On my extended drives across the Midwest and eastern portion of the West, I have been provided with ample time to consider many topics, one of which regards words that have been spoken, texted, messaged, or written to me. I have reached the age when acquaintances, friends, exes, and those I know best are entering long-term relationships, whether dating, engagements, or marriage. Meanwhile I am watching from the sidelines like so many others I know, and frankly it is discouraging.
Like most, middle-aged and elderly individuals have told me I am adorable and quality for any guy, but that never resonates with the generation that hears it. Sure, I have also had guys tell me that I am “cute, smart, and funny,” and I was flattered. Still am to a certain degree. But I believe that is all that it is—flattery. Saying those things about someone does not guarantee a crush, and certainly does not equate to love that holds any quality. Thinking about all of the couples and role-models that I admire and all of the love stories and tales of unrequited love, I realize those words are not enough, even if spoken from the heart. Through dwelling on breakups I have witnessed and too many cheesy dramas, “cute, smart, and funny” is not enough to forge a lasting relationship. I, for one, would become bored with someone who is only “cute, smart, funny.” People constantly change, but even over that, people’s personalities do not change, at least not quickly. So if someone is merely “cute, smart, funny,” they are predictable—generating a safety net of complacency and settling. But people become bored with what is predictable, they wander, they test boundaries, and ultimately they leave. And unfortunately, much more likely than leaving a boring job is leaving a boring spouse.
I am not willing to fall prey to the lie that that is the best I can get. I do not believe it is. It will likely take longer than I desire, and already has in many ways, but I refuse to settle for less than what God has promised me, and He has promised life and life to the fullest. Ladies, I know it is hard and it seems like all of the worthwhile guys are either non-existent or unavailable, but I am pretty sure that is what they think about the worthwhile women. Yes, it will take time, it will be hard, it will sometimes devastate, but I beg of you—do not give up. Do not settle. Do not accept less than what the Creator of all of the universe has promised, and He has promised what is best for us, as well as the deepest desires of our hearts. No, the world is not perfect. No, I cannot guarantee it will happen for everyone. Yes, I have witnessed beautiful love stories like I desire in people in their middle-ages. There is always hope in Christ.
I may sound like a revolutionary youth, who many see will ultimately lose the glint in my eye, the hope radiating out of my smile, and the passion emanating from my spirit as my skin sags, my eyes lose ability to see, and my joints creak. But what if I find the courage in Truth and Hope to persevere? We are promised our perseverance will be rewarded, in this life or the next—that is something I will live for. You may shake your head and disregard me as a dreamer, but I take that as a challenge. I understand many have witnessed their dreams crumble beneath them or even before them, preventing them from ever touching even the edge of the dream, but what if we fought instead of accepting it as our fate? I will not give up in the face of discouragement, but will forge ahead into the beautiful world my God has made for me to enjoy, holding close His promises that move me beyond settling and into adventure.
“But you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded.” ~ 2 Corinthians 15:7