Single Life

My Own Fight for Freedom

A few Sundays ago, I had the opportunity to share my testimony with the High School girls in my church. What’s so spectacular about my testimony? Well, I was a sinner and Christ saved me. It doesn’t get any better than that! Seriously, that’s the best testimony and we all can share that if we have found freedom in Christ. But part of what makes our testimony unique is the way Christ continues to be at work in our lives after we are saved. Yes, our salvation is settled but in our daily attempt to live for Him we come up against so many obstacles of our own making and of the Enemy’s design, that often knock us back a step or two. Each day we have a choice to either remain beaten down or to repent of our sins and start fresh. I want to share with you one area that Satan gained a foothold in my life for over 24 years and this was the part of my testimony that I shared with the girls a few weeks ago.

FullSizeRender (20)I decided to tell part of my story through pictures. I started with this one as I felt it was an accurate depiction of how serious I have been about singing over the years. That or it shows that I have always loved eating. I prefer to go with the former rather than the latter. 🙂 Music and food really do go well together and I am so grateful to be a Southern Baptist … hello, potlucks and singings!

 

Next, I showed them this photo just to confirm that I have always been a fashionista for years by rockin’ a pair of heels with jeans and a tee shirt at the age of 5. FullSizeRender (19)

Then, I showed them this picture. It may surprise many of you to discover that I was a FullSizeRender (18)cheerleader but I was. And I was even captain of the squad! (Mainly, because my family would be at every game since my brother played for the team.) I had fun cheering but I couldn’t do cartwheels, handstands or toe touches. I was a base for all of our stunts. I was in the fourth grade when I cheered and I remember realizing that my body was different from the other girls. I wasn’t as petite as them. I filled out my uniform differently. I came to the conclusion that I was fat. I look at myself now and wonder how I ever thought that then but I did. Something changed inside of me and I started measuring myself to other people’s standards. My parents had never placed importance on physical appearance beyond looking nice for church and being presentable for school. There were no obsessive conversations about being thin, working out or going on a diet around our house while I was growing up. There also wasn’t a huge celebration over our looks. It just wasn’t important. But somewhere, at some point, a message contrary to what I was being taught settled into my heart. I was fat and I wasn’t pretty.

I was naive enough to think that dating would fix a lot of my insecurities. Little did I know, dating only exposes them. I went all through my Middle School and High School years feeling awkward, ugly and overweight (which I was). No matter what I did, I couldn’t lose any substantial amount of weight. A life long battle with many ups and downs.

IMG_7247I never dated in HS (I did in my 20s) and I shared with the girls that Sunday how I understand when you go through a break up what that rejection feels like … however, there is a special kind of rejection that comes from never being chosen. You wonder if you are even seen. There were some nods in the room on that one. So what do you do? Well, I went to junior prom by myself and then my brother asked a college friend to take me to my senior prom. My brother happened to be going with a friend of mine at the time so that’s why he’s in this picture. He was not my date. I repeat, my brother was not my date! 🙂 I was so out of touch on the typical prom things a girl was supposed to do. I did my own hair and makeup. I had a shawl made for me by a sweet woman in my church because I was not about to show off my chunky arms and I borrowed the dress from a friend! But, I had a blast and even though I felt huge that night, I wouldn’t mind being that size again as well as would love to introduce myself to some bronzer. Hahaha.

I went on a few dates in college but as I am sure you have figured out … boys aren’t the answer. Men aren’t the answer. Yo-yo dieting wasn’t the answer. Loving myself wasn’t the answer. The answer has been and always will be found in Christ.

I have read all the blogs and books on being content in your singleness, on how to wait well for the perfect one and how to let go of waiting for the perfect one because God may not bring you the perfect one (well, duh). Can I just be honest and I say that I am tired of the Church putting a title on everything in this area … I’m not sure who I’m waiting on any more but it’s apparently someone like the kinsman-redeemer Boaz, with the timing of Adam (God didn’t wake him till Eve was ready …), the nonadulterous heart of David,  the passion of Solomon, the selfless love of Jesus, the fire of Peter, the wisdom of Paul and the sensitivity of John. Any Mr. Perfects out there? 🙂 And I am supposed to be the quintessential Proverbs 31 woman. Hmm … well, I have come to a place where I am most content when I am focused on Jesus and serving Him. If that sounds good to anyone else then let’s talk. All the rest is just fluff as far as I am concerned and I have known that. I really have but it has finally settled into every fiber of my being. How?

It happened when I knelt at the altar well over a month ago and surrendered my need tome compare myself to others. It was then that when I finally found freedom. And it was three weeks ago, in my car, that I realized I am a complete woman in Christ because that is who He made me be. It’s not in having sex, a baby or being married that makes me a woman. It’s not in a hormonal right of passage at some pre-teen age. I am a woman because that is who God created me to be and I am complete because of the finished work He did on the cross. Everything else is just icing on the cake. Once, I recognized who I was in Him everything else in my life completely shifted. I told the girls if I could do one thing for them it would be to help them understand this now instead of at 33. As well as to know that they are worth far more than what this world offers them. No amount of selfies will ever fill the void that Christ can. Marriage to the perfect mate will not fill that void. Nothing can show you your worth in Christ like the cross and the empty the tomb. And Satan has tried for 24 years to distract me from seeing myself as who I am in Christ.

IMG_7346It’s not like I am walking around looking at myself in the mirror and singing, “you’re so pretty, oh so pretty …” Hardly. Ha. But there is a deep peace in knowing Who’s I am and slowly the lies that I have believed about myself over the years are starting to fade away. I now work to hold every negative thought captive and call on the name of the Lord when I am tempted to belittle myself. A funny side effect to this is that as I am working on my emotional and mental health my physical health is falling into place as well. Go figure. 🙂 When you are no longer worried about what other’s think about you but instead focus on how God sees you and how you feel health wise things just sort of click. Willpower isn’t an issue anymore because it isn’t about a size, a weight or a standard. It’s all starting to fade because it just doesn’t matter anymore. I belong to Christ and I am kept by Him. I am complete in Him. Everything else is just an added blessing.

And oh, if I could help another girl come to understand that before she’s 33 then I would do everything within my power to do so but, honestly, it’s something that she is going to have to allow Christ to show her. She is going to have to open up her heart, be vulnerable with the Lord and “allow” Him to see all the wounded places of her soul. When she does, He will heal and fill every cavern with His grace. And she will know a freedom like never before!

I love you all.

 

 

Advertisements
Single Life

Truth Is … We Can Handle It

Yesterday, my path crossed on Facebook with another 32-year-old woman who was struggling with the fact that she was single. I sincerely told her that it is better to be holy, whole and alone than dating the wrong person. But like most she struggles seeing friends getting married, coming home to an empty house and not seeing any prospect of change in her near future. I shared with her that some of the ways I combat those feelings is to focus more on getting to know who Christ is & acknowledging that my being single is part of His will for my life at this time. I also find other ways to serve so I am less apt to notice my loneliness. It doesn’t work 100% of the time but it certainly does help me. She asked me what to do about coming home to a lonely house. I told her that now that I have my puppy my house certainly isn’t lonely but I still light a favorite candle and turn some worship music on as soon as I walk in the door. Those two little steps immediately warm up my home so that even I feel invited in. I also make it a point before heading home to either have it on my radar what movie I want to watch or book I want to start reading that night if I don’t have something else pressing that I need to do at home.

I’m not sure how well she received my advice because it doesn’t give her a quick answer of “do this and you’ll be dating someone within a week”. I don’t have those kinds of answers and to be honest, I am glad that I am not privy to that kind of knowledge. The start of my year has been interesting so much so that I have shared with several friends that I would rather be left alone than deal with the guys that I have dealt with! And I meant it. I know that I have turned a corner in my life when I can make a statement like that and feel it with every fiber of my being. I have been spoken to about things and in a manner that no man professing Christ should ever speak to a woman about.

I will be 33 next month and thanks to a friend’s husband, I am now calling it my “Jesus Year”! Ha. But in all seriousness, for me, there is something sacred about this age. I am tired of it all and in the same vein, I am fired up. I want this year to count. I don’t want to waste it wondering what is or isn’t being said by someone that I am interested in. So I humbly request that single men and women, who truly profess Christ and seek to follow after Him, stop these 3 dating practices immediately.

(Disclaimer: I have been guilty of all three of these. So rest assured, this is something I have sought to eliminate from my life and some of these examples are from personal experience while others are borrowed from friends but to protect the individuals I am sharing them in the first person.)

Dishonesty

If you aren’t feeling it … then just be honest about it. Somewhere along the line, we have come to the conclusion that we have to be deceitful in our reasons for breaking up with someone or opting out of continuing to get to know someone.

Ex. I have been told in the past that distance is an issue … it was a 45-minute drive. When in reality they just weren’t attracted to me. My brother and sister-in-law dated for 3 years living 6 hours away from each other. So I’m not going to buy the 45-minute drive excuse.

Would it have been painful to heimage1-4ar that a guy wasn’t attracted me? Yes. But it would hurt much less than the realization of being lied to by someone to whom you had hoped would be different because he “lives for the Lord”. Y’all, we are better than this. You don’t have to be ugly about it but tell the truth.

Guys, from a woman who is seeking to be honest in this area as well … hear me … I would much rather know that you don’t see this going anywhere beyond friendship than you leading me on with talk of future events and projects that you know will never happen. If you sought to get to know a woman because you were attracted to her but realized you would be better off as friends don’t assume she is on the same page … ever. I have so much more respect for a man when he is honest from the beginning than someone who backtracks to cover his behind because he is feeling guilty over leading a woman on.

Ladies, if you know that a guy will never move out of the friend zone then stop taking advantage of a “free meal”. He works hard for his money and deserves to spend his money on someone who is truly interested in him. You may be a great friend but don’t be so prideful as to think you are doing him any favors by spending time with him. Be kind but be honest. Let him make the decision if he wants to continue to take you to dinner or if the next time you meet you’ll be going dutch. It’s fair.

Most of us aren’t dating for the sheer fun of it because it’s not all that fun. We are dating for the potential of marriage. So let’s stop wasting each other’s time when we know it’s not going anywhere.

Ghosting

Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. The only ghost that needs to be involved in a Christians dating life is the Holy Ghost. Mmmkay? For those of you who aren’t sure of this term is please see definition #2 …ghostingIn many ways, this all goes back to being honest with each other but it could also apply to that illustrious idea of the “silent treatment”. And just to be clear, both women and men have been known to “ghost” someone. If you are needing space, ask for it. If you aren’t interested, tell them. Don’t disappear. It’s dishonest and petty. It is certainly not the mark image1.PNGof someone who is seeking to live their life with integrity. Now, if you have told them that you are not interested in them and do not wish to pursue things any further yet they continue to contact you then block them. But most people will respect this decision and move on as well. Don’t leave a person wondering as to where they stand with you or what happened in general. Do you remember “the golden rule”? “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Luke 6:31

I have been on the receiving of both ghosting and the silent treatment. It truly is the most mature way of a handling a woman. We feel valued as a human being and cherished by the person we are talking to, I mean were talking to or may still be talking to. I have spoken with guy friends who have been on the receiving end of this as well and they admitted that nothing made a woman more attractive to them when they employed these juvenile tactics into their relationship. I mean they were truly clamoring for more time with that woman. Not. Just stop it.

Ghosting is a cowards way out of a relationship. The silent treatment is a petty way to avoid conflict or to punish your partner (like that is your place, anyway). If there is an issue in your relationship be a grown up a deal with it. Chances are you aren’t dating a mind reader.

The God Card

Please stop blaming God as an excuse for breaking up with someone! There is only one time in which He makes it clear we are not to date someone and that is if they are an unbeliever …

Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14

Other than that … we pretty much have free reign on who we can date in the world of Christianity. So if all of the sudden you have to break up with someone because “God told me to.” Then chances are you didn’t pray about dating them in the first place because if He has a say in it now He probably would have had a say in it from the beginning.

fc622d3be2846894e93d024ae037549a

Don’t get me wrong, I am a firm believer that God gives us a head’s up when someone isn’t right for us but we tend to ignore those signs. So instead of admitting that you were being disobedient by entering into the relationship to begin with you then place the blame on God for breaking up.

Just be honest. It’s not working out. You aren’t interested in them. It has nothing to do with your need to focus on your relationship with Christ or anything else like that. Just tell the truth. You will be better off in the long run for it than doing otherwise.

Friends, let’s be known for telling the truth in love. Let’s be known for living our lives with integrity in such a way that our dating relationships and/or potential interactions with one another mirror Christ more so than the world. Let’s show the next generation how to have healthy relationships without sub-tweeting our relationship woes on social media. Let’s give them something to strive for rather than run from. We can do better. We must do better. Why? Because we are the image bearers of Christ and He deserves no less than our very best. Is it frustrating? Absolutely. But if we resolve to treat each other in the manner in which we desire to be treated then I guarantee you it won’t be so hard. And for those of you who are still scared to be truly honest with those you are dating … the truth is we can handle it and we will respect you for it. Is it hard? Yes. But it is worth it. Let’s be about the hard and holy things of God. Not people who run from challenges and destroy people in our path.

What do you think?

Please comment below.

I love you all.

 

 

Single Life

No Hired Hands

IMG_3710A few weeks ago, I was sorting through some things to throw away when I came across a conversation that I had printed out between myself and a guy I had met on Christian Mingle. This was the last guy I talked to before I quit the site in the early Fall. As I read the conversation, I was flooded with thankfulness that once again the Lord had protected me from what I thought was best. Everything he said seemed so great, however, there were some serious spiritual issues that caused some concerns that he became very defensive of when I received them as red flags. I’m not going to apologize for how the Lord has wired me. He raised me in the home of a pastor for a reason. He gave me the convictions that He has not so I can stand in judgment of others but in order to protect me from myself.

This guy was clearly not the right one for me. My mom calls those kinds of guys “phony guys” while my best friend calls them “counterfeits.” But after my reading of John 10, last month, I am going to start calling them “hired hands.”

I had been reading Rachel Wojnarowski’s The Names of God reading plan for December. On this particular day the reading was on John 10:34-42 and how Jesus is the “Son of God” but my eyes were drawn to the first part of the chapter and the parable of The Good Shepherd and His Sheep. While I have no desire to over spiritualize scripture I couldn’t help but draw a parallel between dating/courtship and the Good Shepherd/sheep.

“I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep recognize his voice and come to him. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.”

Those who heard Jesus use this illustration didn’t understand what he meant, so he explained it to them: “I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me were thieves and robbers. But the true sheep did not listen to them. Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep. A hired hand will run when he sees a wolf coming. He will abandon the sheep because they don’t belong to him and he isn’t their shepherd. And so the wolf attacks them and scatters the flock. The hired hand runs away because he’s working only for the money and doesn’t really care about the sheep.” John 10:1-13

Ladies, we want to wait for someone who seeks to model his life after the Good Shepherd, Jesus.

  1. A shepherd enters through the gate.
    • A man who has modeled his life after Christ will value the process of pursuing you God’s way.
    • He’s not going to try to take shortcuts, i.e. sneak over the wall.
    • He will pursue your heart, first, because he knows Who the keeper of your heart is.
  2. The Gatekeeper opens the gate for him.
    • When we surrender our hearts to Christ and allow him to hold it in the palm of His hand then no one will be able to get past the Gatekeeper who shouldn’t be there.
    • The Lord will help us protect our hearts for the one He has for us.
  3. The shepherd calls his own sheep by name, the sheep hear his voice, come to him and he leads them out.
    • You’ll “know when you know.” Your spirits will bear witness in such a way that it could only be of God’s design. And it will be then that this shepherd will join you and the Good Shepherd as a 3rd in the triune to bring God glory.
    • I have often prayed, over the years, that when the one God has for me comes, I will know his voice.
    • There will be a tenderness to my name that lets me know I am safe, secure and I can follow him.
    • He will come prepared to lead my heart.
  4. In the same way that the Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, the shepherd is willing and ready to lay his down for you.
    • He dies to self and his desires in order to serve and protect the sheep.
    • He learns to love like the Good Shepherd and in return the sheep learns how to love him as well.
  1. hired hand runs at the first sign of danger. He is not invested in the sheep. Theycropped-road-1.jpg aren’t his. His interest is purely selfish … i.e. monetary, sex, temporary fulfillment of loneliness. His sole focus is on what he can gain. Not how he can serve the sheep.  So if the sheep is attacked and devoured it doesn’t matter, so long as he is safe.

Let’s Go Deeper: Are you a hired hand? Are you only in a relationship for what you can gain? Are you shortcutting the system? When things don’t go your way do you pout and punish him until he gives in?

So what is our response to be?

The Lord wants us to wait for the shepherd and stop wasting our time on hired hands.

  1. The Shepherd goes to battle for the sheep each and every time. And the sheep learns and knows that she can trust the Shepherd.

Let’s Go Deeper: Have you truly surrendered your heart and control of your life to the Lord? To the point that you can still serve Him joyfully and with purpose even if marriage isn’t what He has planned for you or you go through seasons of major “date drought”? Is Jesus enough?

  1. In the same way that the shepherd doesn’t jump the fence, you need to have boundaries in place so that any man who meets you knows you are worth the chase.

Let’s Go Deeper: What are your convictions? Write them down. Purpose to live by them. Share them with several friends and/or family members who will unashamedly hold you accountable to them and don’t fight them when they do! Sex is a gift from God that is meant to be shared between a couple that is married to each other, not living together, but someone who has made a covenant before God to love each other till He calls you to heaven. It can be hard to stay true to that Biblical conviction but it can be done even if you have made mistakes in this area before but you have to set clear-cut boundaries! And, friend, if he won’t then he’s not the “leader” you need in your life. Move on. He’s not valuing you over your body and his needs. And in case you aren’t sure … no man of God is ever going to ask you send him a nude picture of yourself.  No Godly girl has time for that. Walk away.

  1. The Gatekeeper will be the one to open the gate to your heart and to his.img_3898

Let’s Go Deeper: This is where I think the idea of “guarding your heart” (Proverbs 4:23) comes into action. It’s hard to know how to guard your heart but we have been given a gift in the Holy Spirit and He is quick to let us know when we should or should not do something. Learn to listen to that voice. Don’t be so quick to open up your soul to every guy out there. Let him discover the inner beauty that the Lord has been cultivating in you over the years a bit at a time. In the past, I have been too quick to share it all that when things didn’t work out with a guy I felt emotionally exposed and I had no one to blame but myself. So instead of giving every guy a piece of my heart here and there I have put a hold on it for “the one” the Lord may or may not have for me. I am still a fairly open book but there are some chapters that are for one pair of eyes only now and that’s ok.  I have learned that when I shut my mouth I am able to pay better attention to the red flags anyway! Funny how that works. 🙂

Friends, I don’t have the answers to dating or courtship and again, I don’t want to over-spiritualize scripture but I don’t think we can ever go wrong with surrendering control of our relationships to the Lord. Daily seeking His wisdom in our interactions with the opposite sex. Allowing Godly friends and family members to hold us accountable in our relationships. But most importantly actively listening to the Holy Spirit and heeding His command.

To my guys out there that are doing things God’s way … thank you! Hang in there. Keep at it. God has a purpose and plan for it, I promise.

And ladies, let’s not forget that while we are meant to be pursued we need to be worthy of the pursuit. So while your shepherd is seeking after God’s own heart be faithfully seeking the Lord’s heart as well as one day you might look up to see the Gatekeeper is unlocking the gate of your heart.

I love you all!

Single Life

This Isn’t A Game

img_5208I will never understand why some married men don’t wear wedding rings … especially when they aren’t in a job that restricts them from wearing it.

Or at the very least mention their wife in conversation.

In case you are wondering, yes, I was just made a fool. But it happens. I wasn’t flirtatious, yet, or anything like that but I would have been more guarded in my friendliness.

This is the day that we are living in. When a man is just being friendly … emailing you all throughout the day … asking about your weekend … discussing common interests … sharing basic personal details – where you grew up, HS attended, pets, family life … but somehow leaves out the fact that he is married. There’s nothing wrong with that, right? I’m sorry but I have a huge problem with that. Maybe it’s just me. But marriage isn’t a game. Being single isn’t a game. Being a truthful person isn’t a game. This isn’t a game.

“May integrity and honesty protect me, for I put my hope in you.” Psalm 25:21

I am a HUGE supporter of Biblical marriage … and as a believer, as a single woman, I take my part in helping to protect those marriages very seriously. I do this by, not only, electing politicians who uphold that same value but by respecting the marriages of those I am around. I do not ride alone in cars with married men. I do not eat alone with married men. I will not be in a house alone with a married man who is not my relative. Not because I do not trust myself or my friends but because I do not believe in giving the Enemy a foothold through rumors or a lapse of judgment.

I have seen the devastation that can occur in a marriage due to an affair. I work hard to be friendly but never cross the line with the husbands of my married friends. Even the ones where the guys were my friends first. Everything changes when they get married, well, actually when they get engaged. That open communication we once shared is gone. I respect that his fiancé and/or now wife deserves his full attention and openness. An openness that I cannot and should not share in. And it’s an openness that he should no longer expect from me. It’s called boundaries. They are a good thing.

I appreciate boundaries. I work well with them and when you have them set in place it helps you navigate through murky situations. It helps you turn away from temptation because you know that you will not compromise on those boundaries that you have in place. For me, those boundaries have been put in place by the convictions of the Holy Spirit in my life and through the reading of the Word of God. I will not and cannot compromise on them. I am thankful that His Spirit prepared me in advance for what I was going to find out today. I will now approach my conversations a bit differently with men and will wait until it is confirmed that a man is single before I believe it. Can’t rely on the fact that he’s not wearing a ring.

This isn’t a game. 

“Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.” Romans 12:3

If you are married then wear your ring if you are able to. If you can’t because of a job then find some way to share about your spouse so that others know that you are proudly and happily married. If you are unable to wear your ring because it doesn’t fit then find something to wear in the meantime! This applies to both husbands and wives.

And please know that I understand that there is temptation all around us whether a ring is present or not … but for those of us who truly do desire to do the right thing, seeing a ring helps us know what boundaries need to be put in place when meeting someone for the first time. I am not desperate to meet someone but I do desire to be a woman of integrity and flirting with a married man has no place in my life.

I know I am not perfect … I fully acknowledge that. I fail all the time. But I repent and start fresh again. It may have been an oversight on his part but it certainly doesn’t feel that way. I’ll still be friendly within the boundaries that are now firmly in place. I’m a little bit wiser and a tad weary of it but this is life.

I’m thankful I get to live this life and that this isn’t a game.

I love you all.

Single Life

Single in the Church

 

fullsizerender-11
#mamaskills

 

When I was a little girl, I had two baby dolls and they were named “Darlin’ and Sweet Darlin’”. They were my babies. If you asked me what I was going to be when I grew up I would have probably told you either a mama or a singer. Then on some days a mama singer! As I have shared before my plan was to get married by the age of 23, have my first child at 25 and be finished having babies (3-4, and I wouldn’t have put them on the ground face first … duh) by the time I hit my early 30s. Instead, I am single, 32, live in an apartment and have a dog! I am neither a mama nor a singer (at least not what I had envisioned).

Nothing, in my plan, panned out at all. Not even my college plans. My 20s included the death of many lifelong dreams and the birth of many new dreams. Dreams that I pray and believe are of the Lord and not strictly of my will. I still long for marriage but children are totally negotiable at this point in my life. I am pretty content with where the Lord has me and on the days that I am not it’s usually because I am too focused on someone else’s life.

However, I have realized there is a huge gap in our churches where singles are concerned and it’s something that I noticed years ago when I was in my early 20s. The Church, at large, doesn’t seem to know what to do once you are past the college and career age. I consider the college and career age to tap out at about 25. Everything the Southern Baptist Convention rolls out seems to be directed towards the college and young career group. Conferences and seminars are geared for this group, i.e. Passion.

I guess no one really accounted for the fact that more adults would be holding off on getting married whether it’s due to careers, finances, commitment issues or lack of dating options. So there’s a large group of people who are being overlooked within the Church.

Even with the churches that seem to have an active singles ministry, if you get to the core of that group it’s spiritually dry. You either have a singles social club or a literal small group of Christians committed to growing in Christ. Women are threatened by the possibility of a new woman coming into the class when there are only a few guys in the class so they often talk negatively about the class to newcomers or just don’t invite anyone. Or you get the singles that are strictly there to find someone to date and end up working their way through the entire group.

image1-1

I don’t know if this will fix the issue but here are few ideas I have:

  1. Stop giving everything a name. There was a time when every youth group and program had a name which carried over to the singles Sunday school classes. I have heard of PowerHouse, The Bridge, The Pathway, The Crossing, Crossroads, The Road, Landslide (JK), Landfill (JK), The Headstone (JK … but I’m guessing that would be a senior single adult class). We aren’t kids. Just divide by ages – names not required. J
  2. Once a month by rotating, each church in the area could share the responsibility with hosting a city-wide Singles Worship service by putting ego and competition aside … this would be something that is not catered to the college demographic but rather speaks to career-minded singles in their late 20s, 30s and 40s+ with solid preaching that also gives everyone an opportunity to meet other singles in the area. And please … no lame ice breakers. In fact, just avoid games altogether.
  3. Stop promoting marriage as the end all be all in the church. Yes, the majority of us do want to be married but for one reason or another (or in some cases, multiple reasons) we are not married yet. However, we have married friends and we know it’s not the ticket to paradise, endless bliss or total wholeness. We see the broken marriages. Some of us are a product of them. Some of us are called to be single. Singleness isn’t a disease and it won’t rub off on you if you are around us for too long. We are vital to the Church and not just to fill the roles parents are too tired to fill. J
  4. In the same vein … stop acting like singleness is a gift when you know you didn’t see it that way when you were single. Yes, we have “tons of time” to ourselves to do “whatever we want” … but that is a lot of time that we are by ourselves. It can be lonely. And there will be someone who will comment that “it’s better to be alone and on your own than alone in a marriage”. To that I say … loneliness is still loneliness whether there is a ring on the finger or not. Please do not downplay one person’s pain because of their marital status. We have all been called to this stage of life that we are in for a purpose.

It’s not Singleness<Marriage or Singleness>Marriage … it’s Singleness = Marriage.

  1. Teach on Biblical Manhood/Womanhood for Singles … I fully support the Church’s fight to save and support the marriages within her walls but there needs to be teaching on what it looks like to be in your 30s and 40s living a pure lifestyle. It’s more than not having sex before marriage. It’s more than not watching/looking at porn. I have been shocked by how many singles I know who view drunkenness, murder and abortion as sin but see nothing wrong with premarital sex or living with their mate outside of marriage. Hello? Have we ripped out 1 Corinthians 7:1-9 from our Bibles? Somewhere the wires were crossed in our youth group meetings that we missed the truths on what it means to truly live for the Lord. It’s not about “missing out” or being restricted by a set of rules but rather experiencing life abundantly the way God ordained it!

These are just some thoughts that have been running through my mind (the only part of me that actively receives exercise but that’s another story) over the last few weeks as I feel like I am a square peg trying to fit into a round hole within the Church. I don’t want to read another book geared towards singles on “How Not be Bitter that You Aren’t Married Yet”, “How to Stop Looking So They’ll Come” (The Field of Dreams version of singleness turning into marriage. The Hallmark Channel is fighting Netflix for the movie rights on this!), “How to be Content in My Waiting” or “How to be Better at Waiting When all You Do Is Wait” … I want to read a book about what it means to be the woman that God created me to be, right now, in the place that I am in … without having to skip over the chapters of praying for my husband and/or children that do not and may never exist. Someone write to me!

Someone write about how true beauty and allure is found in the one who lives a life of sincere praise …

Praise the Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our God, for He is gracious and lovely; praise is becoming and appropriate.” Psalm 145:1 AMP

image2But until someone does write a book Biblical Manhood and Womanhood for Singles in today’s culture may I humbly suggest we turn to Colossians 3:12-17 for reference and put into practice what Paul writes?

“Clothe yourselves therefore, as God’s own chosen ones (His own picked representatives), [who are] purified and holy and well-beloved [by God Himself, by putting on behavior marked by] tenderhearted pity and mercy, kind feeling, a lowly opinion of yourselves, gentle ways, [and] patience [which is tireless and long-suffering, and has the power to endure whatever comes, with good temper].

Be gentle and forbearing with one another and, if one has a difference (a grievance or complaint) against another, readily pardoning each other; even as the Lord has [freely] forgiven you, so must you also [forgive].

And above all these [put on] love and enfold yourselves with the bond of perfectness [which binds everything together completely in ideal harmony].

And let the peace (soul harmony which comes) from Christ rule (act as umpire continually) in your hearts [deciding and settling with finality all questions that arise in your minds, in that peaceful state] to which as [members of Christ’s] one body you were also called [to live]. And be thankful (appreciative), [giving praise to God always].

Let the word [spoken by] Christ (the Messiah) have its home [in your hearts and minds] and dwell in you in [all its] richness, as you teach and admonish and train one another in all insight and intelligence and wisdom [in spiritual things, and as you sing] psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, making melody to God with [His] grace in your hearts.

And whatever you do [no matter what it is] in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus and in [dependence upon] His Person, giving praise to God the Father through Him.” Colossians 3:12-17

I am committed to doing my part in making a difference in the lives of other singles … will you join me in praying that the Lord will show me what that part is and that I will be obedient to follow through with it? And if you are a pastor of a church and any of these ideas have sparked your curiosity then I would love to talk to you!

I love you all.

Single Life

Season of Thanks: A Prayer and Two Dreams

In honor of Dr. Billy Graham’s 98th birthday today, I am sharing the prayer/poem that his wife Ruth Bell Graham wrote in her teens about the man she hoped to marry someday.

The Man I Prayed For
Dear God, I prayed, all unafraid
(as we’re inclined to do),
I do not need a handsome man
but let him be like You;
I do not need one big and strong
nor yet so very tall,
nor need he be some genius,
or wealthy, Lord, at all;
but let his head be high, dear God,
and let his eye be clear,
his shoulders straight, whate’er his state,
whate’er his earthly sphere;
and let his face have character,
a ruggedness of soul,
and let his whole life show, dear God,
a singleness of goal;
then when he comes
(as he will come)
with quiet eyes aglow,
I’ll understand that he’s the man
I prayed for long ago.

By Ruth Bell

fullsizerender-10A few years ago, I adopted this as my prayer too. I have it printed out and framed in my living room as a reminder to myself to continue to pray for him, my future husband, as well as the empty picture frame that sits by my bed. I posted a picture of one of my many copies that I have of it in 2011 … 5 years ago … but I still stand by what I stated then. 🙂 I would like to say that I pray for him all the time but I don’t instead I bemoan the fact that he isn’t here.

Well, last night I had two very vivid dreams. The first I ended up in a “school musical” and for the life of me, I can’t remember what it was now, however, I was a last minute addition. Let me just tell you that I have never been in a school musical theater production. As much as I loved singing, the thought of getting on stage and acting in front of people mortified me. So here I am, in my dream, thrown on stage in a school production at the last minute but it was the backstage conversation that has stayed with me all day long. I ran into a friend who was deep in grief and admitted that they had been using musical theater (of all things) to fill the void of their lost loved one yet they were still empty. I found myself empathizing with them and admitting there have been many times that I have used various things to fill the loneliness in my life that is only meant to be filled by the Lord.

Instead of seeking solace in Him, I look to things to satisfy that only work for a brief time when what I am searching for is something more fulfilling. I’ll be honest … I use food to fill that void 9 times out of 10. I’m not a glutton but if I am lonely, bored or sad then I’ll eat something. For others, it may be shopping, alcohol, relationships, your children, drugs, social media, or TV. We all have various things that, in and of themselves may not necessarily be bad or they absolutely are, we allow to fill the needs in our lives versus the Lord. And let’s just be honest, when we turn to other things than seeking the Lord first it’s ultimately a form of disobedience because we are in essence making other things our gods.

“You shall have no other gods before Me.” Exodus 20:3

“So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say?  I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house right on the ground, without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.” Luke 6:46-49

We will never be satisfied with the things of this world or with the things that are of the Lord if the Lord is not first. It’s that simple. What kind of foundation do you want to build your life upon? Are you, like me, replacing the Lord with something? Seeking comfort in something other than Him and His word? He’s ready and waiting for us to return to our right fellowship with Him. We just have to take that first step.

In my second dream, I was sitting in a house high above a city with a large picture window. There were several others in the home with me when I looked outside and could see planes falling from the sky along with other catastrophic events happening. It was apparent that the Rapture was occurring. It was actually happening in stages. You know in movies when you see a wave of implosion slowly overtaking a city? That is what was happening in my dream but it wasn’t a scary situation. Those in the house were worried because we weren’t “taken” yet but I had this peace that it was coming and we needed to get ready. And that’s what I believe this dream was about … the Lord is coming back … it doesn’t matter what your beliefs are regarding the end times. He’s coming. He told us He is.

 “And there will be strange signs in the sun, moon, and stars. And here on earth the nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides.  People will be terrified at what they see coming upon the earth, for the powers in the heavens will be shaken. Then everyone will see the Son of Man coming on a cloud with power and great glory. So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for your salvation is near!”

Then he gave them this illustration: “Notice the fig tree, or any other tree. When the leaves come out, you know without being told that summer is near. In the same way, when you see all these things taking place, you can know that the Kingdom of God is near. I tell you the truth, this generation will not pass from the scene until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear.

“Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware, like a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth. Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:25-36

Are you ready? Do you have everything in order in your house? Because He is coming. Now more than ever it is time to be about the Father’s business and share the hope we have in Christ with others.

So today … the day before the election … the day of Dr. Billy Graham’s 98th birthday … I am thankful for the Godly example of marriage he and Mrs. Ruth set for us. I am thankful for the hope of Salvation that he faithfully preached to the nations over his lifetime. And I am thankful for the hope and assurance that Christ is coming again.

I love you all!

 

 

Single Life

Season of Thanks: A Letter

To Whom It May Concern:

Ha … that’s a little formal sounding coming from me but I did something different this time and decided to write to you, my dear husband, on my blog versus in the journal that has been set aside for your eyes only. (And I am saving my special term of endearment for you alone, hence the formality.) I am sure for those who are seeing this right now they may be greatly confused as they are 100% sure that I am still single and it is true,  I am.

me
Moments like this … a drive on the Foothills Parkway

As far as I know, we have yet to meet or if we have, I am not aware that it’s you and I am assuming you are not aware of this either. But I write to you every once in a while like I have been since I was 18 because I believe that someday we will meet and there have been some key moments in my life that I have wanted to share with you. Moments when I thought, “I wish I had someone in my life to experience this with,” but for some reason, I wasn’t dating anyone so I wrote to you. I believe the Lord has saved my heart so that only you and He could have my entire heart.

I do not have high expectations of what our life together will be like. You do not reach 32 without seeing some of your friends and family experience deep heartache and heartbreak within their marriages to know that this isn’t the stuff of fairy tales. However, it is something hard, holy and totally worth it with Christ at the center of the relationship. I want to put the work into that kind of relationship, into that kind of a partnership … the kind that makes a difference for the Kingdom of God. Not a relationship that seeks to gratify self over others. I believe we are capable of this because we both know it is only by the grace of God that we have found each other and it is only through the grace of God that we can support each other throughout our marriage.

This is what I am waiting on. And while at 32 years of age, I am closer to 35 and 40 than I am to 25 or 20 I believe you are still worth the wait. In a few months, I will be 33 years of age and since Jesus laid down His life at that point, I figure this would be a good age for me to get married and lay down my life as well. So if you would like to come along say … today … then that’s fine with me too. 🙂 But if we are called to wait further still then we will wait.

However, in the meantime let me catch you up on our life, we have a niece due any day deedee-necklacenow and I am beyond excited for the moment that I get to hold her in my arms and sing “Jesus Loves Me” to her. We, also, have another niece or nephew due in May! Brantley is going to be a big brother. He is going to be amazing at it. Needless to say, come this Summer I will be wearing out the interstate between here and West TN to see our 3rd little one. It will be a blessing to have the 2nd one so close. I love being a “DeeDee.”  These past 5 years with just Brantley have been the most amazing years of my life. The protective love I have for that boy and knowing that I am just his aunt leaves me in awe at times. Speaking of Brantley … he’s been wondering where you are. 🙂 I hope you can throw a football as that is very important to both him and me. Tennessee football has been a roller coaster as usual but we still love our VOLS.

I am still working with the four and five-year-olds’ Sunday School class at my church’s new campus in West Hills (a community in Knoxville) and they leave me laughing every week. Oh, the things they say!

I am not singing in church like I used to as that is not how the Lord is seeing fit to use me but I still sing in the car and in the house … all the time. And you can probably count on at least one concert in the car on any given road trip. 🙂 Should the Lord decide to open that door again then I will gladly sing His praises from any pulpit but I am content with singing His praises from the pews and anywhere else I am led to break into song … just song … no dancing. Be glad for that!

knightleyI think Knightley has finally stopped growing. He even tries to play matchmaker and does the 101 Dalmation wrap up with guys whenever he can. It can get slightly awkward!

Even though the election has our nation in what feels like an upheaval, I have such a much-needed peace today that the Lord is in control.

I always feel His presence when I am writing to you and I have since I was 18. I need to trust Him with you more. I need to leave the who, what, when, where and how of “us” with Him and rest in the fact that He is in control.

For one final note … here is my costume for “Halloween” that I wore to work yesterday. I was a “Fisher of Men” instead of a fisherman. This is what I posted on Facebook …

What can I say?! I take my calling in life as a single woman to be a fisher of men VERY fisher-of-menseriously. The key is that you pick the right spot, you have the right bait and are prepared to wait. You have to be knowledgeable about which ones are just teasing the line and which ones are serious about the hook. Use your energy on that one. The bad ones, the young ones and the really old ones will be thrown back. And like all true fishermen, I’m still waiting on that “one” big catch of a lifetime.

Hahaha. So just know that until we do meet, I am going to keep having fun making jokes about being single as it helps set people at ease. Besides, I have no desire to be that single woman who cannot find joy in being single. At least I get the entire bed and control of the TV to myself … who couldn’t find joy in that?

I am thankful for this time as I learn what it means to seek the Lord on your behalf. I am thankful for you and the hope of you. Most of all I am thankful to the Lord who is faithful to sustain me.

Just know that you are never far from my mind and always in my heart.

Until we meet,

-Melody Faith

**It has been a privilege to link up with Kelly’s Korner today. May all the other singles out there be blessed, be reassured that you are not alone in this season and find contentment in every season of your life. Blessings … from Knoxville, TN**

Single Life

Lady Edith and I

“Where one story ends another begins.”

I knew something was coming as I could sense I would be sharing this story for several weeks now but I couldn’t imagine how I would be telling it nor how I was to be this open with everyone, therefore, I chose to keep my mouth shut and not write until He told me to …

…Here we are …

downton-abbeyFor the first time in over a week, I am lying in my bed and not watching an episode of Downton Abbey. The reason for this is that I have completely started and finished the series in a week’s time. What can I say? Go big or go home! Now for those who are not familiar with Downton Abbey, I should share that there were only 5 seasons and 9 episodes per season. Each episode lasted 45 minutes to an hour, give or take a 2 hour Christmas special. Kudos to those who actually watched the show while it was in production … I would have been so frustrated with only 9 episodes per season.

This show literally had me feeling “all the feels” … anger, joy, disappointment, heartbreak … all of it. I did not cry in some of those episodes that most have cried in but I could have. This is why I am accused of being heartless. Ha! There was very little language and I truly mean very little. They did touch on immoral issues but unlike today’s television show’s they were not issues to be celebrated but things to overcome. They showed how everyone, no matter their background, should be treated with love and respect. I will be watching this show again and again for years to come. It was not anything that I had expected and I am so glad.

I have never been one to become emotionally invested in a TV show. I like television but it’s entertainment. What I did not expect was to see myself in the three daughters of Downton Abbey. And lest you think I have visions of grandeur for myself, I do not. It was their faults and/or weaknesses that I seemed to resonate with the most. While I do not want to give away too much of the show to those who have not watched it I am about to become more specific with a few details.

I saw myself in Lady Mary’s coolness in her attempt to mask her feelings and her frequent regret over her sharp tongue. The sharp tongue is something I have worked hard, by the grace of God, to overcome over the course of my roaring 20s. In Lady Sybil, I see the war between doing what is right and wanting to rebel at the same time. Thankfully, she finds the right balance of being able to honor her family and stick to her convictions as well. For me, that was growing up in the ministry but still being my own person (i.e. not allowing everyone’s opinions on how I should dress, color my hair or when I wanted a break from singing in the choir determine my decisions). Finally, there is Lady Edith. Oh, Lady Edith. Lady Edith really struck a nerve with me. While I could not identify with her issues in seasons 3 and 4, I saw myself in her in seasons 1 and 2. I have never been more annoyed! I saw her chasing after a man and not taking the hint to leave him alone … it was all I could do to not groan out loud in frustration.

I spent 10 years of my life basically in love with a man who did not love me back … at least he wasn’t in love with me. We were friends. I still remember the first day I met him. I have movie reel in my mind that I can pull up at any moment and play through various memories of those first conversations. His smile. His laugh. His look in those first few years. Those first years when it seemed that something might form from our innocent friendship. Moments when there was flirtation coming from him. Then something would happen and I’d watch him shut down. So I would chink away at the wall he had put up again.

I had looked for the “signs” as all good Baptists do. You know the ones I am talking about … things that the world would call coincidence but believers know are of God and had found them. I could even find biblical significance in the number of years that we had been friends and so forth. I was that desperate for this to work. He was everything I had imagined for myself, except for a few things. He was “the one”. I knew it. Others seemed to know it. He just didn’t know it.

I dated some in between but my heart always his. I was finally challenged by a friend to ask the Lord for him. So I did. I got down on my face and asked the Lord. I called it my “bold request”. It took a few months but it became clear one night that I would never mean to him what he meant to me. He was never rude and it wasn’t anything he said or did. In fact, it was what he didn’t say and he didn’t do that told me everything I needed to know I remember leaving the dinner that night absolutely crushed.

We are still friends to this day but it is one of the many reasons why I do not have close guy friends anymore. The water can become too murky. Invariably one will end up wanting something more. My best girlfriends are the ones allowed into my soul and they, in turn, now help me to “hide my crazy” when it comes to men. I am sure he had to of known because I was as subtle as Lady Edith was or a bull in a china shop but he was always so kind to me. It is for that reason and so many more that he will always mean the world to me but he no longer has my heart. He hasn’t had it for some time. I just couldn’t see it or simply refused to see it, because, like with so many other things, it feels like another death of a dream. But, instead, I am thankful for the things the Lord taught me through those 10 years of being “in love” with him and for the things my friend taught me as it only increased my faith.

It is funny how a television show was able to help me finally bring that chapter of my life to a close but it has. So here’s to moving on … not necessarily to bigger and better because this isn’t a negative thing or bitter situation but simply in a manner more surrendered and less spastic! I’m looking forward to the days and years ahead because of this promise that I have from the Lord … a promise that doesn’t require a sign because I can enter His presence with just the whisper of His precious name.

 I love you all!

Single Life

So Hacked

A week ago Friday I received an email from Christian Mingle, letting me know that my profile update had been approved. I thought that was funny as I hadn’t submitted any changes to my profile. I figured that was their attempt at getting me back on the site as I had been pretty MIA that week while preparing for my sister’s baby shower. I logged on and saw that they were asking me to update my job title again which I was pretty sure I already had on there. Anyway, I submitted the information “academic support assistant” and moved on with my day. A few hours later I received another email letting me know my picture had been approved. I was like, “what?” I log on and find this looking back at me …

img_4424
Which one is not like the others? **

Yea, if only I had that jaw line. I quickly emailed customer support with the line “My account has been hacked.” I was with my mom grabbing a few grocery items for the shower at Walmart and quickly thinking of things to do when I decided to shut my account down. I didn’t want whoever this chick was to misrepresent me to guys or to offer things I would not be willing to do. I was so ticked off that this had happened. A friend that I met via CM emailed me through his personal email later that night to show me what was appearing on the website from me …

melody-ran-off
Isn’t that nice?

 

It took 4 days for my account to be turned back over to me. I had to prove through various ways that I was the true account holder. I had to read the email where they talk to you like you are a kindergartner and remind you to not give your account information to anyone. “Thank you. I didn’t.” I have no idea how this chick gained access to my account. After creating an entirely new email address, changing multiple passwords and signing over the rights to my firstborn child (which the joke is on them as I do not plan to have children) my account is back in my hands.

After thoroughly checking my profile for any deviant changes, I am ready to shut it down. My 6-month promotional period is almost up and it’s just not worth it to me to keep paying for this. Please know, I am not sharing from a place of discouragement or anything like that. I am genuinely glad I put myself out there on this site and I know that there are others that I can try but I am just not feeling it right now. I guess I am weird because I don’t want a guy who is only going to look at my profile every day but never take the step to communicate with me or when I take the step to say hi then I am ignored. Where are the men with gumption? Men who will at least meet you halfway on this.

img_4425I’m not interested in continuing to pay so I can find email buddies. I’ve been “one of the guys” my whole life. I love my guy friends but eventually that all has to change, as it should, when they start getting married so I’m not looking to add to that area of my life.

I still have a hope that there is a man out there that loves the Lord with his whole heart, is seeking to figure out what it means to live for Him on a daily basis, knows what it means to make mistakes and learn from them, desires to love and be loved by someone. Maybe that is asking too much. I don’t know. I am honestly not looking for anything that I am not willing to strive to be myself.

I am thankful for the experience I have had with Christian Mingle over the last 5 months as I have learned a great deal about myself and about others. I have seen some really ugly insecurities surface in me but have been able to bring them to the Lord and face them. I have had my convictions tested but have been able to stand firm on them. I have been able to hone in even more on what I am looking for in a mate vs. what I am not.

img_4426

Thank you for walking with me on this CM journey. I’m ready for a break from it and should I decided to try online dating again it will definitely be with another site. But for now, I am not looking. I am going to enjoy Fall in East TN and prepare for the upcoming arrival of my baby niece.

Happy Fall Y’all!!

I love you all.

 

**DISCLAIMER** It appears the profile picture that the hacker added to my account was stolen as well. So the lovely woman in this picture is more than likely not even aware that her image has been used on a dating site!

Single Life

Mirror, Mirror

As I am sitting here waiting to get my oil changed, I am thinking through the last blog I posted. Blogging can be a catch 22. You never know how people will read and receive what you write. No matter how many times you edit or rephrase something then someone can still take misunderstand what you meant. Thankfully, most people seem to get the gist of what I am trying to say.

However, I did want to briefly clarify something from my last post … how I see myself. It’s true I don’t look in the mirror and think I am beautiful but I do have moments where I think or feel that I am pretty. To be honest, I would rather have those moments of prettiness than walking around with a personal belief that I am beautiful. Maybe that seems wrong to you but I am more concerned about reflecting the beauty of Christ than living with the knowledge that I am beautiful all the time.

It has been a lifelong process to come to this level of contentment. When I was in junior high or high school, I did hate myself and the image that was reflected to me in the mirror. I share this not to be pitied or to receive encouragement but because I know there are young teenage woman battling with this same self image issue. Praise the Lord I never turned to self harm in order to deal with the pain. Instead I just bore it and kept it to myself which in many ways is just as destructive. I want more for today’s young women. I don’t want them walking through years of self-hatred. I want them to walk in freedom that can only be found in Christ. That’s why I share. That’s why I write.

And I share about the online dating scene because some people think that it’s the cure-all to dating. Ha. Singles ministries are not what they used to be if churches even have them anymore. I have shared with a few of my coworkers that I am in this 1% minority, even within the Church, now based off of the standards the Lord has given me. And trust me, I am not bragging about this … it’s just the reality I am living in. And I am ok with it. I know that I will not and cannot settle so that is not an option.

So to my precious friends who read my blog please know that I am ok! I am good. I am just being open and honest about this journey that I am on.

I love you all!