A PRINCESS DIARY ENTRY:
Okay, so I watched this charming little movie tonight called The Princess Diaries. I totally identified with Mia, the poor, unfortunate klutz with bushy hair and thick eyebrows (think the daughter of Groucho Marx and Brooke Shields) who finds out she’s really a princess. If you’ve seen it, then you’ll understand why I roared with laughter when, at a fancy schmancy dinner with too many forks of various sizes and costly breakable dinnerware, Mia accidentally sets the person next to her on fire. My other favorite scene was when Mia tried to put on pantyhose on in the back of the limo. Yes, I totally identify with the teenage klutz, only I am not now a princess of a small insignificant European country that is famous for its pears. Hmm…
And now, other musings:
I once prayed with a young woman who was concerned about her husband, who, though raised in the church, had now stated he no longer believes in God. Personally, I cannot imagine saying, “‘Til death do us part,” with someone and then have them say, two years down the road, “oh, by the way, I don’t believe in God anymore.” The tears this young woman shed (young 20’s) as she told me her story made my heart heavy. She was committed to staying with him, praying for him, and hanging in there with him. She was really hurting, and though I prayed with her, I know her heart still had to hurt because she could not see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Have you ever left a wedding and known that “God did that,” or have you left and felt as if you’ve wasted an afternoon? I’ve seen many people I care about (who said the Christian aspect and God’s will, of course, was paramount) get married to “Christians” (see #4 from previous post) and reap much sorrow. Some gave up on the Christian aspect all together and married the man that asked, regardless of his spirituality or lack thereof. In love with being in love and not necessarily the person they married, the idea of getting married somehow threw off and overpowered their true spiritual radar and led them down the aisle of regret rather than down the aisle of celebration. I don’t know if this was the case of the young lady I prayed with or not. I do know, however, when I finished praying with her, I appreciated my singleness that much more. I would rather be happy and single than miserably married. Granted, when I was 25 I said that begrudgingly and with many tears… but at 34 I can now say it with a smile on my face and mean it wholeheartedly.
I truly admire married people who are in God’s will and make the whole marriage thing work. You know who they are… their wedding was a celebration, but more than that, they prepared for the marriage much harder and longer than they did for the wedding day itself. They are the married couple you make your boyfriend spend time with so he sees “how it’s really done.” They are the couple you most love to see fight so you can take notes on how they resolved the conflict and how they stayed married after Chuck forgot to bring the loaf of bread home after work (again). They are the couple you love to see discipline their children, manage their finances, run their home and take that cross-country vacation in the car with all of their children and enjoy the trip or at least live to tell about it. They are the couple that gently reminds you that the whole marriage thing is work, but it’s fun, frustrating and rewarding work.
I could write paragraph after paragraph about the accountability I have in this area (and many others), but I will just write one. All of us need accountability. If you start dating someone and you can’t or won’t take him to meet the people who hold you accountable, BIG FAT RED FLAG #1. If your best friend says, “What the crack are you thinking?” when she meets him — BIG FAT RED FLAG #2. If you compare this man to one half of your favorite godly married couple and he not only falls short, he falls off, BIG FAT RED FLAG #3. If you even get this far, you have to ask yourself: Is this guy worth it? Because, let me tell you, if he’s a red flag after red flag and you ignore all the red flags because you think it’s better to be married to a red flag than be single, you will be married and miserable and very lonely… because while people will be there for you no matter what, they may not stick around to watch you willingly self destruct.
Take it from this singleton: No red flag is worth it (and believe me, I’ve considered one red flag too many). I can say this with all honesty — I would rather be single and happy and free from the sorrow of a bad marriage than miserably married. I declare this often to many young people and will preach it from the rooftops even after I’m married to the man who exceeds comparisons to one half of my favorite godly married couple.