dating and singlehood

romance of all ages

What is “old fashioned” always comes back in style – from fashion to trends toward growing your own darn food, we as a society run around in circles and often have the nerve to think we invented something. There is nothing new…

A recent conversation with a lovely woman who barely even knows my name (she spells it with a Y) included the words “courting” and “respect” and then she reminded me to let him pay for everything. Great advice, thanks. How about I let him hold the door and give him a $20 tip?

What we can agree on, in every generation, is the important of romance.

I recently read an article that said something about romance “dumbing down” our thinking. I thought that was wrong somehow, but I couldn’t quite get my brain around it. Thinking is too hard…

To me, romance in its truest sense is about empowering and strengthening another, valuing their very existence and honoring their place in the world as it directly impacts those around them. Maybe romance itself has been dumbed down by hollywood and trashy novels. Romance is the ultimate story of the love of a man who pursues and treasures and protects and honors and cherishes. Anything less than that is dumb. If what you’re experiencing is mindlessness and euphoria and general bliss, that’s all well and good, but if it isn’t coupled with security, motivation, sense of purpose and meaning, and hope for the future, you need to take a good long look at what’s going on. Man cannot live by chocolates alone.

Two of my favorite books in the Bible are about women – surprise! Ruth and Hosea. So Ruth is all about romance. It’s all about heartache and desperation and hope and faithfulness and good stewardship and all that jazz too. But mostly it’s one of the greatest romances ever told. I’m surprised we have yet to see a truly awesome telling of this story in film, but maybe that’s because no one really truly gets it.

Ruth is this heroine of sorts. She is faithful and good and hard working and respectful and patient. She is all that is right in a woman and we applaud her and hold her up for all us chicks to emulate as Godly women. And then there’s Hosea’s wife who was a prostitute and he had to go buy her back after she cheated on him and went back into a brothel. The rest of the book of Hosea is about God’s relationship with Israel, but the picture is pretty clear. God really really loves women. (Hosea would be a right proper HBO series.)

There was a part of me, and I guess still is, that rebels against being the woman. Like we are supposed to sit around swooning and sighing and fainting until the knight on a white steed comes and sweeps us away and roll credits. I hated the notion of being helpless, tied to a train track by some dude in a mustache and kicking the air – as opposed to kicking him in the … air – and waiting for Dudley Doright to come with his pocket knife to uncut the rope.

But the truth is I certainly have been that person who gets herself in a bind and loses hope and has to just lie down and sigh a lot. And while our every need comes to us just in time by the grace of God, sometimes that need is filled by another person. Well, often it is filled by another person, and my only part in the story, at that moment, is to accept it – fully with both hands. And while there is very little romantic about abuse and greed and violence and mustaches, there is something wonderful and fantastic about the hero swooping in at just the right moment and handing me the knife to cut my own darn ropes.

hey, watch your hands there, mister!!!


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