I once read this book called “A Knight In Shining Armor” by P.B. Wilson, and P.B. shared about a woman who was so convinced that she knew exactly who her husband was that she took it upon herself to start making her own bridal dress, choose her bridesmaids, rent the hall and hire a caterer! Even though this man had never voiced interest and was not pursuing her at the time, she believed so wholeheartedly that he was her mate that she planned the wedding to a “T” and waited for her groom in anticipation. My 23-year-old self was shocked at what I was reading, “I would NEVER do that! That is crazy and very unwise!” (can you hear the pride & criticism? I sure can!) Yet somehow, although I did not go so far as to make a wedding dress, I did fall into the same anticipation and emotional deception, which led this woman to commit such drastic actions.
I had gotten it in my head that a certain male friend was “the one”. I knew he had liked me at one point in time and had even asked me out, but by the leading of the Holy Spirit I had turned him down. Some time had passed and I felt I was now ready for this relationship. Surely, I must have been WRONG when Holy Spirit did not allow us to date previously? The timing must have just been off then, that’s all…I had dreams that this man was my chosen husband (which I felt were from the Lord), my friends had dreams (which I also felt were from the Lord), and I considered myself to have great discernment, so surely I was correct in that this was my husband! Well, similar to the woman with the wedding dress, I was wrong and that man eventually married someone else. Thankfully, Christ revealed to me the error of my ways prior to his marriage and I never did reveal my feelings which saved me a ton of embarrassment… BUT it took me 4 loooong years to see the truth. To see, that in fact, I had been deceived by my own heart. And I like to think the enemy of my soul capitalized on my emotional weakness as well, aiding in this deception.
During this time I did cry out to God, asking Him to deliver me from these feelings if they were not based on truth, but what I had to learn was that often there is a process when growing and maturing. Sometimes issues of the heart are not resolved overnight. I see this same deception happening with single women over and over again. We tend to read into things easily and are generally the more emotional sex. It doesn’t take much for us to invest those emotions in an idea that is as appealing as marrying a certain man we are attracted to. This man could just be being friendly, complimentary or downright standoffish, but if we get it in our heads that he is “the one” then our hearts quickly cling to the idea of marriage until there is a ring on his finger betrothing him to someone else. This deception can happen too b/c we are simply starved for male attention, having not received the healthy male attention we should have received from fathers, uncles, cousins and brothers (this was my issue as well). So we exalt the attention of a man, which is idolatry, give place to the enemy and our flesh, and believe we are in the will of God, when in fact, we couldn’t be further from it.
I was reading a blog post by Heather Lindsey and she shared that while she and her now husband Cornelius were dating, a woman approached him and shared that God had revealed that she was his wife. He graciously told her that he had already found his wife (Heather) and that she was mistaken. Instead of receiving this information in humility and grace, she responded “well, you aren’t married yet!”. Sadly, this woman was deceived by her own heart in addition to being disrespectful to the union God had purposed between Heather and Cornelius.
In my letter to my single brothers, I addressed the issue of men intentionally (or otherwise) misleading women, not guarding their hearts and playing with their emotions. I believe this grieves God. But I believe God also has a grievance for women. I believe He is calling His daughters to mature in our emotions (I know for a fact He is calling me to). Often we can fantasize, make declarations, and even rent a hall and make a wedding dress because our hearts so desire to be given away. Yet this is not wisdom and will lead to heartache, discouragement, bitterness and even anger.
Do not be angry with God for not giving you that man. He never said that man was your husband, you did.
1 Peter 3:17 states that the woman is the weaker vessel. After all, Eve was deceived by the serpent, not Adam. Could this weakness have to do with our tendency to be led by our emotions and not by the Spirit of God? I think so. We are in fact far superior in so many other areas :-). Yet this one area definitely needs working on.
So let’s work on it. Let’s work on not being presumptions, not making assumptions, not reading into every little nice gesture a good-looking, godly man throws our way (BTW I’m talking to myself here first and foremost). Above all, let’s conduct ourselves as women worth pursuing. Not thirsty or desperate, but faithful and virtuous. I think in doing so we will not only guard our own hearts from emotional damage, we will also…glorify our Father in heaven :-).
Walking this out with you!
Your sister, Nicole