For those that follow me on the Instagram, you know that I’ve been feeling quite romantical these last couple of weeks.
And it’s true, I’m feeling inspired and hopeful regarding my own love story.
Remember when I said I would challenge myself to at least 2 dates this month.
Well—they didn’t happen.
But not because I didn’t try…but because…well, there was no real mojo to make it happen.
I’m officially on Match.com. A paid subscriber and everything.
I hate it.
Let me rephrase that.
I. HATE. IT.
Sure, it’s not one bit awkward at all to see co-workers and old college friends on this site.
Men that are almost as weird as me, and many quite attractive--and yet, we have no sense of shared core values and chemistry.
“It’s not hard to make decisions when you know your values…(Roy E. Disney).” #Selah
To my fellow romantics, what if we were making romantic decisions not merely on good stats, but on our shared core values…in addition to real life chemistry.
As it turns out, I may not be a fit for online dating. And I’m quite alright with that.
My Match.com subscription lasts until December 2015. And with that said, I’ll continue to put in my weenie effort, but if my return is as good as its been in the last 2 months, I will most likely be retiring in 2015 from the online dating community indefinitely. Slow clap...
Nevertheless, I’m hopped up on HOPE.
I must be in that “Hoping against Hope” realm. You know, that type of Hope Scripture mentions when talking about the faith of Abraham and God’s promise to Him.
A promise that was very personal as well as eternal. A promise that seemed impossible at the time to fulfill, and yet, what was attributed to Abraham as being in right standing before God and actually positioned him to receive this huge promise fulfilled, was simply his heart to Believe God at His word.
It was something beyond Abraham's capability of doing all by himself, and God knew this full well. That was the whole point. It was a promise God gave. And he would be the Promise Keeper and Fulfiller in the story, if only Abraham would allow Him to be...by Believing--of which Abraham did.
Because not only have I NOT had one single date this September…not even a coffee date or a frozen yogurt date, or a fake date for that matter. But I had a guy with kind eyes, start a nice online conversation with me, only to leave me stranded in our forced dialogue—never to reach out to me again.
And then there are the countless men that I have “winked” at (*Lowers her head in embarrassment*) on Match.com. Only to hear crickets…
Oh and can we also mention how just a few days ago, I finally bumped into the guy that stood me up in January. Yeah. You remember him…I wrote about him here….
So yeah, in the month of September, I’ve had minus 3 dates-- if that’s such a thing.
And yet, I feel incredibly hopeful.
I’m kinda like Jim Carey in "Dumb in Dumber"....
It’s so weird.
The Hope that I’m sensing, is linked to an eternal sense—meaning, the outcome of how I think my love story will go is in flux (clearly)—and yet, this Hope remains.
I’m also mulling over the connection of Hope & Courage.
How, when one has hope for a positive outcome, their choices and actions are reflected from that stance—making one feel that anything Good is possible. Making one courageous enough to take the necessary risks.
And because Christ is our Everlasting Hope (It never wanes or stops! --Amazing), we can always have an expectation for something good, even in the midst of something not so good. (Romans 8:28)
Don’t have selective amnesia on yourself.
Now is the time to remember the dreams, the real dreams of your heart. The ones placed there by God when you were a child.
These things matter.
The essence of these things matter greatly.
There is something eternal there.
In preparation for my own love story over the years, I’ve asked my mom and countless others of how they knew they were in love. How did they know, when it finally happened to them?
Like what does “Being in Love” really feel like?
I wanted some clear markers, especially from those that have gone before me in the realm of passionate love and romance.
Plus my parents have been married for 30 years. And they’re still good friends and like each other. So there’s that. I mean, I know this thing is possible....
When asking men and women over the years, of HOW they knew they were in love and wanted to marry their significant other, many have shared the common phrase,
“You just know…”
Or my favorite is,
“When we first sat down to talk…it was as if I’ve known her all my life, and we could talk about anything or nothing for hours and hours…”
And I absolutely adore these sentiments. But I wanted something even more concrete to share with you and my own heart, in this current space and time that we are living in---the space between a promise given and a promise fulfilled...
I wanted to remind us--or rather, give an enticing sneak preview of that which awaits us and is to come. A deep heartfelt encouragement for us to continue to believe in the promises.
In my research, I found an amazing blog post that pretty much sums up the many stories I’ve heard over the years regarding falling in love.
But before I go any further, I want to give credit where credit is absolutely due.
What I'm about to post below: “12 Signs That You’re in Love: A Letter to My Daughter” is taken from the website, “The (Reformed) Idealist Mom” written to her 5 year old daughter, who started asking questions pertaining to love and romance.
Credit Link: http://idealistmom.com/12-signs-love/
To see the full post and letter, I encourage you to visit here. And thank you, Kelly for sharing this wonderful letter with the world! XO
And to my wonderful men readers, feel free to switch out pronouns, and personalize this thang.
Note: I won’t really get to experience the fullness of #5 and all that it implies, until I get a ring…ya’ll know my steeze. Don’t act surprised. Oh, and #12 is the TRUTH for me....
And now, what you’ve all been waiting for....
“12 Signs That You’re in Love: A Letter to My Daughter”
Here are 12 signs that you’re in love:
1. You can talk about anything. Tough stuff, easy stuff, and everything in between. Conversation is easy and open and honest and (most of the time) fun.
2. You can’t get enough of him. You spend all day together doing nothing terribly interesting or important, and you wake up the next morning wanting more.
3. When he touches you, you feel a spark. Yes, like real electricity. Your skin will feel like it’s buzzing. Or maybe humming.
4. When he kisses you, you may feel light-headed.
5. When you’re running late in the morning getting out the door for work, and you realize you still need to pack your laptop bag and find where you threw your jacket when you came in the door last night AND you didn’t empty out your travel coffee mug, then you look on the kitchen counter and see everything all neatly lined up and ready to go, with hot, fresh coffee in your clean coffee mug – and then you get to the car and see that it’s already running WITH the butt warmers turned on…that’s love.
6. He will love you just the way you are – flaws included – and never make you feel like you’re insufficient or broken or that you have to change to make him happy.
7. He will listen.
8. He will treat you like a queen. I don’t mean blindly worship the ground you walk on. I mean he will respect you, completely. He will trust you. He will adore you.
9. He will be your biggest cheerleader. And he will believe in you even when you may not believe in yourself.
10. Expect to hear a lot of compliments from him. He may tell you that you are: awesome, smart, beautiful, amazing, gorgeous, or all of the above.
11. You may find yourself wanting to do nice things for him, just because. These may be things you don’t typically enjoy doing, but the thought of doing them for him will put a smile on your face and make you feel good inside. Maybe you will want to cook him dinner, even though you usually hate to cook. You might take the car to get washed because you know he cares about that, even though you don’t. You could surprise him by having cookies delivered to him at work, even though it means you WON’T get a cookie yourself.
12. Speaking of which, if you find yourself giving away the last bite of dessert to the person you’re dating, that’s a 99.99% sure sign you’re in love.
Now, it may take you a while to find someone who fits the bill. You may date some losers along the way. It happens.
But that spark inside you? The one that lights up your eyes and makes you my beautiful Abby? The minute you get wind of someone you’re dating trying to snuff out that spark, you drop him like a dirty diaper. If he insults you, or makes fun of your ideas, or talks down to you like you’re stupid, or says you need dental work – he is not The One.
Sometimes you may not want to admit it when you realize you’re dating someone who’s not The One. Because it means you made a mistake. Because it’d be lonely if you left him. Because he’s really damn cute.
But please, dear, sweet Abby. If you’re not sure? Have the courage to let go. Learn and move on. Make room in your life for someone who truly and completely loves you.
Above all, trust yourself. Maybe the love you find will be different from what I found. You’re a smart girl. You’ll know when you find it.
p.s. When your baby sister comes to you with this question, can you please pass along the high points? From the defiance she’s showing at 8 months old, I’m pretty sure she won’t come to me and even if she did, I doubt she’d listen to what I have to say. Thanks, kid, I owe you one.
And from my own collections of love stories over the years,
Here's my #13: Being with them feels like home.
My #14: They challenge you to be the best version of yourself.
And my #15: The two of you have found a way to spread the love that has also inspired you. You've found a deeper sense of purpose that is not just inward, but outward. A Love ministry of sorts. One planted and grounded in the love of God...
13 For the promise to Abraham or to his descendants that he would be heir of the world was not through the Law, but through the righteousness of faith. 14 For if those who are of the Law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise is nullified; 15 for the Law brings about wrath, but where there is no law, there also is no violation.
16 For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the promise will be guaranteed to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17 (as it is written, “A father of many nations have I made you”) in the presence of Him whom he believed, even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which does not exist.
18 In hope against hope he believed, so that he might become a father of many nations according to that which had been spoken, “So shall your descendants be.”
19 Without becoming weak in faith he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old, and the deadness of Sarah’s womb; 20 yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, 21 and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.
22 Therefore it was also credited to him as righteousness. 23 Now not for his sake only was it written that it was credited to him, 24 but for our sake also, to whom it will be credited, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, 25 He who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification.
-Romans 4:13-25 (NASB)
(Note: Words in Bold are my own emphasis)