Well Tina Turner, Actually Love’s Got EVERYTHING To Do With It, (“It” Being Dating)

16 Oct

“Love does not dishonor others.” I was listening to a talk that a friend recommended by Andy Stanley at North Point Community Church in Atlanta on “The New Rules for Love, Sex, and Dating” when I re-read that verse again. Sure, I’ve seen it a thousand times. It’s from 1 Corinthians 13, the most oft read chapter of the Bible at weddings.  And I wonder what that means. Actually, I wonder what the whole love chapter actually means in the first place…

In my life, in this context for me, I think it means not spreading gossip about people. It means keeping things confidential that need to stay confidential. It looks like not talking badly about someone after I’ve dated them. It is trying to pray about how God sees a person, even if I don’t see them that way and trusting that God is right and I’m not. It’s giving people grace and realizing that they are a work in progress just like I am. It is not trying to return pain that someone might have inflicted on me, but instead forgiving them. Letting go.

Stanley laid out several key concepts for me and for a lot of people I know who are struggling with the confusing thing that is dating.  He asked a great question: “Are you becoming the person that the person you’re looking for is?” A lot of us think that we will just magically understand how to love when we meet the “right person.” But what are we doing today to try to become the person THEY want? The person THEY need? Isn’t that more loving than just expecting that the other person will know how to love? How to cherish? How to fulfill vows? How to love us exactly the way that we need? What about me? What’s my responsibility? How do I love them?

I spoke to one of my friends who recently got married. He told me about how hard it had been for him throughout the engagement process to continually “love”. He said it was a lot of work trying to learn how to do this. He is a great and solid guy, so this surprised me. He and his wife are so perfectly matched, it’s amazing. I suppose as a single person, I thought that the “right” relationship would mean that I would have to work less in order to make it work. Maybe it’s not about working less, but working differently.

If, before I meet someone, I’m busy just looking for them, I might miss out. If I am not trying to become healthy and I stop learning how to actually honor people, if I’m not learning how to be kind and compassionate, and instead  trying to one up my date with stories about how great I am, if I’m just looking for my needs to be met, I will more than miss the person I truly want to be with. Because the reality is, I want someone who is doing all of those things!

To learn how to love is to continually check myself against what God says love is. And I ask myself how I’m doing with those things. Not in a guilty condemning way. And sometimes my friends have to check me on it, too, because we all need help. Stanley said and I agree, this does not come natural to us. It is sometimes hard work. We definitely need God’s help with it. But I’m becoming more and more convinced that to follow Christ (which is what I want to do) is to learn how to love. In every area of my life. In my family relationships, in friendships, at my job,  in conversations with strangers, at my apartment, in LA traffic, at church, after church, everywhere.

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One Response to “Well Tina Turner, Actually Love’s Got EVERYTHING To Do With It, (“It” Being Dating)”

  1. Stacia October 16, 2011 at 9:47 am #

    So good! Learning to love because that’s who we’re called to be. We take who we are into a dating relationship. I love that Tina Turner is one of your “tags.” Thanks for the Sunday morning dating thoughts 🙂

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