Hello internet! It’s me, that consistently inconsistent blogger who writes about extremely random things at extremely random times. Nice to see you all again. This past week, I went to Pensecola, Florida with my boyfriend, Josh, and his brother and wife, Tim and Caylie. It was such a happy and relaxing time away from work and college/sorority recruitment preparations, and I am oh so thankful for it! Caylie is a beautifully gifted photographer, so I cannot go on without sharing some of my favorite pictures from the trip. Enjoy those yummy things below.
Yay for happy photos of happy times! There is the boy I love the most. WARNING: I’m about to write a freakishly long blog about my boyfriend, and before you throw up in your mouth I just want to say it’s not about to be all mushy gushy lovey dovey, it’s going to be the cold hard facts. I want this blog to be as honest as possible, because I think so many internet things are painted a little too perfectly and inside the lines, and I do not want to be someone who sugar coats things just because it is prettier that way. I am so, so guilty of that, but I do not want to be. Don’t get me wrong, I like pretty things, but I think even the ugliest, hardest things can be made beautiful through Christ alone. So here I am, about to tell you about a boy who I love, but I’m going to be as truthful as I possibly can by saying that relationships that are worth something are really, really hard.
Josh and I have been dating for almost 1.5 years, and it has been the most wonderful year and a half of my life. I’m the happiest I’ve ever been, and I feel the most comfortable with myself now than I ever have before. That being said, there have been some really, really hard things that have had to happen for me to get this point, and those are the things we as humans don’t want to talk about. We like to talk about the good things, but we do not like to talk about the way we got there, because most of the time the road to something good is marked with something bad, and the road to great is often marked with horrible.
When I met Josh, I was broken. Defective, I thought. I was in the process of putting myself back together, but I was not a whole person. Part of me was still missing from past hurts and past unforgiveness. I was half of a person with a hole inside my heart, waiting for someone to come and patch it up for me, because I knew I could not do it by myself. Josh was the first person to recognize that I was broken and tell me that he was not going to be able to fix me, and that’s why I love him so much.
You see, Josh is not the type of guy who comes in to save the hurting girl by telling her he can solve all of her problems and make her dreams come true; he is the type of guy who points her to Christ and tells her he can do nothing for her apart from Him. He is not proud, he does not boast, he is not self-seeking. He loves Jesus, and Jesus shines through him more than anyone else I have ever met in my entire life. He is who I want to be when I grow up. And he is the one who pointed me toward the one thing I needed to make my life whole, and that was Jesus Christ.
Josh showed me a whole new way of thinking and introduced me to a whole new world. The way he saw the gospel was something I had never experienced before. It was not something he did sometimes then put away when he was finished, it was the way he lived his life every single day. Everything about him dripped with holy water, but nothing about him made a big deal about itself. That is a very rare combination. He was quiet, unassuming, absolutely kind, confident and comfortable with himself, and genuinely interested in others. He is one of those people you walk away from feeling refreshed because of how real your conversation was. He wants to genuinely know you, not the you who you want other people to see.
I sincerely 100% believe that God sent me Josh at the exact moment I needed him the most, and my life has never been the same since. In my darkest moments, he has shown me more grace than anyone, been the most wonderful example of anyone, and has consistently done anything he can to make my life better. But I am a difficult person to date, and we have definitely had our ups and downs.
Josh and I are alike in a lot of ways, but polar opposites in a lot of ways, too. We both love music, writing, exercising (he MUCH more than I, but I work out too sometimes guys, okay!!), kids, taking care of others, and Jesus. But… I’m outgoing, spontaneous, disorganized, stressed out, jumpy, and always, always late. He is introverted, consistent, clean and organized, calm, and always, always early. Having this many differences can be great, because together we can sort of complete each other, but it can also be really, really hard to handle each other sometimes, too.
We have had a lot of fights, I’ve cried a lot, and there have been some very seriously sad conversations about a lot of hard things within our relationship and ourselves, personally. It’s weird because the things we think don’t affect anyone but ourselves often end up affecting the people closest to us just as much if not more than it affects us. Our insecurities and struggles end up being the person who loves us most’s insecurities and struggles too. One of Josh’s favorite things to tell me is “I can only be as happy as you are,” and it is actually the most accurate way to describe what I am trying to say. Seeing someone you love unhappy makes you more unhappy than they are, just because you want them to be happy so badly.
While we were at the beach, Josh gave me a promise ring. Now I know what you’re thinking. Claire. That’s weird. Isn’t a promise ring just an engagement ring in advance? Y’all dumb. Maybe to some young lovers, you quizzical reader you, but that’s not what it means to us. He promised me (he says this a lot more eloquently than I do, but I’ll try my best) that as we go into college where everything is changing and practically nothing is consistent for long, he will be consistent for me. He promised to continue to value what we value, to treat me with respect, to love me with Christ’s love, and to be who he has always been for me. This promise means so much to me, because despite all the hard things we have gone through, he promises to still be there for me when everything else is crazy. Even when we fail at loving each other the way that we should, like we do all to often, he promises to keep trying.
This is a super sporadic string of thoughts, and I’m sorry that I am not making sense. But my message in all of this is, ladies, a boy cannot fix you. A boy cannot make you happy forever. No person in this world is big enough to fill the void that we all have inside of us. The only thing that gives life meaning is Christ, and the people in your life who point you toward Him are the ones you need to keep by your side no matter what, because those are the people who are going to love you the most. This life is not about looking for people who never fail you, it’s about looking for people who point you towards Jesus when they do. Look for people who build you up, challenge you to be better, and constantly and consistently look for ways to love you more. And girls, lean in close because I’m about to tell you something juicy, boys are not magical, they are not everything, and they cannot satisfy you. You are worth so much more than what this world tries to tell you that you are worth. You are worth the world. Do not settle for someone who does not deserve you.
I love you guys, every last one of ya. If you want to talk about anything with me further EMAIL ME, I’m serious. firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ve been through it all, ladies, and I’m here to help. I’ll leave you with a verse that sums up everything I just said in 13 words.
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23
P.S. I’m thinking about doing a Q and A type deal for my next post, so if you have any questions, any questions at all, email me, text me, or comment with any thoughts or questions you may have!