Putting Myself In Position

I had some good friends move to Sweden at the beginning of this week, so naturally, I’ve been exposed to a lot of depressing status updates about moving and goodbyes. But Wednesday, I finally saw a status from this friend that made me laugh rather than want to cry:

“I’d definitely be lying if I said Stockholm wasn’t crawling with cute boys…”

I know what you’re thinking, and I, too, have heard that the weather in Sweden in really nice this time of year… but before you pack your bags and jump on the next available flight, humor me for a second and ask yourself why you’re even contemplating moving halfway across the globe.

Why do we think we have to put ourselves in a position that will get us noticed? A place where we can’t be missed? Why do we feel the need to throw our entire heart and soul into finding that one, special person?

I know that the guy you are going to live out the rest of your life alongside is kind of a big deal, so I understand the anxiety; I’ve experienced it myself. It’s hard to live your life trusting that God is going to take care of everything in due time. So we take fate into our own hands and try to arrange a divine connection. And God sits in heaven laughing at our silly game of make-believe.

Because as much as we want to be God, we aren’t. And as much as we want to force things, we can’t.

It’s normal to want to find Mr. Right (even to the point of obsession, sadly), therefore it’s normal to want to put yourself in a position that might arrange a chance meeting between you and your future husband, but we can’t let that become the focus of our lives. We can’t let our desire for marriage be the force that drives us.

If I’m going to put myself in any kind of position, I want it to be the position of obedience. If I’m going to move halfway around the world, I’m going to do it because God called me there; not because it’s a great place to meet guys. (Which I guess I sort of did since my call to missions led me 450 miles from the middle-of-nowhere-Ohio to a thriving, college town. I didn’t do it on purpose – honest!)

There will always be that place in your heart that desires to be filled by a guy, but more importantly, there will always be a call on your life that yearns to be fulfilled by the One who shapes dreams into reality. And that, my friend, is something is something you can’t afford to miss.

THINK ABOUT IT: What position have you been putting yourself in lately? The position that gets you noticed by man, or the position that makes God beam with pride?

They Lived

Yesterday, I had one of those days. You know, the kind of day where you fume about  stupid stuff and think things like, “I’m not going to get married for the next hundred bajillion years because I don’t even want to deal with this junk.” It took moving 450 miles away from home for me to realize that guy/girl friendships are difficult to come by. I don’t know if that fact makes me want to hug my old guy friends and apologize for all the years I’ve taken them for granted, or slap them in the face and yell at them for making me believe that our relationships were normal. I think what I felt yesterday was a combination of the two. I could have walked right up to one of them and shouted, “Thanks for being amazing, jerk.”

Well, I did what any girl would do in such a situation. I grabbed a bowl of chocolate ice cream and popped Ever After into the VCR. By the time it was over, I felt a whole lot better about the topic of men and marriage. What I love best about that particular version of Cinderella is that the characters have flaws. Prince Henry was selfish, arrogant, didn’t listen very well, and acted like a jerk when he learned the truth (to which he had previously refused to listen). And Danielle weaved a web of horrible lies then tried to keep the pretense going. What makes the story so enchanting is that they manage to overcome their flaws and find a happy ending. I’ve been told that chick-flicks are not good for a girl’s emotional health, but I needed that movie last night. I don’t think it’s bad to hold out for “Prince Henry” – as long as you’re willing to accept that he does have flaws.

The movie comes to a conclusion with this beautiful line: “And while Cinderella and her prince did live happily ever after, the point, gentlemen, is that they lived.” They lived. And while those words were said to convey the idea that Cinderella was more than just a folk tale, I think that line carries a much greater meaning. Take Prince Henry’s line, for example: “You swim alone, climb rocks, rescue servants… Is there anything you don’t do?”

The character of Danielle De Barbarac did not only live “happily ever after,” but “once upon a time.” She embraced the moments and lived the journey. She may be a fictional character, but she’s still a great reminder that we weren’t meant to live for the “happily ever after.” We were made for the “once upon a time.” “Happily ever after” means that the story is over. No more adventures. No more life. One day, I hope I’ll make it to “happily ever after,” but as for today, I simply want to live.