“Isn’t he just so cute?!” one of my friends commented as a group of us girls passed a group of guys walking around at a church camp meeting. A conversation about this guy or that guy quickly ensued. I looked around quietly, wondering what our parents and most of all what God would think of this conversation. There was nothing particularly wrong with our conversation but neither did it seem quite right. Young ladies, of course, love to talk and share with each other and that is wonderful! But it seems like the subject of “boys” is destined to come up, especially in a situation like I just mentioned.
At this particular time, I simply felt something stirring my heart and conscience, so I was not giving my input into the conversation. But I must admit that I was still thinking about the same subject area that the other girls were discussing out loud.
The areas of young men, feelings and “crushes” seem to be ones with which just about every young woman struggles, including myself. My parents and I have decided that we are going to avoid the traditional route of ‘dating’ and instead follow the path of courtship. Even though I have it completely settled in my heart and mind that I am going a courtship route, thoughts and feelings can still be an area with which I have a difficult time.
Where my father pastors, there is limited fellowship with other young people, so it seemed that especially when I was around young men, the thoughts and feelings would begin. Quite awhile ago, I was having a particular “struggle” with thoughts about a certain person. Around this time, I received a magazine for young ladies in the mail. There was an excellent article about different virtues that are all important for a Godly young lady to obtain. The whole article was wonderful, but it seemed one particular sentence was meant just for me at that time. It read; “She learns to be shamefaced–treating all young men she meets as brothers in the Lord…not as prospects.”
Oh, how this stood out to me! This is truly what the Lord would want! I thought to myself, what if this particular young man is not in my heavenly Father’s plan for me?? Am I ruining what He planned as a good friendship with a brother in the Lord? I quickly laid the magazine aside and went before the Lord, asking that He would help me in this area because I needed much work … and I know I still do! Often we get caught up in momentary feelings, or fleeting thoughts about a young man’s looks, mannerisms, or whatever the case may be. This is natural, but it becomes a stumbling block when we let these feelings “get the better of us” or if we dwell on them constantly. Especially in our single maiden years, we should treat all young men as brothers on this life’s journey … which is what they truly are!
In another magazine, I once read this; “If God already has planned the one we will marry (if we marry) shouldn’t we start acting like we’re already taken?!” How true this is! Ultimately, God has a plan for our lives! He has already chosen the way our futures and yes, even our “love stories”, will work out. If we try to do things in ourselves we could end up ruining the beautiful “fairytale” He has planned! It is SO important that we guard not only ourselves, but that we also keep our hearts and thoughts in the utmost state of purity in preparation for our futures. When thoughts or feelings start, go to the Lord in prayer! With much practice, I have learned to instantly and quietly whisper a prayer when thoughts begin or when girls around me are having conversations such as the one with which I started this article.
YHWH has your future planned, so rest in His divine decisions! It is exciting, if you take time to think about it! The Creator of the Universe cares enough about you to personally choose the man for whom you will be a helpmeet! It’s so wonderful to think about all the “surprises” He has planned. I know that I can’t wait to find out! I’m willing to be used how ever He may desire for me to be used; whether that be by having a family some day, becoming a nurse, perhaps living single on some exotic mission field or maybe it’s His plan for me to simply help with my father’s ministry and remain in my father’s house! The possibilities are truly endless when you rely on your Heavenly Father to decide what your future holds!
But beyond that, it is ultimately important to learn to cherish where you are and where your Heavenly Father has placed you right now. It is not good to constantly dwell on and think about young men if that isn’t what God has for you just now. We must learn to be content in each stage of our lives as we pass through them, because if we are living in the future, the “future” will never come … we will always find ourselves waiting, longing and wishing for something else.
In conclusion dear sisters, I want to say that your Heavenly Father has planted some dreams in your heart and it is truly His desire to make them come true … but in His way and timing! He has planned your life in a unique and amazing way that is much better and unexpected than anything you could ever dream. Rest in His plan! No matter what you may come across on your life’s journey, you will never regret the decision to submit all to your Heavenly Father, instead of doing what you want to do. I can tell you that it will truly be worth it!