Friday, June 1, 2012

Not Settling ~ Holding Strong ~ The Introduction



End of May and the month of June rolls around and the wedding pictures come along with the sunshine, flowers and green grass. 

You click over to Facebook and see albums of your friends who have either been in a wedding or been the one married. 

Photo Credit Microsoft Office 
Companies are targeting the bride-to-be's. White tulle and glittering sequins. Whispy veils and red roses, corsages and little girls' curls. Glowing smiles and perfect pictures captured by the perfect photographer on the perfect day.

It's enough to send a desperate single girl running screaming in the other direction. 

Are you overwhelmed yet? Just ready to be done? 

It can be hard to be the one on the edges of the crowd as the bouquet is tossed and knowing it isn't landing anywhere near you

We're programmed to love. God put it within us to desire to find the perfect guy, get married and have 2 1/2 babies. We're programmed to desire romance. But what happens when the romance we keep searching for can't be found?

All the "good guys" are either married or just...not interested. Our world isn't the same as it once was. Sure, the perfect romance is out there, you hear the stories all the time. But they aren't happening to us. We're the ones stuck waiting.

Stuck.

When we let ourselves into the mindset of being "stuck" it becomes the exact moment we become willing to settle.

Willing to accept the wink and a grin from across the dance floor and say yes before our brain has the chance to warn us that we're hot footing through dangerous territory. 

True, it isn't always that dramatic, but most of the time it sneaks up on us before we even realize we've settled. We lower our standards, sure this is as good as it's going to get. We're willing to wink at the issues that should really bother our hearts. 

We let it go too far. And ignore the God-given instinct (Holy Spirit) that is telling us to step away--run away-- fast. 

It's a scary mindset to slip into. We often don't realize when it's happening until it's too late. It begins with a single choice. And we have to stop it with a single choice. 

For the month of June (posting on every Friday), I have invited guests to share their stories of not settling. Some have been married for decades. One isn't married at all. And one only married a few years. But every single one didn't settle. 

Their stories are God-inspired and moving. Encouraging. Touching. 

This topic is so important to me. We've settled for far too long. It's time to stand up. And stand strong. 

Will you join me?

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All this month I will be having a giveaway of Never the Bride by Rene Gutteridge and Cheryl Mckay and hopefully it will encourage you on your journey. Leave a comment on how YOU are NOT settling below and I'll draw the names from all the posts and announce the winners (one from every Settling post) the first Friday of July. 










If you would like to visit other series I have done on purity and modesty in the past, please visit my Committed to Purity page at the top of the screen or link here

24 comments:

  1. Love this post!

    I'm not settling by not even thinking about it. When Ruth was in the field, I'm pretty sure she wasn't thinking, "Oh, that Boaz is one handsome fella, but I bet he has girls in every direction already..boo hoo...etc". She was going about her life. Cute guys come, cute guys go. It won't bother me, because I don't know! Lol

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    1. Ashley, I love your mention of Ruth and Boaz! God's best often comes when we aren't looking. Thanks so much for mentioning her. I love that story!

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  2. when I want to have my own way I am not settling

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

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  3. Love this, Casey. I'm excited to read the upcoming posts. I think some people see "not settling" as "looking for perfection." Not true. To me, not settling is simply knowing God has the best plan ever and seeking that over everything else...even things that might temporarily seem like "it." It's learning to walk through the doors He opens, taking a pass on the ones He's clearly closed, and praying hard and being patient about the ones we're simply not sure about yet...trusting in His guidance.

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    1. Melissa, I'm excited to have them post and share them, they are truly awesome and God inspired. I loved the point you made about how so many think of setting at perfection. Such a good point! You're comment is a wonderful blessing this morning. :)

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  4. I LOVE that book! Love, love, love! And love Cheryl McKay! I've gotten to know her a bit online and her heart is amazing.

    I can't wait for this series, Casey. I think it's going to be beautiful!

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    1. Once I read it, I was hooked for life. A treasure for my keeper shelf! I can't wait to share it, Katie!

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  5. Great post, Casey! I'm looking forward to this series! Thank you for always shedding light on matters of the heart and truths of God's word. Hugs!

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    1. Thanks for coming by, Joanne. :) I saw your cover on the Waterbrook Facebook page, loved how they compared you to Janette Oke's style. :)

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  6. Looking forward to this series, Casey.

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    1. I'm looking forward to your post, Beth. :)

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  7. Fabulous series, Casey! Tonight my husband is marrying (that sounds weird)one of our young adult couples. I love their story and have had the beautiful experience of watching their romance play out and neither settled, although she almost did, he didn't and it wooed her back to him. Oh it's a beautiful story! :)

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    1. No, it doesn't sound weird (well it did, until I read on). What a beautiful story! Maybe you'll have to do a blog post? :)

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  8. Beautiful truth, Casey! I remember feeling that way in college. So I decided to become the woman God wanted me to be, and to accept the fact that if I never married, or if it wasn't for a long time, then He had great things for me (there are a lot of things you can do when you're single that you can't when you're married). And miraculously, one of my best guy friends, who I never knew was interested in me, asked me out senior year. I stopped looking for it, focused on God, and HE made it happen. Trusting isn't always easy, but it's worth it. Thanks for sharing your heart!

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    1. I loved your comment, Lindsay! How many young women like you were in college, think that it's go big or go home, so to be trusting and relying on God's timing is so rare. But when we turn those dreams over to Him, He blesses in AMAZING ways!

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  9. "God's best often comes when we aren't looking."
    A friend of mine wanted me to introduce her to my not-then husband. I said, "Sure." He had a pool party for church and I was swishing down the slide backwards going, "Wheeee." She sat on the edge with her hair in place. God had other plans. We have been married 28 years.
    Be who you are. Don't settle for less than God has for you at the very moment you're not looking!

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    1. I was recently reading a book by Sheri Rose Shepherd called "Your Heart's Desire" and she had a chapter for single ladies, where she talked about: do you change who you are to impress him or just be yourself? Ouch! That one struck a bit too close to home and definitely made me double think about first impressions and actions. It's not about impressing, it's about being who God created me to be!

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  10. Such a great post! I'm proud of you for holding firm to your convictions. It is so tempting to just let your guard down and go on casual dates because you feel lonely or because all your friends are pairing up (especially if you're in a primarily secular culture, like a high school or college). I always felt that I looked like such a loser because I didn't date in high school, but really, I just didn't want to settle. I might have felt lonely at times, but I've never experienced a breakup and I'm about to marry the guy I shared my first kiss with - and that is definitely worth waiting for!

    The only danger with the "not settling" idea is that sometimes we have our OWN ideas of the guy God wants us to marry, and we need to make sure that we're focusing on his ideals, not our own, while we're waiting for that perfect guy. I know that God challenged me about this when I met my fiancé. I had an idea in my head of the perfect guy that God had set apart for me - he grew up in a Christian family, had stayed pure until marriage, hadn't dated around in high school, etc. So when I met my Simon, who had grown up in an atheist family and had a very vague concept of his own faith, as well as a ton of baggage from previous relationships, I couldn't help but think that maybe I wasn't following God's plan... But now, we're getting married next month and we've been together for almost three years. Simon now has such a strong faith and is constantly challenging my own relationship with God, and we've worked through a lot of baggage, even if it was hard at times. God totally surprised me and turned my expectations upside down. Simon doesn't fit my teenage ideal of the perfect husband, but I'm glad about that, as he may not be what I wanted, but he's definitely what I needed. So, I just want to make sure that all of you lovely single women make sure that you're focusing on God's standards and not your daydreams of the perfect man - because God might just topple that all over and surprise you! It's really easy to fall into the trap of fantasising about The One when you're single, so that when you walk into a bar with a friend you look at the guy with the messy hair and the rumpled T-shirt and say "He looks weird." I ended up getting engaged to that weird guy, so watch out ;)

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    1. I love what you said, Rachel and when I started reading the comment, I was nodding in agreement. "Not settling" only goes so far as us NOT taking over the situation and doing what we want or think is the best for us. You're absolutely right in that we should be SO IN TUNE with God that a man has to chance Him to find us. I love that quote from Max Lucado.

      I'm SO HAPPY for you Rachel! I can't wait to see the pictures from your special day and watching your love for your Simon continue to grow and flourish. :-)

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  11. Casey, I have to echo all the others here and say I simply LOVED this inspiring, encouraging, blessedly challenging post!! It really is such a blessing to know you're not alone in what you're feeling; there are other Christian girls that desire a Christ-built love story and taking their stand to wait for His timing and NOT settle.

    I'm not, nor have I ever really been, in a situation where I had to employ any of "what I'd do if a boy asked me out" stuff, lol, so I have no experience to fall back on or "war stories" to reference. I will say my family is a great support system and/or defense system - the "bubble" is a blessing, truly! ;-) So I know they'd keep me in check. I don't know exactly what I'd say to a "wink" or a "grin" (I've gotten them but never been approached beyond that - my brother is pretty intimidating ;-) but THEY would know right quick that I'm not interesting in dating just to date.

    I've seen the stories of those who've waited for God and I've seen the stories of those who took their own path - the latter, sadly, never had a happily ever after. God can only bless what He ordains. I want to make sure that if I'm making a vow of "til death do we part" that it is what God wants; without Him it will be a life of misery. You're wise if you learn from your mistakes, but you're really wise if you can learn from others mistakes.

    Looking forward to more posts like these! They're just what this generation needs.

    Blessings,
    Amanda

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    1. The Bubble is a blessed place to live! I'll say in the young man who asked for my number and giving him my dad's work number showed, just like you said, that I am going to "date, JUST to date". I know what you're saying, sometimes (okay ME) botched what I could have said and HOW I said it in my vast (short) past experiences. But it's a learning experience. It happened and I have a fun story to share with others now because of it. ;-) But in not giving into that temptation to "settle" to just "go ahead and give him my number, what will it work?" I found a core strength I didn't even know I had. God is good to sustain and encourage. He takes care of His kids. :-)

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  12. Lady DragonKeeperJune 5, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    OMGoodness, Casey! I'm a little late (catching up with 2+ weeks of email overflow) when I saw your article. Thank you so much --I really needed to be reminded of this. I'm starting to get to that stage when people around me are starting to date/court/get engaged/get married and ... it's hard sometimes. I'm not settling because I have younger brothers and friends that remind me that there are great godly guys out there! ... Though, I don't know where those that are my age are ... =P

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  13. I have watched as some of my friends settled and ended up very unhappy...so i guess you can say I just watch to learn! I'd love to be entered--
    cbus.blogger at gmail dot com

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According to new FTC rules I must let you, the reader know, that all views shared on this blog are strictly my own. Books to review are either provided for me by the author, publisher or ones I have purchased and I am under no obligation whatsoever to present anything, but my true opinion on any product. I receive no monetary compensation for anything written on this blog. Any giveaways on this blog are provided by the author/ publisher and I am not responsible for any views they express in their work or on this site. Giveaways are void were prohibited and chances of winnng are based on the number of applicants. A random winner is draw when a book is given away.

 
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