Thursday, August 21, 2014

There Is An Order

It is the reason that the theory of evolution is ludicrous. There is an order to everything. God did not take something that was void and out of order to create more disorder. An explosion doesn't put things in place. Explosions don't separate the heavens and the earth, placing the water where it needs to be so aquatic animals have a place, trees standing upright where birds and squirrels have a place, placing man in a place where all is provided for him (Genesis 1 AMP). Explosions cause disorder.

Understand that anything that is a God idea has a constructive function, is decent, in order and is good (1 Corinthians 14:40 AMP). Marriage is a God idea. The function of 2 people working together for a place to be established for their comfort and for the procreation of more just like those 2 people is an order that should not be disturbed. It works. There is no reason to fix something that has been working well for centuries. Stop picking at it and tweaking it. Its perfect.

Who is it that picks on a marriage? Too many to mention. Just know when everyone has such good advice to bestow upon your beginning relationship, sift through it all. People, whether they believe that Jesus is Lord or not, have all sorts of intentions for giving unwanted or unsolicited advice. Working in a senior community, I looked forward to my first day and continued to be excited about my job for little over a year. I expected for these elderly people to bestow upon me their wisdom and knowledge that brought them thus far and for all of the years they continued to thrive...even with their spouses. It didn't happen. The wisdom I received from them, was God placing me at the right place at the right time. I believed that golden years was aptly named for the retired citizen to enjoy the fruits of their labor. To smile and smell the roses. Instead, the crotchety attitudes or the reclusive behavior had a root system stemming from being angry because the spouse passed away before them, having a better understanding of life and physically unable to do anything about it, and adult children slowly taking away their independence for their own safety, senility, delusional from dementia, and just plain scared. If any of them shared some life skills would they enjoy these last years any better then they do?

Tweaking a marriage is a little different. Its a personal preference and also something to wonder if the person has the elevator going all the way to the top floor. This character has a great idea that seems harmless to try and then takes that harmless idea to a whole other kind of level without considering the other person. Adding someone else into the relationship will never, ever, work! Adding more children when the other has had enough isn't the best idea either. Moving to the other side of the country or to another country because the jobs are plentiful or the money is better is switching the love from each other into materials...especially without asking the architect of it all.... its a recipe for disaster.

I mentioned how much I like synchronized dancing and when the dancers flow effortlessly - its even better. Here is a couple I originally introduced in The Kingdom Living Blog. The entry is entitled, You'll Never Feel Happy.... It is the lyrics to the song they are dancing to. The movement of this couple almost puts me to tears because its the plan set to music. There is an order that creates such artistry - its amazing to watch.  I couldn't decide which video to use to express what I am trying to convey. Both pieces are amazing because of their union and agreement to keep the order of their marriage. Notice in the last video, the couples at the end aren't married. Do you see a difference in how they dance? Also notice, they don't finish the entire piece either.

Arguing is disorder (2 Timothy 2:23 AMP). It is one person trying to win the other person over to his/her side. It continues because of the immaturity in not understanding the discord an argument can bring (James 4:1 AMP). It also shows what the other person is not willing to do: listen and /or appease the situation. In a ministry, where I used to attend, I learned whenever stepping into a new task, pray. The next lesson was whenever going to work having to deal with all sorts of personalities, pray. The final lesson was noticing the difference in the peaceful existence when prayer was implemented as opposed to when it wasn't. There was a vast difference and one I will never be without. This cannot be any different when married. Your spouse, soon to be spouse, or the both of you will have to go outside of the house to work, or shop, or go to school, or whatever it is and other people will be involved. To keep the order and peace that Jesus has given to us, do the thing that Christians know to do best. Pray.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Scary Family

We all have them. What used to be called "the black sheep" (the rebel) has now turned into a freaking herd! Are you the only normal one and is it something that should be introduced to your intended right from the gate? Think this one through - seriously! Its like that sitcom from the 1960's, The Munsters. They had that one regular looking niece, yet she never saw what everyone else did.

I wrote an entry to this blog a few years ago entitled, Slim Pickin's. In it, I described for the one hoping to be married, not to feel desperate but encouraged because God is doing what only He can do. He moves the mooches, gold diggers, slackers, hood rats, hoochie-mamas, clowns, and freaks out of the way for you to see the true one that is equally yoked with you. Its a wonderful thing - that is, unless you realize that you have a moocher or a freak because it is your equivalence (2 Corinthians 6:14 AMP). Its something to work on if you don't wish to spend the rest of your life with such a person - clean up your own character (Haggai 1:5-7 AMP).

The scariest of families aren't the ones that allow for you to see their "dirty laundry" off the bat. They wait to see if you can tolerate bits and pieces. If you can accept that then they will allow you to see a little bit more. If that doesn't phase you, some will show you the whole sha-bang. The question is, why didn't you take off running like you were on fire? Why are you still there looking to see what else they have to show? Aren't you the one calling the victim names in a horror flick for being so curious? Don't you call the girl stupid for having weak ankles when its time to run in those thriller movies? You're the one telling the black guy not to open the door, knowing he is the first to be killed. Why are you waiting to see what comes of a relationship when the warning is staring you in the face (Proverbs 3 AMP)?

There was a couple that had been dating for years before they decided that they need to be married. When
they made the decision, they also made plans for their future. One of the things that was in the plan - children. She wasn't really interested in having children but for him, she would make the sacrifice. They then discussed how to raise their children and what would be the best schools for them. One of the things he brought up was his own childhood. He didn't like the rules his mother enforced upon him for whatever her reasons were - he promised he would never do those things to his child. She asked what were they. He proceeded to tell her the horrors he went through. He was forced to quit high school to get a job to help support the family when his parents divorced. He also remembered when he was punished, his mother spanked him for the things he did and what was in his mind to do later on. She gasped at hearing all that he told her and they vowed never to do this to their children. Fast forward: 5 years later, the couple had 3 sons. She recognized some tendencies her husband had when it came time to discipline them. Though she tried to speak to him about being excessive, his rebuttal was, "you never had brothers, this is how a man raises men. You wouldn't understand." He continued with his way as she began regretting her choice of husband material.

I have not studied human behavior all of my life. With that disclaimer, if asked where this sort of behavior comes from, I am sure there would be a litany of answers. Personally, I believe families that have become like this stems from selfishness (Philippians 2:3 AMP). Whether its a man who refuses to marry because he doesn't want to lose half of all that he has built for himself or someone who has an inheritance and doesn't share any of it - the outcome is never good (Luke 6:45 AMP). That behavior is seed which when planted that harvest would be bitter with an outcome that has much to do with the characteristics of the enemy (John 10:10 AMP). Its funny how that seed has the same result as sin.

Truthfully, the majority of this blog has much to do with being tricked in or into relationships. Along in that same vein, you have to admit, in order for you to be tricked you weren't really paying much attention. So, if we are still being truthful, unless you completely read many of these entries, your bible, and/or be a ready listener to God's voice, you were heading down the trail of being tricked no matter what. Seriously, there would be no one to blame but yourself. Disregarding this truth can also send you down another path you will eventually regret as well (James 1:22 KJV).

This is how one rebel is turned into a whole herd - disregarding the warning signs. He/she doesn't think any thing they do is wrong. When Lot's daughters were leaving Sodom and Gomorrah, why did they believe the solution to their dilemma was to have sex with their father (Genesis 19:31-35 AMP)? The result of their decision is the reason why the Middle East is fighting to this day. That's a whole country! They are all family!!!

About a scary family, prayer changes things. Know that if you walk into a situation willingly, believing God will make the necessary changes, it will take faith and patience (James 1:4 AMP). Moses was afraid and stuttered when he spoke, yet he was able to lead the children of Israel from Pharaoh. Now, remember how the children of Israel was appreciative of Moses' efforts. Recall how long before they reached the promise land. Notice their reaction when they were fed from heaven. Eventually, we (the righteousness of God through Christ Jesus) got it right.... do you see that? Do you really need to go through all of that - again?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Not Your Type?

Is there such a thing for a Christian to have a type? You know what I mean? We follow Christ. He tells us that we walk in the Spirit so not to fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16 AMP). Its impossible to please God without faith and the definition of such a thing is believing before we have the evidence of it (Hebrew 11:6 AMP). It would then have to come down to, what are you believing God for? Are you asking for what you can have with the outward appearance or the true heart and soul of a person from the inward which only God can see (1 Samuel 16:7 AMP)?

As I have written before, I look at detective and court shows. When the evidence is compiled, the detectives look at patterns and things that are common about the suspect. When they see that the victims all have the same build, hair color, and social status, they derive that the culprit has a type. This information keeps them from other factors that could be distracting in catching the suspect. There is a purpose in what they are doing. What's our purpose in having a type?

The latest thing for some young women, and its been this way for awhile, is the man has to have money and its not bad if he were over 6 feet. I recall when I was in high school and heard this description for the first time, it was a little baffling as I waited for other criteria that could be rewarded with her company. Nope, that was it!!! In my community there were also those that specifically looked for lighter complected men with curly hair while others liked the darker complexion but he had to have bowed legs. Why, I would ask. And she would reply, "Because its just sexy." Really? Eh, whatever floats your boat.

I was thinking if I had one - a type. Should I compare the guys I liked when I was in high school, or
after I got my divorce? How would I know? I dated my ex when I was a teenager and married him in my early 20's. We stayed married for awhile and I haven't really dated since the divorce. So what would be my type and how could I find this out? My father has a light complexion and curly to straight hair. He was educated, plan oriented, and calm for the most part. Would I compare the person I am interested in to my dad? We have been doing this for years. Is it because of our psychological education or are we really attracted to our parents in some ick, disgusting way that we would marry people like them? My ex was dark complected with a fly by the seat of his pants behavior for planning. What was I thinking?

Actually, I got tired of hearing women complain of the men they chose to be with. The men got what they wanted but the women sounded as if they got gypped. I didn't want that to be me. If a man can marry eye candy why can't a woman and be just as happy about it? I like a firm, chiseled jaw line and broad shoulders with defined arms. Let's see this in a celebrity. What's my type? Morris Chestnut, Shemar Moore, or Boris Kodjoe comes to mind. Nice, attractive looking men but I just couldn't get around not knowing the person. How could I pick out a type without finding who the person is? I can't, in fact its kind of disgusting thinking anyone could marry a person based upon the outward appearance.

I was reminded of this attractive man (even if in his own mind) that married a woman I assume he believed was gorgeous. They weren't married for very long. You see, shortly after the nuptials, she became pregnant. When she had the baby, the husband was upset because the baby wasn't as cute as the couple. He believed that she cheated on him and needed to have a DNA test to see if his wife was telling him the truth. He is the father. Shocked, I assume, he couldn't understand what happened. She finally revealed that early on she had plastic surgery so she could feel good about herself. He sued her for a divorce. His reasoning: he married her under false pretenses. I never heard of such a thing! How could he? She was the same person he courted, the same person he spoke sweet nothings to, the same person he devoted himself to when they spoke their vows in front of friends, family, and God. So why didn't any of those things matter when he sees a picture of her former self. She wasn't his type? But she, why?

A different case where a man marries his high school sweetheart. They have children and for the most part they seem happy. One morning, while his wife was in the bathroom, he knocks on the door for her to let him in. She was on the toilet and asked for him to wait. He didn't think he needed to seeing they were married and shouldn't have any secrets. Because she took too long to open the door, he took a hammer and destroyed the door handle, washed his hands and left with the door and his wife's mouth hanging wide open. This was the beginnings of several violent events that she had no clue he was like when they married and it eventually took a toll on the marriage. They divorced. Fast forward: He gets remarried. Never believing he ever had a problem, his wife soon discovers that her husband isn't what he claimed to be. One day her husband locked his keys in the car and couldn't get into the house. He calls his wife to come home from whatever she was doing to open the door so he could get the extra set of keys. Having been exasperated with her husband in the past, she tells him, he has to do the best with whatever he has until she gets there. She planned to finish what she set out to do for the day. Instead of him waiting, he finds a hammer in the back of his truck and breaks off the handle to the front door of their house to retrieve the extra set of keys. The door and his wife's mouth was left hung open. He definitely has a type because he's still alive!

I wonder, when friends and family decide to be that special match maker because they believe they know the type that would just be perfect, let me warn you, unless you know every nuance of your friend, family member, or co-worker, please keep your self proclaimed skills to yourself. There is only One that knows who is perfect for each and every one of us. He is the creator of all and knows all. When you change, and you will because we all do, God knows who the person will be that can adapt to those changes and who won't fare too well. Rest assured, He can be changing that person even as you are reading this and you didn't need to be around experiencing the transformation or maybe its you being transformed (Romans 8:28 AMP). I know He's not through with me yet.

Party Of One?

If you have never done it before, its not an undaunted feeling one has coming into an establishment just to have a quiet meal and then the hostess asks how many are with you. There are people in front of you, those behind you and are all listening to the answer that you more then likely don't wish to say, "Just one." Walking with a straight back to follow the hostess to a table with 4 chairs or to a large booth where you are the only one that will be taking up all of that space. If it is the first time, you are less likely to look around for a table that isn't in the middle of everything. But once you begin to enjoy your own company, getting a table next to the window won't be so difficult to do.

Which is the reason for this entry. I have written so much about the single person liking who he/she is without being engaged in a relationship first. I have asked the question several times, if it were you, would you like to be with you for the rest of your life? As crazy as that may sound, you are the only one to answer that question before you go off and make it someone else's trap or heaven on earth. Joyce Meyer, a well known evangelist, asks that question. She says, when God was letting her know that she needed to make some changes within herself. She replied that she makes declarations for change to get along with everyone and then they come home and all of those declarations are tossed out the window (paraphrasing). She finishes with, "you can never get away from you. Where ever you go, there you are." My question, so why not like who you are?

Have you ever been on a date and was seated in a nice restaurant, begin having a conversation with your date only to find that he/she is as boring as a gray wall? You try to find a topic that might peak the interest of the other and when there is nothing, you are left to wonder why are you even out with this person? What was it that attracted you to ask/accept the date? If you have ever been on one of those dates asking yourself such questions, try doing the same thing about yourself. Go on a date by yourself. Take the time to make the reservation and a plan as to what you are going to do. Get dressed as if you are trying to be impressive. Get to the restaurant on time. Feeling a little silly? Are you uncomfortable? Do you feel self conscious? If your answer is yes to any of those questions, then its you that hopes the other person will anchor the date on something for it to be interesting.

Society is full of those who try to get something for nothing. Some people have gotten away with their good looks for so long, they never had a reason to attempt with getting the inside together. A conversation on world events would be a hardship for them. Asking what was the last book they read would lead off in a direction of hems, haws, and inappropriate jokes. Anything to get your mind off of something of any intellectual value and back onto the physically attraction you both share. Its when Christians find the scripture, beauty fades. Its unfortunate that the enlightenment comes after vows have taken place. How could that happen? When did the listening of the good Shepherd stop (John 10:27 AMP)? Why would a believer be sucked into such an old scheme (2 Corinthians 5:17 AMP)?

The answers to those questions might come when you can figure out if you felt silly, uncomfortable, or self-conscious when going on a date by yourself. Why not see it as a faith test (1 Corinthians 9:27 AMP)? Do you really believe Jesus is Lord (Romans 10:9 AMP)? Do you really believe that greater is He that is in you then He that is in the world (1 John 4:4 AMP)? Do you really believe that He will never leave you nor forsake you (Deuteronomy 31:6 AMP)? Do you really believe that He created you fearfully and wonderfully (Psalm 139:14 KJV)? You see, if you really believed all of these things, you would enjoy your own company. If you really believed then what others are thinking about you sitting alone wouldn't bother you. Its time out in thinking that there is a better half of you somewhere out there. You are whole, sound, and complete, even before the other person comes to find you or you finding her.