Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sacred Secrets Behind "The Vow"

"You accepted me for who I am,
not for who you wanted me to be."
--The Vow, 2012

If you contributed to the $40 million spent on opening weekend of  Sony Picture's "The Vow."  You might really connect with what I am about to say in this post.  If you have yet to see the film, well, you might be surprised.

On opening weekend of "The Vow" several of my friends and I went out to see this love story for ourselves.  After months of waiting and hoping, the movie was finally released to public viewing!

Starring Dear John's Channing Tatum, and The Notebook's Rachel McAdams, "The Vow" is a romantic story about a married couple who goes through a major hurdle in their married life.  Early in their marriage Paige (McAdams) suffers a major head injury after a car accident.  The result of her injury is memory loss of the past few years of her life.

Upon waking up from her coma, not only does Paige not remember marrying Leo (Tatum,) but she doesn't even know who he is.  The rest of the movie is the valiant story of Leo trying to win her back.  One of his most famous quotes, "I have to make my wife fall in love with me again,"  tells exactly what kind of heart he has.

Throughout the movie Leo constantly reminds himself of the vows him and his wife made on their wedding day.  "I vow to fiercely love you in all forms, now and forever.  I promise to never forget that this is a once in a lifetime love."  Leo paints the picture of this vow by standing by his wife, despite her lack of memories and personality disfunctions.  Leo truly shows us what it looks like to love like Christ loves the church.

WAIT.  Did I just refer to "Christ" and "church" while reviewing a secular film??  I did.  You might be surprised to know that the true story this film was based off of is 100% founded on the principle that God is sovereign and God alone can hold a marriage together.

In fact, the true life couple was a little dissapointed to find out the movie lacked any sense of biblical values at all.  Check out this article from Fox News: Real-Life Couple from "The Vow".

I was not at all surprised to hear this, even after seeing the movie.  Throughout the entire movie I had been telling myself in my head that only God could give that man strength, and only God could fit those two back together.  "What God has joined together, let man not separate" (Mark 10:9.)

As stated in the article, the real-life couple tell their complete story in the book.  I for one, am very excited to read this story and get some real encouraging meat out of it.  How bout you?  Click here for details on the book.

Over all, I really enjoyed the movie despite some less than family friendly scenes.  I do think the book would be twice as nice however, filling me in on the details that make this love story so much bigger than Hollywood led us on to believe.  The story itself is what's worth watching.

Article first published as The Vow: Not exactly what Hollywood says on Blogcritics.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Sex God: Book Review

Pause with me just a moment and think. I want you to go back to a place in your childhood when you really and truly felt alive. Think about the defining moment of your existence. For some of you it may be the day you met your best friend. For others it may be a special time between you and your father. Think about your moment, and think about how it made you feel. You were full, you were alive, you were connected. That is what Sex God is all about.

The book Sex God was written by Rob Bell and published by Zondervan in 2007. The book includes nine chapters of separate but related topics relating to spirituality and sexuality. One of my favorite chapters explained the essence of humanity and sexuality. Bell paints the picture that although we are less than angels, and more than animals, we still have a very wonderful purpose for our souls and bodies.

In other chapters Bell intricately describes the ancient Jewish weddings and all of their meaningful customs. As he explains the customs, he explains how this ties into the original meaning of many passages of the Bible, thus proving that God is a very intimate and passionate lover of our souls.

When I first began reading Sex God, I was thoroughly confused and doubtful about the whole thing. Sex and God. Who would think of comparing the two, much less combining them. Although Bell made some excellent observations in the first third of the book, I was still unsure of the message, but after persistent reading I was soon captivated by the book and read the entire thing in one sitting.

Author Rob Bell, is the founding pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church, a sister ministry of Mark Driscoll’s Mars Hill Church. Bell and his wife Kristen, along with their three children, reside in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Bell graduated from Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois. He also graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. Three of Bell’s books have been on the New York Time’s Best Sellers list: Sex God, Love Wins, and Velvet Elvis.

The subtitle for Sex God is, “exploring the endless connections between sexuality and spirituality.” This is definitely what Sex God is about. The basic human needs for passion, desire, and connection are made perfectly clear and tangible in this book. The only downfall is the end of the book, because it leaves you wanting to read and learn so much more. This would be an excellent book to study with a group of same-sex friends, or between a married couple. I think the book is more appropriate for post-adolescent minds, simply because the rich content might be hard for a hormone-filled teenager to handle.

I loved this book, and I hope you will too, should you choose to read it yourself. For more on Sex God and Rob Bell check out these links:,

Article first published as <a href=''>Book Review: <I>Sex God</i> by Rob Bell</a> on Blogcritics.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Breaking the Cycle: Who will you choose?

In my last two posts I have talked about breaking the cycle.  As I said, I am surrounded by cycle-breakers and I love it.  God blesses those who earnestly seek him (Hebrews 11:6, Proverbs 8:17.)

One particular young man has been steadily breaking chains throughout his entire adult life, but recently, I've watched him come to a decision he hasn't made as easily as the others.

This man was born into a world without a father who cared for him.  His mother had eight kids with a few different men, and so he was raised by his mother and step-father with two other step-siblings and a mixture of family members moving in and out of the house.

As a young boy this man had a dream to grow up and be a preacher some day, but as the emptiness of a broken home set in, he soon lost this vision to drugs, alcohol, and women.  Throughout high school he was rarely out of the principals office.  He dabbled in gangs, skipped most classes, and even became a rapper of terribly degrading music.  Anyone who knew him then said he would be in jail before graduation.

Fortunately for him the grace of God stepped in, as it does for all of us at some point or another.  It was the fall he turned seventeen that this young man made his first big choice towards breaking the sinful cycles in his family and in his own life.  At a student-lead bible study, he gave his life to Christ on his knees in prayer with a fellow Christian male.

For the next two years he made choice after choice--all reflecting the grace of God he had washed his life with.  Nothing was slowing him down.  Each day he woke up in an atmosphere of smoke, profanity, and hatred, and yet he prayed his way through the attacks of Satan.  I even watched him conquer loosing special people in his life, some of which went to be eternally with Christ, others who are now spending eternity in hell.  Throughout these times, he grew closer to God, grieving with a counselor and studying the Word for guidance.

So for the past five years this man has chosen God over and over again, but this time I wonder what he will choose.  We've all prayed, poured into, and helped out as much as God's spirit will allow us too.  We all hope and want the best for him.  We want him to choose God one more time, once and for all, to give this heavy burden over to him.

You see, there was one area of his life, he hasn't let go of yet.  One area he refuses to lay at Christ's feet.  This is often the hardest area for all of us to lay down, probably because of its high level of importance. This area that I am referring to is dating.  Relationships.

Over six months now, I have watched him fight with God, telling him that he will get married to who he wants when he wants, no matter what.  I've watched him do this a million times, and every time God wins.

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting to get different results.  Well, that's what he's doing.  He has controlled relationship after relationship, rebelling against God's model to trust and obey the timing and placing of all he has planned.  And this time seems to be his last choice.

In Romans, the bible talks about Gods amazing grace, how he gives and he gives and he gives, but ultimately there comes a choice where we choose infinitely who we will serve, and when we choose ourselves for the last time, God gives us over to our flesh.  That's the point where this man is at.  Years of cycle-breaking potentially washed down the drain.  What will he do?  What will I do, besides watch and pray?

Rise up cycle breakers.
How will you choose?

Joshua 24:15
"Choose you this day whom ye will serve;
whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood,
or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell:
but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."

Are you a cycle-breaker?  Send your story to for a chance to be featured on a post.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Breaking the Cycle of a Broken Mother

As mentioned in my last post, "Born to Break the Chains," God has opened my eyes to the world of cycle-breaking in our spiritual lives.  I'm still wrapping my mind around the idea, so explaining this to others might be a challenge--but here we go.

All around me I see men and women rising up.  They are standing out from a family of secrecy, lies, and bitterness.  I have no idea how or why, but these beings were the chosen few (Ephesians 1:11-12.)  They were hand-picked by God to break the sinful patterns Satan placed in their families.

Of these friends, (like I said, there are many,)  there is one special woman of God who has seen the pain and unrest that feeds from her mother's prideful spirit.  Her mother is undoubtedly a product of the fall, just like the rest of us, she, however, has chosen to stay that way--despite the Lord's numerous attempts to redeem her.  You may not think growing up in a house with a self-centered mother is no big deal, but look at the deeper level here.

Proverbs 11:22
"Like a gold ring in a pig's snout 
is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion."

Proverbs 12:4
"A wife of noble character is her husbands crown,
but a disgraceful wife is decay in his bones."

Proverbs 12:25
"An anxious heart weighs a man down,
but a kind word cheers him up."

Proverbs 18:8
"The words of a gossip are like choice morsels;
they go down to a man's inmost parts."

Proverbs 18:12
"Before his downfall a man's heart is proud,
but humility comes before honor."

Proverbs 19:13
"...a quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping."

Now, I am certainly not saying that I have these proverbs mastered in my own life.  Nor am I saying that I know any women who do, I am however saying that I know women who strive to be life and love to their husbands and families, and I know women who strive to be life and love to themselves.  There is a big difference.

When you look at the facts it should be rather obvious.  I mean, do you really want to come across as a "constant dripping?"  How about a "gold ring in a pig's snout?"  Didn't think so.  

No one grows up saying, "I can't wait to be married so I can walk all over my husband with my anxious heart and disrespectful attitude!  That will be the day I achieve true happiness."  Therefore, we don't purposely choose this kind of fragrance for our own lives.  It is simply the result of Adam and Eve's fall, our sinful nature.

Women are naturally anxious, controlling, over-talkative about their neighbor, and proud.  We naturally want to "encourage" the men in our life by telling them what they should do.  The problem is, this doesn't come across the way we think it does.  To them we are cutting them down, telling them they aren't good enough, and trampling on anything in the way of our personal satisfaction.  Yeah, this is natural.

But here's where we get a say-so.  We have the opportunity to choose what type of woman we want to be.  

Most of us float through life mimicking the habits, actions, and behaviors of our mothers.  It's called imprinting.  Ducks do it too.  Fortunately, the difference between us and ducks is that we are intelligent, free-will creatures who can change this pattern at any given time through a series of choices.

The young woman I told you about has stopped imprinting her mothers sinful nature.  When she was sixteen she made the first choice to step out of her family norm.  She became a believer of Jesus Christ.  Shortly after she gave him control of her entire life, and she has been sprinting  through the race of life ever since.  

I have joyfully watched her go through bible study after bible study, learning the ways of the Lord and what he expects of young women.  She has recently learned the secret to financial freedom apart from her family's debt, and she puts her whole heart into giving God the "first fruits" of her paycheck (Proverbs 3:9.)  Every area of her life has been washed of sinful nature and consumed with the love and grace of God.  She will always be walking in this process of giving him more control, but she chooses daily to take the road less traveled by in her family (Luke 9:23, Philippians 3:8,12.)

Matthew 10:37
"Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me;
anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me."

Rise up Cycle Breakers.

How will you choose?

Are you a cycle-breaker?  Send your story to for a chance to be featured on a post.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Born to Break the Chains

I heard a song the other day while listening to my favorite radio station, K-Love.  I'm terrible at understanding lyrics with just my ear, so I always catch parts of a song--missing the point of it until I later go home and google the lyrics.  Well, this was one of those songs.  The artist was singing about birthdays, and for the life of me, I couldn't figure out what birthdays had to do with Christianity.  So I looked up the lyrics, and nearly fell to the floor as I understood the meaning of the song.  It's absolutely beautiful.

If you get a chance, look at the lyrics to Casting Crown's "Just Another Birthday" by clicking here.

Then take a moment to watch this video featuring the lead singer, Mark Hall:

What a precious Daddy that young girl has.  Mark was right when he explained we all need a loving father figure to pour into us, making us feel secure and safe.  This truly is one of the staples to a solid life, and those without it are far more likely to crumble.

In the lyrics posted above, we walk through a young girl's life, up until the age of twenty-one.  She first tells us of how heartbroken she was when her Daddy never showed up.  Then we see her again a few years later.  She has tried to fill this huge void in her heart with everything possible--sports, friends, alcohol, boys, even sex.  I for one can't blame her for doing this.  She used logical sense to turn towards the things that the world says "make it all better."  She is trying to fill her desire for a father.

At the end of the song, this young mother is watching her daughter laugh and play at her birthday party.  Thanking God for his grace and redemption, she whispers softly to herself, "You are my happy birthday, and you were born to break the chains."

This young girl may or may not know her father either, but her mother has a heavenly hope that surpasses all question and doubt that this young life will survive.  Her mom found the way to peace and restoration, and through that she will train up her child.  This is breaking the cycle.  

You see, the young mother in the song faced many choices throughout her life.  One of those choices was to keep her baby or abort it.  Another could have been to accept the bible study invitation her friend extended to her.  And one of the most important decisions she had, was the one to choose God.  Not just the safe, Americanized Christian God who asks us to go to church on Sunday and be nice to one anther.  No, this woman chose the real thing.

She wanted a God with passion and intimacy.  A God who wants to love her through and through to the very depths of her soul.  A God whose grace humbled her to the point of brokenness, so broken, in fact, that she remained that way until he walked her through the long and bitter-sweet healing process.  

This is the God who filled her void.  This is the God who made her whole and new again, the God who gave her hope and life to pass on to her children, regardless of her circumstances or income.  This woman chose to be a cycle breaker.  She chose to break the cycle of fatherless homes in her family.  No longer did she want to follow in the mistakes of those before her.  This time, she would choose differently, and she would choose right--a decision that will affect her family for generations to come.

Rise up cycle-breakers.

How will you choose?

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Don't freak out!!

Yes, our page layout, theme colors, and design is completely different!  I am in the process of updating and rearranging the blog's layout, as to give it a more mature and fitting theme.  As I have grown, so has my blog, and so have my readers.

My posts are no longer directly focused on young single Christian women.  I have emails and comments from people of all walks in life, all ages, all places, all relationship statuses.  That is why you may have notice a shift in my content several months back.

You also may have noticed that I dropped the "" at the end of my domain name.  I am now officially registered under ""  Pass the word along to your friends!  I did this to make a much easier to remember and easier to share link for all of us.

As you also may have noticed, my new e-mail is for those of you with questions or concerns.

I am wanting the new look of the blog to better fit the diversity of the readers and content I have grown into.  I also want it to reflect the book I will one day publish.  I am doing this all on my own, but if any of you excel in graphic design, photography, or arts, you should totally shoot me an email with some suggestions!  Any help is appreciated.

Please feel free to post any critiques or complaints below.  After all, the main focus of this blog is YOU, the reader.  As always, thanks for stopping by.  Look forward to some great content the next two weeks!

Love and Prayers,
Haley Marie

Friday, February 10, 2012

Song of Solomon #2-Listen Now!

Okay, so there is not a great way to send you this link without sending you a whole slew of sermons.  However, I feel like it is very beneficial for everyone to listen to the sermon titled "Song of Solomon #2" by Smokey Hurst.

This message contains a wealth of knowledge about love, sex, marriage, and passion.  Smokey speaks directly to both men and women--separately and then collectively.  I found this very encouraging to my love story.

Here's the link: Sermon Player

(Note: As this post gets older, the sermon will move further on down the track list.)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

More on Waiting: 2 Hearts, 2 Homes

My closest friends know that I tend to have certain, quirky rants I like to express from time to time.  They are always weird little things that no one else seems to bother thinking about, but to me they are true and important, and often times they turn into a blog this one I suppose.

All my years as a college student I have struggled immensely with this.. There is a place in my heart where I was born and raised.  There stands a mother and father who love me dearly and will always be a large part of my life.  I also have a brother who is very active and involved in every activity under the sun.  When I'm home I get to watch him excel in all these wonderful joys of his life.

In this place, I have a bed covered in a quilt my grandmother gave me.  It has her and my grandpa's wedding anniversary date written on it.  On top of that quilt sets a large black cat who stole my heart fifteen years ago.  He eagerly waits for my next visit home.  Next to my bed I have a closet full of T-shirts I earned at camps, vacations, and 5K races.

From the house, to the family, to my friends--this is a special community and place I can call nothing less but...home.

Now you may be thinking, "that's all very well and nice dear, what do you have to struggle with there?"  You're right, nothing.  I love this place.  I lived there for twenty years, and I wouldn't mind stayin' around another twenty if it came to it.  Everything is full of love, support, and trust in this part of my life.  But, this place becomes a struggle when it meets place number two.

In place number two I have a nice spacious apartment all to myself.  My living room is a joyous place for company from all my wonderful, loving and encouraging friends to come over whenever they please and sit and talk for hours at a time.  A few strides away, these same wonderful friends are often seen hanging around my own personal kitchen.  It is in this area, that I bake brownies, nutter-butter marshmallow bars, chimichangas, tacos, and anything else their tummy yearns for.

Some of these friends are die-hard disciples of Christ.  They put their life on the line every day as they creatively find ways to share the gospel with the darkness of this city.  We spend hours together praying, discussing, and chewing on the Word of God.  Nothing can be sweeter than this time spent together, except heaven itself.  Iron sharpens iron when I am with these friends.

Other friends that sit on the same couch, are people hungry and hurting.  People who desperately need the love of Jesus in their life--even if they don't know it.  I spend hours discussing theology, politics, and life with these dear people whom I love.  Friends like these stick closer than a brother, and they are always open for a new discussion or event.  I treasure the times I spend with this circle of people.

My own kitchen, a couch full of Jesus, and a kitchen full of loyal friends--this is a dear location I have learned is nothing less than the definition of, well...home.

So maybe you still don't see the conflict.  You are sitting here thinking, "Gees, the woman is spoiled!  What in the world does she have to be complaining about?!  Go spend some time with the children in Africa for crying out loud!"
Believe me, I don't blame you for thinking these things, but I promise you there is a point in this description.

As a disciple of Christ, I pour my whole self into anything I'm doing, or anyone I'm around.  I want each person I come in contact with to feel deeply the love and devotion of Jesus Christ.  This is the way we were meant to live life--fully and completely each and every day.

However, conflict hits my heart hard when I am at home with my family.  My spirit longs to love on the hurting and hungry.  They to experience their daily dose of Jesus.  I need to hear about the exciting events in their lives this week.  What did I miss?  How are they doing?  What have they learned?

And yet, when I am in my apartment at school I desperately desire to watch my brother excel in sports, or speak at church.  I want to pet my cat and listen to my Mom's weekly update on the extended family.  How are Dad's crops?  What's going on in the community?  Where is the basketball team playing tonight?

Two wonderfully rich worlds, two divinely orchestrated mission fields, and two entire pieces of my heart--split right down the middle.  Of course, I have made it my goal to live fully wherever I am present, but the longing for the other half never fully goes away.

The point I want to make, is that we all have two homes.  As Christians, our home and our heart is in heaven.  Mercy Me paints a better description with lyrics from their song Homesick.

"I close my eyes and I see your face,
if home's where my heart is then I'm out of place.
Lord, won't you give me strength to make it through somehow,
I've never been more homesick than now."

In his first book, Peter calls us (Christians) "aliens and strangers in the world."  How clear that makes it! As children of God and heirs to the throne of Christ, we aren't at home in this world!  Yes, we are called to live, and work, and love here all the days of our life on earth (Ecclesiastes 8:15-16,) but we will never fully be home until our maker and creator comes to take us back to the place of full redemption and rejoicing with the very one who made us.  Then, and only then will we be able to say we feel completely at home.

"He who testifies to these things says,
'Yes, I am coming soon.'
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus."
Revelation 22:20

Monday, February 6, 2012


My hope is in You, Lord
All the day long
I won't be shaken by drought or storm

A peace that passes understanding is my song
and I sing
My hope is in You, Lord

I will wait on You
You are my refuge
I will wait on You
You are my refuge

--My Hope Is In You, Aaron Shust

Life is full of waiting isn't it?  I know the single section just shouted a chorus of "Amens."  But what about the rest of us?  What about life after marriage?  What about the life of a child?

I remember the first time the desire of a long-term wait really sunk in for me.  I was sitting in a small, wooden desk with a package of 64-count Crayola Crayons.  My best friend, Bernice, sat right in front of me, and one of our other friends joined us as we discussed the grown-up details of our 6 year-old lives.

"I can't wait to be sixteen," Bernice let out with a long, hopeless sigh.  

"Sixteen?  Why, what happens at sixteen?"  I asked with wide eyes and a curious mind.

"Duh, Haley.  Everyone knows that when you turn sixteen you get a car and  you get to drive wherever you want."  she replied.

After a few moments of careful thought and consideration, I then announced to the group that I would be getting a pink convertible to match Barbie's on the day of my sixteenth birthday.

We were six.  A good ten years of waiting sat before us, and yet we had already planned out the date, the details, and the price our parents would have to pay.  What a torturous way to spend ten years of a young life.  If only we had that license, THEN we would be complete.  We would be grown women.  Wise, mature, sexy, confident.  Everything hinged on the day we turned sixteen and received our licenses.

But of course...everyone knows what happens when you FINALLY turn sixteen...
You have to wait two more years to become eighteen.

And when you turn eighteen, it's three more years 'till twenty-one.  And so, at some point we begin to realize that satisfaction, contentment, joy, and love do not magically appear after a period of waiting.  In fact, we are often just pushed on to realize something else we desperately need to make us happy.

You want to know the real truth, the secret to the waiting game?  Here it is:  you'll always be waiting for something.

As a single woman, we often waste our single years wishing for Mr. Right to come save us and make us happy and complete.  But what happens after we receive that?  You guessed it, more waiting, wanting, and discontentment.

Paul clearly tells us the secret to this never ending wait in Philippians chapter 4.  First, look at verse six:
 "Do not be anxious about anything, 
but in everything, by prayer and petition,
with thanksgiving,
present your request to God."
Then jump down to verse twelve:
"I know what it is to be in need, 
and I know what it is to have plenty.
I have learned the secret of being content 
in any and every situation,
whether well fed or hungry,
whether living in plenty or in want."

As a Christian on earth, you will always be waiting and watching for something more, something better...something holy.   This is because our husband has not come for us.  He is sitting on the throne in heaven watching and praying for us, waiting for just the right time to rescue us from all things evil, thus redeeming us to the one our soul desperately longs for.  Yeah, now that's something worth waiting for.

So what do we do in the mean time?  Worship, work, and wait.  

Ecclesiastes 8:15-16 says:
"So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad.  Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun."

And 1 Corinthians 10:31
"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."

And also, John Waller says,
"I will serve you while I'm waiting, I will worship while I'm waiting."

Put your hope and trust, your pains and struggles, and your desires and longings in God's hands and he promises to never let you go.  
He will NOT leave you in despair, I promise you.

"God, the one and only--I'll wait as long as he says.
Everything I hope for comes from him, 
so why not?"

Pslam 62:5-6 (MSG)

Friday, February 3, 2012

When God Writes Your Love Story: Book Review

"When God Writes Your Love Story: The Ultimate Approach to Guy/Girl Relationships."
That title says it all.  Okay, so not quite, but it does accurately describe the essence of the book itself.  After being recommended this book hundreds of times, I finally had a chance to read and review one of Eric and Leslie Ludy's most popular books.

Originally published in 2004, the book is a flavorful mixture of the Ludy's love story, God's word to singles, and how to prepare for a marriage that stands on the truths of the Bible.  Eric and Leslie Ludy have written over eighteen books and spoken to millions of people around the world.  "When God Writes Your Love Story" is one of the best-selling Christian books of all times.

Eric is the president and pastor of Ellerslie Training, a discipleship school in Colorado for young leaders.  Leslie directs Set Apart Girl, an international ministry that helps teach girls about living pure, Christ-centered lives.  The two of them live with their four children in Widsor, Colorado.

I really enjoyed every aspect of the book.  Some comic relief makes the book fun and entertaining, while the casual tone gives the book flow and readability for almost any age, (yes, I recommend this book for young teenagers to late adults!)

The book is laid out in five sections: desiring, preparing, waiting, sweetening, and discovering a God-written love story.  Through out these five sections readers learn a treasure chest full of wisdom, knowledge, and practical applications for letting God write your love story.  Personally, chapter fourteen was my favorite.  It delt with the role parents and accountability partners play in a dating relationship.  There was also an amazing chapter on healing and forgiving the ones closest to you--your family.  The truths found throughout these chapters are applicable to people of all walks.

While the book is not founded on highly-scholastic research or great theological doctorate degrees, the simple truths are foundational to a Christian marriage.  Some may be tempted to find the lack of scholar a negative aspect, but I completely disagree.  The child-like faith and simplistic truths drive right to the heart of the matter, leaving no room for unwavering faith.

I recommend this book to any young single person searching for answers as God leads them through the season of singleness.  To order the book on Amazon click here, or to find out more about Eric and Leslie Ludy, check out their website at

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Father Who Protects

As I stated in my last post, I recently watched the movie Courageous and absolutely loved it.  While the entire film was heart-wrenching and edifying, my favorite scene by far includes one of the fathers giving his daughter a promise ring, and a promise to go with it.

His short speech paints the perfect picture of what fathers are supposed to be from the time their daughter is born, to the day they walk her down the aisle.  God  gives us fathers to protect and guide us while we wait for our husband.  This is a channel God uses to speak, protect, love, and guide us with.  This is why the Bible makes so many references to obeying your parents.

So what if you don't have a father?  What if you have a Dad who's not a Christian?  Maybe you have a Christian Dad, but he hasn't stepped up to the plate in guarding your heart.  If you do have a Dad, regardless of his walk with the Lord--you can pray for him, encourage him, and show him respect through small acts of kindness.

No matter what your Dad situation, you do have a heavenly Father who is perfect and holy.  His grace covers any fault your earthly Dad has or had.  If you are willing to follow, submit, and listen to him, he will guide you through the courting process and lead you to the man he has picked out for you.

So many people go wrong when they say they are following God with their love life, yet they are searching, striving, and stressing about who and when they will get married.  The truth is that freedom comes from letting go.  God knows the timing, the prince, and the story, so why not let him write it the way he designed it?

In the book "When God Writes Your Love Story," Leslie Ludy writes a whole chapter on how beneficial her parents were to her courtship story with her husband Eric.

"When I first began to truly learn how to give God the pen to write my love story, one of the first things I felt Him lead me to do was to invite my parents to be on my team through prayer and accountability.  
It was as if he softly reminded me, 'Leslie, I have placed your parents in your life for a reason.  They have a special wisdom and anointing that I have given them, especially for your life.  Don't ignore the built-in teammates I've provided for you.'"

Respect your father this week.  He wants to be a part of your love story as much as God does.

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