FINDING THE ONE :D :D :D *hearts*

I don’t actually know how. LOL… I’m not an expert in relationship thinggssss

But I am a bit older than most of my friends, I’m married, and I have a bit of experience these arenas and I can tell you a few things about what I see today.

People believe a lot of stuff about love, romance and marriage that is just not true.

I’ve written about this before but sometimes it just needs to be repeated.

#1
If you want to find a spouse, you need to stop putting so much emphasis on “THE ONE” …

Your spouse isn’t Neo… or Jet Li. He/she is nobody, really. Or anybody.

For years now, the church has made the mistake of letting people put a LOT of emphasis on the idea of “the one” when it comes to a spouse. The idea that there’s some mystical person that God has set aside specifically FOR you… ooooohhhhh… There’s actually very little truth to this. In the bible, this happened very rarely and when it did happen, it was because major events in the world were about to unfold (like… the birth of Christ) and even in the situation of Christ, God simply CONFIRMED that they should be together. The bible doesn’t really indicate that He said, “Hey, see that girl over there? Marry Mary! Buah! Marry Mary…hehehe.” – First Joseph asked and then an angel appeared to them both.

The idea that there is a “one” is more an idea of “destiny” / “fate” which is far more mystical than Christian.

Now I’m not saying that you can’t feel that God is leading you to wait, or something, but I can tell you that a lot of people who have just decided to “wait” are usually the ones who are “scared” and end up waiting most of their living lives.

The one
(Pay attention… he wasn’t “THEE one”)

#2
Don’t for one moment believe that it’s not YOUR job to get prepared/ ready for a spouse before they show up.

I have seen far too many young people who want to get out of high school and find “the one.”

I’ve seen many more sit around and ask why God is not sending them “the one” when they are literally doing nothing productive with their lives at all.

I understand that in this day and age it’s difficult. I have a pretty major beef actually with the fact that the way society is set up, people can’t even CONSIDER getting married until around 25-30. I understand that this is frustrating. But USE THE TIME to become more appealing and ready for your future spouse and who knows, you might even meet them along the way.

Get a college education (no… don’t do that. Don’t listen to me, please) or get a job at least. Sure, start at McDonald’s if you have to, but always try to be moving up. Become a Shift Lead if you can’t find another job that’s better and then try for the Assistant Manager, etc. Who cares if that’s your job, if you make money, it’s a good one. (And trust me men, women are more concerned with the fact that men HAVE a “decent” job than they are that it’s at a restaurant or a Starbucks).

If you’re a guy? Get your life more together. Press into God more. Learn as many skills as you can with tools, weapons (why not?) Cooking some simple meals for yourself and (let’s be honest here,) Stop your porn addiction. I know how hard it is in this day and age with it being so accessible, trust me. But seriously, GET HELP for that. Because one of the biggest lies that the enemy wants to tell all single men is that “they’re doing it because they don’t have anyone and when they do it will stop.” There is not a SHRED of evidence that this stops after marriage, in fact in many cases it became worse and eventually led to other things (look at Josh Duggar, but he’s literally only one example) Every person that I have ever met who told themselves this lie is worse off now than they were when they got married. It’s a lie and it needs to be taken care of. Because the addiction is not about “your lack of partner” it’s about you liking porn.

If you’re  a girl. Do some similar things. Learn how to cook (big one, trust me ladies) Even if it’s some simple meals or things that you don’t need to do a lot of work for. I have some amazingly simple recipes that I can share some time consuming, some not that will keep your future husband at least a bit happy. Practice keeping your house clean, practice being kind to others. Babysit, etc. All things in preparation for being a wife/ mom. ALSO get a job, ALSO pursue dreams, etc.

DO NOT BE the person who sits around and plays video games 24/7 or even for four hours a day and expect that God is going to send you a wife/ husband.

#3. 
DATE.

FREAKING DATE. DATE A LOT. DATE OFTEN. DATE ALL OF THE FREAKING TIME.

WHY IS THIS A PROBLEM!?

I never understand this generation of people who think that there’s some kind of “shame” in dating. DO you “Kiss Dating Goodbye?” Well, DON’T! Maybe do it in the sense that you don’t serially “have relationships” but don’t stop DATING!

Here’s the thing. Dating is a GOOD thing. It helps you to understand who/ what you want in a person.

And the way you do it is this- You approach it as if you are going to “get to know someone”. You go out, have coffee, go to a movie, then you go with someone else. Then you go with someone else. You have close friends who may or may NOT eventually become relationships. DO NOT RUSH THINGS. Just date. Heck, date fifty times a month if you have to! No Kissing, no holding hands, no immediate talk of your future together, no acting like this is “A RELATIONSHIP IN THE MAKING” … just a date.

But seriously, don’t be afraid of it unless you know of a reason why you can’t do it. (I understand those and they are valid- you don’t have self control, etc). But if you can maintain a clear thought in your head about it “JUST GETTING TO KNOW RACHEL/ TAYLOR” then DO IT! Have fun and learn learn learn.

#4. 
Don’t be Afraid.

Those things that the devil tells you, “what if it doesn’t work out?” “What if he’s/she’s a weirdo?” “I don’t like THAT thing that they do!” … it’s a bunch of bullcrap. No one is going to be perfect and every last person is at risk for ANY NUMBER of things. You are literally never safe. You heard me. You ARE NOT SAFE.

Love is a risk, so is marriage, so is life, so is family, etc. The ONLY thing you can do is you.

Which leads me to

fear
#5.

Stop believing that things will be “good” when you find that person.

I hate to say it, but we put too much emphasis on “love” in this day and age. I’m not talking about TRUE love. I’m talking about the kind of love that you know about… the one from the movies… the one from Game of Thrones. The one from every Chick Flick on the planet. That kind of love that’s really… well, let’s call it what it is … lust. Or emotions. Or fleeting feelings of attraction and infatuation.

All of which are symptoms of / part of love (or can be). But they are not REAL love. REAL love is HARD WORK and I’m sorry if no one ever told you that, but it’s the truth. Real love not only takes time, and your best behavior, but it WILL NOT grow unless you nurture it, feed it, strengthen it, and WORK WORK WORK for it.

You can not marry someone and expect love to just “happen” or “stick around”…

REAL love is sleeping next to a man (or woman hehehehe) who snores and keeps you up all night. Real love is cleaning up their vomit when they’re sick as a dog and their head is in the toilet. Real love is being with them when they get fat and agreeing with yourself that you’re going to stick by them anyways. REAL love is holding them when they’re afraid or in trauma. Real love is sticking beside them if they lose a limb and being with them til death, (you know, like you promised?) Real love is deciding (like in my case) that if they have a disease that prevents them from having sex with you that you not only DO NOT go seeking out other men/ women (or porn 😛 )but you stand by them, find ways around the issue, and support the person who is sick. REAL LOVE is watching the BOTH of you grow old… and die.

REAL LOVE IS SELFLESS
REAL LOVE IS DEDICATION
REAL LOVE IS SACRIFICE

REAL LOVE has NOTHING TO DO WITH WHAT THEY DO FOR YOU… it has EVERYTHING to do with WHAT YOU DO FOR THEM.

They WILL NOT fix you. You CAN NOT fix them. They WILL NOT make you happy / take away the pan. You CAN NOT make THEM happy / take away THEIR pain.

Real love is acceptance.

Love is not a feeling. It’s saying yes and then doing the “yes” part til death.

Unfortunately, that is the truth and unfortunately, people in this generation have no clue what real love is and they move on from boyfriend to boyfriend or even spouse to spouse “promising” something that they can never give because they do not understand that the issue is in themselves and their misunderstandings of “love”

After all, it’s “patient, kind, etc… 1 Cor 13”

#6.
Don’t be Creepy, Dude…

Or girl. If you get the sense that a person is NOT interested… STOP bugging them. Seriously… like stop…

I’ve seen both men AND women go after a person that is obviously NOT the one and obviously has NO interest in them almost from the start. Just… stop… Be their friend.

Which leads me to number

#7. 
Stop crying “Friend Zoned”

Every time someone decides that they just want to be your friend, accept it as fact and move on.

You are not in some “prison” … you are having a “normal life” where people GET to choose whether they want to be your spouse and / or boy/girlfriend. They are allowed to, it is their right.

Crying “I’ve been FRIENDZONEEEEDDDDDD” is just harboring bitter for something that you have no control over and frankly, you shouldn’t… After all… Deus Vult 😉

Don’t cry over some invisible zone. Realize that God has something else / better for you.

tales from the friend zone

#8. 
Do NOT be the person who is just eternally “indecisive”

This is horribly unattractive.

“I like you… Well, maybe I don’t. No. You’re really pretty… I don’t like you tho. I don’t really want to be in a relationship with you… You’re definitely the one… maybe I was wrong.”

STOP IT!

Make a decision and stop messing with people AND yourself.
“Let your yes be yes and your no be no”

Oh, and stop blaming it on God. That is definitely, unequivocally 190% YOU.

Be CAREFUL how you treat others who are near you. Don’t let someone spend lots of time alone with you that you know has feelings for you and act super friendly with them only to tell them that you are not interested in the long term. That’s just your selfishness and enjoying the “attention.”

love

#9. 
No… God did not “tell you”

This one needs to stop. Seriously. It is honestly THE WORST thing I’ve seen in churches when it comes to marriage/ relationships, etc.

It does SO MUCH HARM! Playing “match maker” or “Marriage prophet” is a BIG NO NO NO NO NO … and it applies to YOU personally too.

Have I seen it happen? Yes. Have I seen it happen lots? No. I have seen probably 10,000 cases of “God told me marry so and so” and maybe THREE instances in which it was actually truth.

My dad (who is prophetic) has a good policy, “NEVER PROPHECY IN MARRIAGE”… good one.

MOST of the time, when a person feels that “god” is telling them that Anna suchandsuchy is their wife, they are 100% wrong. It’s NOT God. It FEELS like God because it’s what the person wants to hear, but in actuality, it’s them. It’s what THEY want. Or, if it’s not, it’s them looking for an answer and attributing something to God that’s not God.

This goes back to #1… “THE ONE” – God told me that “SHE/HE is THE ONE”… more than likely? No He didn’t. You can believe that He did… but I’ve seen MANY of these “God told me’s” turn into divorce and unhappiness.

Because again, they don’t understand “love” …

Don’t tell someone that God told you about THEIR future spouse either. He may have, but do NOT share the who’s why’s how’s… that’s not your job. If God wills it, it will happen.

I could tell you countless stories *SMH* … Just… train wrecks.

TLDR
TL:DR
#1.  Be open, there is no “the one” Be MINDFUL

#2.  PREPARE / get your life together

#3. Date, lots. Don’t throw your heart around, just spend time with people.

#4. Drop fear. Admit that you’re afraid of commitment and stop it.

#5. Stop believing lies about love. It’s selfless and love is about YOU, not them.

#6. Move on. They’re not into you.

#7. Stop with the “Friend zone” thing.

#8. Let your yes be yes and your no be no. Stop with indecisiveness

#9 God didn’t tell you who your spouse is, so don’t believe it

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I’m Tired of Deadpool, so naturally I blog about it

Let’s start this off with two facts.

Fact numero 1, I love Deadpool.

cool story bro

“The character” “The idea” “The player character in Marvel Ultimate Alliance” “The quick talker in Ultimate Spiderman” “Ryan Reynolds BEFORE the end of Wolverine” (Okay… people are dead…)  In fact, if any of you have ever seen me say, “tada” he’s where it started. He loves to say that in Marvel Ultimate Alliance, one of my absolute favorite games). Every time I say this, I hear it in his voice. (Hands up, John Kassir) (He’s also been voiced by one of my FAVORITE voice actors, “Nolan North”… HANDS UP NOLAN NORTH!!!)

The idea of him is pretty awesome, gotta admit. Someone who can’t be killed, heals awesome quick, martial arts, tele-ports (with a device-y thingy), longevity. Yup, Wade Wintson Wilson’s got it all…

Sept where it comes in the looks department-
the face of hell

But that’s neither here nor there at this point.

Fact letter B, (yes, we’re still on facts, keep up)
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII…lookedatpornlastnight.
Hey, we’re being honest, right?

It wasn’t like “people having sex” porn, or even real graphic. Just something that I shouldn’t have been looking at.

This is an issue that I’ve mostly kicked (or had mostly kicked) in my married years and during my walk with God and becoming more serious about Him and what He wants for my life. There’s a reason that it’s become a LOT more difficult in the last two – three years. No, I don’t have an “addiction” (this isn’t something that I do every day, every week, etc) but I do have moments where I fall to it now, and the reasons are long and drawn out and hard to explain. I WILL say that it has a LOT to do with my illness (I’ll link blog here-https://lkjslain.wordpress.com/2014/08/02/hello-my-name-is-lisa-and-im-a-chronic-pain-sufferer/) and while I’m not using that as an excuse for my behavior, it absolutely is related. Pain causes us to see things differently/ think differently, etc. ESPECIALLY (I think) when it’s sexual / preventative pain.

Sure, I should be “stronger,” but ultimately those are all things that God is working out in me and it’s day by day (sometimes minute by minute) you fall, pick yourself up, fall…etc.

This (soft core porn struggle) is a problem that I’ve had off and on since I was probably… fifteen and you know what it started with? (Take a crack at it)

MOVIES! 😀

I’m gonna be hhhhonest with you, I believe that one of the reasons for the rise in bi-sexuality and lesbianism in the church is due to R-rated films or films that exploit women.

There’s a slew of information to back this up especially accounts of WOMEN WITH this problem talking about and sharing how this problem began.

But there’s even more to it than that… MEN report much of the same thing. In this day and age, I have found more and more than men’s awakening to their sexuality was due to “film.” Whether it was a raunchy sex scene, nudity, or just a woman slowly revealing that she is in a bra and undies.

I state this second fact and where I stand on it BECAUSE I want everyone to know who’s reading this that A, I don’t hate you or think you’re a horrible, nasty sinny sin sinny sinny sin sinner for liking and/ or watching Deadpool “the movie”…

OBVIOUSLY I’ve got my own problems and thus, can’t look at you and say “YOU HORRIBIBLE TERRIBIBLE PERSON…BIBLE…”

However, what I CAN do is explain how I feel about entertainment, movies, the Christian walk, and how “I’VE” come to where I’m at now. (I know, you’re all DYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYING to know… *watches a person click off this site…* Deadpool-red-band-trailer-2Okay……… the REST of you are all DYYYYYYING TO KN *POINTS DRAMATICALLY*-SIT BACK DOWN!)

I am not at ALL holding up a sign that says that I am the “Shining Example of What to Watch in CHRISTIAN Entertainment” … Yes, yes, I DO watch The Walking Derps, and Yes, yes… I DID watch “Hannibal” … These are definitely NOT touted as Christian shows and certainly contain violence, gore, and the like. I would never suggest anyone to actually “watch” these shows unless they were into this/that. >_> The other.

But MOST of my movie and television watching has gradually become more and more cleaned up of things like sex, nudity, and gratuity as time has gone on.

I remember being eighteen or nineteen and thinking during a raunchy sex scene… “Why am I watching this? Why is this okay?” Then I of course laughed and said to myself, “SELF… Why is VIOLENCE okay?” Then I sort of churrrckled and said, “Well, it ain’t… but in some cases in stories, violence is warranted or “righteous” … is THIS… THIS on the screen ever warranted?”

And I struggled with that for a long time.

I will note here that it’s been my experience that MANY of the same men in the church crying over women needing to “dreasss moarrrr moudestly…” are the shock same men who are watching movies and TV FILLED with sex and nudity.

Double standard, much?

The bible warns us many times over not to A, look upon women lustfully (or men, it’s directed at both) and B, to be careful what we’re witness to. Those things will start to dictate what’s in our hearts and souls. Those things “come out” when no one is looking and soon when EVERYONE is looking.

I look at watching movies like, “The Avengers” and say, “The fighting / violence going on is often righteous because it’s a situation in which they are often fighting to protect/ help.”

It’s often similar (not the same, I know) in TWD. The people are (often) either fighting to protect others from the undead, OR to protect others from OTHER horrible people. There’s a sense of righteousness… and something else that God laid on my heart? It’s… acting…

Nudity and sex however… well… it’s not “acting” … You can’t “act” naked, if you’re naked, you’re naked and Hollywood uses this device to tempt and taunt and sell sex. They don’t OFTEN use it for reasons that they should (natives, tribes, prisoners, slaves, etc) Sex? It’s “just acting” …. yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeah, hate to break it to you, but not really. (I’d like to preface this by saying that I have been in Hollywood a little and know plenty of people who are/ were and can confirm these things) – actors and actresses OFTEN sleep with one another (not always, some have morals) but when you’re filming a sex scene for six days where you’re both nude and pressed up against one another (sorry to be graphic) WHAT DO YOU THINK is going to happen?

I read an article one time (wish I could find it) that an ACTOR wrote about how during love scenes he had a VERY difficult uh… time (won’t get any more graphic than that, you can use your imagination).

Because it’s NOT acting when you put two naked people against one another for several days and ask them to “pretend to do sexual things”… that’s not how the human body/ brain or anything works, really 😛 (unless your co-star is 100% flaming gay)

Hollywood itself is STEEPED in sexual sin. I know someone who can TELL you that as a woman she was asked by almost EVERY SINGLE manager and some directors to either A, take her clothes off, or B, sleep with them (or do sexual favors). And often, these women in Hollywood are told that they won’t “get anywhere unless they do” … sad… exploitative. I would know.

Now, I’m not suggesting that there isn’t a chance that God doesn’t want me watching The Walking Dead…

rg.jpg

I’ve actually struggled with the idea of “stopping” watching TWD… and I can guarantee you that if they choose to cross a few set lines in my head, I won’t hesitate to terminate my “relationship” with the zombie show. I almost terminated it during Terminus. BUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

What it IS to say is that often, I’ve found with movies and film the REASON that I’m okay watching certain things is finding the redemptive part in it.

As a person and as a CHRISTIAN, what I long for is restoration/ healing, forgiveness, affection/ brotherly love…
EX. one of the reasons that I love The Count of Monte’ Cristo (with James Caveziel) is because at the end, he realizes that revenge is NOT the answer, even though the bad guys deserved it and TO BE FAIR, he justly dealt with them all (in the movie)- eye for eye like.

He is restored at the end, no longer a “cloaked figure” trying to hurt people. Now a man with purpose, family, and love again.

If things are often just “glorifying raunchiness, adultery, sexual immorality, violence, etc…” I have a VERY hard time just “watching” that and feeling that Christ is okay with it.

Who knows, maybe I’m wrong… but I can tell you that God has spoken to me NUMEROUS times in movies and film ESPECIALLY where there was a sense or heroism, restoration, sacrifice, etc.

I wouldn’t say that it brings me “closer to God” – I’d say that it helped me at times understand myself and our Lord better.

I want to briefly address also, how I feel (as a society) we’ve tricked ourselves into thinking that Deadpool must push ALLLLLLL boundaries because that’s “just who he is” … let me tell ya, son. I sat down and pawed through a ton of Deadpool comics, I have watched multiple things with Deadpool in them, and I play as deadpool in one of my favorite video games… I BELIEVE that the writers/ producers could have VERY EASILY made this PG-13… and maybe quite a bit more funny/ creative/ suggestive. In fact, there’s a large part of me (being a writer) that wants to see the darn movie, get the script and re-write it to prove everyone that it could have in fact been done. In almost ALL instances where we’ve seen this character he’s been PG-13 / (sometimes even PG) and no one has complained. In fact, everyone LOVES DEADPOOL!
deadpool valentne

Things COULD have been pushed further, but the idea that things needed to be pushed as FAR as they were? ………………………… questionable.

I am writing this blooooog not to say “HEY YOU! YES YOU SINNER SINNY SIN SINNN SINNER… DON’T GO SEE DEADPOOL!”

I’m actually writing it plant some ideas and ask a few questions about our entertainment.

We as people and as Christians should always find ways to see God in entertainment and if we can’t, then that entertainment might not be worth it to us. Remember, PAUL stated that he can do ALL things, but not ALL things are beneficial to him… in fact, some things are the OPPOSITE of beneficial. They hurt us in the long run. And I just wonder at times how many of us (myself included) watch something and then years down the road don’t realize that HEY… I wonder where this train of thought, or THIS allowance, or THIS such and such started… …………………………………….. if I was honest with myself…? Maybe it started with Deadpool… 😦
(Or GOT, or SOA, or Hannibal, or TWD, or OITNB, or………………………)

– Did you make it through this boring piece without shoving a fork in your eye? Good for you! You get a chimichanga.

Now go see Deadpool and don’t come complaining to me that I’m uptight and holier than thou. 😛

God takes forgiveness pretty seriously. You should too

Matthew 6:15 – http://biblehub.com/matthew/6-15.htm

I’m going to be blunt…

I hate it when people (ESPECIALLY Christians) won’t admit to the fact that the problem is “them”…

When a person has deliberately decided that someone else is the problem and hence they hold no forgiveness for that person in their their hearts and act as if they can never be made whole again, it really frazzles me.

Time and time again I watch in the church (funnily enough, mostly with WOMEN but a few times with men) who get their feathers bent out of shape because of this or that or the other and decide that now they have a problem with someone else.

However, when the problem is addressed, commented on, apologized for, or stated to be misunderstood, the same old things always seem to follow … in fact, it’s hilarious how predictable those things are-

Un-forgiveness, mistrust, contempt, jealousy, rumor spreading, gossip, the list just goes on and on.

unforgiveness (1)

I have lost several friends in the last 6-10 years, ALL of them women, ALL of them to issues that could have easily been resolved if said woman would have just accepted my SINCERE apology and realized that THEY were the problem.

Now, let me be clear-

When I say that THEY are the problem, what I am talking about was/is after the fact. Meaning that regardless of whether I initially caused an issue (most of the time it was over a misunderstanding, which makes it even more silly) they have refused to accept my apology, have a relationship with me, communicate, etc… This makes them the problem whether they like it or not.

Jesus repeatedly spoke in the bible about forgiveness and ESPECIALLY amongst his elect and His church. The “emotional feelys” that women don’t seem to be able to work out with their brothers and sisters seems to be one of the many reasons that women are not supposed to preach in churches as it seems that women have a much bigger issue with this than men.

The bible says that you are NOT supposed to have an issue with your brother or sister in Christ. This doesn’t mean that you might not always be working things out. This doesn’t mean that the other person won’t do things that rub you the wrong way, or that they might not do something that makes you mad. It means, don’t hold it against them. Let things go. ESPECIALLY IF THEY CAME TO YOU AND APOLOGIZED!

If you can’t do this, then what in the world are you calling yourself a Christian for? We are supposed to forgive our brother (sister) seventy times seven.

Even if your brother/sister was COMPLETELY in the wrong (and in my experience, that’s actually NOT the case. Usually there is either a great misunderstanding, the person who is upset is making it a FAR bigger issue in their mind than it actually is ((by ascribing motives and issues to the person that they are not forgiving)) that are not correct thus blowing it MASSIVELY out of proportion, or the other person might have actually done something very wrong and now they are very sorry about it).

The worst part is that usually the person who is holding someone in un-forgiveness will justify themselves in that. Immediately taking to social media and saying things like, “When God closes a door…” bla bla bla… No sweetheart… God didn’t close that door. You did. In fact, you SLAMMED it… in the face of your brother/sister and here I refer you to Matthew 6:15. Then you see posts like, “God knows what happened, I will stand firm”… and everyone on Twitter and Instagram likes it/ making the person feel justified (without knowing the full story). No sweetheart, again, God ain’t mad at your brother, He’s mad at you. 

Matthew 5:23-24 says, “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.”

Sounds to me like God takes forgiveness pretty seriously… “Leave your gift at the altar and go and reconcile” – “Your father WILL NOT FORGIVE YOUR SINS…” Hmmmm.

I would like to finish this post by saying that ultimately, here’s the real issue-

You are not causing someone else problems, you are causing problems for YOU… For yourself. God is not going to grant you favor through un-forgiveness. It says so in His book.

unforgiveness

–I’m not trying to “Throw shade” or be “salty” I’m actually ONLY referring to people who have had personal problems with me in the PAST… so if you feel convicted or angry, then maybe you should be asking yourself why.

Think about it…

This is a marriage (our marriage to Christ) and it only works if we are committed to making it work. ALL OF US

TL;DR Me, this generation and emotional manipulation

Hello.
My name is Lisa,
And I am an emotional manipulator…

Manipulation-Puppet

*phew* it took me years to learn to say that. YEARSSSS… I should say that the previous statement was more “passed tense” than it is “present tense” but, I’m still working on this.

I want to take a moment to talk about this generation and emotional manipulation…

You see, I live in a world of young people who don’t consider these things, so I’d like to bring them to light by way of sharing some of my own experiences in emotional manipulation.

When we hear the word “manipulation” or “You’re a manipulative person” we cringe and buck and balk and immediately say, “NO I’M NOT!!!” … and that’s because like so many other things in this world there are DIFFERENT KINDS of manipulation. The same way that there are different kinds of love, mercy, forgiveness, etc…

When we hear manipulation, we honestly think of a person (and or fictional character) that is “out to get people” … We think of Regina George in Mean Girls saying, “Oh my gosh, what a BEAUTIFUL SKIRT!” because she wants EVERYONE to love her and then turning towards Cayti and saying, “That is the ugliest effing skirt I have ever seen…”

You’re not like that in the slightest… ARE you? 🙂 I certainly wasn’t. In fact, there had been times where I had been blatantly honest. A girl at church came one time wearing an unflattering, horrible yellow dress that was basically blinding. When I was asked what I thought about it, I said, “I don’t like it. I don’t think it flatters you…” I was picked on for days lol.

So how in the world was I manipulative?

When I was a young person, I had no idea that I was manipulative. SCARED, maybe… but manipulative? Nah… How could I be? What could I be doing to say that I was manipulative? O_o

The truth is this…

If you are overly expressing your emotional state to people when you want something, then you are being emotionally manipulative.

This could be construed and rehashed and rephrased several different ways, but it’s the truth.

Let’s say all of your friends have decided to go and climb a mountain. You’re the one person who doesn’t want to go because you’re scared. You think it’s stupid… You probably think it’s stupid BECAUSE you’re scared… you don’t get it… So you are “left out” of said experience, right?

Wrong… You have made a decision and you can NOT blame the group for “not including you” or not “deciding to do something else” to “include you”… Crying, whining, not listening, back talking, or becoming bitter and/or angry are all forms of emotional manipulation.

Because whether it’s your boyfriend, your husband, your spouse, your BEST friend, your friends period, or WHOEVER… the point is this- You KNOW deep down that they care about you… so in reality, crying, whining, back talking, etc is YOUR WAY of asking them to reaffirm that they care about you by making YOU feel more comfortable and making sure that THEY don’t leave you out by doing this thing that you don’t want to do…

Come on! They HAVE TO! Why ? Because they CARE about you! You KNOW that they care about you… so, what do you expect them to do? Show that they care! They’re not going to suddenly become pricks and be all, “Boo hoo, too bad for you,” and walk away. They’re going to console you (even though the problem is yours) and change their plans to accommodate you. (at least, that’s the goal, right 😉 😉 😉 )

Manipulation

Let’s say that your two closest friends want to go to “Mary Anne’s” house, but you don’t really LIKE Mary Anne so you decide not to go… LET THEM GO and don’t have “issues” because they went without you… Your “not liking” someone doesn’t change the fact that they DO like Mary Anne and that they were invited (as well as you) and you DECIDED not to go. IF you’re going to make a decision that puts YOU in a bad mood, then don’t make it. Don’t “feel left out” or “not wanted” … don’t “blame” your friends OR Mary Anne for your decision to exclude YOURSELF… Have a good time on your own, let it go, don’t be mad at your friends at ALL… It was YOUR decision.

If your boyfriend / spouse wants to go out with the guys (so long as they’re not doing something that you’ve agreed is not okay in your relationship), and you don’t want him to because of your own “insecurities”… don’t piss, whine, cry, mumble, belly ache, throw things, etc even just being plain indecisive can be manipulating/ wandering around looking sad/lost/ hurt… not good… this is all childish behavior and is basically ASKING for your boyfriend/ husband to do one of two things… show you what a JERK he is (by saying “whatever” and going anyways) or ruining HIS night by making him stay home with you… because that’s what he’s supposed to do… RIIIIIIIGHT? He should CARE about your feelings… and he DOES…

Let’s say that someone is trying to let you down easy/ break it off with you… Don’t cry, bitch, ask, beg, plead a case, talk about past failures, etc… They’re trying to tell you in the nicest way possible that they are done with this stage of your relationship. LET THEM GO! Don’t try to “keep them” by whining about it… You know the person well, and if they are a good friend, then they have one of two options… A, be a dick and say ‘screw you’ … which basically confirms in YOUR mind that they’re an evil person… or B, to “comfort/ console” you and “stand by your side…” … This is not okay.

If a person has been clear with you about their feelings in your relationship… you need to respect them. Go vent/ cry/ blab to another good friend about all the past stuff. Let the person trying to let you go, go. That’s what they need. And if they don’t fall for your belly aching, don’t turn around and tell everyone what a creep and horrible person/ friend they are…

Same with any of these other scenarios…

You see, when you do these things, you’re playing on someone’s emotions. You’re letting them know that you are DISPLEASED with them and that they SHOULD (in effect) care MORE about YOU than anything that they want… which isn’t okay. And unfortunately, it’s contagious… ONCE a person learns that they can do this to Nice guy A, or Friend B… they’ll continue to do it because they learn (subconsciously) how that person will respond. “If I cry… then she does THIS! WOW, she REALLY cares about me! And I can get what I want!” 

Never mind that this is selfish and horribly “five year old” of you… and honestly? Everyone can see it and knows it too…  And the worst part of this is that if a person who knows you well feeds into it, you can start to use it more frequently, and with more and more things until you are (essentially) the person who is in complete control by exploiting the other person’s emotional state.

MANY people don’t even realize that they do this…

And honestly? I’m not “mad” at the people who do. I USED to do this all the time. I used to sit around and whine, complain, bitch, become bitter, angry/ throw stuff, for stupid stupid, stupid things… I’m slowly letting that fall off of me as a person. Because I’ve slowly come to realize that this is all MY fault, MY insecurities, MY fears, MY problems and that it’s all based in that very thing… “ANXIETY”...

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WHAT IF these people don’t like me? WHAT IF I try and I fail? WHAT IF I can’t figure myself out? WHAT IF my husband meets someone else on guy’s night and runs off with them? WHAT IF I can’t have this person in my life FOREVER??? What if what if what if?

Other ways that you can emotionally manipulate-
Constantly redirecting the conversation to be about you… (“I hear what you’re saying but MY feelings are more important…”) 
Lying… (“Well, I feel REALLY REALLY REALLY sick right now…”)
Being blunt to make someone feel bad/guilty when such things weren’t necessary and could be said privately. (“Remember that time that you talked to BARBARA all night long? YEAH! THAT’S why you can’t go out with the guys…”) 

ENOUGH!
Philippians 4: 6-7 says-

6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

You as a person have to be honest with yourself about your own insecurities. If you’re afraid, then ADMIT IT! And instead of getting down on yourself, either try said thing you’re afraid of, OR don’t… but don’t blame everyone else… It is YOUR issue to deal with/ handle.

Don’t hold on to people… LET THEM GO… and trust that the Lord has more in store for you.

Understand that this behavior is not okay, it hurts others and makes them think of you in certain ways, it causes grief in relationships and allows you to rule over people by emotional exploitation, and in the end? It really doesn’t help you out at all.

fear

Run from your sin! And it will certainly, absolutely never ever ever follow you at all.

I had come to the end of my rope…

“I just can’t do this anymore,” I said sheepishly looking at my husband.

I had just reiterated (for the fiftieth time) my current struggles in life coupled with my feelings of inadequacy, and the proverbial “banging your head against your wall” that happens to us all when a Christian begins to experience sin and temptation in all it’s resplendent false glory.

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My husband listened, nodded, sighed heavily a few times and lifted his head to look at me. “I don’t know what to do,” I said.

He shrugged. “Nothing.” He replied as if reading off of an item on my grocery list.

Wait a second… I just told you that I was struggling with temptation, and that I felt that I was drowning and your response to me was that I should do nothing?

“Nothing,” he replied again. “You need to keep putting yourself in it’s face.”

If your head didn’t just explode, stay with me.

How often in our Christian walk have we heard, “Run away from your sin…” ?

A few years ago now, I was struggling with an issue, and I sat down to talk with another woman about it. She shook her head and said, “You need to run… you need to run away from that right now.”

Now, please don’t get me wrong, I believe that there absolutely is a time and a place for running. If you feel yourself giving in to REAL temptation, then run. Run right then.

But, for some of us… those temptations are not as easy as “put down the bottle and walk away” because they’re less …physical.

The truth of the matter is that running sounds like the logical choice…

But wait a minute. If we run from temptation, what happens the next time we encounter it? Oh sure, we might not run into meth in our every day life, so resisting it once might sound really easy because heck, who knows when the next time we’ll encounter it again will be. Maybe never. Run once, and you won’t even have to look at meth for twenty years maybe. That’s simple!

But, alcohol… that might be a bit harder to always run from…
Porn… Even harder…
What about just old fashioned unforgiveness? … hitting a nerve there…
What about gossip? Having something against your brother? YIKES!!!

I’m not sure that you can always “run” from those kinds o things… and quite frankly, I think that this is one of the reasons that we start to lose people in the church. They can’t “handle” their own sin and have been told to “run from it”…

Funny…

You know, I don’t think that the verse is “Run from your sin, and it will certainly, absolutely, never ever ever follow you at all…”

I’m pretty sure that ACTUALLY the verse is “RESIST the devil and he will flee…”

What what?!?!? SAY IT AGAIN! “RESIST SIN?! RESIST??? Not RUN FROM!!??”

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Funny, I never really thought about this verse until my husband told me to continue to put myself in front of my “issue.”

I stewed over it for days until God reminded me of that very verse, and continued to point it out to me.

I wasn’t supposed to “run” from this sin because firstly that’s not what the bible says to do, but secondly, my sin is an issue of my heart not outright action, and BECAUSE of this running from it will only mean that it’ll chase me. That’s the nature of sin. Sin is in the heart and if you run from it, it’s still there. It’ll make another object, person, image, or drug the focus in no time flat.

This might sound nutty but it hit me like a ton of bricks.

A few nights later, I glared at my husband, “Everyone’s theology is flawed…you’re the one who’s right…” I smiled. He nodded at me, “I know,” he replied with a small smile. Then we talked about that verse.

You know what’s interesting? Since that revelation, I’ve felt stronger in this.

The idea that I can RESIST and not “run” actually gives me hope, and strength. I can stand up against my own selfish and foolish desires… and maybe I can have Victory.