Friday, August 22, 2014

"On Fire": When God Puts a DEAD END SIGN on Your Relationship


I got an unexpected phone call. It wasn't the person that made it unexpected; it was the information that they had to share. After asking me if I had watched the news earlier that day, they sent me a news link. It was about a huge crime situation that broke and as I read on, I saw one of my exes names in it.

A few things crossed my mind.

One was that he could be looking at spending the rest of his days locked up. And while it's easy to assume that all people who do criminal activity are "bad people", a lot of them simply were not shown other options. There's a reason why God has a formula: Have a relationship with him. Don't have sex outside of marriage. Marry a disciple (John 8:31-32). *Then* have children (Malachi 2:15). There are a lot of people who's parents didn't follow this plan and as a result, it made things harder for them. My ex? I've known him, off and on, or many ways. He's brilliant---and broken. Brokenness presents itself in so many ways.

Another thing I thought about was the fact that when I dated him, he was in a less-than-level of what his life has apparently now become. And so, I had no business being in a relationship with someone like that. *Some people, we meet to witness to; not be in a relationship with*. No matter how fine or sweet or much we want it to be about something else.

Still another thought was that in spite of knowing all of this, for many years, I still held on to the dream that he would get himself together and someday we would we work out. And so when we reconnected several years ago, there was a part of me that was upset with God and him when my ex was like "I'm always going to love you. We don't need to be together though."

Yes, all of this ran through my mind as I read the story...and looked at his mug shot. Many years ago, I penned a devotional entitled "There's a Blessin' in Rejection" and as I told a girlfriend of mine last night, "I was so busy being upset with God in 2005 and he was like 'Girl, you're going to thank me in 2014.'" Indeed, we have to keep in mind that God's "yes-es" are meant to last---*and so are his "nos"*.

In other words...

When God says "Let him go."


"He's not the one for you."


"Your relationship is compromising and toxic."


"Why are you doing the very things I told you not to do in your relationship?'


"Move on, I have something better."

He's not just taking into account what is going on in the present. Remember, Revelation 21:8 tells us that God *is* the beginning and the end. Therefore, God's right here with you as you're reading this blog yet at the same time, he's 1, 5 and 25 years into your future simultaneously. And so, all of what he's telling you now, even when you don't like it, even when you can't see why he's saying it, he's looking ahead and basically saying "Trust me, you'll be glad that you listened."

Yeah, after reading that news story, I can certainly vouch for that.

I'm going to pray for my ex and his family---one that includes children. I still stand on the fact that the core of him is good. Hurting people do hurting things.

However, at the same time, I'm going to praise God that he didn't allow Psalm 106:15 to manifest in my life. He didn't "give me what I wanted while bringing leanness to my soul". This time, thanks to him and my ex, the answer was a firm "no". And it's a blessing.

Indeed, when we're coasting down Lover's Lane and God puts up a dead-end sign, we need to stop trying to forge (or is it force?) a path. We need to accept it for what it is, reroute and move on.

On that note, I read an article this morning entitled "6 Signs He May Never Propose". I'm sharing it in conjunction with my narrative---eh hem, testimony (I Timothy 4:14-16-AMP)---because since this is a blog about preparing for marital covenant and signs of being in a dead-end relationship can present itself in so many different ways, I believe this might provide some soul food for thought. Read it. Do some praying. Seek some wise counsel (Proverbs 24:6). Be honest with yourself. Heed the signs. HEED. THE. SIGNS:

So you've been in a relationship for a while and are more than ready to walk down the aisle but does he feel the same way? You may be in a great relationship but what's the point if it's not going anywhere? If you have your doubts, these signs he may never propose, will come in handy. There's nothing worse than being in a dead end relationship where you're in it for the long haul but where he may never propose. If you have been noticing these signs he may never propose, maybe it's time for serious action!

1. Negative Thoughts about Marriage. While you may be the sorts who has always been dreaming about a dazzling rock on your finger, the most romantic marriage proposal, the perfect wedding dress and happily ever after, he may detest the very idea of marriage. Does he hate going to weddings? Does he often talk about marriage as the "end" of a guy's life and wonder out loud why people even get hitched? Maybe he doesn't believe in the institution of marriage, maybe he's just commitment phobic or maybe he believes that all marriages are meant to fail. Either way, if the two of you are on opposite ends when it comes to the very idea of marriage, chances are you may never get him to change his mind.

2. He Plays Hot and Cold. Some days he's extra attentive and romantic, buying you flowers and taking you out on lovely dates, while on other days he's just a jerk and won't call you for days on end without a reason. If he's inconsistent in the relationship, it's probably because he's indecisive and doesn't know what he wants from you. And until he figures out what he wants, chances are he's not going to propose.

3. You're Not Close to His Friends and/or Family. An important sign he will never propose is if he doesn't make an effort to integrate you with his friends and family. Sure, you've met them a couple of times on a couple of occasions, but if he sees you as his potential wife, he will make sure that they know you as more than some girl he's dating. He will ensure that you're as much a part of their lives as he is, if not more.

4. You Only Have Short Term Plans. When it comes to making plans for next weekend, he's all in and excited but talk about going away on vacation together next year and he chokes up and mutters something like "We'll talk when the time comes". If he sees you as a part of his future, he'd have no qualms making plans or at least considering them and that's that. If he can't commit to a long term plan, he's probably not in it for the long haul.

5. Avoids Talking about the Future. Nothing says "sign he may never propose" like avoiding talks about the future. Does he shy away from conversations about long term commitment? Do you end up fighting every time you talk about the future or kids? Does he freak out when you bring up the "M" word? Does he always change the subject when it comes to your future with him? If he won't even discuss it, how is he ever going to pop the question?

6. All Talk, No Action. Maybe the two of you have had a serious discussion about marriage a while back, where you told him how you felt and he seemed very eager to take things forward but that's it... nothing has happened since. There has been no house hunting, no ring shopping, no proposal signs, no hint whatsoever and when you bring it up, all you get are excuses and more excuses. Unless these seem like legitimate reasons, chances are he's just buying time, till he's cornered into absolutely having to make a decision.

Dead-end signs can be painful. And helpful. Life-saving, in fact.

Watch out for them.



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