Hey everybody! I have been keeping up with this blog lately called HeartSupport and I just wanted to kind of promote them I guess? They have some really good stuff to say about relationships. From family members, to dating, to marriage, to divorce, just everything they have to say is just so well thought out and spoken, because it is spoken from probably one the best and most persuasive perspectives and that is experience itself.
I would like to encourage everyone who is dating, single, married, or thinking about being married to watch every single video that Ben and Emily Sledge have done. Those videos are really good and both of them are just honest and soft-spoken people and it really has been just a huge pleasure to watch every single one of their videos! So, click on the picture so you can be directed to their video page and copy and paste the link below to go to their blog page!. I hope you find everything they say encouraging and honest.
Alright so I had a pretty good laugh to myself before I decided to write this post, because last time I wrote a post that had to do with me and my girlfriend Carrie, I had a friend joke around with me and call me "pressed". I laugh for a few different reasons. The first reason is that, the actual fact that I thought about whether I should write this or something else reminds me of highschool -- which I am fresh out of and now am a Freshman in College -- and constantly caring about others opinions about my decisions. I also laugh because this is my girlfriend and if I choose to brag about her then I can brag about her! Who's to stop me?
So, I love writing about Carrie and I, because I remember how I felt all through Highschool when I was single and when me and Carrie were broken up. I loved to read things about others and their relationships because it gave me hope that one day I could have that. But, for some of you who are single and reading this, and are pessimists, you probably hate the fact that I am talking about me and this chick again. If that is you...well....to be honest maybe when you stop being so pessimistic you'll find yourself with someone who is worth more than a few times of hooking up (ouch).
But seriously, now to get to the point of why I am writing what I am writing! If you cannot tell by the tone of my writing so far -- I'm unimaginably happy! I get to go home in two days and see my girlfriend again and I'm not the one to try to be all giddy all over the world wide web, but I'm just excited for Friday.
As of today me and Carrie have been dating for 8 months and that may seem small to everyone else, but that is huge for us. To make it 8 months dating means more than actually just dating for 8 months it means we have made it 3 months with me gone away and in college, it means we have made it longer than the first time we decided to actually date (it lasted one month), and it means we have been dating for the same amount of time we were broken up for.
Carrie is an extreme blessing to me and I couldn't ask to be dating anyone else. I remember when we decided to date again and people actually bet that we would only last at most 2 months. People really didn't believe all that much in us and who could blame them? Out of all the most indecisive couples in the world we were probably ranked in the top 20. We have gone through countless arguments, we have thrown multiple jealousy-temper-tantrums, we have hurt one another, we have broken up with one another, and we have gotten back together with each other.
I don't have much else to say to be perfectly honest. I could pour out my entire heart to all of you reading this about how I feel towards her, but I will save that for a more appropriate time. She literally is my closest and best friend, and we have come a long way in the past three years of knowing each other. We have set our standards (read my blog post called standards), we have been honest with one another, we have enjoyed the journey together, and we have constantly tried to be the best that we can for the other. I spent months arguing and writing and praying and thinking about what it meant to date and whether I think I could handle it. And through it all God has provided us both with strength to keep pursuing each other and love to keep showing one another. It is only by Gods grace that we have made it to where have. I have seen us make mistakes together and by the grace of God I have seen us persevere together.
To those who are single I would encourage you to keep pursuing Christ and loving others with as much vigor and excitement that you would have if you were dating. For those who are dating I would say keep persevering and pursuing Christ and through your love for Christ may you love one another Biblically. If you are in Highschool or College and are dating someone do not let anyone put you down for your age, but rather stand up and seek, through your heart for God and the one you are dating, more respect for what Teenagers and Young Adults can do through the grace of God on their lives and relationships.
I would first like to start off by a simple introduction. The picture, seen to your left --or right if you are reading through a mirror-- is a picture of me (the black one) and my girlfriend (the attractive one). This entire blog post is dedicated to my girlfriend Carrie Eaton.
Those who have watched us grow up in highschool know our story. And, if you were unlucky enough to be a very close friend of ours during this time you probably were very annoyed with a lot of our story. To quickly sum up the story, I liked her, so I went after her after just getting out of a relationship. She liked me and went after me, after getting out of a relationship! Well...we both weren't ready. So we went a whole school year acting like we were boyfrirend and girlfriend with out the title (I will blog about how much I hate when people do this one day!). We were on and off that whole school year 'til one night we were on the phone I was going to the doctor's office cause I had strep throat and a sinus infection at the same time and she said we should just DATE!
So we did. It lasted a month. She went on a missions trip came back, I guess Jesus didn't want us together, blah blah blah, heart-break heart-break, and then after 6 months or so we got back together!
I want to share with you all what have been some of the key factors to us growing up and finally understanding what it means to be in a relationship with one another. Carrie and I have gone through some rough times and have acted foolishly more times than I can count! But, our second time dating has been one of the most encouraging and rewarding experiences I have ever had in my life, by God's grace and his grace alone.
One night while Carrie and I were broken up we went to the movies together to get some "closure." We decided we should talk first then watch a movie cause if the talk went bad at least we'd have the movie to help cheer us up! The talk went great. When Carrie went on that missions trip she happened to start falling for a guy on that missions trip. It hurt like crap and I was angry for awhile. But, when we talked that night I shared with her that there is always going to be "someone better." There is always going to be someone who is better looking, stronger, hotter, funnier, "talented", and more! But, if you like someone you have to like that person for them. When someone asks me why do I like Carrie Eaton, my answer first and foremost should be, because she is Carrie Eaton! After that, then I can go on and explain the different and various reasons why I like her and what makes her, her!
I believe that one huge reason the divorce rate is getting higher and higher in today's society (there are number of reasons!) is because too many people when they were dating someone did not like that person for who they were! Completely and utterly for who they were! Instead they saw someone else walk by, who "looks better", and automatically attempted to be with them! So, when people get married they are so used to constantly switching and breaking up for someone else, that when they get married they feel like all they can do is divorce in order to get someone better. "For better or for worse." Are we going to start taking those words seriously or not? Scripture says "Love never fails" In 1 Corinthians 13 so why is it that I hear too many people saying, "I still love them, but I just had to be realistic and move on."
If you walk away you have never loved in the first place. Scriptural love, Biblical LOVE calls for people to love even when times and people seem unlovable.. And, if you are a Christian you MUST agree with this! Because your whole salvation rests upon the fact that you are the most unlovable and yet still loved through it all! That you have lied, cheated, disobeyed, hated, and mocked not only your Father, but your bridegroom (we are the bride of Christ as the Church Ephesians 5:22-33). The one you are married to, and yet you have pushed him away!
What I am getting at is that we must have a standard of beauty that is the person we are with. Christ's standard of beauty is not the perfect human! His standard of beauty at this moment is you. Once you are saved and are in his grace and mercy you have been accepted by him as righteousness and perfect, although we both know you are not! But, Christ says I will love you because I love you! No one else compares!
If God's standard of beauty is not the perfect human I do not think that us as humans should have a standard of beauty that is the "perfect girl/boy". I am not saying when you are dating someone you should act as if you were married. I am saying though that you should begin to put into practice the same attributes that you will begin to put into practice when you are married. Attributes like viewing your girlfriend or boyfriend as the most attractive person in the world! There are plenty of people in the world! Plenty of good-looking ones no doubt, but if the person you are with, in your eyes is ultimately beautiful everything else fades to black! I hear too many people telling Carrie and I to be "realistic." That we are in college and most likely will not make it. They just might be right! And, I am willing to try to humble and understand that we are not perfect and that God is ultimately in control of the direction of our relationship.
But, I believe that if me and Carrie truly see each other as beautiful...inside and out. Then at least that is one thing we don't have to worry about. We don't have to worry about seeing someone else and falling for them, because we can sincerely say I like you for you. That girl may have what most would say, "cooler" hair, but in my eyes I believe that Carries hair is all I need (just a lame example).
If you are single, I would encourage you have standards, but allow your standards to be Biblical. Allow your standards to be a woman or a man of God who is completely and totally sold out for Christ! And then...whoever meets that standard and whoever you are most attracted too...be with them. Do not narrow your standards by physical limitations.
I hope all of this made sense! All I am saying is to love like Christ has loved you in the end! Love your spouse, fiance, and boyfriend or girlfriend the way that Christ has loved you and in the end I believe that is what will truly help strengthen and encourage your relationship to go to places it never has before!