twenty-five. what i’m labeling as ‘the year of transitions.’
i just happen to be 25 and i feel like for the first time in my life i’m sitting back and saying ‘wow. life is CHANGING.’ every person i’ve come across that happens to share the gift of the 25th year of life with me is going through some kind of change–which is rather incredible because i’ve never experienced anything like it before! life changes include: quitting jobs and starting new ones, moving to a different state–or across the country, getting engaged–then married, having babies, starting new business ventures, going back to school, deciding whether to end a relationship or begin a new one, deciding where to live and who to live with…the list goes on and on. simply stated–LIFE IS HAPPENING. who knew that 25 was going to be such a pivotal age? (apparently this guy did!)
i’d have to say that after being halfway through my twenty-fifth year of life, it has been quite the adventure and not at all what i had planned or expected. it has FAR surpassed any expectations. i’ve quit a job, moved, got a new job–and been challenged in ways i never imagined. with moving back to a college town, i’ve recounted many memories of when i was in college and some of the decisions i made back then and the decisions i make now. and WHOA–how they are different!
as i’ve stated in some of my other blogs, i love to run. running actually helps me maintain my sanity and it’s my time to spend with Jesus. at least once a week i make sure to run through downtown to enjoy the full ambiance of the small town atmosphere full of college students. and it’s fantastic. since night one of moving into my new neighborhood and taking a jog around the area, i was struck with the amount of unmarried young couples living together. i would say that within my little townhome community, at least 1/4 are unmarried couples. three years ago, this wouldn’t have struck a nerve with me because i was in their shoes. i’ve been there and done it. and after all, it’s the norm. everyone’s doing it. what’s the big deal? right?
so for the past few months, i’ve been pondering that question–what is the BIG DEAL about living together?
here are some common responses i’ve recently heard and ones i once spoke as to why people move in together:
1. we can both save money.
2. if we’re going to get married, it’s better to live with that person before so you can get to know them and see if you can tolerate living with one another.
3. we can cook for each other and share things. life will be great and we’ll both be happy because we’re together.
all may be true. and again, i must emphasize that I HAVE BEEN THERE. there was a point where i agreed with all three of those statements listed above, in addition to making other excuses that sounded good and reassured me i was making the right decision. perhaps i’m extremely passionate about this because so many of those around me are currently in this situation or are about to dive into it. and more than likely, if it’s up for discussion, it’s really already a done deal. you might ask around what others think, but ultimately, you’ve already made up your mind and you’re going to do what you want to do. so when and where does putting the other person before yourself come into play? and really, if you’re planning to spend the rest of your life with this person, why not just wait?
while money may be a factor in the decision, it’s moreso based upon the feelings wrapped up in the relationship. i long to see every one of my friends in loving, secure, committed relationships and i want the same for myself…but what kind of foundation are we building these relationships upon? one of the most disheartening comments i’ve heard shortly after a couple has been married and after being asked ‘how’s married life’ is getting the response ‘not any different than any other day.’ i’ve heard this on more than one occassion, and it brings me to tears every time. there’s no excitement or anticipation about life after the wedding day. and why not? because no one has to wait for the other or long to be with their future wife or husband. when you return home to them everyday before marriage, it’s not going to change after. what happens when life throw an unexpected curve during marriage–maybe an unexpected pregnancy and the new car or house has to wait–or a new job offer in a different location that involves moving, saving money, and making sacrifices. that foundation built prior to marriage–the one of waiting–is something that you’ll already be familiar with. it is my prayer that our generation will be one to have the courage to say no. to respect the person you’re with enough to set boundaries and follow them. to change what is normal to what is best for everyone involved. to wait for what God has in store for every one of us and pursue it, only when the timing is right.
i love me some joyce meyer, and she had such a timely tweet today “God gives us the strength to do what is right, but we are the ones who must choose it…God won’t do it for us. #beyondfeelings”
be daring. be different. make hard decisions!!!