It’s Never Ok except to LOVE THROUGH.

It’s never ok to play with someone’s heart. Dangling hopes, dreams and desires before someone who has prayed for a while for those things is bound to hurt them and confuse them. That’s never honest and never compassionate regardless of your intentions. You have to be careful with matters of the heart when you are engaging people. You don’t know what makes and breaks a person or what could hurt them deeply and interrupt their race. Honesty has to be the basis for everything. You should know yourself and where you are headed. If your head and heart are disconnected you will move ahead of your heart a divided person. There may be good reason you are divided, explore that division and find out what direction you should head. Never start a race you are not willing to run. I try to be aware of this as much as I can but sometimes miss the mark and I understand others can as well. We have to forgive people when they do this and hope they will forgive us as well. It’s explained by the fact that the heart is deceitful and desperately wicked according to the Bible. With all the knowledge I have there are still times I am knocked off my feet. We long and desire some great things in this life and having those things isn’t wrong, but be ready and able before involving someone else who is ready to have them. I know people have good intentions and do not intend to hurt others. Yet still we have to own it to grow and learn. Intentions are not meaningful if the person never sees or knows them. People can misjudge you quicker than trust you. They may only know what we said or did. Hindsight is 20/20. The Lord tells us to guard our heart and we have to be careful with where we place our trust or how we are drawn into a persons life. We have to be able to tell if someone is being truthful with us and if they are making a decision from wholeness or brokenness. Listen to that voice that says, wait or not now. That’s our accountability. We also have to be careful with our own weakness. If we are treading where our desire and past hurts collide we can potentially put ourselves in an unhealthy situation and not realize it until we are hurt deeply. We may hurt others deeply as well. Ugh, this stinks too.

I have never understood the concept of throwing people away. Even people who have done some pretty terrible things. I hope and pray I never do! I understand healthy boundaries. I understand separation, enabling and codependency. That is not what I am talking about here. I understand solving disagreements with clear kind compassion that sets those boundaries. I am talking about judging and sentencing a person without fairness. Even as humans we can show mercy if we choose and hear out a person.

I am glad my Father’s love is perfect and that he understands my heart and weaknesses and doesn’t just wad me up like a piece of paper throw me and all of the good things about me away because of his anger or because I was impatient with him or because I crossed a line. Truth is I am going to be impatient once in a while, I will cross lines at times and I will cause anger. It is never my heart to do these things but I am not a super Christian. I am truly a lamb who needs her Shepherd. I am a loving gal who is imperfect and still seeking and growing in this journey. I don’t and won’t always get it right but no one who has ever stayed in my race will say I failed to forgive and love through the rough spot. I really don’t know how else to do it but to love through. The truth most people miss or do not take time with in this life is when they are misjudged. As bad as I can be and as much as I can fail, I pray Lord, let me learn to love like you do more each day! I am amazed at the great love of GOD! Some of my best friendships were born out of misunderstanding. Take time to work through things that offend and realize you are filtering everything with your own stuff. Giving people the benefit of the doubt is a trite saying to me. I say go the extra mile and love them through not only the doubt but through what they can’t see. If a person can’t see it and receive you, then LOVE ANYWAY. You can be hurt and rejected but that’s ok. Here’s the thing ~ He is my God and is the God of second chances and even as unworthy as I am, I get a second, third, fourth, hundredth, chance with Him because he alone is faithful and true to offer it. He can’t violate his word and withhold it from me. His restoration and resurrection are principles he wants in my life to get me to where I need to be in his purpose and plan. It’s a check he can write and cash because of his Son Jesus. He is able to offer it because he loves me and has proven his love with a cross. He sincerely cares and loves me with undivided compassion. He offers grace that abounds beyond my sin and that sustains me in hard times. I am thankful God sees past my shortcomings to my real heart and knows my desires. I am thankful God loves through. I am thankful for the journey and once again I have to start on it, knowing that should God provide that second chance, it will come in a way that is right for me by someone who has a heart like his and will treat me like He treats me. The world will throw you away but God’s love never fails and it reaches even an imperfect sinner like me. I am thankful for people in my life now who have God’s heart and can show me his love even when I fail. I love them dearly and wow! what an honor to race with them and be taught by them!

There’s a lot of shame and blame in this world. I am thankful Jesus rose past it as a perfect example and endured it for my sake so I would have a way to race and finish well. He loved through.

Hebrews 12

1Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

2Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

The Tender Silent Warrior

Sometimes there is nothing more you can say except no regrets and that you are thankful.

The Tender Silent Warrior

A man in on the front lines
Working day by day
Doing what is right
In spite of the fray

He works with his hands
And gives all his might
It hasn’t been easy
He gave up his right

To be just a man
Walking away from them
He stood by the stuff
When the lights were dim

His back is tired
Some days go wrong
His bed is empty
The nights are long

So much has been done
By his strong hands
Whose cheering him on
God understands

He can look around
The fruit of his work
Who smiles when he’s done
Duties he didn’t shirk

He bows and prays
He has done right
Who says thank you
Alone in the night

Heaven’s on his side
God has a plan
He answers the accuser
I love that man

Come what may
God can’t love him less
A tender silent warrior
He’s done his best

My heart will still pray
earthly love he will find
he changed my life
he’s one of a kind

Labor Day Weekend

Guard your heart, use your brains, and above all remember this is the Internet.

I wrote this article last year for a Christian internet dating site. I have edited it with a few more thoughts. I think it bears repeating. I am not trying to discount getting to know someone through dating sites. Studies show that people who meet on Eharmony for example have a higher success rate than meeting in person. Yet at some point people have to go toe to toe and eye to eye to dance in the minefield of relationships. That’s all I am saying here. Dating sites are a tool at best. Don’t get the cart before the horse.

March 2010.
Sometimes you have to use common sense. I know this will go over like a lead balloon. Internet dating sites lend themselves to serious discernment problems. You can’t have a “relationship” with someone you have never met. You can feel deeply, feel strongly, and all kinds of things but you can’t have a relationship with a chat box or phone call or even a few phone conversations. Relationships take quality time and take one on one interaction, and eventually growth together in person. That simply can not happen online where aspects of personality and character can not be seen. It’s far too important a matter to play roulette with. At some point you have to meet and see where the relationship might go.

Miracles happen and things stranger than fiction have. Generally speaking that’s the exception more than the rule. You can at best develop an “acquaintance friendship” Friendships take a long time to form and relationships even longer. Online one might jump right into the latter without the former and begin roles never assigned to them if in real time. The problem with this kind of thinking is that you can give your heart over to a person you have not met because you are living in a pseudo fantasy land and wind up with disaster.

A person can expect you to fill a certain role based on where their heart is and they wind up with a disaster. This creates chaos, distraction from the LORD and folks get hurt that way. Be mature, respectful, and direct in these things. Do not play games or expect mind reading. Guard your heart, use your brains, and above all remember this is the Internet.

We have to understand God’s heart for us is not to walk into a disaster. Disaster that often breeds with the availability of Internet anonymity. Too many can “be all they wanted to be” vs. be real. I know I have used the word “fantasy land” before but that is because there is no word to describe the plane that the Internet affords. It’s still being defined. What I do know about and have seen is the brokenness of people who have played in this media and found themselves hurt. I have seen it and experienced it. I think the Internet’s own virtue is it’s own demon. The fact that you can connect with so many on so many different levels because you aren’t distracted by the physical. I have a couple of long term friends that I have come to know as kindred brothers and sisters in the LORD but I know how rare that is and given their character I am thankful they are real. I have met them both and to me they are extended family. Even those friendships are 8 years old and did not foster overnight.

Men, if you are reading this understand intelligent women are not just protecting their heart but yours as well if they are wise enough to hold back. A weaker woman will create you as a white knight in shining armor. A strong woman will still develop ties that are going to cause her heartache if she doesn’t make healthy choices. That is unfair for you and her. Yet if a woman can’t see at best all people have armor that has rust spots and chinks she will get herself involved with someone who isn’t real.

Women, if you are reading, understand words are just words. Action reveals what a person truly believes and exposes their character. Until you are in person, you really have words and maybe a bit of knowledge about them. Be aware of sites that offer too many contacts which also offers too many distractions. Juggling men will lead to being perplexed. One pursues you that you are not interested be honest and cut that off. It’s not fair to make people an option. Another delays pursuing you because to him you are an option. The old saying goes, “never make someone a priority who only makes you an option” A third guy is great but keeps you clueless. Shake hands, be friends and move forward. Some say that they are not ready for anything but are on a dating site fishing. . Don’t be insecure about that, understand it’s good news. Clarity is much better than guessing. This division of the heart is not good for a woman to bring into her life. God is not the author of confusion. A man will seek what matters to him. He may not do it at your speed but you will know if he’s interested or not. No need to sell yourself, throw yourself at him. If a man isn’t casting a net in your pond the best thing you can do is gratefully accept that.. Know yourself and your God who will provide the desires of your heart. I know I am not winning friends with this post. I love people, love the LORD and had to get it out there.

Men approach relationships different. I don’t pretend to know what all of those differences are. I just know that women aspire to relationships emotionally more than men I think. (keep in mind this is my own opinion and observation)

The goal should be though if CHRISTIAN to do it in a Godly way vs, worldly way. You can’t trade urgency for real passion, heart, fun and companionship. Rushing a relationship is like lighting a short fuse. I for one do not want to be the cause of anyone being hurt and want to do things in a way that lasts beyond the fireworks and pleases GOD. If I had to draw lines to do that I just can’t apologize for that. Passion in it’s place is well worth the wait.

I think a woman should be pursued and found as a treasure. Keep your options open until you meet a person and see their life first hand. Be careful out there.