The Heart of a Woman

How “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” Broke My Heart and Killed My Generation. Part 3. 

If you’re just joining us, feel free to catch up on Part 1 Here and Part 2 Here.

Yesterday we looked at craziness of the female brain. How we need to stop thinking that just because he takes us to dinner means he wants to marry us. Yet I know the pain of wanting to have the problem of not assuming he wants to marry me. I didn’t go on my first date until I was 20. It was a through eHarmony and a terrible experience and I vowed to never do it again. I didn’t get asked out on another date until almost 3 years later.

Three years and several friendationships later, I found myself once again on eHarmony. I had two different guys interested in me. They both seemed nice enough but I had incredibly high levels of anxiety as I prepared to go on the first date. To be honest, the poor guy didn’t stand a chance. What he didn’t know was that my heart was fully wrapped up in someone who couldn’t or wouldn’t commit to me. I tried online dating as a desperate measure to forget him and move on.

As we got through the awkward first few minutes, I quickly realized he seemed more interested in conversation with the waiter than me. Mildly relieved, I knew there wouldn’t be a second date. Six weeks later I tried again with a local guy who seemed to be semi-normal. Wrong again. This guy actually showed up at the church I worked at trying to find me on a Sunday. I was an admin so I worked during the work week. Not on the weekends. Our students pastor found him wandering the halls of the office trying to find me. When I showed up at work on Monday I was informed that I never needed to date him again.

My first three experiences with dates were all through eHarmony and that was often a source of embarrassment. At 24, it was the first time I was asked out by a guy I actually knew. It felt significant because no one who had known me had ever actually asked me out before. We had an enjoyable dinner but ultimately things went nowhere.

So believe me when I say, I understand the question and the loneliness in wondering if you’ll ever be asked out. The bitterness in wishing to have the problem of not needing to assume it’s true love after one date. Out of that knowing comes the other part I’d like to address with the ladies and also help you guys understand our woundings.

There is a deep dark fear of being alone inside each of us. As women, we often fear not being loved, of not being worthy, of not being lovely, of no one fighting for us. We have deep relational fears that someOne is holding out on us. And we can trace this back to the very first female to walk the earth.

These deep fears control and manipulate the best of us. I have fallen victim to this every single time. I am a master at manipulation. My ability to conveniently be in the same place as the guy I like is uncanny. I know how to get them to hang out, confide in me, and make me important in their life. But it’s out of a need to control. My insecurity as a woman is only taken away when I first find rest in security of who God is and second when I trust in who a man is.

The hardest thing for me to do is to sit back and let a man pursue me. I am SO good at pursuing. I’ve always been good at figuring out what I want and how to make it mine. Unfortunately those tactics rarely work with people and even less in healthy romantic relationships. I’ve endured countless heartache due to my own disobedience. I’ve deliberately disobeyed the Lord when He’s called me to be a woman and wait to be pursued. And maybe because my deepest desires (to be a wife and mother) are tied to needing and desiring a male companion to fulfill them, I tend to take back control when I see potential developing.

I can only count the number of potential relationships I killed because of my disobedience.

But here’s what I’m learning. When a man DOES pursue you, it is the most glorious thing in the world. I had a man come out of the blue. Someone who wasn’t on my radar and someone I couldn’t have manipulated into saying the things he did. But he pursued me. He pursued my heart. And without even knowing it, something in me changed.

It was like the paradigm of my behavior shifted. I didn’t even notice it until I was at work one day and someone asked me what was different. I had no idea what they were talking about until I met with my counselor later that same day. He unknowingly reaffirmed what had been said earlier and I finally traced back the only different variable in my life. Him. His words. His heart. His story. His pursuit.

And while things with this guy changed, I had a wise friend remind me that now I knew what it was like to be pursued, I should never settle for less than what he did to my heart. Because she watched me wait around and settle for the man who didn’t pursue me for over a year versus the way this man pursued me in less than a month.

It wasn’t like this was a new thing I was witnessing either. I saw a dear guy friend  become Romeo when a woman secure enough with herself allowed him to pursue her. She did nothing to manipulate or control him. She awakened his masculine heart with her feminine spirit. And suddenly I saw my clueless and goofy guy friend turn into a romantic lead who secretly asked her sister what her favorite flower was so he could surprise her.

Ladies, society does not make it easy on us. They tell us that we have equal rights. That we can do everything men can do and we should exercise our ability. While I’m all for women’s rights, I do believe that we have a Creator who celebrated the day He made us different from Adam. He saw us as no more or less valuable than His first human creation. But He saved us for last, because He knew we were a treasure and it was the man’s responsibility to care for us. Not the other way around.

Not only does society not make it easy, but our loneliness and fears make it even harder. Our flesh just wants to take control because if we don’t make it happen, it never will. But those are lies. Lies that can only lead to death and destruction. Sure, you may end up married. You may end up married to a genuinely nice guy who loves the LORD and loves you. But you’ll always have the question in the back of your mind. If you hadn’t pursued him, would he have pursued you?

So I challenge you – I challenge you to leave your dark passengers of fear, manipulation, and control behind and embrace the beauty of being a woman. Of being loved. Of being worthy of a fight. Of being enough. Of being the one who should be pursued.

I challenge you to shed the dirty rags of who the world tells you to be and instead clothes yourselves with dignity and grace. Because your feminine spirit will invite a masculine heart into the fight for you. And when we start changing the way we act, we will allow men to be men. We will stop taking on the role of pursuer and pursued. We will find freedom in being a woman.


11 thoughts on “The Heart of a Woman

  1. I just wanted to say I enjoy reading your vulnerable blog entries. You have publicly spoken what has been in my heart for years. I stayed clear of putting my thoughts out there on the world wide web in fear that I would be seen as weak, desperate and unwanted. I still do not have that courage, but maybe one day I will. I am 29 years old, never been kissed and only dated one boy in high school. I fear being alone, just like any other girl; but what hurts the most is that through my many friendships, acquaintance ships, etc. no man has pursued me. I have known some pretty incredible guys, and I have been careful not to pursue them, but have been left hurting as they ask another girl out. I would like to know what that feels like, but am afraid it will never happen. But, it is encouraging to hear your thoughts, and I will continue to pray and seek the Lord.

  2. Pingback: Friendationships | Ramblings of a Beggar

  3. Came across your blog because of Stuff Christians Like. 🙂
    I love your I Kissed Dating Goodbye posts! I’ve shared them through Facebook, and now even my friends and the students I work with (I’m a campus missionary) love them.

    God bless you, dear sister!

  4. Question: when you speak as one of the commenters do about letting a guy pursue you… I hope you aren’t stopping short of letting a guy know that you’re interested in him… I agree it’s a man’s responsibility to pursue, lead, etc, but sometimes you have to let a guy in order to facilitate his leadership. It’s kinda like a jump start to his broken leadership skills… I don’t think that’s unbiblical… Just thought I’d point out the distinction between pursuing & making an indication of your feelings. Maybe you’re already aware, but if not, hope this helps someone.

    • Ryan, this is great feedback!! I wrote a post recently about how much is the right amount to initiate / let a guy know. I’m sure it varies from person to person but I would love your opinion on it!! The post should be on the front page of my website, or feel free to shoot me an email.

  5. Just want to say it’s amazing how God works. Just when I needed my confidence for my faith, I stumble upon a woman who has the same values, thoughts, and amazingly enough, my EXACT NAME. Thanks so much for what you do. I’m definitely spreading this blog around to my Christian friends. Yes I’m only 15, but I’m starting to wonder about love and relationships, and I’m wondering about someone. Thanks for the indirect help!

    • Hi Rachel!

      So fun that you found me. I’m happy to help and happy to talk more if you have questions 🙂 Excited for the journey the Lord has you on. My contact information is on my page!

  6. Hi Rachel, I’ve read a lot about this topic and was happy to see you wrote a series on it as well. I was on board, right up until you referred to pursuing men as being inherently disobedient. This seems to fall in line with the rather sexist nature of some forms of Christian complementarianism. Could you clarify what exactly you mean by this? My relationship with my fiancee started because she initiated the first contact, by asking me for my number and to hang out. I am glad to hear you agree it varies from person to person.

    Also I would mention that not every man thinks the same way. While I don’t worry about the future as much, my mind can be in many different directions and I do intend to envision that down the aisle moment.

    • Hey there!

      Thank you for taking the time to read and respond to this post 🙂 I am always surprised to see comments and notes in old posts.

      To be totally transparent with you, I wrote this series 5? years ago? haha. My life has changed quite a bit and with that my opinions on pursuit. While I would say an element of the responsibility of pursuit should rest primarily on the shoulders of the man, I do believe there is mutual pursuit and it isn’t wrong for a woman to make the first move. Truthfully, I think it comes down to the heart issue of why you are pursuing. And that goes to men and women.

      I appreciate your insight. Honestly, I’ve thought about pulling these down and re-editing them a bit. Life is completely different at almost 30 than it was at almost 25 🙂

      • Thanks for the reply! I completely understand that life changes with time. My intention was more to engage with the idea in general, as I stated in my other comment. 🙂

        I would be happy to read your newer blog post on the subject as well. I do appreciate your thoughts on the damage of courtship. I remember pursuing after girls in high school and getting stone walled by courtship talk. The funny thing was, even though I was homeschooled, my home wasn’t conservative politically and our church was outside of the evangelical blanket, so I had no idea that courtship and Joshua Harris ideas were actually taken so seriously.

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