Dating the Lord

God help me to be fully satisfied in you. The idea that I need to be in a relationship needs to be removed from me because ultimately I’m in a relationship with you God. I want to be fully 100% satisfied in you and at peace with the plan that you have prepared for me. Amen. 
The scariest part about asking the Lord to make me fully satisfied in Him, is that I’m also asking for peace if that means I’m called to be single for the rest of my life. I totally understand that you’re thinking “that’s a little extreme” but hear me out. We’re all called to be and to do something. While I have felt that I was called to be a wife and a mother my entire life, the Lord may not actually be calling me to be that. He could be calling me to be something different. Even though I’ve always dreamed of being a wife, ultimately He may not call me to fulfill that roll. I’m asking for grace in accepting that the Lord is fully in control, even when that brings me to my knees in emotions. 
Paul Enns said “Grace may be defined as the unmerited or undeserving favor of God of those who are under condemnation.” 
When it comes to dating and relationships, I have thought that I knew better than God. That the relationships I was in, or men I was waiting on, were the right fit at that moment. But the crazy thing is, I have never been pursued by men the way I’ve pursued them. The way that I want and deserve to be pursued. But the Lord pursues me daily! 
Hannah Kerr as a song right now where the lyrics make me feel infinitely better. 

“Every scar on my skin 

Is a beautiful reminder

Of a moment when I didn’t give in 

And I walked through fire
Cuz in the dark there is a light 

A truth that keeps on burning bright

Makes me brave to fight the fight

And shout the battle cry 
Don’t ever stop me I’m a warrior

When I fall down I get stronger

Faith is my shield your love is the armor

I’m a warrior”
I would rather be completely and wholly content with being alone than go down another path where I’m going to be questioning every day where we stand. Relationships shouldn’t be that confusing and complicated. They should be exciting, and fun! While I’m anxious for that next chapter, I’m trying really hard to enjoy each coming day and let God take me down the paths that He chooses to send me down. 

Let go and let God. No matter how many times I tell myself that, it’s easier said than done. 

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Know Your Worth

It took me many many years to figure out my worth. I dated a lot of men and thought that they would be able to help me define it, but honestly it made it more challenging and made me feel like I was worth less, not more. I also dated a lot to fill whatever hole of loneliness that I needed patched.

Knowing your worth is a challenge. But once it’s found, the thought of losing it is unimaginable. I can’t imagine losing what I’ve won. I’m so proud to be where I am and proud to know what I’m worth.

Dating is a time in life when many of my girlfriends, like my old self, lose that. They think that it’s more important to have a significant other who maybe doesn’t respect them, or won’t commit after months is okay because they aren’t alone.

Girlfriend! You are worth more than that. Being single is a phenomenal time to learn about yourself and make that your prime investment. Take up a new skill, or learn to bake something besides slice and bake cookies. Find a foundation you’re passionate about and get involved. Redecorate your house or get a side job. But never forget that you don’t need a man.

I’m in a situation where I’m trying to date a guy long distance. Trying is the key word. Long distance isn’t for everyone and having to maneuver around that is challenging, honestly. I totally get it’s not for everyone and I don’t lose an ounce of respect if that ends up being the case in my situation. But please understand, after I cry for a second I’m going to get up, dust my butt off from falling down and I’m going to move forward. Because I’m worth more than settling for someone who can’t give me 100%, and girlfriend you deserve more too.

I know in my heart that there is someone out there who will be willing to, and will want to give me 110%. Someone who appreciates how I love people, my family, friends, strangers and the Lord. There is someone who will share my dream of raising a family, adoption and traveling the world. That man is out there. Heck, it could be the guy I’m getting to know and dating now, but until God reveals that to me, I have to continue trusting the process and moving forward.

While you’re trusting God and moving forward in your own relationship, try keeping these things in mind:
– Why isn’t he committing to you? Is it because its brand new and you’ve only known him for 3 weeks or does he have another excuse that doesn’t make sense anymore 8 months later?
– Do you actually have things in common? I have a girlfriend who isn’t even sure she likes the guy, but their intimacy level is really compatible . Make sure that YOU’RE there for the right reasons.
– Has he done something shady that you’ve chosen to ignore and look past?
– Has he ever told you you deserve better? I learned that if a man tells you this, you need to listen and trust him.

If you said yes to any of those things, I would take a step back and look at the relationship from a different perspective. Ending relationships suck. I know because I’ve ended almost all of the relationships I’ve been in and it’s really hard, but staying longer when in your gut you know it’s not right for you is going to make leaving later every harder.

You are loved. And you deserve everything you want in this world. Please don’t stand in your own way and be the reason why you don’t get them. ❤️

Reality Checks

Reality checks always suck but i’ve found when the right person gives you the words you need to hear at the right time, they can be pro founding.

I regularly get caught up in the daily struggles and roadblocks that are thrown my way. Typically, I try to acknowledge them and move forward without letting them get me down, but like any other human being, sometimes that isn’t the case. The last 6 weeks of my life have been insanely frustrating, exhausting, and heart wrenchingly painful. Seeing everything that i’ve been through, in retrospect, it really hasn’t been that bad, but the combination of it all and feeling alone on top of it, is what has made it so hard.

I ended a relationship that I honest to God thought was the one for me. You know what I’m talking about. That relationship where you think this might actually be the last first kiss you ever have. The one where the relationship feels so easy, and perfect. On top of all of that, he had all of the qualities that I had asked God for in the perfect spouse. Unfortunately, due to circumstances in his life, i chose to end the relationship to allow him the space that he needed for healing. While I did care for him greatly, i’m the only one who can stand up for myself, and I realized that I couldn’t be in a relationship waiting for the other person to realize what I already knew. Walking away was hard, but moving forward has been even harder.

I met a great guy friend of mine for ice cream last night. This man has been in my life for 7+ years and has always been there for a good laugh and an honest conversation. He looked at me with serious eyes and said “for someone as religious as you are, I find it hard to believe that you can’t let go of the plan you have for yourself to allow God to do what He has planned for you.”

WHAT?!? Talk about a slap in the face of honesty. I tried to explain to him that I always thought at 26 that I would be married by now, maybe with a baby. And while the life that I have now is incredible and God has blessed me with way more than I deserve, i still wish for that life that i’ve dreamed of.

Its hard. Stepping out on faith and choosing to let go and let God. It really is and he looked at me and told me he understood. That it was a battle he also struggled with but he has decided to move forward everyday as best as he can and see what the Lord will provide for him.

Letting go and letting God is unfortunately always easier said than done. These are some verses that I found peace in, hopefully if you are fighting a similar battle, they help you as well.

Isaiah 43:18 “But forget all that–it is nothing compared to what I am going to do.

Job 17:9 the righteous shall move onward and forward; those with pure hearts shall become stronger and stronger.

Colossians 3:2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;

Psalm 62:8 Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.

Romans 8:28-29 And we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose, because those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

James 1:2-4 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

With all my love,

Shaken

I recently decided to stop dating the man I’ve been seeing for a few months. He is everything I have asked God for, and all of the things I didn’t know I needed. But in this decision to take some time apart, he asked a question that shocked me. His offensive question has been in my head non stop since he asked. The night before our winery date, where I realized he was someone I could picture as being incredibly important to me, I went on a date with someone else. We were both single adults and both still dating other people, but I’d made a choice that I have never been proud of and for whatever reason felt that the space he and I shared was safe enough to share this in. I have no idea why, but I did. We have never talked about that night, until now.

His question has brought up issues from my past that are more than 10 years old, and some that are newer that I have chosen to not deal with. I thought I had, but now I’m realizing that I’m broken still, just covered my a mask. A mask I didn’t even know I owned.

The decision I made that night was my right as a female, whose in control of her own body. Which may have been a part of the problem. So many times in my life that power has been taken from me, so to have the power and the control to make that choice on my own is where I believe that decision came from. It came from a place of need to fill a void, rather than allow it to remain empty and lonely. It came from a place where I needed to be WORTH something to someone.

It’s incredible to me that I thought this break was for him. For him to heal, and be as ready for me as I thought I was for him. But it turns out, I may be equally as broken, but in different ways.

Sexual abuse causes people to act out. In grownups, people assume you’re just being promiscuous. But sometimes there is an underlying cause that needs to be acknowledged. I’m Kristi. I’m a repeat victim of sexual abuse, and I’ve never healed from it. I’ve moved forward and allowed myself to ignore it, while also forgiving those individuals, but I’ve never healed and let it go. It’s been almost 4 years since the last incident, and I have allowed the control that he took from me to eat me up, silently, over the years. This is letting the bad guys win. Over and over again.

In a webinar for a Bible Study I’m about to start, the author said this “Insecurity and lies we believe can shake us to our core and the foundations of our hearts.” The lie that my worth is only found in the bedroom, from men that take what they need, is no longer going to control me. Join me in letting go of the lies that are holding you down, and acknowledge that they are prohibiting you from moving forward.

Perspective

While being in my mid 20s has been some of the greatest times of my life, its also the time when all of my friends are getting engaged, married and having babies…including my ex’s.

My first serious boyfriend ever got married this past weekend. He married a girl that I was incredibly close to in college. And it put me in this weird mood. Not because I wish it was me he was saying ‘I do’ to, because I don’t. I know that God used the relationship he and I had to teach me a lot, and grow in more ways than I probably am even aware of, but it was still weird. I tried explaining the feeling that was distracting me to my mom, but she just couldn’t relate.

I know a part of me is sad that I’m not at that season of my life yet, but still sad isn’t even the right word. I’m very slightly envious, because I’ve been wanting to be loved by someone who wants to spend the rest of their life with me. But then I think about how much I’ve changed in the last year and a half. I think about the things that I thought were important in a significant other, and how different those “absolutely must have” qualities have changed.

J and I remind each other regularly that we don’t need each other. While to some that may sound incredibly insensitive, to me its incredibly empowering. Its empowering to be able to look at the man I care about and with 100% honesty be able to tell him that I don’t need him. But that I CHOOSE to have him in my life. I choose him. He’s in my life because I want him there, not because I need him to provide for me. Or because i don’t know what life would be like alone. Or because I can’t live without him.

When the guy that just got married and I broke up, we’d been together for 4 years – 2 in high school and 2 in college and I literally didn’t know what life would be like without him. I hadn’t walked through life alone in so long that I didn’t know what to expect, our how to function. Id lost friendships because he became my world so I had to start from scratch. Granted, I was 16 when we started dating, so I really didn’t know what I was doing, but it made starting over even more challenging. I had to establish a baseline for the woman that I wanted to be and grow from there. I had to recreate the tribe of people that surrounded me and occupied my time, and I had to figure out what it was that I wanted. I had the freedom to decide for myself what I was going to do with my future, as well as what I wanted to spend my free time doing and even simpler, where I was going to eat. I didn’t have to take into consideration anyone else’s feelings but my own and it was terrifying and exhilarating.

Now I look at where I stand, and its incredibly empowering to be able to look back at the growth that’s occurred. To be able to honestly and truly say, but also believe, that I don’t need a man in my life. I’ve proven to myself that I am capable of giving myself the most amazing life all on my own. That I can provide for myself and my dog. That I can have friendships all over the world and successfully make them important pieces of my life despite the distance between us. I’ve found hobbies and grown as a Christian woman and daughter. And I’ve managed two jobs and developed a relationship with an incredible Christian man, all while never once losing who I am.

Take a step back and look into yourself for a second. Do you depend on your significant other or spouse for everything in your life? Financially, emotionally, spiritually, physically? I challenge you to take some time to focus on yourself. YOU are the most important person in your life. And I think that is something that we regularly forget. Everyone needs a reminder, and i’m happy to be yours.

With all my love,

kristi