Guys Are Looking for Love Too

Girls get so caught up in romance and our hearts and finding love and if “he’s the one” that we forget about the other side of the equation.

We aren’t the only ones in relationships. It really does take two to tango, you know?

I never really thought guys dreamt of their future wives or hoped for that perfect soulmate or even cared about love at all until I met someone who made me realize it’s not all about the girl.

So many times, girls have been so hurt by a guy (or guys) that they see every single guy through the lenses of a generalization rather than for who he is as an individual.

I did that and still do that. I catch myself not believing there would be any way for my fiancé to really love me the way I love him because guys just don’t love like girls.

That is very wrong and, really and truly, unbiblical. God never said, “these people love more and harder and better than these other people.” We are all called to love and we learn true love through the love of God.

After finding a guy who really knew what it meant to love God and be loved by God, it became clear to me that he had the desire for love just like I did.

It comes across in the way he puts me first, in the way he does special things for me, and in the way he plans cute little things for us to do. At first I thought he only did romantic things because I like them and he wants me to be happy, but I started to realize that it was satisfying a hunger for him too.

Who are we to think, as girls, that guys don’t long to be loved? God made us with the desire to be loved. Girls may show that differently, in a more open and sensitive way, but that doesn’t mean that men are not desperate for affection too.

A woman can’t leave the man out in the pursuit of a relationship because that’s when she makes it all about her.

If we are so focused on them making us happy and buying us flowers and cooking us dinner and planning us dates then we turn this into a one-sided deal that was always meant to be 50/50.

If we are searching for all the love for ourselves, what love are we giving them?

I have found myself taking advantage, unknowingly, of what an amazing guy he is because I’ve never had that kind of love before. It initially felt like a dream and the fairytale I’ve always wanted, but then it became real. Relationships can give you butterflies and all that cute stuff, but at the end of the day, they are very real. There are real fights and real emotions and real problems and a real purpose as to why you have been joined together.

We cannot look for relationships for ourselves but for the glory of God. Have you realized that? Because I sure didn’t. I was in it for me. I wanted the butterflies and the cute pictures and fun dates and someone to hang out with all the time but it didn’t cross my mind that it was for something bigger than me.

When I first started dating my now fiancé, I wasn’t fully on board because I was all about being single. Just when I was pretty sure I wouldn’t continue the relationship, I listened to a podcast about “why you should date.” I have referenced the podcast a million times and always will. He basically said, if you’re dating someone because you think they are cute or fun or a good time, you’re really wrong. You should be with someone because, together, you can further the kingdom of Christ. Out of all the moments I think back on when I say I “knew” he was the one, that really was it. That was God knocking telling me I found the one HE wanted for me to do HIS work. Point blank. No other questions asked.

And the same goes for him. He wants love and loves to love me and enjoys having me to hang out with (I think), but that’s not the main goal of him pursuing me. He pursued me for my heart for The Lord because it matched up with his. He hasn’t been dreaming of a trophy wife to do the dishes, he has been longing for someone to walk beside him while he chases after God. We walk together through all the victories and all the struggles to, and that’s what love really is.

So, yeah, maybe guys aren’t all about all the “hype” of being in love, but they are hopeless romantics in the sense that they desire a connection with someone who will love them for who they are no matter what  for the rest of forever. They may not say it or write about it or post about it or scream it from mountaintops, but they let us know with their quiet words or loving actions or selflessness.

Girls aren’t the only ones out there looking for “the one” and getting their hearts broken. Guys are going through it too. Good men are still left in the world and they are on their pursuit just like women.

We can’t think of all men like we think of that one guy who wrecked our world just like they can’t think of women like they think of the girl who dumped them for another guy.

Every person, male or female, deserves love and deserves a chance, despite the actions of their predecessor.

Girls, let’s stop being selfish in this pursuit of love. Let guys in on the fun and remember that they have hearts too. They aren’t robots with no feelings; they are made in God’s image, and God is love.

And the one who did break your heart, he wants love too, but he wasn’t right for you. So, just pray he shows that to the woman he will spend forever with while you pray that for your future husband.

We are all running toward the same eternity, and we all want to be loved along the way. Men need love as much as women, just in a different way, so let’s recognize that and respond.

We aren’t the only ones dreaming about that wedding day and a lifetime of happiness, ladies, so scoot over and let him enjoy the love too.

 

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The Day After The Day I Quit My Dream Job

I had a million and one dreams and aspirations when I was kid and none of them involved sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week.

I bet none of you dreamt that’s how you’d spend your time either.

That’s why I got a job as a reporter, so I’d rarely have to sit at a desk.

I already told you about how I up and quit my dream job as a reporter one day without another job lined up. My dream turned out to be something I was meant to do but not meant to do forever.

Well, the days came just like I knew they would and I didn’t have anything lined up to jump into.

Until.

My last week at my job as a reporter, I had several interviews. I had applied everywhere, so I was willing to interview everywhere. I was willing to work anywhere until I found that “dream job.”

I was offered a job on Wednesday night and my last day at the news station was Friday. Woah. I see you, God.

The job I was offered was not my dream job nor the job I went to school hoping to be at one day. I had never in a million years imagined I’d be where I was going. I didn’t particularly want to go there, either. But I knew I had to have a job, and, at the end of the day, it was a stepping stone and experience, and that’s better than nothing at all.

I think a lot of times we leave something because we are being called to exit, whether that’s a job, a relationship, a city, or anything else we are no longer meant to be with, but then we wait in the wrong way.

Being patient in waiting on your next step is great and beautiful and necessary. But waiting does not mean not doing anything. God wants you to wait on Him and listen to Him, but sometimes He leads you to an “in-between.”

I’m confident that’s where I am right now. And you might be there too. And that’s ok.

There’s no rule book that says when you are supposed to be where, so stop freaking out.

You might be in the job you’ll be at forever and be happy. You might be in the second of 15 jobs. You might be in the first of 100 jobs. The whole point is that as long as we are pursuing God and listening to Him, we are where we are supposed to be or on the track back there. Period.

A lot of times when it comes to something like a job, we want to just wait around and not do our part. Yes, God calls us to rest. Yes, God calls us to take time to pray and make a decision. And yes, if you are financially able to do so, give yourself time to be without a job until you find the next one, but don’t just stop and wait for Him to throw you a bone if you aren’t chasing after Him and doing your part.

Again, if I had my pick of jobs, I wouldn’t have picked the one I accepted, but I knew deep down that He was pushing me to that job. It didn’t matter what I wanted because it isn’t about me. It’s about Him and other people. Remember that little acronym? JOY: Jesus, Others, Yourself – We learned it in VBS, and it’s still true.

Everything we do should be about Jesus then others then, lastly, us. The world says,”Be selfish, look out for number one, do you.” But God says, “Be selfless, look out for your fellow man, do the right thing.”

So, I go to work at as the Marketing Director at an ice complex every day not because it’s glamorous or earns me recognition or pays me a ton of money, but because I know it’s the next step on the journey God is leading me on. And I know, in some way, at some point, He will show me “why.”

If I decide I want a high level Marketing/PR job like many communications-minded people, so this is where I start: building a brand for a company who needs one from the ground up, improving social media followings, planning community events, helping the kids here, growing the Special Olympics program, plugging a non-profit organization for athletes into the community, and more than anything, being a light for the people I interact with, all the while, building my own brand and my skillset, which is necessary for any and every job.

It is not about where you are or what you’re doing, it’s about how you do it. And it’s not always easy. You won’t always want to do it. And you may be in your “in-between” stage for a long time before God sees that it is time for your next adventure. That’s not a bad thing; that means He wants you to grow just a little more before you move on.

They might need you longer and you might need to gain a few more skills that will be necessary at that next job.

I started out at the news station doing digital producing and that is not what I wanted to do. But I use the skills I learned in that position every single day at my current marketing job. And that’s how God showed me “the why” of that season of my life that I struggled to understand. And I know that he has reasons for what I’m doing as the Marketing Director of an Iceplex. I have already learned skills and programs that I know I’ll need for something later on. And had I not been put here, I wouldn’t have had the same opportunities that might just lead me to something bigger.

We are “big picture” people these days. It’s hard to focus on anything but the end goal. But, God is very concerned with the in-between. My favorite message I’ve ever heard (I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again) was from Pastor Christ Hodges. It was about the “process” and how God works on us during that in-between phase and that’s why He loves that season more than He loves what we think of as the “finish lines” of our seasons. (You can watch/listen here.)

This idea goes for anything you’re going through. If you just got out of a relationship, you might be single for a while, but that’s not because God isn’t working; it’s because He IS working and preparing you and your future spouse for one another. That doesn’t happen overnight. Nothing good in life happens overnight. It might seem that way to us every now and then, but God was working even when we weren’t noticing.

Those in-between seasons can be beautiful if we choose to let them. We can learn and grow and take what we learn over to the next season. That’s called life: learning lessons and building on them forever.

I know that wherever you are: finish line, in-between, starting line, God is preparing you for something. He always is. There’s always a next and we are always working toward Heaven. We are working not to get there but to prepare our hearts for that final prize.

In the midst of your in-between-ness, just pause and reflect on what you’re learning and know that God will show you “why” later. He doesn’t have to do that for us, but He is kind, so He does.

I have to do that. Sometimes I think, “How did I end up here in this city, at this job, with these duties?” And then I remember, “Because God.” He wants me where I am and so I’ll do what I’m supposed to until He decides it’s time for a new season.

Jobs are not all about money or power or position; they are about how we are furthering The Kingdom. You might be working in retail or the food industry or at a gas station or somewhere else where you may not feel respected or dignified, but guess what? You are. You are a respected, dignified Child of God. And what you are doing, the people you are serving, the light you are shining is making a difference.

Again, I doubt no one dreamt of a 40-hour a week desk job, and not everyone has one, but some of us do. And that doesn’t make you any less accomplished than anyone else. There’s no comparison chart, so stop trying to make one up.

Keep pressing on. Keep your eyes open and your heart thankful, no matter what the day is like, what the season is like, what the moment is like.

One major thing I learned in quitting a job and immediately finding another one like a magic trick is that God provides and is always faithful. I’m not so sure I really knew what prayer was until that month of darkness, worry, and finding real faith, but now I do. And that sure seems like “the why” to me.

XO,

Kaitlin

When You Go Through Something That “Isn’t That Bad”

Have you ever told someone about something you’re struggling with and they responded with, “It isn’t that bad.”

It’s like a punch in the gut. Because to you, it IS that bad.

It might be that your cat died or your debit card got stolen or you ran out of gas… or whatever. The point is – to you, in that moment, it was a bad feeling.

You may have a bad day or week or month, and to someone else who is going through something horrible, your problem probably seems like a drop in the bucket, but that doesn’t mean it’s not tough and you aren’t experiencing self-doubt and anxiety and a whole list of other things.

Recently, I have been going through a career change. I quit my current job as a news reporter without having another job lined up, and I never in my life imagined quitting a job and finding a new one would be so hard – mentally, physically, and emotionally. It’s very draining and it’s very tiring and hearing “no” a million times can really crush a person’s confidence.

It has been one of the most humbling experiences of my life and my pride and ego and worldly desires have been torn down one small piece at a time, and every piece stings a little more.

So you can imagine that I have had a few breakdowns here and there – and I know I’m not alone in that. Change is scary, and sometimes, we let our emotions control our reaction.

I know many of you have been there – maybe on a smaller scale or maybe on a much bigger scale.

Maybe you are changing positions at your current job or maybe you are changing from “in a relationship” to “single” or maybe you are accepting the change of no longer having a loved one here on earth. No matter the change, “small” or “big,” it can be hard and can wear you down… if you let it.

In the midst of all the stress and anxiety I have had about this change, I have been taking it out on people closest to me. One night after finding out I didn’t get a job I had applied for that I really wanted (and really thought I would get), I had a meltdown and just poured my heart out to my fiance – my anger, frustration, doubt, insecurity, fear, confusion, etc.

And out of all the kind, encouraging, positive things he said to me, one thing stood out and made me so mad: “It’s not that bad.”

WHAT?

It’s not that bad? Ok that’s fine that you don’t care about my problems AT ALL.

I mean I went totally 14-year-old “you don’t care about my life” mode. I was furious that I had completely poured my heart out and explained my frustration and he had the nerve to tell me “it’s not that bad.”

He wasn’t being mean, of course. He was just trying to tell me that other people are going through worse things, and at the end of the day, a job is not the most important thing in the world and should not cause me so much stress. Not when God has already handled it.

And he was right.

But in that moment, I was focused on my problem, my life, my worries, my stress, and my situation. I wasn’t focused on the reality that it really wasn’t so bad and that God was going to handle it without a doubt.

I think a lot of us do that all the time. We want people to listen to our problems and feel sorry for us – we want them to tell us what we WANT to hear, not what we NEED to hear. But listen when I say, you NEED those people who will set you straight and point you back to God in those dark situations. And we have the chance to really exercise our faith when we truly hand it over to God and watch Him work while we finally relax and do our part in a stress-free manner.

And no, a job change/a job search is NOT that bad, but at the time, it has been the most important thing on my mind. However, I’ve had so many opportunities to really trust God and let Him show out for me AND others to see.

I have a friend I reference often who had colon cancer, and he has been in and out of the hospital for the past year and a half. Every time he gets out, he goes back. And not only is he strong, his fiance is the strongest woman I know. They have held on to their faith in God the entire time. Of course they have had some very rough days, but they have oozed with peace and the mentality that “it’s not that bad.”

They know it could be worse. He is thankful to be alive and she is thankful to have him, no matter what that might look like right now. Because they KNOW God is going to come through and they know that have to trust Him through the process and grow in the meantime.

That’s what it should look like for me and you, too.

Whether a job, a relationship, relocation, tragedy, heartbreak, struggle – you name it – “it’s not that bad.”

This is NOT to downplay what some people are going through right now. There are people in the world right now who just lost a child or both parents or a spouse or their entire family or their best friend. There are people who have seen murders or fatal car wrecks or mass shootings. There are A LOT of bad things going on in the world. And those things remind me that the things that seem so huge to me really aren’t that bad.

However, so many of those people experiencing those things think and say the same thing as my friends! They are living through their own personal hell and are still able to find the bright side and recognize that maybe someone, somewhere else is in more pain. They recognize that “this too shall pass” and that EVERYTHING will pass, good or bad, but God won’t. And that’s what they cling to.

If that’s not encouragement, I don’t know what is. I’m encouraged by those people I don’t know who do it, people I briefly cross paths with who do it, and people I love, like my dear friends I mentioned, who do it right in front of me.

It encourages me to take my struggle and hand it over. It encourages me to have the mentality that “it’s not that bad” and I will get through. It may not look the way I always thought it would, but that doesn’t mean God isn’t using it and using me for a much bigger, more beautiful purpose.

So, my fiance was right. (Don’t tell him I said that). It’s not that bad and it never will be, even on days my world comes crashing down, because I have faith and a God who is bigger and has promised to deliver me. He has promised me the PROMISED LAND. He has promised me eternal life. So, I refuse to let “this life” be that bad because I am setting my sights on things above.

I encourage you to do the same. I know I’m speaking to someone right now who is in a low, low valley. Lower than they’ve ever been. Friend, whatever it is, I PROMISE you WILL be OK. Maybe not tomorrow or next week, but God is working and He will pull you up on to the mountain.

And on a lighter note, when you spill your coffee or get a flat tire, laugh it off and remember, “it’s not that bad.”

God provided me with a new job, by the way. It wasn’t when I thought he would. It wasn’t where I thought he would. It wasn’t what I thought he would. It was nothing I expected or really wanted, but it’s what He wanted for me. I called out, and He answered. He took care of me. And maybe it was to remind me that it really just isn’t that bad and I really just need to have faith. Because He will. He always does.

Trust His timing,

Kaitlin

 

The Day I Stopped Loving My Boyfriend So Much

Whenever I have a bad day or I’m feeling down or just not “enough,” I always tell myself, “At least I have a good boyfriend who truly loves me.”

It’s always nice to know there’s that one person who will love you no matter what, whether that’s your boyfriend or mom or sister or best friend.

But just the other day, I decided I should probably stop loving him so much.

We are now engaged and getting married next year and I love him more than anyone on the planet. But that’s just the thing, I have to remember to love God more. I have to get through those bad days by saying, “At least my God truly loves me.” I have to lean on Him, not anyone or anything on earth.

How many of us do that? “Well, at least I have a good job,” or, “At least I have really nice clothes and a big house,” or, “Who cares if this didn’t work out because I have a better opportunity somewhere else.”

I’m not saying any of those things are bad things, but they can become bad things when we value them over everything else, including our relationship with God.

People will fail us. He will not.

If I let all my joy depend on my boyfriend (fiance, whatever, I’m not used to it) that is unfair to me and him. I am putting unrealistic expectations on him to give me the joy that only an almighty God can deliver. So, when he can’t do that, because he’s not God, I let myself get upset and feel let down, when, in reality, He will never be able to fill that void.

There is a God-sized hole in your heart – I know you’ve heard that before – and it can only be filled by God. There is no boyfriend or friend or job that can fill it.

People are certainly important. God created community and fellowship for us on purpose. He speaks through our loved ones and uses them to talk to us. Think about that – you are being used for your loved ones just like God uses them for you.

But have you ever let anyone down? The answer is yes. Because you aren’t God either.

We are here to help each other, not heal each other.

We can’t save anyone and no one can save us. Only God is in that business. All we can do for each other is point to Him and love like Him.

My boyfriend/fiance points me to Jesus. Always.

Just last night, I was crying and just having a bad day, and instead of him trying to fix the problem, he listened to me and then prayed over me. He took my problems and gave them to Jesus.

That’s what we have to do. Give it to Jesus.

No one can heal your broken heart like Jesus. A new boyfriend, a new girlfriend, a trip, a new house.. none of that is going to heal your broken heart. Jesus will – I promise.

So don’t put that pressure on anyone else, or even yourself. You can’t be your own savior. “You weren’t meant to carry this beyond the cross.” Remember that.

While I love my fiance and am looking forward to a lifetime with him, when I catch myself loving him and spending more time with him than HIM, we start to have problems. I can’t love him the way God intended when I’m not loving God.

So I decided to stop loving him more than anything else because that is reserved for God. I decided to stop loving anything more than I love God. I have to put Him first for the rest to follow.

I encourage you to do the same. Because I love you and know that will give you the best life. He will give you the best life.

So yes, I love my boyfriend very much, but I’ll be careful now to not love him too much and not let him love me too much. It’s the old triangle theory – if we both have God at the top, we will inevitably grow closer… through Him.

Go be love,

Kaitlin