Hope

Since browsing Dollarama a week ago, our house has acquired a kitchy kitchen decoration that pronounces, “HOPE gives wings to our dreams” where the “O” is a chicken.

Hope gives wings to our dreams

Hope is an all encompassing feel-good word that doesn’t quite elaborate itself. Yet, always before a Christian is the simple reality of “I am not my own.” We place the weight of our hope not in any preference or desire, any payoff for effort or chance, but in the relationship we have with our Master and Lord. That “I am not my own” should give peace to my thoughts, for it relegates concerns of lesser importance (the “I’d really love ifs”) to the periphery, and allows you to see Christ more clearly at the centre.

Think, if you will, about Jonah, and what would change about his thoughts and attitudes if he were to embrace that maxim, “I am not my own.”

The literature on singleness says…

The recent proliferation of blog posts should signal to you that while ESL is keeping me busy and interested, it is not mentally and emotionally draining while it is intellectually stimulating. (The formula for the mood to write blog posts: busyness of other obligations, engaged with other intellectual topics, residual mental and emotional energy.)

Instead of writing my thoughts in this post, I will instead recommend something for you to listen to. Admittedly, I’ve read enough about singleness, relationships and marriage to consider writing a thesis (though perhaps not a very good one as I lack key experience), and I’ve discussed the topic with enough women that many of the things I’ve read and agreed with are confirmed. So below you can listen to an opinion I nod to without having to read my unsophisticated thoughts.

One important point made is that for some reason glorifying God through career or formal ministry is seen as so so so much more important than glorifying God through marriage and family – disproportionately so. Feel free to post thoughts and opinions below if so desired.

Getting Ready to Get Ready for Marriage – Albert Mohler addresses the need for intentionality in the relationships young people pursue.

[While we’re recommending stuff, Why Conservative Churches Are Growing is also a good read, though on a completely different topic.]

Awkwardness

Watching a certain instructional DVD [byb] made me think about purposeful relationships and directive conversations and how that can seem awkward, and maybe a little slyly manipulative. But some people can make it seem so natural!

I think though, that it’s a matter of how much you do it. When you’ve done it too many times to count, it’ll merge with your personality – naturally.

An illustration that comes to mind is that of romantic relationships. There’s a lot more sensitive and unknown territory for people in new relationships that requires a far greater input in purposeful and directive communication. It’s not weird for things to be a little awkward sometimes. (Not that I know, but I assume this is the case.)

With old married couples though, you can see that they know each other. They have patterns that fit together. Just observing a couple leading something together at church this morning – the husband led, the wife responded – it was cute. It was calming to observe, and not awkward. There is still a lot of communication, but it’s all second nature.

Obviously, with the original scenario, it’s not like you’d suddenly know strangers very well, but you’d know well how to have wholesome meaningful conversations.

Practice. Homework. Practice again. Graduating won’t get you out of learning.