Friday, April 19, 2013

The emotionally pure cat. . .and where she went wrong.

This isn't just another "relationship" post. It isn't another "contentment" post or a you-must-follow-"The Rules" post. It is something that has been very near and dear to my heart, on a personal level, that I must share with you. A seeking to draw the minds of girls into that of Christ; to evaluate themselves and the men around them. To see that "the books" say one thing, but God has a unique, completely against-the-grain love story in mind, FOR YOU. Throw away your books on emotional purity and tune in. ;)


I'm a girl. In many ways, your typical girl. In others, very different. Very deep. Very something I myself can't understand. Now, remember all the "this isn't"--s above? Well, this isn't a Michaela-has-all-the-answers post. But hey, I'm the authoress, and your reading my blogs, so something of ME will be thrown in. It just works that way. :)

See, God created a package--a small one, under five feet tall, and with passions so deep and vast they turn her into a whirlwind of LIFE. That package is me. Coming from an all girl household, I can say with certainty that each and every female creature on the planet possesses a form of catty. Yeah, that ugly, four letter word. The one that claws and growls and manipulates. The one we stick up our noses at. The one we'd NEVER be. Um, much as I hate to admit it, "MEOW" is part of being female. And if you don't see it in yourself, look again, because you may be the sweetest, most even tempered person in the world. . .but it's there. There is a bit of jealously, diva, princess, and all kinds of selfish womanhood in each of us. It is, or should be--at the core of a true Christian, to battle the flesh and defy the Eve that says. . ."yes, but just one small bite. See Adam? It's beautiful. I'M beautiful. Much more beautiful than HER. Nasty, unworthy creature. You want ME."

From the time a girl enters the world she wants to nurture. It's who God made her. She wants to be loved by men--a man, her man. To be restored to his side as his wife, lover, and best friend. Like an illustration I read recently, men and women were created for each other--apart they are missing the human design. It's like living without a limb, a painting without color, a song without music. Puzzle pieces, scattered over eternity until one day they meet--a perfect, made to measure fit. Its natural. This is why attraction is so important, and why I abhor the phrase "emotional purity." See, the original concept was good. It was meant to curb some of the "meow" tendencies of women. It was meant to obstruct the fantasy-land of girlhood. You know, the fairy tale as follows: tall, dark and handsome (not to mention sinless,) prince drops from sky. Check. Rescues fair maiden. Check. Falls in love with maiden Check. Marries maiden. Check. Lives happily ever after. Check (???). . .and so on and so forth. Unrealistic, but girls, if you stop and think--this is YOU.

"Yeah, so I like this guy. And SHE likes him too. :dark glare: I'm.Going.To.KILL.Her. :purr: Oh Susie? Darling, I LOVE your dress. Where did you get it?" :readies knife:   

Dramatic? Not really. But--say it with me--this isn't another "girl problem" post. Ladies, what are you seeking? I believe with all my heart that men and women were created for marriage--it's the decline of the church and yes, the concept of "emotional purity" that are keeping young people apart. Through books and systems we've learned that attraction is dirty. Lustful. That the man you "like" is someone else's future husband. That you must shatter every thought of possibly marrying him. . .because he'll never, ever be yours. Maybe. But--"emotional purity" supposedly curbs over the top, guy-crazy thoughts. I've seen just the opposite. Rather, girls that come from a strictly by-the-book agenda are sappy, dreamy, scared to death of men, yet somehow think that EVERY guy is potential. That, "oh my goodness, he looked at ME. I think. . .the wedding will be in June." They don't speak with men. That would be lusting. They don't interact with men. That's fornicating. And they most certainly DO NOT entertain thoughts of the new guy in church. . .because, quick! Reverse everything the Lord has instinctively bred in you. My dear, he will NEVER be YOUR husband!!

It's dangerous. I've seen girl after girl fall because she's so "emotionally pure"--every man is a threat. On the opposite spectrum, ladies who have been encouraged to interact with the opposite gender, treating them as brothers, are able to discern good vs. bad character, friendship vs. potential relationships, etc, etc. It's a healthy, God-given pattern, because frankly, isolation from men breeds insecurity. It prevents relationships. It puts girls right into the fantasy land  they are trying so hard to avoid. In my experience, the ladies who are allowed to evaluate and form friendships (in a wholesome, non-personal way,) are able to make rational choices, know exactly what they are looking for, and are free from "waiting for my Mr. Darcy" enslavement. Because a few, natural crushes, and yes, even heartbreak (not encouraging dating in any form when I say this,) are important in defining God's will and timing for relationships. Why are so many young Christian people single? Why don't you take THAT question to the system makers of the modern courtship/betrothal movement.   

What are we looking for? If it's perfection or the hero in a Jane Austen novel, it won't happen. Lately, in my walks through relationship forums, I've seen "lists" that, probably unknowingly, cater to the cattiness of girls. He must have a sense of humor. He must be understanding, protecting, kind. All good on the surface, but remember--this man, whoever he may be, is human too.

I've faced struggle, insecurity, heartbreak, failure, disappointment, battles with my will. I've cried, begged, and am STILL waiting for answers. His ways are not our ways. Can we put a limit on God? Can we tell Him what we want, how we want it? Our first answer is no, but really, think about it. How often do circumstances meet our expectations? How often can we say--this happened EXACTLY the way *I* (prideful, self-centered me,) wanted?! Never. Systems are wrong. Period. However, just as I, and I trust YOU aren't looking for perfection, the man that enters my life must remember that I am human too. Tell me no. Lead me. That's what a woman desires! But we are all fallen creatures. We are all struggling in some area. It's all part of Christ's perfect plan. He is a Just God. There is more to knowing Him than love--there must be repentance, constantly seeking his face. Winning people to a "God has a plan for your life" gospel doesn't work. But he DOES have a predestined plan. He is an Almighty God that is shaping--that has shaped and Authored your story from the moment He gave you life. How can we doubt Him? How can we bind a living God in a book of rules? How can we take the romance He crafted--His beautiful, natural bringing together of men and women, and give it a false identity? 


Ladies, when we make lists. . .remember, God may do something so different, so radical, so unlike anything you or I have ever imagined. Don't look for perfection. Be open to that small, lingering voice in your heart. Seek Him in all and everything--even in the confusion of singleness. In the battle against sin. Branch out. Talk to that guy. Be a sister in Christ. We need to build up our brothers! We need to show them we care--that we want them to fulfill the calling of Biblical manhood. Stop putting a limit on God. "Wait" takes on new meaning when one pulls out of the system. . .and falls headlong into the lap of an all-knowing Creator. The Creator of Love.

13 comments:

  1. Beautiful! That is all I can say.

    Thank you,

    Brigid
    The Middle Sister and Singer

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  2. Thoughts upon reading this:
    Title: She's really gone bonkers now. She's teaching emotional strangulation..erm, purity...to her cat.
    First couple of paragraphs: Hm, good, good...
    Eve's dialogue: Unavoidably read in Gollum's voice...
    Rest of the article: YESYESYESYOUGOOOOOOOGIRL!!!!!

    Awesomeness sauce, hit the nail on the head. Strangulation is the root of the problem (and as a former Strangulation Advocate I struggle with it to this day). And loved the bit about my favorite three types. Still secretly pining for a charismatic (as in personality ;)) Visionary and trying to keep believing that if he is a (boring) Steady or a (domineering) Command man that'll be ok. LOL.

    Affirmation is my second LL...first being physical touch. ;)

    All in all..GREAT POST. Keep up the good work, Flippeth!!!!

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    1. Ok, ok! I think the whole "Command, visionary, steady" stuff was misinterpreted! First off, thanks muchly, Flop. :) You are so funny. As I was writing this it was like, "Ally will approve." Amazing how the Lord changes and molds, huh? But like I said to Samantha below, I am not looking for any certain type of personality in a guy--whatever the Lord brings, He brings. VERY important that I make myself clear here. :)

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  3. It's a fact: God did not create us to be nuns. =)
    Thank you so much for sharing this. I so needed
    to hear it.
    blessings!

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    1. hehe. . .are you sure you don't want to re-write The Sound of Music with me?? ;)

      So glad this was a blessing to you!

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  4. Good... no, GREAT post. I had many brothers in Christ who were good friends and, through that, I was able to learn a lot about men (in a good, protected, way). Now that Andrew and I are married, we have learned so much about each other, our love languages, our imperfections, etc... I did not marry a perfect man, or even who I thought my ideal man would be. God knew better though. :-)

    My love languages are the same as yours. Quality time and affirmation! Sure can make me come across as needy sometimes, but Andrew is learning that it is just the way I feel loved the most.

    Again, GREAT post. I just love your heart, Mich.

    Love you!
    Rachel

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    1. Thank you, thank you, thank you, you beautiful girl! We are so much alike it's a little scary. . .in the best way possible. Keeping you in my prayers. <3 <3

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  5. Spot on. I needed this today. :)

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  6. Really, really good post!
    I love your part about lists. I just watched a little clip of Debbie Pearl talking to a girl who had read her book. It's not as much about what we want HIM to be like, as much as what WE should be like. If we want a guy with certain qualities, we should make sure to have those qualities ourselves. She (Mrs. Pearl) also said that sometimes the girls WITH the lists are the ones who remain single. Eep! I'm sure this is not always true, but I can see where have extensive lists could be a problem ( I'm not talking about spiritual things you're looking for, those should be non-negotiables, just some of the other non-spiritual things, like his looks, for instance). I think if we are truly committed to God and His will for our lives we will bring us a guy that will help fit our needs/desires in the right way.

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    1. Very much agree! Just want to make it clear though that I am not looking for a "steady"--that would have been my ideal at one time, but now I am very much open to whatever the Lord brings. Just wanted to clarify, in case that bit didn't make sense. :)

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    2. Gottcha :-) Sometimes what we want isn't the best, and what we think would be wonderful might not be what God knows is best for us. I enjoyed Rachel's comment, it's good to hear from a young married lady!

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