Recently I went on a trip with my mum and grandma to Cairns. We were driving from the main CBD of Cairns, to about 2 hours away to Atherton. On the map, it seemed like a pretty easy straight drive. However, when we were on the actual drive, it turned out to be a lot more difficult than I thought. I had to drive up these windy roads up the mountain, which meant driving round and round in Z shapes over and over again( For about an hour). We nearly got hit by cars from the opposite direction because they were going too fast around the corner and I couldn’t see them. Some cars who were regular-drivers-of-this-mountain were flashing their lights at me, as I slowly made my way up the hill at a safe speed.
My GPS had another 20 minutes of this, and I pondered in my head whether I should just find a spot to do a U-turn and just head back down the mountain. I hadn’t even reached my destination yet, however I was freaking out that I had to go through this same tiresome drive on the way back. Even worse, in the pitch dark. Things were going through my mind, and eventually I snapped out of it. I had already done 1.5 hours into the drive. What more would a 20 minutes be to reach my resting stop and just figured it out as it comes along?
Eventually we did make it to Atherton. I drove past a sign that said “Tea by the Lake” and we plonked ourselves there for a break. I asked the guy there if there was another route back to Cairns, and he said if we kept on going on the route that we were on, it was maybe longer but definitely less whindier. Going on our merry way, we continued on our journey, went through a few more small towns and made it full circle back to Cairns.
While I was driving in the car, I thought how funny is it that the drive was an analogy on the dating life. There are so many times when we go through obstacles, situations and circumstances that we would rather turn back and go back to what is comfortable?
I went to church yesterday and during the sermon, the preacher was using the same analogy that God is the driver and we are the passenger. We tend to tell him where we want to go, and what we want to do without fully surrendering our wants, fears and desires. He put them there, and sometimes we try to just go on the journey with him. Then when the times get tough, we start to revert back to old ways, whether it be friends, habits, or lifestyles. We start to take over the wheel and drive without listening to his voice. We start making decisions on our own and begin to settle with what is comfortable or the most predictable. (Totally me)
I met this really lovely girl at church and the conversation got brought up about how I met my current boyfriend (which in itself was so God and spectacular). I had told her that I had written down what I wanted in a husband longgggg before I had even met him. When I mean write down, I had really written down very specific things about this imaginary husband’s character, nature, spirit that I was looking for, so much to the T that I even thought maybe I was a little crazy. Now that I have met my current boyfriend after being strategically single for 2 years. I told this girl that my boyfriend was everything on my list, and more. God really had answered a prayer. She was quite baffled at my story to the point where I wanted to encourage her (not knowing what she was going through), to not settle for anybody. To my dismay, she was saying how all of her friends have said she has “high standards” and will never find anyone that will suit her. All of this too much spoke to much to me.
I mean, how is it possible that I could find a man, who loved and put God first, who had a heart of gold and amazing character, who also was someone I could get along with like a house on fire, had the same values, all at the same time? Who also I was extremely physically attracted to? I was told I had way “too high standards”. That having a 4 hour conversation about Jesus wasn’t normal and that shouldn’t be an expectation. So much to the point that I had turned down lots of eligible christian men, because I knew they just weren’t my type or what I was looking for.
Now that I’m dating this incredible man (who I can 100000% say that has been a biggest blessing in my life to date), I can truly say that it is well worth not settling and waiting on God’s best.
- The road is windy and may be long. It may also be short. You don’t know, but trust it’ll take you to your destination.
I remember being in a place in my singleness where I would question whether I had gone the wrong way. Was I being stupid for being celibate? Was I being stupid for turning down dates and not even giving people the chance? I mean physical attraction was something that should happened straight away right? Maybe my expectations and list was way too long. Maybe God wanted me to be single forever? Maybe it’s all in my head? Maybe I will just have to settle for just anybody. Maybe I will just have to come to terms that I may just marry someone who won’t be as passionate about God and my purpose on this earth. Maybe my family and friend’s are right, I should just marry someone who just makes me feel stable and nothing more.It felt like I was going around the same mountain over and over and over again. Just like going up those windy roads to Atherton. I was a bit over it.I was tired trying to justify to people why I didn’t want to just “date” that actor on my set because we both were single. I was tired trying to explain to people why I wanted to keep my purity before marriage, even though my husband seemed so far away and non-existent. I mean, how stupid was I to keep on saying this in faith that I was “keeping myself pure” for someone who was not present in my life or even existed?But trust that the more you go around the mountain, the closer you are to your destination. Trust that it’ll take you where you want to go. Mine wasn’t just “having a boyfriend”. It was “I want to be happily married with kids and grand babies.”
In order to get there, I will have to be extremely picky with who I chose to spend my life and time with. And that vision kept me going.
- You may pass a few towns on the way.
Be open to opportunities and doors. Be open to meeting new people. Go to parties, connect groups, catch ups, learn a new skill to expand your world and your life.
Go because you want to interact and discover a new experience. Don’t just go to every social event thinking you might meet the “one.” I remember going through a period that every where I went, I would be like… “I wonder who I would meet today? Maybe he’s my husband and maybe he’s my husband?” To the point where I had no rest. It was tiring. It was distracting. Instead of focusing on the sermon, I would be checking out who was the most eligible bachelor. And then be bitterly disappointed if I had not met anyone that I was interested in or attracted to. Then I started to resent being single and get angry at God.Go into every social event asking who you could meet just from a human perspective. It doesn’t happen to have to be someone of the opposite sex. Just be comfortable in your own skin. Start genuine conversations as you don’t know where it would lead. It may not lead anywhere, but at least you just started a great friendship.You may go on a date or two with someone. And they may not be right for you. And thats ok. Keep on driving to the next stop. As it’ll bring you closer to your destination.
- Have good company in the car.
Life is all about moments and memories. It’s a lot easier when you are accountable and have the right people surrounding you, pushing you closer to your destination.
I did find it difficult trying to keep my eyes fixed with friends who didn’t have the same vision as me. In the car, my mum had suggested that I should turn around and just go back. I could’ve easily taken her advice and missed out on all the encounters/experiences through the other 3 towns we eventually did pass. And I wouldn’t have been able to tell this story.So keep wise people around you. People of different seasons, people who are wise, people who have your best interest and same values. They will keep your eyes focused on things that are important when you yourself loose sight or vision.And enjoy the drive. It doesn’t have to be longsome and a drag. You’ll get to that destination either way, so you may as well enjoy it.
- Be ok with just “cruising.”
Well, Sarah that’s great for you. You found your man, but how about me? I understand that the “wait” can be tiresome, long, and unpredictable. And actually I hate calling it the “wait.” My friend is an amazing dating coach, https://www.jessica-santosa.com/, and she put it brilliantly. And I also have written a blog post on “Being content being single”. That you shouldn’t be “waiting” around for your significant other. You should be living your best single life, being the most brilliant version of yourself. That means, going out for dancing, going to church, going to connect, going to the beach, pampering yourself up. Catching up with your boys and girls.I like to say that it’s like cruising in your car. You know where you are going. You are stopping off at different destinations and doing your own thing. And it just so happens that you may bump into someone who is going the same direction as you. You may bump into them a couple of times and nothing really eventuated. But maybe one day it’ll turn into something special. Who knows 😉
- Don’t go back
Just like you going on a road trip, whats the point on going back to what you already knew didn’t work out? And don’t stop too long at a town that you know wasn’t your destination. It may seem a lot more comfortable to go back to that ex, to see what you guys “had there”. But it ended for a reason. You ain’t gonna find a future with something that already ended and closed a chapter ago.It just means added extra time, heart ache, gas and confusion onto your original trip. So don’t do it to yourself. Keep on going forward and trust that God will bring you to where you need to go. Focus on how far along you came. I kept on looking at my GPS and the only thing that kept me going was seeing how much time I had invested in the drive. If I had done 5 minutes, it probably would’ve been easier to turn around. But since I had done 1 hour into the trip, it would’ve been stupid to not go the whole way. So see the time you have been single as more of an investment into getting to your destination rather than a curse.So keep those standards high, keep your eye on the prize.
Don’t settle. And enjoy the ride.