STOP in the Name of Love, Before YOU Break a Heart, Think it Over.
(That could make a good song….ha, ha!)
All single adults really should read this Relational Rehab blog before making any kind of a couple’s commitment. Better yet, it would be good to read before even getting involved in a relationship that has the potential for heading in that direction.
Those who are already in a committed relationship can benefit, as well, especially if you begin to see or feel that something is lacking. Without the knowledge and wisdom to know how to deal with the relationship it could slowly die. But, know this, there is help and hope through this blog.
This week we will begin by creating a mental picture of what a desired relationship looks like. That mental picture will represent the target in which you will aim. Without a target or vision we tend to settle.
Then, once that target has been established we will learn how to discover who another person really is, prior to making a commitment. After which we will spend some time learning how to correct any imbalances in the relationship.
I wish I had known as a young adult what I am offering, here. Because I lacked relational wisdom and knowledge I ended up not only with a broken heart but also broke the hearts of others, several times.
Many years ago, during a relational breakup, my pastor explained that I had a tendency to choose men like people choose a house. He said, “You seem to look at only part of the house before you buy it. Then, after you have moved in you discover things that you don’t like but hadn’t noticed prior to buying it.”
When buying a house it is typical for the young and inexperienced to be limited in his or her wisdom and knowledge for making such a decision. With a limited scope individuals tend to give attention to only what the house looks like and maybe a few other features that would accommodate their lifestyle. Many times, it isn’t until after one takes possession of their house that they discover things that are unsatisfying to them. (Exactly how I did relationships, early on.)
They say that hind sight is 20/20 but we don’t have to learn that way which is also known as “the school of hard knocks”. The scriptures say in Proverbs 1:5, “A wise man will hear and will increase learning, and a man of understanding will attain to wise counsels…” So, listen up all you wise people.
I listened to and thought about my pastor’s words which made it hard to deny that I needed help. He was absolutely right. As a single woman, a man’s physical appearance got my attention. Simple conversations helped me to discover if there was any common interest and if there was we would spend time together doing things. Having fun during those times was a catalyst that launched me, too quickly, to the threshold of commitment. After which, I discovered things that were very unsatisfying to me. Without the wisdom and knowledge, at that point, to do anything else I just let those early relationships die.
Can you relate to that? Committing too soon or at least lacking the wisdom and knowledge necessary to do something to keep the relationship alive? If you answered yes, I have an assignment for you.
Where ever you may be relationally, it is important to identify what you are looking. But, before you do that take some time to look around at what others have or what they are missing in terms of character. Then, write down at least 10 qualities that you desire in a relationship and at least 10 things that you would not tolerate in one. When listing these character traits write a sentence or two to define exactly what you mean by them. For example,
10 Desired Qualities:
Godly A man who not only spends time reading the word, praying, and worships God, daily, but also self corrects when he knows that his ways and thoughts do not line up with the Lords.
Honest A man who will tell the truth even if he has to suffer a consequence for it. One who will dare to stand alone even when all others are being dis-honest.
10 Things that are intolerable:
Prideful A man who thinks he knows everything and refuses to listen to others. Even when solid facts are presented he will not admit where he is wrong but rather insist that he is right.
Selfish A man who does not consider the needs or desires of others but rather chooses to do things or have things his own way.
Both of these list are important to think about and identify because they create your target. Without which you will probably end up in a very shallow relationship.
As a counselor I have done pre-marital with many couples over the years, presenting this assignment the first time we meet together. I know of at least 3 couples who broke off their engagements right after that first appointment.
Some people have heard that testimony and made remarks that they would not come for counsel with me because it may keep them from getting married. My job is merely to help couples see if they equally yoked and/or mature enough to make that next step. Love is blind but marriage is an eye opener. Better to open the eyes prior to that kind of commitment.
Though two of the three couples did not marry each other the third couple did the work and eventually ended up at the alter.
That said, do the assignment but take your time. Remember, if your target is not visible and well defined you will not know where to aim.
And, don’t forget to tune in next week to learn how to find out if your prospective partner possesses the qualities you desire. We all know that we don’t just come out and ask somebody if they are honest. There is a way to get to the truth and that is what I will be sharing.
Be sure to leave a comment or ask any questions that you may have as we go through this journey.
Much of what we will go over in the next few weeks are explained in
my book “Character Blocks” which is being released in the next few
weeks. It will make a great gift for those who are single or struggling
in their relationships.