Thursday, October 28, 2010

They Do Not Listen to Friends and Family

Mistake #17

Isabel was a sweet and quiet girl, yet she was not shy.  She wasn’t a flirt with every guy, but she knew how to flirt enough to get a guy's attention.  She could take on any task and get it done well a day before the deadline.  People admired her competence and quiet confidence. 
Like so many girls the problem was not getting a man interested in her, but what happened after he was interested.  In time it became clear to the people who loved Isabel that this was not the guy for her, but because she hardly hung out with these people without her boyfriend, they never had a chance to tell her what they were seeing.  If they were bold enough to make an opportunity to warn her, Isabel was majorly offended.  How could they say this about her boyfriend?  What right did they have?! 
Proverbs 15:22 (NIV) says, “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” 
The truth is we need to utilize our family and friends for the wisdom and life experience they have.   We need friends who love and follow after God to help us to make wise decisions about who we continue to date and eventually marry.  Girls often underutilize their families.  Here are ways to take advantage of the wisdom you have in the people who care about you most:
·         Spend time around other people together.  If you decide to continue dating someone, it should not be uncommon for the two of you to hang out with other people including friends and family.  This is a good opportunity for them to meet this person and later share with you what is great about this guy and what might be areas of concern. It is also helpful for you to see how he treats and interacts with other people.  If he is dating you, he is likely treating you like royalty, but you want to see how he is with other people.  As a side note, it is especially helpful to see him in a situation with people he can gain nothing from.  How he treats “the least of these” (Matthew 25:40) such as the poor, young, old, socially awkward, etc. will tell you volumes about his character.
·         Listen to happy couples.  If you have people in your life who are in good marriages, they are the perfect people to get feedback from on what they think about this guy.
·         Listen to your parents.  Your parents love you like no one else and have lived longer and seen more than you.  You should take every bit of wisdom from them you can.  We know that some of you have parents who have values you don’t agree with.  We are not saying you are bound to do what they say (assuming you are an adult), but you do have to honor them by listening to them respectfully.   After you have heard them, pray and ask God to reveal to you what is truth in what they have said.

Many people are hesitant to bring someone they are only casually dating around friends and family because of how their friends and family may behave.  If this is the case, go to these people ahead of time and let them know that you value their opinion about the kind of man you should date and marry because they love and know you better than anyone else.  This being the case, you need them to be casual and act like it is no big deal for you to bring a guy around.  Why would it be, you are a woman in demand and go out with lots of different guys?!

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