Okay, so I will try to keep this post as far from a rant as I can. But I read an article on Facebook this morning that touched on something that is a “hot-button” of mine. I started to share the article and write my thoughts on it but then decided to write a blog post of my own about it instead. The article itself was about a Navy sailor who was hit by an IED and lost both of his arms and legs. The main focus was around his girlfriend, now wife who was with him before his accident and then decided to continue to love him after and stick around. She held him and helped nurse him back to health as it were.
Anyways, this hit on my button of expectations in relationships. Particularly what people view as deal breakers. Life happens. People go through cancer and lose their hair or gain weight because of it. People develop diseases or other health problems that cause them to gain weight. Accidents happen that alter people physical, mental, or even emotional states. People go through seasons of anxiety or depression that causes a change in habits that could result in physical changes as well. All these things are things that happen to people that are mostly out of that person’s control.
What I’m getting at is this: we need to stop putting so much emphasis on the external and care more about the internal. We live in a world now where relationships don’t last the way they used to because we’ve started valuing and de-valuing the wrong things. Now there are other factors with why marriages/relationships aren’t working out and that’s another conversation for another time. But my focus in this post is primarily the title.
I am over 6 ft tall and so you can imagine that there aren’t too many men who are taller than me. At least not who share my faith in the Lord and so that narrows down the playing field a bit when it comes to dating. At least it would if my standards were that I only date men taller than me, which they aren’t (despite the article title). The thing that really lights a fire under me though is when I hear shorter girls who are 5′ 7″ or 5′ 9″ or whatever talk about not wanting to date a guy shorter than she is. Or she won’t wear heals around her guy because then she would be his height. WELCOME TO MY WORLD!!! Now I know that not every girl is tall and so my problems are not everyone else’s problem. I’ve had to learn lessons that maybe some wouldn’t because of it. And I get that not all women (or guys for that matter) will share my views and that is totally fine.
I just want to offer some perspective is all. Now I’m not making a point to say just be with someone who you don’t really find attractive but is “a good person who loves Jesus”. There’s a lot people that fit that description. But what I am saying is think about how much weight you put on external appearance in your relationship. The factors I listed above about accidents and diseases and cancer are all situations of which I have friends, married couples who have experienced those things. After they were married, life happened and the physical appearances started to change because of circumstances outside of their control.
I know for me as well as others that lifestyle is a big factor. I’m a gym rat and I try to eat at least semi-healthy (though some weeks are better than others). But lifestyle is important. I’m not saying ignore that. I’m not say throw out chemistry and physical attraction. What I am saying is that those things should not be outweigh a person’s character, who they are on the inside. I’d rather stand next to a man on my wedding day who is shorter than me but I know he will stand next to me no matter what because he loves the woman I am, not just how I look in a dress. I know that I can count on his heart, his character, his honor, his integrity. A man makes a woman feel feminine based on how he treats her, not if he can scoop her in his arms and twirl her around.
I guess I just felt compelled to share this perspective because I think it’s one our generation needs to hear. We as people are naturally selfish so there’s things that we want out of relationships. But maybe what we want and what we need are not the same thing. When we trust God, he gives us what we need not just what we want. I hope this post will encourage single women (and guys too) to evaluate your dating standards and see where you are putting your values. God’s definition of love ( 1 Corinthians 13) is very different than what the world or what movies say love is. And I know as a hopeless romantic, it’s easy to listen to what the world says a relationship should be rather than what God says. But if God is more concerned with the conditions of our hearts then I think we should be too.
But the LORD said the Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: a man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD look on the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7