up. Why am I not good enough?

In reading Scotty Smith’s “Everyday Prayers” (pick it up here. Seriously. Go buy it.), I came across a mind blowing concept. He writes, “Idolatry is everywhere because there’s no such thing as a nonworshiper.”

Now, I’ve heard this concept many times, but it simply ROCKED me as I read it yesterday. YESTERDAY. (God’s timing is awesome) My following thoughts went something like this:

  • Oh that’s gooooooooooood. Yeah, he’s spot on.
  • I should share this with people that I know are struggling with idolatry. Maybe they’ll realize the idols in their life.
  • Man, I’m glad I have my idols worked out.
  • Shoot. Is that an idol? Being better than everyone else?
  • Yup.

I have really good conversations in my head.

Anyways, it seriously got me thinking. What is my aim in relationships? What is my aim in blogging? What is my aim (fill in the blank)?

Often, my aim is for people to like me. I want to be wanted. I desire for people to desire me. At the deepest root of who I am, I want to be known.

What really throws me for a loop here, though, is that I am already. And I’m not liked, wanted, desired, known because of anything another human has done for me. I am all of these things because of Christ. God’s Word says in Zephaniah 3:17, “The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.” And again in Isaiah 43:1, “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.”

In other words, I am liked, wanted, desired, known, and LOVED because of God’s great love for me.

Now, just because I’ve written this blog does not mean that I’ve washed my hands of this idol. It doesn’t mean my need for approval is magically wiped away. In fact, if you know anything about me, you know that this has been a struggle in my life for a long time.

When I reflect back on my past relationships, my main goal in each of them was for the other person to validate me. My worship was myself. I could argue with you about being the most selfish “girlfriend” ever. Because I used to be, and probably will be next time around too if my validation is still coming from the guy I’m dating.

My hope is that we can struggle through this together. That we can like each other, or not, just because. That we can let the love of Christ be enough.

There’s a line in a BarlowGirl song that has stuck with me since the first time I heard it: “You’re a God who has all things, and still You want me.”

May we all let that be enough today.

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“Mawwage is what bwings us togeder tooday…”

First off, if you get the movie reference in the title, we will be good friends.

Secondly, marriage isn’t exactly what brings us together today. Singleness is.

So, why write about singleness? Because that’s what I am. I’m a single person. And I want to talk about it. I don’t want to talk about how hard it is being single. I don’t want to talk about how this is just a season for God to prepare me to be the wife I’m meant to be. I don’t want to talk about how I’m so young and God will bring the right man along that’ll be my knight in shining armor of God (Ephesians 6 anyone?!).

I want to talk about how we, as followers of Christ, can build our identity in Jesus as single people simply because we want Jesus.

Too often I hear people, especially young women, discuss this idea that once we get our lives right with Jesus, He’ll bring the right man along. Heck, I used to be (and sometimes still can be) that girl. And while there’s truth to that–that we need to be content in Christ–marriage/a relationship shouldn’t be the goal of that contentment. Going to Jesus shouldn’t be a method of meeting my husband. Going to Jesus should be for Jesus and Him only.

If you’re reading this and I’ve had a conversation with you about “falling in love with Jesus before I fall in love with a man,” please hear me out through this journey. My goal isn’t to judge or make others feel inferior because of their desires for a relationship or marriage. My goal is open up a discussion on what it really means to fall in love with Jesus. Period.

I’ve got some (hopefully) fun stories lined up about how I’ve tried to wade through being single and dating and all that comes with that. Whether you’re single like me, dating, engaged, or married, I hope you’ll join in the conversation. Disagree with me. Challenge me. Give me a virtual high-five if you feel like it.

Let’s have a not so regular (ie: irregular…like the blog tagline…get it?!) discussion on our marital status.

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