Friday, October 14, 2011

"On Fire": Signs That You're SETTLING.

"Your strength will come from settling down in complete dependence on me— the very thing you've been unwilling to do."---Isaiah 30:15(Message)

“Living with integrity means: Not settling for less than what you know you deserve in your relationships. Asking for what you want and need from others. Speaking your truth, even though it might create conflict or tension. Behaving in ways that are in harmony with your personal values. Making choices based on what you believe, and not what others believe.”---Barbara de Angelis

Hey Ladies...

So, I was having a conversation with someone earlier this week, basically along the lines of that quote by Ms. de Angelis re: how do you know when someone is disrespecting you in a relationship. I mean, not *abusing you*, but just not *honoring you*. I have lived, for some time now, by the (working) philosophy that *once you state your needs* and they *continue to go 1) unacknowledged and/or 2) unaddressed*, that is a pretty clear indication that some respect is lacking. And it's hard for anything to really flourish, especially in a healthy way, without mutual esteem present. That's not my *opinion*; that's *biblical*: "One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind." (Romans 14:5-NKJV)

Indeed, I hear myself saying more and more these days, "You value what you value." Personally. Professionally. RELATIONALLY. Period.

I think that's what I really enjoyed about an article that I "happened upon" (Proverbs 16:33-AMP) last evening entitled, "Settling vs. Settling Down". As I went down the list, it amazed me how many people, based on the information that they've shared with me, came to mind. ON THE SETTLING SIDE OF THINGS. Check it:

Settling vs Settling Down in Your Career

Signs of Settling:

    I hate this job, but it pays the bills
    It’s not the ideal job, but I’ll take it
    I don’t like what I’m doing, but the money justifies it
    This is the lesser of all evils
    I can take this job and look for something else in the mean time

Signs of Settling Down:

    I love this job
    I love what I do here and the money is just an added bonus
    This job gives me an opportunity to express myself creatively
    The idea of doing this for the next 5 years really excites me
    I’m not really thinking too far ahead and I’m really present when I do this work

Settling vs Settling Down in Relationships

Signs of Settling

    This is the best that I can do
    This is significantly better than my last relationship so I shouldn’t complain
    It’s been a long time since I’ve connected with anybody
    Well, I’m x age and if I don’t make this work I’m going to be to old (this one is quite popular)
    etc, etc.

Signs of Settling Down

    I feel amazing about this
    I feel truly blessed to have this person
    I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with this person
    I wake up everyday grateful to have this person next to me
    This is what I truly want

Now, we know that for the sake of *this blog*, you're also settling (I Timothy 5:22) if your fella is *already* waking up next to you (SMH...LOL...RME...LOL), yet I think we all get the gist. And then, the goodness just kept on coming after I read another piece entitled, "Dating: God's Best or All the Rest" with this tying it all together quite...effectively:

As I began to observe his life and how he interacted with others, as well as how wonderfully he always treated me, I decided that there could really be something here. As I prayed about it, I felt like God gave me permission to pursue it. Later on, when I prayed about the possibility of marriage, God answered that prayer clearly too. The rest is history. We dated for about 10 months before he proposed.

And now, after nearly four years of marriage I am so glad I followed God’s leading. It’s not that my husband and I never disagree, or that we do not get on each other’s nerves periodically, but married life is so much simpler when you know that this is the person that God led you to. With that in mind, we know God will see us through whatever difficulties we face in the future. And as I look back on past relationships, I can see why Matt and I are the best match compared to others we each dated.

Don’t get me wrong, you could probably make your current relationship work. I believe that there are any number of people that we each could marry and make it work – and even be happy. But I also believe that we will be happiest in marriage if we allow God to choose our mate for us. That doesn’t mean waiting for God to drop that person into your lap, or waiting for a flashing neon sign to blink over his or her head identifying that person as “the one.” Instead, it means taking each relationship to God and asking, “Where do You want this relationship to go?”

And the next step is just as important, are you truly willing to abide by God’s answer?

If God’s will is for you to be married, then I believe He wants you to have the best marriage possible. You deserve someone who will appreciate you for who God made you to be, encourage you to grow spiritually and embrace all that God has for you, and cherish you as a precious gift from your Heavenly Father. Don’t settle for less than that.

That question about asking Adonai where HE WANTS the relationship to go...boy, that could spare a lot of unnecessary money for a wedding *and* for the divorce that oftentimes follows right there! Come to think of it, it could also move a lot of relationships *much further along* if more women chose to accept that Adonai is *far more concerned* about a person being good for your spirit (soul salvation) than your libido, bank account or family photos. Sometimes we make the wrong options our top priorities.

Anyway, I'm sharing this because as the 2011 calendar year is starting to wind down, if you see yourself anywhere in these articles, I hope you will *make the time* to *really think* about the warnings that they're giving you. If you don't like where you're working or living...*why are you settling?* When the Word, which is Adonai (John 1:1), tells us that perfect love casts out all fear (I John 4:18), this doesn't just apply to relationships. LOVE YOURSELF TO NOT LET FEAR STIFLE (OR STAGNATE) YOU. And, if you're in a relationship (even, on some levels, in a friendship) where you see some of these "You're settling" red flags, that is *definitely* something to think about...*and reconsider*. Not only is life too short, but there are *far too many spirits* out here in the world that are not just out to waste your time, but drain your energy and distract you from fulfilling your purpose (Psalm 20:4).

In the game of life, Adonai covers all bases. Don't you just love the lead verse for this? We can only *truly settle down* by being *completely dependent* on him---relying *wholeheartedly* on his way, his time and his will.

Life is short. We are vapor (James 4:14). It would be a shame to rewind and realize that more days were spent (or is it wasted?) on "This is the lesser of all evils" and/or "This is the best that I can do".

Why settle? You're a daughter of the Most High (Psalm 82:6). You *certainly* don't have to.

So don't. Settle down...instead.



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