Monday, April 21, 2008

Don't Pick the Right Guy

I thought I'd share this thought with you because A) it's poignant in my own life, B) it should be poignant to any woman thinking about having a relationship with any man and C) it will plug my friend's book.

So yesterday I was at church. One of my favorite friends there is a single girl (as in, never been married). I don't remember what started the conversation. Oh, I think I was talking about whether I'll ever trust that a man can actually love and value a woman in a way that requires him to toss his selfishness (yes, I'm momentarily jaded & cynical). She is in her early 30s and said something like she gets scared as she gets older. "I'm afraid of picking the wrong guy!" she said. "So don't," I said. She just looked at me like, "Huh?" "Don't pick any guy. Let God pick him." I could hear just how trite and cliche I sounded. Like some self righteous idiot suggesting something like, "Just stop sinning," to a career criminal. But something in me told me to keep going. I'm pretty sure it wasn't me - it was God giving me the thoughts.

I said, look, I picked a guy. I picked this guy and said, "Ok God, please make this the right guy. Make him The One!" And God looked skeptical and started to explain something. But I just shushed him and said, "God...I said make THIS guy the one for me. Make him the perfect husband for me." Like, this is the one I want, God. Work it out, will yah? I tell this much better in person because there are hand gestures and certain phrases that don't translate into type. But the reality is, for years, I asked God to make future ex The One. And God kept trying to tell me something - probably trying to tell me that he wasn't The One and maybe why. But each time, I'd hold up my hand and go on pining and waiting.

Eventually, I got tired of waiting for God to make future ex The One. So I took matters into my own hands. I asked him to marry me. And since no one better was around, and I was nice and had a good job and seemed pretty ok, he said sure, why not. Everyone we knew was thrilled. Including me. But in the back of my mind, I knew I had settled on the one point I said I never would. I married a non-Christian. Not that marrying a Christian guarantees anything. But it gives you a better common starting point. You'd hope. But that's a whole other post.

When I got married, I see a certain image in my head. I see God going *sigh* and throwing up his hands a little. Like, I tried to tell her! But God being the wonderful loving father (read: dad) that he is, he saw that I took my marriage vows and whole marriage very seriously. He saw that I really wanted to make this work. And I think he honored it. I imagine him going, "Ok I'll bless this union because you love me and are taking this seriously. But I can't make any promises for this guy. I mean, he's got free will and all that." He gave us a lot of fun happy years. And he blessed us with two gorgeous, perfect boys.

Well, the current situation speaks for itself. I married a man *I* chose. And not blindly. I'm not kidding when I tell you that I begged God to make him The One. I knew he wasn't what I should have waited for. But I got scared. I was 30. How would I be able to start from scratch and find a new one. Notice how I was wondering how I'D do all that?

So I told my beautiful special friend, "Don't pick the right guy. Ask God to pick him for you. And then trust that God will pick someone way better than you could. He knows what you want. But more - he knows what you need. He'll bring him. Just ask him."

It's not the kind of conversation I would normally have. But I'll tell you, this little wake up call I call Divorce? The hard lessons I'm learning shouldn't remain locked up in some dank corner of my mind. And do you know what is illustrating the lesson I just talked about here? Trish's new book. And I'm not saying that just to plug Trish's book. I'm saying that because I'm reading it and thinking - oh for the love of Pete! She's lived it, too! Just like me. Just like every woman out there. But she writes about it very well. And makes me laugh at the same time. Her book illustrates how things go when WE do the picking. And how things go when we ask GOD to do the picking.

Don't pick the right guy. Ask God to pick him for you.


Trish Ryan said...

This post should be required reading for all women over the age of 25...I did the same thing, taking a guy who would have me and demanding that God make it work. Ugh.

On a happier note, I can't wait to see who God brings you--he's freed you up for a reason, you know??? :)

Sarakastic said...

So while I was waiting for the comment box to load I was getting all set to type "This post should be required reading for all women over the age of 25", but then Trish already did, but she's right. Women everywhere should read what you just wrote.

I think about all the guys who I prayed would be the one & where they are now blech, well except for Matt Damon.

Mary Ann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Ann said...

At first I said, "and all women over 55" but deleted it because obviously "over 25" includes 55. It's just that I was thinking you don't necessarily stop making that kind of "he'll be the One when we get through with him" mistake at 30.

JenKneeBee said...

It seems so obvious, but it's really hard for most of us to learn. I'm a control freak and want to know where everything is going... too bad God doesn't work that way.

ellesappelle said...

I can't wait to read Trish's book... and I also think that's very good advice. Not that I would know anything about it but it sounds good to me and thank you for giving it!

Jane said...

I love this post!! I too married the wrong guy. I knew it as I was getting ready to walk down the aisle. God has so much in store for us if we can just be patient and let it all unfold. Why settle? It's insulting God when we do that :)

Love you!!!

Wanda said...

Great advice ~~ actually it best to let got do the picking of everything thing in our lives.

I missed you ~~ but all moved in and loving it.