2014: a year with no dates

Don’t ask God to deliver you from the temptations you are pursuing…instead, remove yourself from the paths that lead you to destruction.

An uncontrollable sin problem and Andy Stanley is where it started.

He preaches a series called The New Rules for Love, Sex, and Dating (it’s not hyper-linked for no reason y’all, check it out) & it is fantastic. Towards the end he brings it up..the dating fast….a scary proposition for a, then, 18 year-old freshman in college, with little to no self-confidence or worth – but I was committed to redeeming my value in Christ and was willing to try literally anything, even a year with no dating.

It. Was. Hard.

Pastor Joby Martin from the Church of Eleven 22 says in week 4 of his kick butt Song of Solomon series, “Let me assure you of what’s going to happen ladies…if you decide to do this [dating fast], 6 weeks from now, you’re going to meet this man. And he’s a combination of William Wallace, Tim Tebow, and Jesus [and he] is [going to] swoop into your life and you’re going to have an opportunity to decide who is your Lord. Are you going to trust God, or are you going to try to take control of it?”

And y’all, let me tell you…that will happen. Sure enough, January 2014, my “perfect” combo walked his way into my life (though I prefer to replace William Wallace with John Wayne, but that is neither here nor there).

I had to be reminded, time and again, of the commitment I had made, to stay true to it…but along the way I was also reminded that God looks at our progress not our perfection. I learned to not beat myself up when I don’t get it right. Because, if I always got it right, I wouldn’t need Christ on the cross, would I?? And believe me as I cry it out, I DESPERATELY NEED THE WORK OF THE CROSS.

1 Samuel 16:7 says, “People look at the outward appearance, but The Lord looks at the heart.”

Your intentions, your motivations, your heart, and your obedience are key – not how well you can perform a list of do’s and don’t’s.

Don’t do the enemy’s job of beating yourself up over failures. Let The Lord redeem them for His glory.

So, what is the point of all of this? Why do it?

Well, to use Pastor Joby’s reference; just like an injured athlete sits games out to heal, you need to sit out of the dating game if you’ve been doing it wrong…you need time to heal. Or to use Andy Stanley’s point, are you the person that the person you are looking for is looking for? In other words, if today you met the person that you want to spend the rest of your life with, would they feel the same about you? {I touch on that a little more in this old post, here.}

I know that a year off dating may seem a little too extreme to you or it may scare you or whatever; I get it…it’s something that needs to be prayerfully considered for sure, but stay with me…

Because this process was so difficult for me, I was able to really press into God. I learned more than ever before about His heart, who He is, and how He operates… 

I’ve never been as close to the heart of God than the distance this process has brought me.

It is beautiful to experience The Lord’s pursuit of your heart when you block all the noise out & it is amazing to experience soul level love the way He intended it.

Becoming strong and independent in Christ is incredible.

My whole life I have never wanted anything as bad as I want to be a wife and a mama. In the spirit of honesty and vulnerability, I’ll let y’all know that I struggle with idolizing even the idea of both. Now, I’m not saying that the desire or the struggle has disappeared but I can say that detaching from the dating scene to seek God far outweighs even the most joy I know marriage and motherhood could bring.

The first hand realization that God is enough, and always will be enough – to know with 100% certainty that as great as being a mom and a wife could ever be, neither is necessary, because a raw, real relationship with my Creator is best – is a freeing feeling, indescribable. It brings immeasurably more joy than I ever dared dream. And finally having that wisdom is worth more to me than all the dates a year can hold.

So, maybe a dating fast is something you’ve considered or maybe this is the first you’re hearing about it… Talk to God, search your heart, watch the linked series, and if you have any questions or you’re more interested in what I learned from it all, contact me directly (find me on Facebook or something! I promise I won’t think it’s too creepy) and we will talk it all day long.



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