Sheesh, that means I have nine months to go! God continues to show, shape and guide me in my understanding about relationships. To my surprise, the recent lessons from a purposeful season to NOT DATE, have nothing to do with dating. Instead, the Lord used this time to help me heal from issues that have plagued me since my childhood but I kept limping along life with those burdens because, well, frankly, I didn’t think I could ever unload them.
Here are five great lessons that the Lord has shown me in the last couple of months. I hope you’ll find a blessing in them for yourself! 🙂
1. What might seem like the second time around will be different, if Christ is involved.
I have situations that resurface but I notice that I don’t react to them with the same anxiety or avoidance because I now can rely on Jesus to confront them with me.
2. People don’t always want to hear what you think.
Okay, does this defeat the purpose of the blog? No no, I’m kidding. This was a gentle lesson that the Lord mercifully brought about through observation. On occasion, I will run into people who feel compelled to give me advice because I’m a single mom and somehow that means a portion of my brain is either missing or malfunctioning. (People just say odd things, like, needing to remind me that I have a daughter. Oh! so THAT’s who was on my taxes..scratches head).
Actually, the real lesson for me is that it’s okay to ask if it’s okay to express the point of view. I noticed that some people aren’t always ready to hear it. People appreciate being asked for their time and attention, instead of a blindsiding brain dump that they might not have been ready for.
3. Other people are watching how you live your life, whether or not you know it, whether or not you want them to.
The loudest testimony is our lifestyle. I learned that, even with a naturally guarded disposition, I can’t help who is watching me and my choices from afar. This ended up being a blessing. Instead of exhausting myself on trying to hide, the Lord just met me and guided me through what would have been very stressful situations.
4. The dating story is different in our thirties.
Or forties. Or sixties. The natural span of life experiences will make for a different template on the dating wire. God also showed me how some people move a lot of the chatter out of the way because they have the maturity to be able to communicate about deep things without hesitation. This was a big comfort.
5. My timelines versus God’s timing.
Have we all done this? Tell God how long we think we need to endure? I almost caught myself to want a commercial length lesson, but the Lord is holy and He will not accept less than His own best. God is never late. He is always on time. He showed me things that I would have missed if I had rushed out of this process.
I was blessed to have the Lord reassure me that there was no need to rush, that He is walking closely with me through this commitment to hear from Him. He has so many other things to show me, that are greater and higher than I could imagine for myself. But the reward comes from being in His Word, being around God’s people and consistently deepening my efforts at prayer. Every day, I’ve got to trust Him. And every day, I can be amazed.
More lessons to come.
P.S. For 5 Lessons from Month One of Not Dating, click here!