An abusive relationship can really do a number on your self-esteem, and one of its most damaging residuals is the development of insecurities in our decision making. We question our own judgment when choosing someone who’s right for us because a prior relationship felt so right in the beginning, but ultimately went devastatingly wrong. From personal experience, I know what it’s like to meet a person who looks the part of someone that is a perfect fit, however, this person turns out to be someone completely different than who you believed they were. Sometimes we’re shocked by how far off we ventured away from the “good judgment’ department. This can cause us to develop fear instead of faith when choosing a compatible partner in a relationship.
One of the things that we should all do is pray before we dive into a relationship. I’ve been a Christian a long time, and I’ve made prayer a habit pattern, but praying often doesn’t necessarily mean praying effectively. Prayer is a two-way street. When Jesus Christ taught the disciples the template for prayer, he instructed them in Matthew 6:9(NLT), “Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.” God loves it when we come to Him in prayer. He loves talking with us, but sometimes we forget who He is, and this isn’t cool. Heavenly Father never forgets who we are. He knows us so intimately that He even knows the number of hairs on our heads. He knows us by name, and He would never mistake us for someone else.
He has set a precedent for our communication with Him, and it is one of mutual respect. He respects us as His chosen ones and precious children, and we must have honor and respect for Him; for His supreme sovereignty, divinity, and majesty—for the greatness of all that He is. His Word tells us that He is love. He is perfect, all-powerful, and all-knowing. He is holy, and holiness is a sacred quality. There’s nothing on earth that compares to it. This is who He is, and we must acknowledge our understanding of His identity, because that’s what you do in a respectful relationship. Approaching Heavenly Father with as much reverence as we can muster in our hearts and minds will convey that we are prepared to get down to business. We are prepared to both speak to Him and hear from Him.
1John 5:14-15 (NKJV) says, “14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for.” I was beyond giddy when I first discovered this promise. Like a whole lot of folks, I saw the shiny, sparkling thing and thought, “Oooo, that looks good. Surely God will give it to me if I ask.” I didn’t realize that everything that shines isn’t gold, and just because it looks right doesn’t mean it’s right for me. I had a hard time learning this lesson well.
It also took a while for me to learn to reverence God in the way He deserves. He tells us in 1John 5:14 that we must ask according to HIS WILL. I skipped that part altogether. I’d get partnered up with a fine specimen of my own choosing, and then ask God to bless the relationship. “Please God, let this one be the right one. Please let this one work!” I’d pray. Often the warning signs would appear, but I’d ignore them, thinking that if I prayed enough, God would yield to my will. Nope! Doesn’t work this way.
I didn’t know if the person was always a malicious master of manipulation, or if there was something I had done to bring out the worse in them. This kind of confusion is a direct result of trying to force a fit. I had to learn that God has a plan for my life, and it’s a good plan. So instead of finding the wrong puzzle piece and trying to force it into a place it has no business being, I began to reprioritize my prayers and seek the will of God for my life.
Like so many others, I once bought into certain things that sound romantically hopeful. Sayings like, “follow your heart…” or “you can’t help who you fall in love with” are a few examples. The Apostle Paul said in 1Corinthians 13:11(NKJV), “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” The lesson that we should learn is that the more spiritually mature we become, the more we learn to lean on God. With His anointing and blessing, pieces effortlessly fall into place. We can always have confidence in our judgment and decision-making when we look to Him for guidance and direction, and we’d be wise not to make a move until we receive it.■
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
“Don’t Force a Fit” written for Overcomingdomesticviolenceorg.wordpress.com. Copyright ©2021. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord!