Dating Mistakes: Choosing Dishonesty
Editor’s Note: One of my dear, bestest friends surprised me with a submission for us this month. She has been blessed with an unbelievable love for God and humility I see in very few people, and she is a gift to me. She blogs at kellyasummers.blogspot.com, and tweets at @kasummers. Please take what she has to heart. – Lauren
When Lauren started the Good Women Project, I didn’t think I would ever be able to write for it. Women have written stories packed with guidance and advice that will take me years to fully comprehend. I’ve only been married nine months, and I don’t feel qualified to give even the newest of newlyweds advice. Women submit stories of struggle and triumph, pain and redemption. My story is pretty plain and safe. Not boring, but not epic either.
When I found out that October was all about dating mistakes, I knew I stood a chance to write something. I know about mistakes.
After hearing God’s call on my life to be a single young woman and pursue only Him, I chose to remain in a relationship that was comfortable. Mistake.
After ending said relationship, I got overzealous and promised God I wouldn’t date anyone for an entire year. Mistake.
About three months into that year, I met an amazing man who turned every aspect of my life upside down, and I could not resist growing closer to him, even though I said I wasn’t dating. Mistake.
When it was obvious that we were more than friends, I spent months denying our relationship, estranging friends and causing immense guilt in my heart and stress on Robert. Mistake. Mistake. Mistake.
When we were finally dating openly, we pushed every boundary there was to push. Over and over again. Mistake.
I know mistakes. But I also know that God redeems. He restores, He forgives.
I know that even when it seemed like I was doing everything in my power to mess things up, God was loving and sovereign. He didn’t ignore my disobedience, but He used my blunders to mold me and change me. He used my mistakes to teach me about honesty.
I wasn’t honest with my friends trying to keep me accountable. I wasn’t honest with Robert who was just trying to love me. I wasn’t honest with myself, and I wasn’t honest with God. That, of course, was the greatest mistake of them all.
Today, I can see how essential honesty is in any relationship. When I find myself in a place where I feel like I’m keeping secrets and hiding my actions or feelings, it’s certain that we will start drifting apart soon. I find that our relationship works best when I am honest with Rob about how I feel and why I feel that way.
It’s also important to know what honesty is not. Honesty is not calling your friend after a fight with your boyfriend to tell her all of the crappy things he’s done. It’s not bashing his habits in the form of a prayer request, and it’s not cutting him down as a man whenever he does something you don’t like.
First Corinthians 13:6 says that “love rejoices in the truth.” Love prevails when you are honest with yourself about your relationship. Love prevails when you can calmly and lovingly explain to the man in your life why you are upset or hurt. Love prevails when you listen to God as He teaches you to be open and real without being hurtful.
It’s not just important to be honest with your husband or boyfriend. It’s also necessary to be open and real with Godly women who can provide accountability. I know I’m blessed to have a small group of women who are willing to be truthful with me about what I’m doing or how I’m acting.
If you’re dating someone, one of the best things you can do is have an older, married woman you can turn to for advice, but the key is to be honest with her. You can feel bad all day long about how you slept with your boyfriend last night, but until you are honest about it, you will never be free of it. The beauty is that you are sitting right in the middle of a project that can help you find a good woman to talk to.
I cringe when I think of all the ways I could have prevented my own marriage during those years of dating, but I rejoice in the knowledge that my God knew His plan and that none of my mistakes could keep Him from receiving His glory.
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