Posted in Faith, Love

3 Ways to Live Loved

Living loved is not the result of having people in your life that love you or accept you. Living loved is not a feeling based on how others choose to love you. To live loved goes way beyond the kind words and actions you receive from others.

The moment we start to depend on other people’s words and actions to live loved, is when we have lost complete sight of what living loved is all about.

The root and foundation of living loved is anchored in three critical areas of our lives:

  1. Our identity

  2. Our purpose

  3. Our faith

Throughout my years of being a Christian, I have learned that life does not get easier, nor free of negativity and hurt. Living the Christian life has nothing to do with us, and everything to do with Christ, which is why the word Christian has the word Christ in it.

Being a Christian means you are no longer living for you but for Christ. As Christians, our plans, agenda, goals, and desires no longer matter. Rather it is God’s plan and desire to use us in whatever way He sees fit to accomplish His bigger plans for humanity.

That means being fully present in the season you’re currently in. Whether you’re a full time mom caring and loving on your kids, teaching them in the way of the Lord, or being a waitress/waiter serving the person or family in the restaurant you work at. No matter what season of life you find yourself in, there is a purpose for you and the people you encounter during that season of your life.

Don’t be discouraged, and don’t be afraid. The fact your dreams and goals will no longer matter, does not mean you won’t have new dreams and goals. God is so divine that He replaces our own selfish plans and desires with His plans and desires for our lives. Ultimately, for the salvation of many lives.

Had I not given up on my own plans and agenda for my life, I would not be typing this blog right now. I would probably be practicing medicine on someone somewhere. Can you picture me as a doctor? What about a pediatric doctor?

Yeah… I’m glad my plans did not unfold the way I thought they should. Almost a year ago, God showed me I was living from a place of discontentment. The sad truth is that I had absolutely no idea I was living this way! God has a way of bringing to our attention the places of our lives that don’t please or honor Him.

For me, it was through a friendship I was holding on to with the hopes of being more than just friends. I was so caught up with the thought of just friends that I lost the significance of having him as a friend. Why wasn’t I content with being just friends?

So what if our friendship never got passed the friend zone?

Would I be OK with that? Obviously, I wasn’t.

Deep down I was not content, which is why I wasn’t OK with just being friends.

What does living loved look like?

Have you ever wondered or questioned that?

I hadn’t until I realized I was living from a place of discontentment.

After attempting to seek answers from this guy pertaining our relationship, I didn’t get the answer I hoped for. So I made the decision to stop being his friend. Was I being selfish and self-centered? I was definitely making the situation about ME rather than allowing God to have His way with our friendship.

After carefully considering the question, “Why wasn’t I content with being just friends?” The reason was, my lack of trust in God and His sovereignty. Rather than focusing on God’s truth during this time, I was so caught up focusing on my fleeting emotions.

Discontentment only brings frustration, anger, negative self-talk, and worry. Friend, we were not created to live a life of discontentment. We were created to live loved in spite of our circumstances.

3 Ways to Live Loved

  1. Live Loved by Knowing and Understanding Your Identity in Christ

Our true identity is not found in what people say about us or how they treat us. Our true identity is found in Christ and Christ alone! People may identify you based on your race, your job or career, your outward appearance, or even based on your past.

God, however, He identifies you as His son/daughter. He identifies you as the bearer of His own image! (Genesis 1:26)

  1. Live Loved by knowing and Understanding You Have Purpose

Each of us have a purpose to fulfill here on earth. If you don’t know what your purpose is yet, I encourage you to seek after it. Discovering your purpose will require you to be intentional about it.

You can volunteer at a church, school, or nonprofit organization to name a few places. Ask yourself what interests you and try it out. Taking these steps of action can help you discover your God given purpose.

Discovering our purpose is powerful! Once we know what our purpose is, we live with an understanding that we were created for more. No matter what life throws at us, knowing our purpose will encourage us to keep going and to not dwell in life’s circumstances.

  1. Live Loved by Knowing and Understanding His Best Is In Store No Matter What

Yahweh God is good and faithful! His character is based on the foundation of pure love. His love, grace, and mercy never falter. The storms of life can’t stop God from being faithful to us. It’s in those difficult and challenging moments where God wants to pull us close and grow our intimacy with Him.

To live loved means knowing and understanding the foundation from which love comes from.

“But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

– 1 John 4:8

The Bible tells us that love comes from God. We can’t live loved if we don’t know the source of love, and we can’t show love without first living loved.

Friend, let’s be intentional about living loved, and that starts with seeking the giver of it – Yahweh, God.

“We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.”

– 1 John 4:16

Question: What Bible verse speaks to you the most about love and why?

Posted in Faith, Love

LOVE Defined (Book Review)

Hi lovelies! I am so excited to share with you a few of the major take-a ways I got from reading this book, Love Defined, by sisters Kristen Clark and Bethany Baird. In their book, Bethany and Kristen teach the reader how to embrace God’s vision for lasting love and satisfying relationships.

Some of us have been taught wrong on how to navigate love and relationships for far too long. I not only want to encourage you to read this great book for yourself, I also want to give you a short insight on the biblical based points in which Bethany and Kristen write about.

Beginning with chapter two, seeing through the Fairy Tale Facade, Bethany and Kristen write about Hollywood’s false front and how it takes a lot more than good looks and passion to maintain long-term love. Good looks will eventually fade, then what? Passion won’t always be there, then what?

Beautiful sisters, there is nothing Holy about Hollywood! We must stop fantasizing about having relationships like Hollywood portrays them. Instead, we must learn to crave and desire true love, which can only be found in Jesus Christ. Only then will we be able to embrace God’s vision for lasting love and satisfying relationships.

The Fairy Tale Facade consists of lies, deception, and selfishness. None of which are Christ like. In chapter three, the Merry-Go-Round Method for Modern Relationships, authors Bethany and Kristen describe the five-step process of this method (the wrong method to navigate relationships). Briefly, these steps include: (1) catch the right guy (2) coast on infatuation (3) concentrate on your feelings (4) count on him to satisfy you, and (5) cry when it fails, then go back to the beginning and do it all over again.

Does any of it sound familiar? It does to me! I was that girl on the “Merry-Go-Round” a few years ago before I learned and understood God’s vision for lasting love and satisfying relationships. I’ll admit, even though I’ve learned from my ignorant view of love and relationships, there are times that if I’m not careful, I can easily fall into the Merry-Go-Round Method once again.

Let’s take a moment to unpack steps 2, 3 and 4. Infatuation is a big mistake we as single girls tend to make when it comes to dating or even getting to know someone on a friendship level. If you have mentally planned your wedding with the guy, darling, you have officially entered the infatuation stage. That’s not a good thing!

Infatuation is a form of idolatry. You are constantly thinking about this guy, planning your wedding and honeymoon with him in mind, and wondering if what he said or did means anything. Infatuating about a guy will only cause heartache and disappointment when you soon find out he’s just not into you.

Concentrating on our feelings rather than on God’s truth and wisdom is the second mistake we as modern day women commit. We are quick to make decisions based on how we feel instead of taking time to seek wisdom for moving forward in a relationship. Our feelings should not dictate our actions. Our feelings are indicators for searching wise counsel.

The primary goal of the Merry-Go-Round Method, as Bethany and Kristen describe it, “is rooted in and fueled by a desire to please self (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 37).” Rather than bringing God glory, this method is driven by personal happiness. God’s ultimate design for relationships is to bring him honor and glory.

Depending on a man for your personal satisfaction is like drinking coffee on a hot summer day and expecting your thirst to be quenched. No one can truly satisfy us the way Jesus can. The cycle of heartache and devastation will never end unless we change our way of viewing love and relationships. We must choose a Christ-centered approach if we want to see change happen in our love life.

“Who we marry is just as important as why we marry (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 58).” Kristen and Bethany also write about the purpose of marriage and marrying the right guy. Marriage is much more than a wedding date and butterfly feelings. Marriage is about glorifying God and serving Him along with your spouse. Our goal should be to marry a man whom we could serve the Lord effectively. Kristen and Bethany provide the reader with three must-have qualities to look for in a future husband.

#1: Look for a man with VISION

“A man considering marriage doesn’t need to have every single tiny detail of his life together, but he does need to have a vision for where he is going and where he wants to lead you, his wife (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 160).”

#2: Look for a man with PASSION

“Choose to marry a man who is passionate about the Lord now. This is a must-have quality in a future husband (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 161).”

#3: Look for a man with PURPOSE

“Choose to marry a man who understands his God-given purpose (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 162).”

What Kind of Husband Do You Want to Spend the Rest of Your Life With?

“A man whose life is marked by these things and who lives for the Lord is the type of person the Bible regards as wise to marry (Clark & Baird, 2018, p. 163).”

Ladies, I can go on and on about what Kristen and Bethany teach us in their book, but I rather have you read it for yourself. Please consider reading this book and allow God to show you his best for your romantic relationships.

You can connect with Kristen and Bethany on their website: girldefined.com

Posted in Faith, Love

Are They Worth The Risk?

Love.

Heartbreak.

Repeat.

Is this the kind of “love story” you want? Falling in love, getting your heart broken and then repeating that same process all over again with someone else. Maybe this is the only “love story” you have heard of because you haven’t learned to count the cost. In my blog titled Love Doesn’t Hurt. Loving the Wrong Person Does (Read blog here). I write about heartbreak and how choosing the wrong person to invest our love in can lead to a devastating hurt.

Although love doesn’t hurt, love creates an atmosphere for potential rejection, heartbreak and/or a messy relationship. This is why counting the cost between the person you are interested in and the guarding of your heart is extremely important.

Before you think about getting into a relationship, you must first ask yourself, “Is this guy or girl worth the risk of me being rejected or getting my heart broken?” Often times, this question is hardly asked and the lack of asking it can result in regret.

Continue reading “Are They Worth The Risk?”

Posted in Love

Love Doesn’t Hurt. Loving the Wrong Person Does.

Whose been in love? Hands down. I’m sure most of you have at least once. I’ve been in love multiple times. Most of those times loving caused me some serious hurt. Hurt that takes months and even years to fully heal.

I now have a better understanding of what dating should look like. It’s definitely not going out with multiple guys until you feel “loved” by one of them! Continue reading “Love Doesn’t Hurt. Loving the Wrong Person Does.”