East Texas is known for its weather. Sometimes that is spelled with all capital letters like this WEATHER, when it is it can include tornadoes the volunteer fire department once sighted SIX different tornado funnels in one evening right close to the Youth With A Mission Ranch. We were all on red alert and not sure where to go as most of the housing there was built without the benefit of basements.
It was during "one of those times" that we had rain. Many of you who have never experienced EAST TEXAS RAIN (notice the capital letters again) are thinking that little spring shower which makes those beautiful blue bonnets and crimson clover. Well, the kind of water I am talking about here looks like someone turned on the upstairs showers and left for the day. The lake sized ponds on the Twin Oaks Ranch can go up 3 feet in a day of rains like that.
Yes, it was one of "those" occasions. The rains had stopped, Mick had picked me up at the girl's dorm and was taking me to our favorite breakfast spot close by, Love's gas station and convenience store that did a pretty good job serving breakfast. We were part way there.
It suddenly came to my attention that those rains yesterday had left numbers of homeless out in the streets. Oh, no, my least favorite kind of "homeless".
"Hey, look at the tarantulas! My nephew Chris would love to have another one the last one I got him got loose in the house and they have been looking for it ever since!"
My fiance had little boy excitement in his voice as he slammed on the brakes digging all around the piles of treasure in the front of his El Camino.
"You are going to try to get one of THOSE and bring it in this truck to take to Chris?"
"Yah, I know there is a band aid box here somewhere, just a minute."
Band aid box at least he wasn't thinking one of the coffee saucer sized arachnoids. I lost my appetite and Love's no longer had much appeal for me, great appetite suppressant, those furry looking crab-like critters.
"Hey, Jo, they aren't very poisonous I KNOW that band aid box is here somewhere."
"Mick, look at me in the eyes" I put two hands his shoulders and turned him away from his frantic search for a spider container in the truck. "I am very serious here I can be just as dead from a heart attack as a poisonous spider bite, please let's leave these little homeless critters OUT THERE and us right here in the front seat of your truck going to Love's?"
There must have been something about my voice which told him to me this was not a joking matter. Something about my panicked and fast breathing that clued him in or maybe it was my blanched face, but he listened.
"OK, I hear you. I don't think Peggy has forgiven me for bringing the first one to their place anyhow."
Mick leaned over and gave me a big hug, "interesting things I keep finding out about you woman".
He double clutched Brownie, shifted into gear and we were once again off to Love's. I actually quit holding my breath about a mile down the road. I had only one sister. We did catch frogs at the lake. Mick, on the other hand was one of eleven kids and most of those were boys. I can only imagine what their mother put up with when they brought the "homeless" to their home.
Below are some more of the teaching we had learned and are so thankful for.
Standards for dating:
Why do you want to date someone?
NOT because you are popular or foxy.
A.Your heart's motive from a clean heart
1.God said to and is directing you into this relationship
2.God is in it
3.To glorify God
4.Keep all relationships God centered and not "we" centered
B.Give up all your rights for example when they are spending time with another person.
C.Keep it light base your relationship on truth and God's Word no heavy discussions on how much you mean to each other or what you like or don't like in the other person until the engagement or there is too much emotional involvement too soon. If there is too much emotional involvement too soon this will result in fights and quarrels.
D.Communicating with your companion if you sense that the person you are dating likes you more than a sister or brother you have to reestablish the brother sister guidelines again. I just want to know you're my brother get back into balance OR if it is becoming more tell them. Girls have a hard time being blunt and laying it on the line.
E.To know that it is blessed of God communicate and submit the relationship to those in authority over you your prayer group leader, pastor, prayer covering, or parents if they know the Lord. PRAY. With each other and with those in authority over you. If someone is checked or not in agreement with the relationship then keep praying until God shows you or the person not in agreement why there is a "road block".
F.(This was relevant for the Youth With a Mission Community but would have application in a church group, Bible study group or other accountability group)
Announce that you are in a "special relationship" more than just sister and brother, before the group. The group can then bathe you in prayer. You need someone outside the relationship to pray with you. The devil wants the relationship to become ingrown and dark.
G.A dating Christian couple committed to God can get subtly caught up in the things of the world house, car etc. Come together in marriage for ministry and missions. Ask: "God show us the ministry you have for us as a couple".
Don't get caught up in the status quo. It is a responsibility of a dating couple to reach out to singles and to build relationships with others.
Focus on commitment rather than romance. Yes, God is very romantic, there is much time for that aspect of a relationship after the solid foundation is build on commitment.
Some of these writings are based on a lecture series called Sex and Dating by Dale Crall and are used with his permission. Thank you Dale!
There are many more articles in this series if you enjoyed this one you might want to read the others!
Please feel free to leave comments or questions.
My blog is: http://myincrediblelord.blogspot.com/
(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.
Saved by His grace in 1974, from 9 years of professing atheism into His loving arms. RN for 23 years, missionary with YWAM then statistical analyst for Every Home for Christ over 9 years. Living with my husband in the middle of a mountain meadow. GRIN! Wanting to spread the good news
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