Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Lie Number 8...the List

Have you ever made a list of gifts you want for Christmas? I was a gift hungry little girl in my younger years, so every year I had quite a long list. My parents certainly didn't have the resources to buy every single gift on those lists. I often awoke on Christmas morning to find one item from that list under the tree. But, to my awe and joy I often found several other "little" gifts that never made my list. Those little gifts surprised me and I delighted in the loving touches my parents demonstrated to me by finding things that fit my person and character more than the "stuff" I thought I wanted from the outstart.

Friends, ladies, countrywomen...we've made a grave error by making "perfect guy lists!" Before you click the back button...or search for a new website...hear me out.

"Should I just accept any 'ole guy who comes my way, then?" you say to me--a bit sarcastically or angrily, because I've just challenged the list. No, of course you should not just accept any 'ole guy. My friends and I used to play the "the next guy who walks in with blue shoes on will be my husband" game. I don't recommend it.

Having a good idea of the Godly characteristics and qualities a man should have before you agree to declare your lifelong love for him is rather wise. "He's a Christian, that's good enough" doesn't cut it. Does he have the characteristics and qualities that he needs to have to accept the position of husband?

The list. Why am I so "anti-list?" It's not that I'm anti-list. It's just that it seems to me that many Christian women unknowingly sell themselves short because instead of allowing God to provide them a good and perfect gift, they look for all kinds of characteristics that they want. What I'm saying is that often our list is based more on what we think we need (want) in a man than what God knows He will provide to make us more godly. Am I losing you? Stick with me.

It comes down to this. Do you want to have to fit a list perfectly before a wonderful, strong, man of God asks you to be his wife? (If Angel had a list, I don't want to see it!) You see, I had ideas of things I would like in a man...who doesn't! But God continues to surprise me with things I hadn't thought of--or things I said "no way" to and He knows me more than me.

Bottom line: Are you willing to trust God to provide you with the man HE has planned for you--in His time and in His way? If the answer is yes, I challenge you to stop clinging to the list and simply enjoy God. Let Him pamper you and cherish you and lead you to the One He has for you.

His list is perfect.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Finishing Off the Lies

Ok, I have not been faithful to those of you who have visited this blog. Since Angel and I are devising a better daily schedule, I hope to get it going again! (Future blog: "Why Setting a Daily Schedule is Hard When You're a Missionary). Anyway, here goes.

Lie #7: I'm content in the Lord, so now He'll send me a husband.

Listen, ladies, contentment in the Lord isn't about getting what we want. Do you remember what Paul wrote about contentment? Paul, a Bible hero to many believers, said:

10But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity.
11Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.
12I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.
Philippians 4:10-12 (NASB)
Contentment has to do with our trusting God. I don't know where the idea started that "contentment=I get what I want." Being content simply comes about as a result of trusting Him and living to glorify Him.
I have shared with many women--single and married alike--about the years I spent wondering if I would ever marry. When I truly came to the point where I said, "Lord, I have learned to be content in whatever circumstance I am," God did not give me a husband immediately. In fact, I felt so content in my circumstance (singleness) that I believed that God intended singleness as a way of life for me--forever. Several years later God introduced me to my husband. In God I found contentment. In Him alone I found completion.
Don't believe the lie! You see, if you think, "I have to be content in the Lord to get a husband," you will most likely find yourself less and less content in your current circumstance. Why? Because you will be trying to feign a contentment in the Lord that is not the pure abandonment of self that He desires from you. You will think, "I'm content in Him, but I'm still single; therefore, God reallyl doesn't care about that aspect of my life." IT'S A LIE! I know it can prove difficult at times. I know that the world pushes romance and love stories and candy hearts and chocolate. (By the way, the chocolate's not that bad!) But let yourself find ture contentment in the fact that a loving God does care about every aspect of your life. Let Him bring you to that point where you can agree with Paul's words. Only He can do that!

Lie number 8--"He fits my list, so he must be the one!" That blog comes in a few days. But, before you read it, ladies, please--THROW AWAY THE LIST! :)

See you next time.