Keep On Keepin’ On

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Life has a funny way of repeating itself. We sometimes can find ourselves in similar situations over and over again. The main theme of my life I’d have to say is heartache. And I don’t mean that in just a romantic way. Heart ache through betrayal from friends, enemies, even people I don’t even know – lies, conniving, plotting – just to see me fall. And throughout the years of being broken down and praying and crying out I always come back to the same word…WHY?

Why would God allow these things in my life? To teach me a lesson? Why am I continuously drawn to people who are waiting for me to turn around so they can stab me in the back? Why do people tell lies and get away with it? Why are they doing this to me? And what did I ever do to deserve such treatment?

In the past I’ve festered over these thoughts and feelings over long periods of time. But as I’ve grown in my faith, I’ve been able to accept it and KNOW there’s a purpose. There’s a reason. And while I do need to learn to not give my trust so easily, being a good person to people who end up taking advantage of that are suffering far more than I am. And rather than seeking revenge, I know it’s already been taken care of. Not necessarily by something bad happening to them, although I can’t deny it’s definitely crossed my mind wanting someone to get what they deserve, but I’ve learned that God’s timing is impeccable and perfect.

I could go on and on about the situations I’ve been in. From “friends” talking about me for no reason, to being pre-judged by people who don’t even know me, my ex’s entire family hates me because of a lie their family friend told about me, I’ve had people steal money from me, and others throw me under the bus to make themselves look good. I’m not sure if God is trying to make my skin thicker or what His plan is, but I do know for a fact I haven’t suffered in vain.

From an early age my parents and teachers at school would always say: “Do unto others, what you would want done to you.” Treat people how you would want to be treated, act with integrity, don’t lie, don’t do something that will hurt someone or their reputation, be kind, be generous, be loving, be genuine – at all times. I don’t understand why everyone hasn’t been taught these vital morals in life. I’ve even had self-proclaimed “Christians” do things against me and use me. It’s unbelievable and I’m constantly in awe of what people are capable of. My mom always says, “Don’t ever be surprised because everyone is capable of doing anything.” It’s true. It’s a sad truth, but I can’t let that keep me from continuing to do what is right.

There’s been only a couple times where I allowed someone to make me lose total control. Which I could have avoided easily, and regretted immediately after that I allowed someone to get to me like that. Most of the time though, since I wear my heart on my sleeve, in situations where I should be fuming in anger I end up crawling in a ball and sobbing. It hurts. I just can never understand.

Whether I’ve been left to celebrate my birthday alone, have had a “friend” try to get with my boyfriend in front of me, or been humiliated when I’ve never done anything wrong to anyone; rather than letting that make me bitter I’ve just learned to let those people go. I will never be afraid of letting new people in because that’s just where my heart is. I love having relationships with people and while I’ve had about a hundred different circle of friends so far, those who are true have never left and I’m ever so grateful for those few.

If you’re finding yourself in similar situations or feel like you can’t handle another person causing you pain; rest assured your pain has a purpose. While it may not seem so at first and sometimes things will get so hard you feel like your heart can’t take anymore, God’s plan will prevail and someday you will see what He had in store for you all along. This doesn’t mean that you won’t ever suffer, we’re all human and even those you love will let you down, but as long and you’re living in the Lord’s truth, you’ll be able to pick yourself up, give grace, and keep on keeping’ on.

Truth For Today

“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” – Galatians 6:9

“Do what is right and good in the LORD’s sight, so all will go well with you. Then you will enter and occupy the good land that the LORD swore to give your ancestors.” – Deuteronomy 6:18

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Waiting For God’s Best

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It seems as I’ve gotten older, I continue to refine and be more specific as to what it is I’m looking for in a partner. If anything, a majority of my past relationships have taught me exactly what I’m NOT looking for. 

From my experience, a staggering number of men pretend to be what they are not. They want to end up with a good woman, so they play the part. But it’s all fake. They fake being cordial, they fake being a gentleman, they fake having respect for you, they fake having any sort of values and most of all they fake caring about you at all. Not just as someone they’re dating, but as a human being. If you can’t care about someone on a level of them being your brother or sister in Christ aside from being attracted to them, then there’s a problem. 

I’m holding out for someone special. Someone who will accept me for who I am, won’t judge me on past mistakes, and who has standards. Someone who challenges me to be the best version of myself (sometimes I lack motivation) and he will probably be someone just as picky as I am. I think it was Jefferson Bethke who said when he came to Christ he then started seeing all women as his sisters, even those he wanted to date he treated them as he would a sister.

Although it’s not easy waiting for someone worthy to come along, I know it will be so worth it. The time I spend in life groups, furthering my education, my career and focusing on volunteering opportunities rather than going on dates, will pay off. It seems as though when people try to “hook me up” with guys they rave about how successful he is and financially stable and whatnot. But that’s not what I’m looking for. What I’m holding out for is stability of the heart; a partner to not go through life with but enjoy life with, someone to laugh with (sometimes at), will hold me at my weakest and will be immediately calmed by the touch of my hand. Someone who doesn’t focus on material things, who looks at me as if I’m the only girl in the world, and will be ok with the fact that I MIGHT be better than them at some sports. Specifically ping pong. I realize no relationship is perfect no matter how good two people are, at the end of the day, we’re all human; but I know God’s best for me is out there somewhere. We just haven’t met yet…or it might be possible we have…

 

 

 

 

 

Most Friendships Aren’t Meant to Last

 

Recently I was going through photos on my Facebook and realized how many people have come in and out of my life. It’s a lot. Like an entire football team’s worth at least. Maybe TWO. I find the main turmoil of growing up is in fact, when you lose friends. Usually it’s for the better, but that doesn’t make it any less painful.

When I speak of losing friends I’m mostly referring to female friends. I grew up going to private school so throughout the years up until the 8th grade, I was with pretty much the same kids every year. Even when my best friend moved to another state I still kept in touch with her. But then as we age, sometimes we can grow apart from people.

I’m at the age now where everybody is starting to find their pair and getting hitched. Girls that always said I’d be their bridesmaid found an excuse to not even send an invitation. My best friend growing up who moved to another state when we were little made me her bridesmaid 3 years ago. I felt so honored and excited to be a part of her union. Unfortunately, the wedding was canceled a week before it was supposed to happen, she’s now getting married to someone else next month and I can’t even get her to text me back, let alone send me an invitation.

I’ve always been a relational type of person. I like having friendships, I give a lot in my relationships with others, more than most I think. It’s hard to find people who you actually can relate to and also know how to be a good friend. For me personally, good-hearted people were hard to find because I was willing to accept the not-so-nice friends and kept the company of people who hurt, deceived and took my friendship for granted, out of not wanting to be lonely. My mother always (and still tells me) that I’m too sweet and people like to take advantage of that. I never said no to anyone, I was always willing to drive people around, buy things for people who didn’t have money, lend my clothes, I even let a friend live in my parents’ house one summer after her parents kicked her out. It’s sad to think that I don’t have friendships, let alone any type of communication, with any of those people anymore.

If I explained why I’m no longer friends with these girls, you would either laugh or say “WTFrench Toast?!” It’s just ridiculousness I don’t even want to get into. I saw a counselor for a few months not only for the breakup I went through, but I was having a hard time with the friends I was losing as well. For years I kept thinking, “Is it me? Am I the problem? What am I doing wrong?” It was so comforting to have a professional tell me that it wasn’t me. That she thought I couldn’t have done anything to salvage any of the friendships and that there are so many women who experience the same thing. One of the girls who stopped talking to me recently (after she praised me for being such a good friend to her for so long), threw in my face how nobody knows how I “really” am, that I scare people into being my friend and that all the girls I’ve lost throughout the years have been my fault. If she would have said that to me prior to seeing the counselor, I would have taken that VERY hard. I’m the type of person that takes things to heart but when she said this to me I took it with a grain of salt. First off, if you’re my friend and reading this right now, what she said should have you cracking up right now. Secondly, someone has to really be going through something personally in order to attack someone who has done nothing to them. When someone says something nasty to you, it is not a reflection of you, but a reflection of them. When I told her I wish her the best and success in life she told me she didn’t need my good wishes. Alllllrighty then, so much for trying to be nice.

Life goes on, and you learn what types of friends you need in your life. The types of friends who are going to stand by you on your wedding day, who will be called “Aunt” by your kids and are willing to put as much into your friendship as you are. I’m not the same person I was two years ago…I don’t even hang out with the same people I did a year ago. That’s insane to me. To think I’ve grown that much in such a short amount of time. But, there’s a reason for everything and I’m grateful for the girls that have stuck by me (you know who you are) and even the ones I’ve began relationships with most recently have been more of a friend to me than other girls ever have that I’ve known for years.

You don’t need people who will bring drama to your life, you don’t need people who will judge, or take advantage of your kindness. You don’t need people who only talk to you when they need something, or just to gossip. You also don’t need the ones that are willing to throw your friendship away over petty things or start a fight over nothing. Life is too short ladies. I think it had been a year since our friendship ended and I was still tagged in a photo and one of the girls decided to make a nasty comment about me so of course I got the notification. I responded that it was very sad that she would harbor such feelings after such a long time and that I would pray for her. She laughed at me, but I was serious.

Just like in relationships with men, it’s not worth staying in friendships with women who do nothing but bring you down. Whether you’re in the same stage of life or not, true friendships remain no matter what. Whether you talk every day, every week, once a month or every few months; the important thing is that you’re there for each other in the times you need it the most. We need relationship with other women because they’re the only ones that can truly understand us. It’s awesome how sometimes I’ll think I’m crazy but then my friend confides she’s the same exact way and it brings a sense of relief to know someone is right there with you. Cherish the women in your life, keep the ones that are faithful and have always been there for you. Sometimes I seriously think our true soul mates are our girlfriends. Make it a point to be a good woman, one that lifts others up, is there when someone needs you and never has a bad thing to say. Live in such a way that if anyone were to say something negative about you, nobody would ever believe it.

 

 

 

Jesus is My Boyfriend

I’ve been feeling compelled and empowered lately. Ironically, I’m feeling this way as a single woman. A newly single woman I might add, when normally after a break-up I’m sad. Ususally I’m still reminiscing, still looking at old photographs, trying to see what he’s doing…but I’m not. Not this time. It might have something to do with the fact that I KNEW he wasn’t right for me. But even then I think I was just grasping for a reason to stick it out. But then, God embraced me, and I let it go.

I was lied to…yet again. I was blind…yet again. I was believing in things that weren’t there…yet again. I absolutely believe in the quote that says “God allows people to enter our lives for a reason, a season or a lifetime.” There’s something we can learn from everyone, every person we meet is not an accident. I admit I was a bit desperate to find love at the time. I went as far as joining an online dating website which I where I met my most recent boyfriend. Although I was talking to Him more than ever and actively pursuing God, I still really wanted to be with someone. And I needed to learn that I need to listen and not pursue anything that doesn’t glorify Him. I had feelings in the beginning that didn’t feel right with this guy, but I didn’t listen because I felt maybe I was being too picky, but I wasn’t. God revealed so much to me about this guy, He spoke to me and I finally believed that the bad feelings, were absolutely right on.

For the first time ever after I’ve been dumped or betrayed, I’m OK. I’m not looking for someone. I’m not grasping on for the life of me. I don’t want to go out on dates. I don’t want to put my identity into a relationship with another person. I want my identity to only be defined by how I live my life, what I stand for, and the most important relationship I will ever have: which is the one I have with Jesus Christ. That’s it.

So many young women make the grave mistake of not being content. Of fearing that they’ll never find anyone. Holding on to toxic relationships and tying themselves to people who are not for them. I challenge you to try something. Attach yourself to God. To Someone who is and has always been there and has never left you. Even when you think He isn’t there, He is. Most of the time he gives us ways out. He allows things to happen, he allows us to bear witness to things that SHOULD allow us to escape and realize this is not someone for us. But most women stay. They stay through the abuse, they stay through the disrespect, they stay through the unloving words and actions, they stay through the most horrendous things and don’t realize that God is trying so hard to lift your chin up to remind you of your worth. He’s trying to tell you “you’re beautiful”, He’s craving for you, He wants to dance with you in the moonlight, He wants to kiss your forehead goodnight, He wants to be the one to hug you when you’re feeling at your worst. You’re praying and waiting for the guy you’re with to do that for you, when you know they never will. A lot of women have that man, but if you don’t, why not let God be that for you until He allows the RIGHT man into your life?

I am so incredibly blessed. I have a wonderful, loving family. My few real friends are amazing and I feel more loved than ever. That’s because for the first time, I’m letting Him love me the way He’s always wanted to, but I ignored for so long. I don’t NEED a man to be happy. I don’t need to be chasing or pursuing anyone but Jesus. I have friends in bad relationships tell me “I’m not as strong as you, I can’t just let him go.” I’m going to tell you right now, I’m not strong. God is strong. Philippians 4:13 says “I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.” It took me a while to build up courage, but He provides that. He’s my support system and He can be yours too. All you have to do, is let Him in. He’s waiting for you. Open your heart and let Him love you.

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