The “End” of Courtship?

hookandstringYesterday I had a mini “I’m-single-and-need-to-find-someone-or-be-single-forever” crisis and signed up for EHarmony. Five minutes later I called and canceled my subscription and got a refund. Part of it was the $300 commitment I had just made to something that most likely won’t deliver a return. But most of it was my disappointment with my previous experiences with online dating.

I’ve ranted about this many a time on Facebook before, but I cringed every time I received a message that lacked effort, especially when I specifically requested thoughtful messages that would foster conversation. I also just can’t stand spelling and grammar errors when spell-check is readily available for use, but that has more to do with me than with others.

I struggle to find the true meaning behind this general lack of effort I’ve seen lately, both in online dating and IRL (in real life) dating, and I think I’ve at least figured out that my disappointment stems from my desire to find someone who is willing to set aside all other distractions (online messaging with other women, multiple dates with multiple women in the same week, Facebook stalking, etc.) to just go on a few dates and focus on one person until it’s clear there will or will not be a future. Maybe I’m old fashioned (or maybe I’m just getting older, ugh), but I think I’m mourning the end of courtship and this new age of hook-up culture.

Don’t get me wrong, I totally get the self-confidence from being “chosen” or “winked at” on a dating site. But it took me a while to realize that my confidence was false and based on a false desire to be found attractive by as many men as possible. The affirmation I felt from receiving a message or a wink was so short lived that I would seek it more and more often, almost like a drug. But I already receive affirmation every day from the only One that matters, and I’ll take Divine Affirmation any day over a wink.

Maybe someday I’ll have someone to share my life with, but for now, I’ll pass on this new hook-up culture until I can find someone with the same outlook and ideals as me. I’m in no hurry, and while I might have several more mini crises on the horizon, I know they will pass and I’ll be left wondering why I became so worried in the first place. After all, I’ve already surrendered my life to The One in control.



A Dirty Word

dirtywordsI never thought I had the luxury to be able to surrender. I became used to taking care of myself at a young age, and grew to learn that planning and preparation is the way to ensure bad stuff doesn’t happen.

Well, despite all my planning, preparation and exit strategies, I’ve never had things under control. It’s taken me a long time to realize this and it’s something I need to remind myself constantly. *Deep breath* I’m not in control.

When I delude myself into believing I am in control, I miss out on what God has already planned for me. But “surrender” has always been a dirty word in my vocabulary. Surrender has always signified weakness, an inability to take care of things on my own.

I’ve been struggling with my current living situation, and the possibility that I may have to move. It took me a while to come to grips with the idea of moving, leaving my current home without knowing whether the next place will really feel like home. But not knowing my next steps has been an exercise in surrender for me. This is a situation I can’t be in control of, no matter how much I plan and prepare. It’s too early to secure a new living situation, and there’s the potential that I won’t have to move.

And while I can’t make this feeling of balancing on a tightrope completely disappear, I can surrender the situation to God, who already has it in control, anyway.