Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dating with a purpose

Mark and I always had a purpose in our dating relationship.  Neither one of us was looking to just have fun with someone or pass the time with another warm body.  At the same time, we weren't rushing to the altar and talking about marriage all the time -- we didn't get engaged until after two and a half years of dating and then married until after three years of dating. 

I'm not sure I understand couples that are in relationships with people they don't ever see themselves marrying.  Or if they're not even sure they ever want to get married.  Why are you wasting yours and that person's time?  What's the point?  Get a best friend, if that's what you want, but don't pretend the relationship is something that it's not. 

I think the old-fashioned term "courting" sums it up best: "to seek the affections of; especially : to seek to win a pledge of marriage from." 

I believe every relationship is on its own course.  There's no deadline (to an appropriate extent -- 10 years of dating may be pushing it) that must be met or race with other couples to see who bites the bullet first.  Every relationship will have its own unique story that unravels in the fullness of time.  I also believe, however, that dating must have its purpose -- to discern if this person is whom God has intended you to marry. 

Mark and I talked about this purposeful dating in the early stages of our relationship.  We began praying together that God's will would be revealed to us, and I prayed that He would make our relationship into something beautiful and that every purpose He had for our relationship would be fulfilled -- no matter if we were to marry or not.

Loving organization the way I do (thanks Mom!), I, of course, have my own prayer schedule.  I pray for certain things every day of the week so that I don't get overwhelmed in my prayer life or sit for hours and hours praying for everything under the sun.  Mondays are the days I pray for dating, engaged and married couples.  I have a list of all of my friends that I go through by name and pray for their relationships, whatever status they may be.  I certainly pray for my friends in dating relationships, that in the fullness of time, God would reveal His perfect will for their relationships to them, in the meantime granting them His peace and patience.  Again, that every purpose He has for their relationships would be revealed.

We need to encourage our friends in these times of their lives to be purposeful in their dating relationships.  Ask them how things are going from time to time, and keep them in your prayers.  Absolutely, breaking up is hard to do, but it's better than spending years and years in a dead-end relationship when you could've been dating your future spouse.

"All I'm saying is that somewhere out there is the man you are supposed to marry. And if you don't get him first, somebody else will, and you'll have to spend the rest of your life knowing that somebody else is married to your husband." 
~ "When Harry Met Sally"

Ha, wisdom from one of the greatest romantic comedies ever. :)

April 2008, My cousin's wedding

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Walshy becomes a Payne

This past weekend, my dear friend, Christi, married Thomas!  Congratulations, you two.  It was a beautiful ceremony and an awesome reception.  Lots of good music, dancing, food and friends.  She couldn't have looked happier!  That woman deserves every bit of it!!  Cheers to a lifetime of joy, peace and laughter.

June 19, 2010, Christi and Thomas Payne's wedding day

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

One year later

We've now been Mr. and Mrs. Mark Crowley for one year and two days!  We have lived every day of the year together as husband and wife, and it's flown by!  Maybe it's because we've been so busy with the special circumstances of many friends' weddings and the impending birth of our niece (next week!) and another niece / nephew later this year, but I'm not sure things will ever really slow down.  Such is life!  Next year it'll be a couple more weddings, etc.  I'm so grateful I have someone so wonderful with whom to share these experiences.  God is so good for finding it good and pleasing to have chosen us for one another.  He sure knew what He was doing when He set us apart for the other!  I couldn't be more joyful.

We had a wonderful anniversary celebration, planned by Mark.  He certainly set the bar high for me next year when it's my turn to plan!  I think I can measure up. :)

The weekend was incredible, filled with lunch at Trattoria Lisina (Mandola Estate Winery restaurant)...

a tour of Texas' only successful olive oil company, First Texas Olive Oil Co.,  and wine tasting at Bella Vista Cellars -- all located at Bella Vista Ranch in Wimberley ...

a stay at The Lakehouse Bed and Breakfast in Canyon Lake ...

dinner at a seafood restaurant on the lake ...

and general celebrating!

It was a perfect way to celebrate our first year together as a married couple!  God willing, the first of many, many more to come.

To close out this post, a little reminiscing on our holiest and most blessed day together yet ...

I can't think of anyone I'd rather be than Mrs. Mark Crowley.  Happy anniversary, hun!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

"Your marriage is in their hands."

Welcome to the NBC show, "The Marriage Ref."  Really.

The TV show that has a slogan of, "Your marriage is in their hands," features celebrities, such as Madonna (divorced twice), Alec Baldwin (divorced), Larry David (divorced) and Ricky Gervais (never married), who critique the marriages of everyday folk who care to share their troubles with the American public on live television.  Hmm.

There are so many things wrong with this; do I even need to go into them? 

First of all, the couples' situations are taken so out of context when their "situations" are played, just to make for entertaining viewing. 

Secondly, in the matter of 30 minutes (or however long the episodes are), random celebrities who have sometimes not been involved in healthy marriages (third problem) wrap up a quick, superficial, random solution to the couples' problems and give recommendations on how these poor people should move forward in their marriages.

What are these couples thinking by going on this show?  Take your marriage seriously, folks, and get some real help if you need it.  Quit watering down your sacramental union, and live up to the promises you made on your wedding day.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Amy and Sunil get hitched

Congratulations to our good friends, Amy and Sunil, who were married last weekend!  It was a beautiful and fun wedding, and the couple looked fabulously happy.  There's nothing else like your wedding day!  Getting married is the most fun. :)  Enjoy Jamaica, friends!

Amy and Sunil Chaudhari, June 5, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

To love, the decision

This morning as I was driving to work, I was listening to a morning radio show that was discussing whether the co-hosts thought love was a decision.  I frustratedly listened to the one girl's poor defense that love is a decision, but her lack of words and reason left her defeated in the conversation.  I flipped the station in annoyance.

One reason marriage is so dishonored in society is because of pop culture illustrating love as an emotion.  Lust is an emotion.  Infatuation is an emotion.  Love is a conscience decision.

How does one settle this argument?  Define what we mean by the term "love."  What I term as the word is "putting the needs of others above yourself."  Doesn't sound like an emotion to me.  That is an action, a purposeful intention one makes.  A decision. 

Falling in love simply means falling into infatuation, attraction, that ooey-gooey feeling we get when our emotions get high and we get butterflies in our stomach just by looking at or being around someone.

We're all called to love everyone we meet -- put everyone's needs above those of ourselves.  I know, I'm not proclaiming to be any good at it, but it is everyone's higher purpose and for what we should all strive in the end.

Mark sometimes kids, saying he loves me most of the time.  Then I bring up to him that he probably likes me most of the time, but he chooses to love me at all times.  Even when he wants to pull his hair out with me, he still loves me.  He self-proclaimedly made that commitment and promise the morning he proposed.  He then usually agrees. :)  If there ever were to be a time that he actually doesn't love me, we would have a serious problem.  That would mean he is consciously choosing to not love me, to not put my needs above his own, to choose himself first, to not be committed to us, and our marriage would be on a very dangerous path. 

When you're upset with your family, you still love them.  If you're in healthy relationships, you would still do anything for them.  That is love.  Love isn't easy.  With anyone.  But it's a decision we all make with those whom are important.  In good times and in bad.

Luc: I loved my mother.
Kate: No, everybody loves their mother. Even people who hate their mothers love their mothers.

~ "French Kiss" the movie

Great movie!

Thanksgiving 2009, Cancun, Mexico

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Ryan Sporer

Our friends Ryan Sporer and Bekah Eason got married this past Saturday, May 29, 2010, and what a beautiful wedding it was!

Here's to a lifetime of love and joy!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...