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Thursday, June 20, 2013

how to know if he's the one: mwwf's first guest post!

'Ello, sweet sisters! So glad you're here! Today marks our very first guest post on MWWF. I know, I know. Exciting stuff. My new friend, Charity, approached me about writing a guest post after she confessed a very hurtful struggle with me. I was so humbled by her words, that I knew that strength and wisdom isn't just a necessity of single gals–it's a necessity for everyone.

I'm so thankful for women like her.

As for me and my house? We're still kickin' it in the OBX. Fun, fun, fun, 'til her daddy takes her T-Bird away!

Take it away, Miss Charity! And happy reading, friends!























We were about to have a “define the relationship (DTR)” talk. The air smells different; the scenery blurs and turns slower in those moments.  That night the air smelled like chlorine and a sweaty college football team.  The scene moving slowly around me was a football team having a swim. 
We sat on the pool patio playing Gin Rummy at the hotel he was staying at while visiting me. In the middle of the game he asked me to be his girlfriend and I said “yes.” Both being competitive, we finished the game. 
I still maintain that I would have won if I hadn’t been stopped in the middle of it to “talk.” How could I concentrate on a card game after becoming someone’s girlfriend?!
The beginning of a relationship is exciting and sometimes scary because after the “DTR” comes a bigger question:  Is he the one?  
God used so many aspects of our dating relationship to help me discover YES! Rene was my husband.
Rene showed me that He was a Godly leader by initiating conversations about his intentions and our purity.
Intentions
He told me his intention was to honor and respect me because I was a daughter of God.  He said we were dating with the intention of discovering if we should enter a covenant marriage.  I felt so honored and valuable. He wasn’t just dating me because I was pretty, fun or filling a void but because he had a clear purpose for our dating relationship.   
Physical Boundaries
We both shared what God had been speaking to us about purity. We to wait to kiss until we were engaged. To make the murky waters of physical boundaries clear, we showed each other physical affection through holding hands and side hugging.
We were also vulnerable with Christian friends (same gender) about how we were doing with these boundaries. Ultimately, physical purity is a matter that begins with our hearts.   
1 Samuel 16:7 says, "The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."
* These boundary lines may not be the same for every person, and ultimately God knows our heart motivation!  If our hearts are committed to purity than our outward expression should fall in line with the goal of honoring God with our bodies, not the goal of how much can I do without having sex?
Fighting together for purity showed me that Rene was serious about obeying God even when it was hard. There has been such good fruit in our marriage because of our commitment to purity! 
And, wow!h That first kiss was worth waiting for!
We had the same vision and values for our life.  We discovered this through conversation and intentionally experiencing life together by:
Playing! We played cards, bocce ball, played at the beach and painted walls.  We learned more about each other through these activities then if we had gone to dinner and a movie.
Reading!  We read through “For Women Only” and “For Men Only” by Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn. I read “For Men Only” and Rene read “For Women Only” first, and highlighted important points.  Then we swapped books and discussed. This gave a non threatening way to talk about our needs in a relationship.
Entering In. Rene and I lived five hours apart during our relationship.  We did not attend  the same church, have similar friends or careers.  Even if you are from the same city there are always things to discover about a person’s background and everyday world.  
We understood more of each other as we met each other’s families , went to each other’s churches and talked about our hopes for the future. 
Our family, close Christian friends and pastors were supportive of us getting married.
I remember my Aunt telling me Rene could use her engagement ring to propose so he didn’t have to wait and buy one. It brought joy and peace to our hearts to hear from the people who knew us best that they could see how God had designed us to be together. It is important to hear the feedback from those that know and love you the most about who you are dating.
We both sought the Lord about our relationship and He gave us peace about marriage.
God is our Father and Creator and knows us intricately and completely.  Dialoguing with God daily while dating and seeking the truth about what a covenant marriage in the Bible looks like, gave me peace and clarity that this was the man I should covenant my life with.


*Fun note–pictured is Charity and her husband, Rene, on their wedding day! Aww, so cute, right?!

I would love to hear your thoughts! What qualities are the most important to you in your future spouse? What are questions you want answered before getting married?  Leave a comment below!




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2 comments

Stephanie Garber said...

Great post Charity! I love that picture of you and Rene! Before I read Brett's comment I thought it was just a pretty picture. :) I loved reading about your story. It's encouraging to hear that no distance is too far for God, and there are men out there who care about purity.

Charity Rios said...

Thanks Stephanie! Yes! There are good men still in this world! Thanks for reading!

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