(Okay, y’all. I know this is a long post. I know your time is precious. I’m not claiming that these words are magical or are going to change every aspect of your life. However, I have been praying over these words for months and I believe them to be truth. Maybe you can relate or maybe not; but I would like to especially encourage my sisters striving for holiness and wholeness to please take them to prayer. I’m praying for you.)
I’m nineteen and I’ve never had a boyfriend.
Look into the spaces of those words and you’ll see stories of heartbreak and confusion. A relationship status is never as straightforward as it sounds.
I have struggled trusting Jesus with the desires of my heart.
When we don’t believe that God is enough to fill us, things get messy. When we take the fulfillment of our longing into our own hands, things get ugly.
And then, when you stumble into Nice Boy who lurks in every Christian circle, you’re setting yourself up for a disaster.
Let’s define the Nice Boy. He’s generally polite and engaging. He’ll laugh at your jokes. He goes to church and does the whole Jesus thing. He might include you with his friends or even single you out for a conversation of some sort of depth. He might tell you a lot about his life and you can’t stop talking about your own.
He says friendship but acts relationship. He’s unsure. He fears commitment, he fears your heart.
And he makes you feel bubbly. He makes you feel pretty. He makes you feel enough. You want him to ask you out and thoughts creep in about giving him more and more of your heart. You allow him to take over more and more of your imagination. You’re so ready to leave the friendship stage and dive headfirst into a romantic relationship.
Except…it goes on. And on. And on. The feelings are intensifying but nothing is happening. The walks are getting longer but you aren’t having the “defining the relationship” conversation. While you don’t deserve this, you’re also enabling it by not holding him to a higher standard.
The Nice Boy is responsible for a lot of almostships. Not relationships, not friendships, just weird whattheheckships. There’s a lot of confusion. It provides the perfect stage for over-thinking, over-analyzation, and a lack of emotional virtue.
The thing about the almostship: it’s not built on truth. It’s built on a hazy, confusing understanding of the bridge between friendship and relationship. A bridge was never meant to be a foundation; it’s supposed to be a gateway to more. It’s not a place to camp out.
Y’all, I have lived on that bridge for longer and more times than I would care to admit. It’s unstable. It’s scary.
I have deceived myself that that bridge is where I was created to live. That I was supposed to be there. That I wasn’t worth being honest with. There are so many conversations that I should have had that I didn’t out of fear.
When there’s no truth and no definition, it makes it even harder to move on when something explodes.
The explosion is inevitable, as are the feelings that come with it. Shame and confusion; desperation and regret. And bitterness.
Bitterness is a big one for me. It’s filled me with thoughts of “I am the worst person ever why did I ever even like him” and “wow he’s the worst guy ever can he just not”. I wanted the guys who caused me so much hurt to feel shame. I wanted them to feel regret– how dare they not pursue me? How dare they just let me go like that? How dare they not be upfront and honest with me?
Bitterness has often numbed me to feeling the full gravity of the pain of rejection. Thus, it has propelled me to the next Nice Boy to prove that I am enough. And the cycle starts all over again.
Ladies, I am SICK of the cycle. Not just in my life, but in the lives of so many of those around me. I am sick of the living in fear, of the living in chains. I am sick of the shame and I am sick of the despair.
Are you sick of it? Are you sick of shutting up the parts of your heart that carry hurt you don’t know how to deal with?
I could keep wallowing in what I do not have. I could mourn a dead relationship forever and it still wouldn’t make it come alive. Or I could stop looking for the living among the dead. I could throw off the talons of the creature that is seeking to pull me down and destroy me with regrets of what I have done and the shame of what has been done to me…and I could be free.
Let’s deal with these emotions. The captivity ends TODAY. You weren’t created to live in the shadows of relationships that didn’t work out. You are not to be defined by rejection. You were never meant to be a slave to fear and shame.
Jesus already purchased a way out. He has already died for you. It’s time to receive everything He has won for you.
First of all– YOU ARE GOOD. Simply in who you are. Sunsets and chocolate and everything else beautiful are not made in the image and likeness of God. You are. Your worth is not determined by your actions…it’s determined by His love which deems you priceless.
I know what it is to be pushed aside. I know what it is to have someone you love want to hide a relationship with you. I know what it is for someone to be embarrassed to be seen with you. I know what it is for someone to be afraid of committing to you. I know what it is to give too much of my heart, to live on that damn bridge. But this does not define me.
Furthermore just because you were never officially dating him doesn’t mean that you don’t have baggage. It doesn’t mean that you’re not allowed to hurt. Your emotions are valid. We cannot let these situations cause us to fall into a hole of self-hatred, feeling that we are not enough.
Right now, what are you silencing? What hurt has been gnawing at your heart that you haven’t allowed yourself to feel? What wounds of rejection have you invalidated?
The maker of your heart looks at you and says, “I’m not a stranger to wounds. Look at my hands. I’m not afraid of the damage. I am enough.”
You can take authority over the bitterness and shame. Jesus is filling you with power. Just as He rebuked the waves, you can rebuke them. Proclaim this over your life: “In the name of Jesus Christ, I renounce all bitterness and shame. You have no place here. I bind you to the cross where you are no more.”
It’s time to forgive them. Verbally. Maybe you’re not called to actually call them up, but claim forgiveness. It is not up to us to uphold justice. Know, dear sisters, that your heavenly Father is far more aware of the hurt than even you are. He sees it…He sees you. By withholding forgiveness, you’re only strengthening the chains holding you back. With power and confidence, proclaim: “In the name of Jesus Christ, I forgive (name) and release him from the hurt he has caused me.”
It’s time to rest.
No more running. No more hiding. It’s time to let God work on your heart. That doesn’t mean He’s going to sit you down and bring up every past hurt to yell at you. It means that He’s going to show you what love really is.
His love knows how it feels about you.
His love is loyal, His love is honest. What His love promises, it gives. His love is constant, His love is consistent. His love does not run away, His love does not abandon. His love does not ignore. His love embraces. His love enters into the mess. His love understands.
His love is mature. His love is bold. His love is reckess. His love is jealous. His love demands a response. His love is not passive. His love is captivating, is captivated by you. His love takes risks. There is nothing His love has not purchased for you.
His love is pure. His love is selfless. His love is radical. His love pursues. His love is faithful. His love is devoted. His love goes all the way.
His love is in awe of you. His love calls you worthy. His love does not use. His love does not play games. His love is breathless at the sight of you. His love is proud to be seen with you. His love does not lead you astray. His love is trusting and trustworthy.
His love is for you.
Whatever has prevented you from falling into this love, from claiming this love as your own…bind it to the cross. Our distrust in real love often goes back beyond our encounters with guys…it can stem from deep wounds from childhood. We have a tendency to project failed human love on the infinite love of the Father.
In prayer, think of all of the ways you have been hurt. Then write out the opposite of that hurt. For example, if you have been hurt by rejection, write “His love accepts all of me, forever”. Think back on those memories that caused so much hurt and claim the presence of Jesus there, defending you.
Friends, no other “love” or illusion of love will ever satisfy.
You are not defined by the hurt or the mistakes. Let what has hindered love fade into the background as Jesus runs to you.
You don’t have to run anymore. You don’t have to fight for love anymore. It’s yours. You don’t have to justify your mistakes anymore. They’re gone. You don’t need to prove your worth anymore. It’s been confirmed.
The old has passed away. I have been made new.
I’m with you on this journey. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any prayer requests or more info about any of this.
Let me leave you with this: you are worth giving everything for. It has been given. You are worth so much more than a guy who isn’t sure how he feels. Let go and fall into the arms of a Mighty Lover who has been pursuing you since the beginning of time.
I’m praying for you.