I knew when I wrote Beyond Waiting that it was going to brand me. Still I can’t help but sigh when I get certain feedback from people who hear I’ve written a book.
First, there are the people who get it all wrong and congratulate me on my commitment to celibacy. (Um, no.)
Then there are the people who think I should check out this story about some girls who are “living out my message,” and the next thing I know, I’m looking at the pictures of this t-shirt boasting the hashtag: #IWillWait. (If you know anything about Beyond Waiting, you should understand why that slogan is a problem. Hello, we’re beyond waiting here.)
Then there are the people who tell me I should connect with so-and-so because we have “the same heartbeat.”
And that’s about the time I just want to shout, “You have no idea what my heartbeat is!”
Because most people don’t assume I had no desire to write Beyond Waiting. Most people don’t understand that I never wanted to brand myself as the singleness guru.
So let’s get something straight, please, so I don’t have to smile and nod through all the singleness talks that everyone assumes I’m oh so interested in.
I don’t agree with all the relationship-rambling, purity-pushing, singleness storytellers out there. I didn’t write Beyond Waiting because I wanted to join the bandwagon; I wrote it because I thought a vital piece of the story wasn’t being told. It felt to me like so many people were getting caught up in the so-called “rules” of dating that they were overlooking the problem altogether.
Dating isn’t the issue; waiting is.
The problem is that we’ve got our girls so wrapped up in the “Your Prince Will Come” mentality that they can’t see that there is more to life than happily ever after. The problem is that we’ve become so wrapped up in daydreams that we’ve forgotten to live the adventure that is waiting for us here and now—Prince Charming-less.
I don’t consider myself an expert on relationships. In fact, if you’re looking for someone who can speak from personal experience, I’m the last person you want to consult on that subject. That’s why I didn’t write Beyond Waiting from the perspective that focuses on the someday guy.
Beyond Waiting isn’t about relationships at all. It’s about you. And living your life now. And not waiting for someone to “complete you.”
And yeah, I’ve got opinions about dating and relationships, but they’re not the ones you’ll hear at those Christian conferences that talk about how true love waits. Mostly because they’re my own. Because I don’t believe there’s a formula to relationships so I’m not going to be the one to say you’re doing it wrong.
It’s not my job to convict you. It’s not my job to believe I know better than you.
But it is my job to encourage you to live each and every moment of your life. Because that’s how I would want you to encourage me.
Life is short. Each moment is a gift. The seconds are ticking away…
And no matter what our relationship status is, we’ve got to embrace them.