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Archive for the ‘Male/ Female’ Category

A Real Man (Ruth 3-4)


Here is Boaz, he has eaten and drunk and his heart is merry (likely a euphemism for having had at least a little alcohol). He gets into bed and a woman crawls in with him.

Now Ruth is young, beautiful, loyal, hard-working, and a Moabite (a people group the Jewish people at this time have little respect for). She is everything a man could ask for, and she is of a class of people no one cares about. Further she has only an elderly mother-in-law to look out for her. She is incredibly vulnerable, and she is lying at his feet, in his bed, at night.

Boaz could very easily take advantage of her, and then claim he mistook her for one of the prostitutes who often hung out around the fields at harvest time when they knew the men did not go home, even though he knew she did this with the hope of marriage.

But he doesn’t.

He protects her.

Instead of immediately kicking her out of his bed, he allows her to stay with him until morning, because he knows she is safe in bed with him. (This is true purity.)

He then protects her reputation. He wakes up early, or perhaps does not sleep, to make sure she is on her way home before too many people realize what she has done. He also warns his men not to let anyone know that there was a woman there.

Before she leaves, he provides her with grain. He knows she has not had a good night sleep and will likely not be in the best condition to glean, so he takes care of her needs.

He praises her. He assumes the best. He does not berate her for doing this, but instead looks at the situation through a positive lens. She could have gone after younger men, and there is the unspoken assumption she could have become a prostitute, or loose woman. Instead she turns to a man she believes is the one who is right for her, who will be her kinsman-redeemer. He does not assume she is a gold-digger or someone trying to trap him into marriage. He assumes the best.

He takes care of her problem immediately. It is the middle of the harvest, a time that is so busy that the men sleep on the threshing room floor instead of going home, but he puts his needs aside to make sure that she is cared for.

He obviously wants her, but he goes about things the right way. There is another relative who has a claim on her. He approaches this man and makes sure that he has permission to pursue her.

He knows that marrying her comes with obligations, and he is willing to accept those responsibilities. He will have to buy back her father-in-law’s fields and care for them for a son who will bear another man’s name. His first son will not be known as his, even though he will be the father who raises him, and he must hope for a second son to inherit and care for the lands he has loved and worked hard to make prosperous. He will have to train two sons as heirs, splitting the time between the needs of each estate. He will be a busy man until these boys reach manhood, and he is already an older man, but he takes on these responsibilities with pleasure and allows his first son to be laid on Naomi’s lap when the child is born, indicating that legally he is hers, to inherit all that her husband had.

Boaz is a real man. He does not give into his lusts, and takes care of his responsibilities without complaint. Let us train our children to know that this is what a real man looks like, and to eschew any teaching that implies the contrary.

Proverbs 31: For Women Only?

Photo by Matija Barrett

The list of characteristics in Proverbs 31 has rightly been used as a criteria for finding a godly wife. And, much to the chagrin of many a godly woman, is the only real listing of its kind found in the Bible, making it impossible for women, when it is used incorrectly, to point to the ‘male’ list and say, ‘See, see, you’re not doing so well yourselves!’ Despite the nastiness that sometimes accompanies these endeavors, the question does remain: Is this a list for females only, or are they universal characteristics one should look for when anyone is considering uniting themselves to another for life?

So let’s look at the qualities listed in these verses, first noting that there are some criteria given in verses 3-9 that speak directly to the men. (Also notice that, if you are like me, you have probably never heard these verses of Proverbs 31 preached on before…)

The verses of instruction spoken directly to the son by his mother tell him:
1. Not to spend his energy chasing women who will only do him harm.
2. Not to drink wine or crave beer as a ruler, since doing so will result in poor decisions being made.
3. To give beer to those who are in anguish, so they may be relieved of their misery.
4. To speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.
5. To judge people fairly.
6. To defend the poor and needy.

So what does this man look like? He is not a player or a partier. He makes good decisions, helps those who are in pain and he stands up to bullies. He does not make snap judgments, and is not overly critical but instead treats people fairly, which involves not making excuses for bad behavior as well.

And then there are verses 11-31. And the question is: Should men have these qualities as well? (And I think we can all agree that women should not be partiers, and be a person of good morals like the man described previously as well.) So let’s look at the qualities a wife should have:

1. She is a person her future spouse may have confidence in. One who brings him good, and not harm every day (not just when she feels like it). To choose a husband that does less would be disastrous, and an emotionally immature male, who does not constantly seek the best interests of his wife would best be described as abusive, so yes, these characteristics are universal.

2. She selects wool and flax. She knows how to pick quality products to meet her family’s needs. This too is a good trait in a man.

3. She works with eager hands. Again, a lazy man, who does not wish to work diligently, will not make a good spouse.

4. She does not mind traveling far to get the best quality food for her family. A man too should be willing to expend effort to see that his family has what is best.

5. She gets up early and makes sure everyone under her authority (her servants and her family) is well fed. A man too should not be prone to sleeping in nor negligent in making sure that the basic needs of the people in his care (and this may include employees) are being met.

6. She considers a field and buys it, and the start-up capital comes out of her earnings. She has resources and is able to start her own business and run it. (Remember, during this time in history, most people were self-employed.) A man too should aim to have extra earnings to invest and the knowledge to make wise decisions regarding those investments.

7. She works vigorously and her arms are strong enough to do the work that is necessary. Similarly a man should also be a vigorous worker and in good enough health to do the work he has chosen without tiring.

8. She sees that her trading is profitable. She does not make poor business decisions. A man too should be good with money, and his business dealings should be profitable. This means that he is not investing time or money in projects that will inevitably fail. This may include: degrees that have no real word application, get-rich quick schemes, having a dead-end job or being frequently out of work.

9. Her lamp does not go out at night. She remembers to do the little things that are necessary to a smoothly run life. Today this would be remembering to put the garbage out, changing the oil, not forgetting the things you need, like your wallet or cell-phone etc. These qualities are important for a man as well.

10. She sews. While she is a wealthy woman, she has the skills to do the basic tasks that would be needed if her family fell on hard times. Today this would include: basic maintenance of the home and car, coupon cutting and budgeting, home haircuts etc. These skills are good for a man to know as well, because even the best laid plans sometimes go awry. Further, men do sew in scripture. The Levites make the priestly robes. Men sewed items for the Tabernacle. Jacob made Joseph a coat of many colors etc. So while today fabric is often more expensive than premade clothing making more than basic sewing a luxury, sewing itself is not restricted to the women in the Bible.

11. She is generous to the poor and needy. A man who cannot give to those who are truly helpless, will not likely be generous to his wife and children either.

12. She does not fear the snow, since her household has what it needs. (More than what it needs, since they are clothed in scarlet, an expensive cloth.) Men too should seek to provide those under their care with more than what they need so that they do not have to fear being cold, or any other misery. The scarlet cloth also indicates that they are not hoarding their wealth by being stingy, but using it wisely to bless those in their care.

13. She decorates her house and dresses well. A man too should not be a slob, but should be able to dress and keep his surroundings in a way that garners respect. (But balanced with the verses to not be showy, meaning that what he does is respectful, not ostentatious and designed to make others feel small.)

14. Her husband is respected, meaning that her actions benefit him and do not demean him in the eyes of others. A man too should never do anything that would bring shame to his wife, whether through his own behavior, or by putting her down.

15. She makes garments and sells them. She has profitable skills. A man should also have skills that may bring extra income into the home.

16. She is confident, and does not worry about the future. This is not a false confidence, but because she knows she can handle life. A man too should have enough success in life, before being married, to be confident that he can handle whatever the future brings.

17. She speaks with wisdom and instructs others correctly. A man should also be known for giving advice that actually works.

18. She watches over the affairs of the people in her household and is not lazy. She knows what is going on in the lives of those she cares for. A husband too should know what is going on in his house.

19. Her children call her blessed and her husband praises her. She should be the type of woman who you would not think of making fun of. A man too should be someone whom put-downs would just seem silly if applied to him. People, especially those who are close to them, should respect both the man and the woman, or they are not ready to be wed. (They still have some growing up to do!)

20. She surpasses all women. This can only be true in the eyes of her husband, since it is advice to every man about the woman he is to marry. Her future husband should believe she is the best there is and he is lucky to have her. A future wife should believe the same about her future spouse.

21. Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting. A wife should not be chosen based on her looks, or how much she flatters you and makes you feel like ‘the man.’ These things will not last. A woman should also not choose a spouse based on his looks and smooth talk. These too will fade, and often the guys with the smoothest lines can’t wait to try them out on someone else…

22. She should fear the Lord. Yes men, so should you.

23. She is to be praised and receive the rewards that result from what she has done. Her husband should not treat her earnings or accomplishments as if they were somehow his doing. Neither should a wife usurp the praise or rewards due to the husband for what he has done. This means that the man does not take a Bible teaching he heard his wife use and repeat it as his own, that a wife does not utilize all the household money on clothes while he has none to enjoy for his own needs etc.

In teaching Proverbs 31 as a list of criteria for a spouse in general might we motivate the young boys to strive harder, and encourage the young ladies to pick better, more mature men? Shouldn’t the man be at least as mature as his wife? Just a thought.

Photo by Matija Barrett

Why Do We Keep Separating the Men from the Women?

After a particularly great men’s conference, one of my male friends made the following statement. He said, ‘I wish my daughter had been there. I want her to know what kind of man she is to look for, and this speaker made it so clear.’

He has a point. A good one. Why should the other gender not know what the church is saying to their spouse (literal or potential)? Would the men have more of an incentive to be a wonderful man of God if they knew the women had heard the message as well, and were holding them accountable? Would the young girls choose more wisely, and thus motivate the boys to be better husbands, if they had heard what a mature man believes all men could and should be? Why do we keep separating the sexes?

The Pharisee-controlled society of Jesus’ day separated them; but the early church did not. Women supported Jesus’ ministry and sat at His feet to learn. Women were in the Upper Room, and told of the empty tomb. Women ministered with Paul and one taught Apollo along side her husband. With so many examples of the sexes together, why the over-fascination with splitting them up?

The sad truth is that more women probably watched the movie Courageous than men. More women currently attend Bible studies and have daily devotional time. More women work in the church. More women are told that they have to remain pure, but cannot expect this of their future husband. More women settle for men who are not what they should be, and then try to change them once they are married. More women are leading the homes because the man is absent, physically, or emotionally. Our notion of separate, but equal does not work. Men and women are to become one, not separate entities who split the work according to gender roles that make little sense now that there are modern conveniences and the children go off to school. And even if you choose to teach them that way, shouldn’t the other sex know what they can expect?

And our women’s groups seem to be compensating by throwing tea parties and dumbing-down the curriculum choices. Where one could once get fed deeply, a woman is more likely to be required to dress up like a princess at a pre-school party and asked ‘non-judgmental’ questions that have no right answer, rather than examine what the truth is according to God’s Word. Would this occur if the men were invited?

I am tired of women’s conferences that have no meat! (Literally and figuratively- have you seen the menus? Which begs the question: Who decided BBQ and wings were only for men? And how did I miss that meeting?!)

I want my daughters to know what a true man of God should look like, and I want people to stop implying that ‘real men can’t help themselves’ as a motivation to keep them modest. I want the men to stand up and protest any time it is implied that they are animal-like slaves to their hormones, because they don’t want their girls picking a man who is. Sure, modesty is good. But a real man throws his coat over the naked girl and saves her from the burning building without a second glance. He does not ogle her and then blame her for whatever wrong thing he does next.

I also want my sons to know that the good girls make the best wives and that they have no chance of getting them if they are not behaving themselves. I want them to understand that purity is for before marriage, and that girls can and do make the change. False teachings cannot be corrected when one side has no ability to say, ‘That is definitely not true’ and discuss it. Men and women’s roles in today’s society continue to be different- that much is true. But society is changing rapidly and the answer to how we keep up and remain godly lies in communication, not private lectures that are soon forgotten, and occasionally focus on an ideal that could only be achieved in the 1950s or before. Let’s stop playing around and get real.

Holding the Door and Other Nice Things

I just finished reading CBE’s post about women helping men and it brought back memories of a conversation I overheard (in my defense they were speaking very loud) at an ETS convention. The theology students were talking about holding doors. Apparently, in the male evangelical world a true man cannot walk through a door held by a woman for any reason. What? Is it just me, or is this a little extreme?

Here in New Mexico everyone holds the door for everyone. The rule seems to be that if another person is anywhere near the door it is polite to wait for them rather than let it shut. When we are a small group (1-3 people) we walk through and say, ‘thank-you.’ When our whole family is together, we say, ‘Let me get that for you,’ and hold it for us and anyone behind us. If it is a child holding the door (and many times it is) they receive more praise for doing such an honorable thing. It’s a little thing, but it gets us all through doors without being awkward.

Occasionally there is a gap between us and the next person that is not big enough to allow the door to close and still be polite, but the person is far enough away that the person exiting would need to wait a few seconds to hold the door for them. In this case the person coming speeds up a little to get to the door, and says, ‘Thanks so much,’ or something like that. No one taught anyone to do this. We just learn by example.

So why is this so difficult? It is difficult because some people in the Christian world have taken chivalry to a ridiculous level and made it a source of pride and test of manhood (neither of which are Biblical attitudes). We have taken what should be a servant’s heart, and a loving gesture, and turned it into an opportunity to get our feelings hurt if someone less than us does it in return. This is not love. This is all about you.

So what do I teach my boys? I teach them that holding the door, the chair, helping the girl with her coat are good manners. Why? Because they are gestures that, in our society, tell a person that they are important to you. The more of them you do, the more you say you care. They are not a badge that says, ‘I am a ‘man.’ That is useless puffery. They are things people do, especially male people, to communicate that other people have value. While a stranger may hold the door for me at a restaurant, if they opened my car door, or pulled out my chair I would think they were weird. Small gestures are for strangers. The more we pile these gestures together the more we say. ‘I love and respect you.’ It is a societal convention, and the girl allowing the boy to do these things says, ‘Thank-you, I appreciate your affection.’ A girl who is not that interested in the boy will not wait and will do more of the little things herself. It is part of our mating ritual.

Now we can change how we do our little romantic dance, but couples who do this frequently need to discuss which portions of the ‘rituals’ (such as the man paying for the date) are to be followed and why. The discussion needs to occur because like it or not, our society has ‘norms’ and these are them. It is okay to change the dynamic, but we need to realize that it is there. Hence the need for a discussion. It is when these cultural norms become something they should not, whether it is a test of manhood, or a woman assuming that the man’s intentions are to oppress rather than one of the few ways he has to show he likes her early on, that we get into trouble. When our pride rears up, these things turn from niceties, to something I would rather not be a part of.

The other day I went with my son to the auto parts store. He had to return some routers (heavy brake things). He had four heavy boxes in his arms so when we got to the door I went ahead and opened it for him. He thought nothing of walking through with, not only a girl holding the door, but his sainted mother! (Okay, maybe not so sainted, but still.) Should I have watched him struggle, demanding he hold the door for me? Should he have put the boxes down, then tried to dead-lift them off a flat surface to save his honor? Of course not. Mom holding the door for almost adult son in this situation was the right thing to do. And since he has not made door holding a thing that potentially offends his honor and pride he had no trouble with the gesture. (I doubt he even remembers it…)

Emotional Abuse Vs Repentant Sinner

A girl has sex.

For men, that seems to be the important fact. She had sex, it doesn’t matter how it came to be, so she must ‘repent.’ And that is how it is for a man (and some women who have had the privilege of never knowing abuse).

But, for a woman, the situation is more complicated.

There are wolves out there. They are in the church- oh are they in the church! They pray on the naïve and the girl who was raised to believe that her highest calling was to be the wife of a man. They twist words and play with emotions. They make the girl feel like she can’t say ‘no.’ They push, then back off, then push some more. The girl believes the boy loves her, and desperately wants a life with him. She has been taught that this is her ‘calling.’ He uses this to get her to do things she never wished to, under the guise of lies. He makes her believe that they will be together for life so everything will be ‘okay.’ She is looking for a strong man to ‘lead,’ and ‘lead’ this boy does! He leads her right into his bed, and she thinks it is because she has captured his heart. Then she is crushed. He no longer treats her right. He ‘has her.’ Because she has ‘fallen,’ she will do anything to continue the relationship. She does not want to be a ‘whore,’ but a woman who is appreciated and she does not know how to get back to the ‘status’ she thought she had with him. She is confused, and does more to please him, thinking it is somehow her fault, not realizing that it was lies from the start.

These girls are hurt. They are destroyed by what happened. But when they tell what they did they are condemned. ‘Caring’ people tell them that there is forgiveness in Christ, but what they need is healing. They need someone to tell them that what the boy did was wrong. Someone to explain what happened, and strengthen them so they will not be a victim of this type of manipulation again. Often, this is not what happens. The church tells them to ‘repent’ and treats them like a ‘sinner’ who willfully rebelled and needs to be ashamed of what she has done. But the girl is already ashamed, and hurt, and devastated. It is a time to comfort her, to raise her up, to improve her self-esteem so she can fend off the wolves in the future. But the branding of her as a ‘whore’ (though no one actually calls her this) tears her down and makes her more likely to be the ‘victim’ again. The wolves know who they are looking for. They are looking for the girl who aches for love, and wants so much to be cherished by someone that it hurts. They are looking for a girl who will believe that they love them just because they said so, and who will forgive easily because that is what she was taught. They avoid the girls who know how to set firm boundaries, and realize that actions (like pushing them to do more than they want) show that all the ‘I love you’s’ are lies.

But the church is not producing women who set good boundaries. Typically, women are told that men are ‘visual,’ so they must be modest, and that being a mother is the greatest thing a daughter can become. This gives the girl the impression that she is at fault when the boy ‘cannot help himself because she is so beautiful’ (a common ‘wolf’ line). It also keeps her in the relationship when he says that he loved her, because acquiring the love of a man is her ultimate goal. Men pursue careers; ‘good’ Christian women pursue marriage. Men have paths and plans laid out to achieve their goals. ‘Good girls’ must wait until their man magically arrives. They have no way of making it happen. They too want to achieve their goals, and this desperateness to ‘do something valuable’ makes them vulnerable. So when a seemingly good man, who says he loves them arrives, the girls are willing to do anything to keep him so they can be ‘complete,’ ‘adult,’ ‘fulfilled’ and all of the other promises that go with their idea of what marriage will do for them.

When a boy hurts a girl she must therefore be handled carefully. She needs to know that others believe he did wrong in hurting her. It hurts enough already. She does not need to be told that she did wrong. She is so ashamed and embarrassed that she is not planning on doing it again, but she does not know how to avoid it. She does not know how to recognize the ‘wolf,’ nor does she have the maturity and self-esteem to fend one off. Supportive, caring people may help her learn this. Typically though, she is judged. She feels worse and wants all the more to be loved and validated- told that she has worth and is a special, unique creation that deserves to be loved, and loved deeply. No one does this for her, and the second wolf enters. He will give her the words she needs to hear, but they are lies…

Most women gain maturity, not from being a product of supportive, nurturing environments, but by getting so sick of being hurt by the wolves that they finally learn the game. This is not the best way to grow.

Some women have the privilege of being from a family that supported and nurtured their girls in a way that gave her the ability to see the wolves for what they are. This is rare. Unfortunately they did not give their girls the ability to see that their ‘sister’ did not have the same defenses. They judge and look down on her, when she needs lifting up. They have no compassion, not because they are ‘mean,’ but because they cannot imagine what it is like to not feel secure and loved.

Men too judge. They know the wolves are out there, but do nothing about it. They do not understand why the girls fall for it because they were not raised the same way. They never tied their self-worth to being ‘loved’ by someone. This training was reserved for the girls, when they were taught to be the ‘perfect’ wife, while the boys were encouraged to succeed in the world. The ‘wolves’ are their friends. They are not shunned for what they have done, and are tolerated. The men know they have sex, and assume that the girls are ‘willing.’ They may even realize that their friends lie to women, but do nothing to stop it. Their friends are ‘players,’ and there is an underlying assumption that the girl should be able to see that she is being played. They do not understand how deep the game goes, nor do they understand that almost every time the women separated from the men in their church the speaker was making the girl more likely to believe his lies and be desperate for what he was offering. Love. The ultimate goal. A goal the ends in marriage and the perfect, clean, orderly household that tells a ‘good’ girl she has success.

So what are we, as Christians, to do?

We must shut down the wolves in our midst. It can no longer be ‘okay’ to tell a girl that you love her in order to get her in bed. The line ‘but you know we are going to be married’ must be a warning bell that causes the men to come at this boy with the righteous indignation typically given to the girl who falls for it. The boys can no longer be given a ‘pass.’ The men must realize that by treating these boys as if they are ‘good’ the girls assume that they have the men’s approval and feel free to let their guards down around them. By doing nothing, and worse, putting your arm around the boy and joking with him, you are like Paul holding the coats while Stephen is murdered. You did not do anything to hurt the person, but you stood by and ‘approved’ of someone who would.

We must also love, support and educate our girls so that they do not fall for the wolves. Blunt discussions on the things some men try combined with opportunities to succeed and gain respect outside of marriage are a must.

The irony: I gained my self-esteem and knowledge from a pack of wolves. I was the only consistent girl in a group of non-Christian guys in a martial arts do-jang. They knew what the wolves looked like because they were the wolves, but they loved me enough to talk to me over and over (and over) about what some guys are like. I knew they loved me for who I was, and not for what I could give them. Although they were wolves, I was ‘theirs,’ and they were extremely protective of me. They would run off any guy they didn’t like if he got too close. This taught me it was okay to cause a guy to run. (An important lesson.) When I was alone, I remembered the fierceness they displayed when the wolf approached. It allowed me to literally (and I mean literally) kick a guy out of my dorm room. (Long story, but he did hit the wall as he left. If he had been bigger, calling for help would have been necessary, but I had the confidence to yell, something most girls do not have.) If a pack of wolves can do this for a woman, why can’t a group of great Christian guys?

By the way- for those of you who are going to say that a guy should not have been in my dorm room anyways, this is exactly the type of thinking that keeps girls from getting help. They do not want anyone to know how ‘stupid’ they were, and be humiliated. In my case, the guy was brought by a friend and then the friend ‘went to the bathroom’ and never returned. It was a set-up because he ‘liked’ me. When he started turning off lights and locking the door (no kidding) it was time for him to leave.

Some scenarios a ‘wolf’ preys upon…
(these are all adapted from ‘real life.’)
– A girl loses her mother. Her father is grief stricken. She has no one who truly understands and feels so alone and vulnerable. Enter the wolf.
– Dad is abusive. While some suspect, no one really knows. Mom has twisted scripture to justify why she stays. She teaches her version of ‘forgiveness,’ ‘love’ and ‘submission’ to her daughter. Her daughter isn’t sure Mom is right, but doesn’t know because the church rarely covers this topic, and she loves her mother so. Her father’s love is painful, so when a slick talking, say anything guy enters the picture she is hooked.
– The girl has been abused. No one knows. She is older and cannot sleep through the night because of the nightmares that have begun. She goes to a friend’s house to sleep, knowing the friend will watch over her. She just wants someone to care, but no one old enough to help knows her problems. Enter the wolf.
– The girl has been diagnosed with a disease. It is not fatal, but it is life-altering. She is scared and unsure. She has distanced herself from her parents and they do not know what to do. She feels so alone. Enter the wolf.
– Dad is a strong leader in the family. He has a list of rules for dating his daughter and he firmly adheres to them. No boy has made it through the gauntlet so far, and he is proud of that. His daughter does not know that many have tried. She feels undesirable and is beginning to believe no one will ever want her for a wife. The wolf somehow senses this. Since he is not ‘upright’ he has no problem lying and convincing the father that he is the man dad has been waiting for. The girl is so grateful that she is finally ‘loved’ that she is willing to do anything to make this last…
– The girl is not ‘pretty’ or ‘popular.’ She is a good girl, but longs to have the adventures the other girls appear to be having, not realizing that reality is nothing like the Christian novels she has been reading. The only guy who can sweep her off her feet in the way she desires is a boy who lies. He is not afraid to say, ‘I love you,’ because it means nothing to him. He can text her day and night because he is not a ‘responsible’ person who has a job that would prohibit him from having that much freedom. He doesn’t mind sneaking, so he can see her whenever and wherever she wants. While other boys obey the rules, he is at her window at night being silly, or texting her things he shouldn’t at 2 am. He has no problem buying her things because he is irresponsible with money as well, so he can take her places others don’t, putting it all on a credit card until his parents pay it off in an attempt to ‘help him out.’ He encourages her to sneak and lie, not caring that if she is caught by her family, there will be hell for her to pay.
– Truthfully, any girl who has a low opinion of herself, is naïve or feels alone in the world… (During the teen years, this covers most of them at some time or another.)

The problem: When a ‘wolf’ gets a girl pregnant, the girl thinks she will be alright because he ‘loves’ her and they were going to be married anyways. This is what the ‘wolf’ has led her to believe. The typical ‘wolf’ response however is, ‘I don’t know if I am ready for this,’ ‘We were only dating, I am not sure I want a commitment.’ (The worst I have heard is, ‘We weren’t even dating; I never asked her out, and now I am supposed to marry her?’ What the heck did you think you were doing with her!?!?) The girl is devastated. She is alone and pregnant waiting for him to decide what he wants to do. She did not see this coming. She thought he loved her and that their love would last forever. The only reason they were not getting married was that he did not yet have a job to support her, he needed to finish college, they were still too young etc. She did not see that he just wanted sex, because he told her everything she wanted to hear. If they do marry, the chances he will cheat on her and treat her poorly are high, because that is who he truly is. He was not treating her well because he loved her, but to get what he wanted. Now that he feels ‘forced’ into a relationship (to him, there was no ‘relationship’ before this) he has no motivation to love and care for her as he should.
The other problem with the wolves: They ruin it for the good guys. They use lines that should be reserved for serious intentions so that, by the time the ‘good guy’ gets around to saying them (because he means it) the girl has learned not to believe it. The good guy will not show up on a girl’s doorstep at two in the morning just to give her a kiss just because he was thinking about her because he is responsible and knows he needs his sleep to do his job well. He also respects her parents too much to violate their trust. He does not text every five minutes (or more) because he has other things to do and he takes his responsibilities seriously. He also does not take her to as many extravagant places, or buy her as many things because he is good with money and knows what he can, and cannot afford. Living within his means also means that there are things a ‘good’ guy cannot do, even though he would like to. But, he will work hard to make sure one day he can, and that is a day worth waiting for!

Lines Guys Use to Get A Girl to Sleep With Them

My friends and I were talking and decided someone needed to do a public service announcement to let naïve girls know he is lying to you to get you into bed! So here it goes.

1. You know I’m going to marry you. Yeah, well where’s the ring? When there is a ring on my finger then I’ll believe you. The gold one, not the diamond. Engagements fall through, so I am waiting to be certain I can count on you.

2. I love you. Really girls? I know sometimes this is all that it takes, but you must admit you are going to sound pretty silly as an unwed pregnant mother when you say, ‘But he said he loved me…’

3. You are so hot I just couldn’t help myself. Really? So this means that when your older and they hire a really hot secretary to work with you I can expect you to sleep with her too?

4. I thought you wanted it too. This is emotional blackmail and a bit of date rape rolled into one. The guy is blaming you for ‘tricking’ him into sex by sending the wrong signals. He knew what ‘no’ meant, trust me. He also knows that you will let him if he pushes because you love him. (And in your mind love means never saying ‘no’ or anything else that might upset a person. Don’t be this girl. She is easily taken advantage of and suffers because of it. And bad boys can spot you a mile away.)

The list is short and I am sure there are many, many more lines out there. Feel free to help me out by sharing any you can think of!

Aren’t Christian Men Supposed To Be More Mature Than My Gynecologist?

Okay, I am not for adultery, even on an emotional level, but some of us in the church have gotten a bit nuts over the male/female issue. I’ll admit, if the sight of a woman, any woman, causes you to ‘lust in your heart’ then you need to do something about it. But that something does not involve placing rules on all of the people around you just because you are still thinking like a 13-year-old boy. It means you need to grow up!
My husband is an ER doctor. If he followed all of the ‘rules’ we are now seeing for Christian men he would be out of a job. (We do enjoy laughing about it with our other ‘health-care’ friends as we sit in the pew listening to all of this ‘good advice’ though. Comedy in the church is rare so these ‘talks’ are not completely useless…)
The problem is that many of the ‘rules’ assume that men have not grown up, and will never grow up. Bull! I have seen men go out of their way to love and protect women rather than take advantage of them even though the opportunity was there. (Non-Christian, tough guys, not committed to purity, but with an ounce of decency in their make-up.) These are the ‘real’ men. Truthfully, if I actually felt that my pastor needed ‘rules’ to keep him away from women I would not think him mature enough to be a pastor. Sure he can fail. But for the most part he should be mature enough to overcome his raging hormones, at least for an hour, so that he can talk to a matronly mother of seven without wanting to jump on her! (I am tired of having to bring my husband, keep the door open, or not go to the restaurant where the guys go to talk for fear of impropriety. I was once a physical therapist, trusted to treat partially naked men when they had a groin pull, or worse I was an 18 year old personal care aide who gave sponge baths to men who were confined to their homes. This is just pathetic.)
If these ‘rules’ were applied to the Bible, Paul, a single guy, would have lost half of his work force. None of the prophets would have been allowed to stay alone in a widow’s home. John would not have the affectionate (friend) relationship that he obviously shared with the woman in 2 John. Deborah (a married woman) would have never been allowed to sign a duet with Barak (not her husband). Rebekah, Rachel and Zipporah (unmarried women) should not have been talking to strange men at wells. You see where I am going with this. If we are going to be brothers, and sisters in Christ (like they were in the Bible) then we are going to have to grow up!
Someone once said, ‘If she is not your wife, then she is your sister in Christ. Treat her that way.’ This doesn’t mean avoiding her and acting like she has the plague. This means you love her, care for her and look out for her best interests. What if men actually did this? Got to know the women in the church. Could they stop a naïve girl from falling for some young schmuck before he got her pregnant? Could they figure out that maybe this wife was being abused and beat the crap out of (I mean, nicely talk to) her husband and cause it to stop? Is it really better for everyone that we keep the sexes at arm’s length, or are their benefits to actually acting like one body in the church?

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