Category Archives: God

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Witnessing From the Bedroom

I’ve been an (adult) member of a church since 1997, so I experienced the Christian dating scence up close and personal for many years.¬† And, as scary as it is on the ‘outside’ (in the world), it sometimes seemed even scarier on the inside.¬† We think when we are newly saved that God will send the man or woman of our dreams who will respect our boundaries, fall in love, commit and then we will get married.¬† Or we think that dating a nice Christian brother or sister will somehow be significantly different than¬†dating someone who doesn’t know Christ.¬† And it is in many ways.¬† You have someone who understands your commitment to God, that hopefully enjoys church as much as you do and can be counted on to help you get through your crisis.¬† But many times these relationships don’t work out.¬†¬†So we turn to Plan B.

Which I call ‘Witnessing From the Bedroom.”

What exactly is Witnessing From the Bedroom?  When we begin to date in the hopes of getting married, but get distracted, side-tracked and caught up in the sexual relationship.  Somehow, we think that, okay, if I stick with this for a while, he (or she) will eventually come to realize they love me and that they want to take this relationship further.  That by giving my body to him or her (or providing a sexual service for him or her), I am showing my seriousness and tying him or her closer to me.

I only have one thing to say about this practice:¬† it doesn’t work.

If a man or woman want to commit to you, they will.  Sex does not make anyone more committed.  Sex will not make anyone stay in a relationship with you.  And, finally, sex is not an effective means of taking the relationship to the next level.  Sex in the wrong context is just that Рsex.  A meaningless physical act between two people.

I’m not one of those people who talk about being a born-again Virgin or the evils of fornication (we all know that sex in a loving, married relationship is a thing of Beauty as God created it to be), but I am one of those people who say: Be Smart!¬† Take care of yourself and your body.¬† And recognize the consequences of your actions when you engage in a sexual relationship with another person.

Next time, I will talk about the physical, emotional and spiritual changes that come when you are sexually involved with another person.

 Until then РBe Blessed!

What Do You Have to Offer?

Hello everyone!

Sorry I haven’t been around for a bit – school has got me into somewhat of a bind (I’ve started back full-time).¬† But I’m back – and, believe me, I have a lot on my mind!

Okay – here is one of my pet peeves.¬† I will hear a woman say how she’d like to meet a tall, handsome man, with a good job and a good education.¬† And he should love children and get along with his mom and be spiritual and, you know, just¬† fill in the blanks (think: perfect).¬† And I will take a look at her and she is still living with her mom, working at McDonald’s, taking the bus to work and only going to church to catch¬†herself a ‘good’ man.¬† (Not that there’s anything with working at McDonald’s or catching the bus.)¬† My point is that I always want to turn to this woman and say, What do you have to offer?

Why, oh, why do we think we can attract a ‘perfect’ man when we are so far from it ourselves?¬† Why do we never think of the fly in the ointment (which is sure to come) as we detail how tall he should be, what type of school he should have attended and what type of car he¬†be driving.

So let me ask you (and maybe you should ask yourself) – What do you have to offer this gorgeous, spiritual man you’d like to come into your life?¬† What kind of car are you driving?¬† Where did you attend school?¬† How is your spirituality?¬† No, I don’t think you have to be rich, gorgeous or a size 2 to attract a man, but I think we sometimes need to take a good hard look at ourselves before we advertise for this ‘perfect’ one.

The sad truth is this – we attract what we are.¬† If you are attracting no-account losers, you need to ask yourself why.¬† If you are attracting people who never go to church, while all the spiritual brothers ignore you, you need to ask yourself why.¬† And if you can’t seem to attract anybody, you need to ask yourself why.

I think we would all be a little better off if we took some of that energy we use to fantasize about the perfect guy and become the ‘perfect woman.’¬† Find your passion and follow it.¬† It may be going back to school, getting a better job, traveling the world or losing a couple of pounds.¬† Be the type of woman who could get a date with a classy, spirit-led guy.¬† Drive your own nice car and let him be wowed by your style.¬† Or read all the classics and learn a foreign language so that you can hold you own in any intellectual conversation.

I’m just keeping it real – I had to figure out for myself why certain men were attracted to me (married, non-commital, etc.).¬† Until I finally realized it had a whole lot to do with me.¬† I didn’t seem like I was interested in anything serious (this was during my serial dating phase), so they didn’t take me seriously either.

I don’t believe every woman is too picky when it comes to dating men, but some of us definitely are.¬† And I know that if we could devote just a little of that energy to improving ourselves, the results would be much more worthwhile.

What do you think?

Do Open Relationships Work?

I was inspired to write this post after reading Actress/Comedian Mo’Nique’s remarks about her marriage in Essence Magazine.¬† (A link to an excerpt of this article can be found here.)¬† In this article, Mo’Nique says:

I married my best friend. Sid and I don’t put a label on what works for us because it’s ours. But some people might say that we have an open relationship. Some people consider sex outside of marriage to be cheating, but I think you’re cheating when you lie and keep secrets. We’re honest with each other.

Now I’m not trying to judge Mo’Nique or anyone else, but I have to admit her words took me by surprise.¬† Why?¬† Because I don’t understand why a person would enter a traditional institution (marriage) just to have a totally¬†unconventional outlook (an open relationship).¬†

Which makes me wonder how people define ‘marriage’ nowadays.¬† A marriage (for believers) is a covenant between two people that is ordained by God.¬† Where two people become one.¬† Where a husband is admonished to love his wife like Christ loved the church and the wife is advised to submit and obey.¬† And, where adultery is forbidden.

Now I know we live in 2006 (and not 1006) and that people cheat all the time.¬† And, yes, I understand that people often have sex before marriage, get divorced and re-marry and¬†that we have many forms of non-traditional ‘unions’ and blended families.¬† I understand that we live in a modern world.

But does that mean we can marry someone, have an open relationship and expect that relationship to work?¬† I don’t believe such a relationship lends itself to success.¬† A relationship should be built on openness, honesty and commitment.¬† How committed can you be when your partner is entering into that same type of relationship with other people?¬† Would that increase your faith in him or her or decrease it?

You know what I really think about people who are in ‘open’ relationships?¬† That it’s just easier to have an ‘open door’ policy because you just assume (nowadays) that your spouse will cheat.¬† Better instead to just allow him or her that freedom than to set yourself up for the inevitable pain of unfaithfulness.¬† Or, conversely, that it’s easier to excuse your own unfaithfulness if you go into the relationship with the understanding that you are still ‘free’ to pursue other interests.

What it seems to come down to for people in these types of relationships is an unwillingness to try and make it work in a one-on-one, monogamous relationship.  And again, if you feel that way Рwhy get married at all? 

I hear a lot of celebrities (and non-celebrities) say that traditional marriage doesn’t work.¬† That men are by nature unfaithful and everyone has a natural curiousity about having other sexual partners.¬† And that no one can reasonably expect to be with the same person for 20, 30 or 40 years.¬† We’re living longer, I hear them all say – we should have more partners and more options during those longer lifespans.¬†

We are unwilling to accept that such an old-fashioned institution such as marriage can stand up to the pressures of a modern society.  So why even try?

I don’t know about you, but I still think the institution of marriage still has merit. God intended that a couple should marry, raise children in a Godly way, and that families become the building blocks for a healthy, God-fearing society.¬† That marriage imitate the relationship Christ has with the church – one of eternal love, sacrifice and sanctification.

I don’t think having an open relationship can even begin to capture God’s idea of marriage.¬† What do you think?

Knowing God

Hello.  How are you today?  How was your day at work today?  Good?  Great.

So, how's your relationship with God?

Yes, you.  This is not addressed to your sister,  your mother, your best friend or your doctor.

But you.

Do you feel like you are close to God?  Do you feel like you know Him at all?  Would you like to?

I think about things like this a lot, and I  know I'm not alone.  I've been a Christian for a while (about nine years now) and, while I feel like I have a relationship with God, I am always striving to know Him better.  And I know you probably feel the same way too. 

So I thought we'd talk about it today.  And talk about some good pointers for getting to know God better.

Know the first thing you have to do to truly know God?

Be a Believer

Do you believe in God?  Do you believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God?  Yeah, I know all about the Da Vinci code controversy – Jesus was just a 'man', right?  Wrong.  Jesus himself declared he was the son of God.  Why else do you think he would sacrifice his life on the cross (in one of the most horrific ways to die possible) to save you and me?  I love my friends and family, but I probably wouldn't give my life for them.  And you probably wouldn't either. 

But Jesus did.  Because he knew it was the only way to wipe out our sin and restore us back to our original relationship with God – as His children.  Do you believe in Jesus Christ?  Do you believe he was the Son of God?  Do you believe he died on the cross for your sins?  Now if you confess these things with your  mouth – and believe – you are now God's child.

So where do you go from here?

Pray

You know how you like to spend time with your girl or guy friends, your family and sometimes your co-workers?  How you can spend hours just talking, hanging out and having a good time?  Well, God wants to have that exact same type of relationship with you.  So, hang out with God – by praying.  Talk to Him.  Tell Him what's on your mind.  Ask Him what's on His.  And – you might be surprised – He just might answer you ūüôā  If not today, then maybe tomorrow.  But, remember, all relationships take time and effort.  So invest in your relationship with God by spending time with Him. 

And after that?

Study God's Word

Yes, that old Bible is looking thick, dusty and long!  Not to mention boring, outdated, and irrelevant.  After all, modern scholars have debunked everything in there, right?  Wrong! That's what they want you to believe.  And the best knowledge is knowledge you discover for yourself.  Study the origin of the Bible.  Study what the Bible says.  Many world events, people and places have been confirmed by historical and archaeological findings.  And, the books contained within the Bible are the accepted doctrine of God – as close to talking to Him as it gets.

And, outdated?  Hardly.  I am currently reading through the Old Testament, and if I read about one more rape, blood-thirsty war, plague, act of disobedience, instances of incest and rebellion, I am going to faint!  People freely worshipped other religions and denied God (just like we do today), went to war for stupid reasons (just like we do today), questioned the relevance of God (like we do today) and celebrated feasts and holidays unto God (just like we do today).  And the Proverbs, Psalms and New Testament are filled with so much insight, wisdom and knowledge about life – how to handle stress, conflict, depression,etc. – that it's a wonder anyone can make it through life without knowing the Bible!  So, pick it up today – and learn what God has to say about your life.

And, finally:

Go to Church!

Yes, I know you think it's possible to have a great relationship with God in the privacy of your own home, but I hate to be the one to tell you that the Bible specifically tells us to fellowship with other believers.  And there are other very good reasons to attend church:  you will meet other people who are in the same boat as you are and can encourage you as you grow closer to God; you will learn from people who know a lot more about God than you do; and you will take your first step in obedience to God by doing what He's asked you to do.  The church really is a great place to make friends, learn about God and develop good relationships with His people.  But – it's important to remember – people are not God!  They are just people.  And you are going to church primarily to get to know Him, secondarily to make friends and build relationships.

This will be very important to remember as your embark on your spiritual journey, because it's very easy to get caught up in interpersonal dynamics instead of focusing on God when you go to church.  And God should always be your focus – not what the pastor is doing, not what your friends are saying and not what anyone else is wearing (I know I'm guilty of this sometimes!)  

Focus on God and He will focus on you.

I truly hope your journey with God goes well.  I know that He has your best interests in heart.

He's just waiting on you to figure that out for yourself…