Where Is My Heart At?

Are you tired of hearing

“go here to meet a guy”

“change this attitude to become more attractive to someone”

“get more involved in ministry, thats where all the great christian guys are”

“Visit other churches, expand your scope of where you are looking for a godly man”

I have heard these statements and many others told to me, sometimes subtly by well meaning friends,acquaintances  and by christian authors. Oftentimes people, articles and books will tell christian singles, especially us girls, that in order to meet someone we need to expand our horizons, go visit different churches, get out more, do mission work and the list goes on. This sounds like great advice in theory and I used to believe this was the way to do things. My thought pattern was, where else am I going to meet the best guys if not doing ministry and involved in church activities? Plus guys want girls with a good attitudes, love, patience and all the fruits of the spirit, right?

I have stated on the blog before that I think the best way to meet a potential mate and really seeing what they are made of is by working in ministry together. I stand by that statement.  As a christian culture we have twisted that to mean we need to go out of our way to do things and change ourselves so that we will be seen by the godly young men.  All of these christian activities and trying to mold ourselves to be more like Christ are all great things. The problem comes when we do it because of a desire to meet a guy instead of the motivation coming from a love of God and wanting to be more like Him and to bring more people into His fold.

Should we be in constant fellowship with one another? The answer is YES! Multiple times the Bible commands us to be encouraging and uplifting to our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.  Ephesians 4:29

We need to be encouraging our brothers and sisters and Christ and sometimes that extends to  people outside of our home congregation. Sometimes we need to visit other churches to encourage them. As an example some of the young people in our church try and make church visiting a monthly event. We go and encourage our sister congregation and the guys help out by teaching a lesson and/or leading songs. The members really appreciate that and I think it is a great way to build up the bond between fellow workers in the Lords church. We are not doing this out of hope for self gain, but because of the love for the members of Christ’s body.

Well what about ministry? Should you put yourself out there to minister to people and teach them about Christ? Absolutely!  Jesus commanded us to teach others about him. In fact those were his very last words to his apostles.

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Mathew 28:19

This should not be done thought to meet potential spouses. Never in the Bible does it tell us as christians to go preach the gospel to meet our potential spouse. Enough said.

I think the saying I have heard the most is “fix that _____ problem or no guy is going to be interested in you.” Every day we should be striving to be more Christ like through Bible reading, prayer and through our actions.

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners and purify your hearts, you double-mind-ed. James 4:8 

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4: 31-32

These verses speak to drawing near to God and sharing His love with those around us because of the great forgiveness we have been offered. When we become Christians we are supposed to change, but not to please other people, but out of love for a Savior that gave his life for us! The problem with all of the “how to meet people advice”  lies in the heart. When you are doing these things to please potential romantic interests, or to meet them, this is not pursuing Christ and trusting him with your potential future relationships.  All of this often well meaning advice tells women not to seek to spread the gospel and become more like Christ for the gospels sake, but to find a husband. This the beginning of the heart of a hypocritical Christian seeking to please men other then God, even thought I don’t think this is the intent.It looks on the surface like we are giving all of our time to Christ, but in reality we are there because thats where the good christian guys are at or we hope they are there. Don’t get started down this path, because it can be hard to get off.

With all that said I think there are avenues that are specifically designed to meet other singles. In my opinion those opportunities to meet people(especially if you live in a remote area where christians are few) can be good and I am in no way bashing those. In these situations every one is going in with the mind set of meeting other like minded Christian singles and there is no hidden agendas. Also there is nothing wrong with being single as Paul said in 1 Corinthians 7:7-9 and there is a lot of things that a single person can accomplish for the Lord.

I don’t want this to discourage you, but instead  to challenge myself and you to think about the motivation behind what you are doing. Are your actions done out of love for God and wanting to please Him and grow in knowledge of him, all while lifting up your fellow brothers and sister in Christ? This extends way beyond the topic discussed here.  Or is out of hope for personal gain to potentially meet “the one” so to speak. If you can honestly say you are doing it with good intent, great! I have not always been there, and while I don’t think that way very often anymore sometimes I still have to check myself and ask the question, why am I doing “xyz” is it out of a love for God or the possibility of meeting “my future husband”. If its the second reason, then I need to seriously consider wether I should be doing “xyz.”  The reason behind working for the Lord and growing closer to him should be out of love for God and not a selfish desire, and that  my friends can be hard to do because we are a selfish people.

 

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One thought on “Where Is My Heart At?

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  1. So refreshing! I agree. I think it’s easy to fall into what I call the “Sarah” mindset– there was nothing wrong with her desire to have a child of her own (God even specifically promised it to her!) but when it didn’t happen in her timing she started thinking of ways to do it herself. As we know, that road with Hagar may have been legal and socially acceptable at the time, but it was sinful and caused huge problems and heartaches. What it came down to is a lack of trust in God’s power and leading, in my mind.
    To continue the analogy, I think we often have a perfectly healthy and perhaps Godly desire (to get married) but when it doesn’t happen in our timing we start thinking of ways to “do it ourselves” because I think deep down, if we are really honest, we don’t really trust God as much as we should. It all goes back to verses like Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” So to extrapolate, if we are acknowledging Him in all our ways (looking for ways to minister/serve/bless wherever God wants us to with pure motivations) then God will take care of the rest and open doors towards whatever he wants for us. I told a friend laughingly once that I don’t think God is up there in heaven going “Oh rats, I forgot to make sure Jim, the guy I wanted for Rebekah, went to McGrath’s fellowship tonight so he could meet her. Oh well, I guess she’ll have to be sad and lonely forever”!
    I think when we get that mindset we are like the Israelites on one side of the Red Sea feeling trapped as they watched Pharaoh’s army coming. They didn’t see any way out…they didn’t understand why God would lead them somewhere that seemed nothing but a dead end. But the same God who miraculously parted those powerful waters and made a way of escape for them is the same God who cares for me. If God wants me to marry some guy living in Timbuktu with $5 to his name, God is powerful enough to make it happen, to bring him to me or vice versa. I don’t need to worry about it, just trust God and focus on serving Him. And if God doesn’t want me to marry– Psalm 37:4 “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” If my focus is on delighting in the Lord, my desires will line up with His, and married or not my heart will be at peace.
    Oh boy, I’m sorry for writing such a huge post! I hope you don’t mind, I just loved what you are saying! Feel free to critique anything I said! All the best!

    Like

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