“You have to learn to get up from the table when love is no longer being served.” –Nina Simone
Saturday night I was chatting with one of my good friends Joshua about life. I always enjoy talking to my male friends because I get honest opinions from a male’s perspective. We discussed fashion, our careers, home décor and how much my Tumblr page inspires him. (el oh el) At some point in our conversation we drifted into the topic of relationships.. I value my friend’s presence in my life because he’s always inspired me to draw close to God than I already am. My friend Joshua has a very powerful relationship with God and views on life that our peers either don’t follow, or don’t agree with and he’s unashamed about it. When we became friends a few years ago I knew that I wanted to inherit that same attitude from him. I value him just for that. Anyways, he and I began to discuss love and how we only want to be the best versions of ourselves before we choose to get into another relationship. We talked about having a partner who understands and values their relationship with God just as much as we do. My male friends honor and respect me so much. They are always giving me words of life and encouragement. I took away a lot from my talk with Josh and the biggest thing was knowing when to understand that the person pursuing you isn’t for you. Not everyone deserves a piece of you and if we aren’t careful about grasping that concept we will connect to any and every one out of desperation or fear of being alone. We often miss how important it is to remove ourselves from relationships that no longer serve us what we require and desire.
My conversation with Joshua reminded me of a conversation that I once had with my friend Anthony. I emailed Ant mid-day while sitting at work. I needed advice and all that I had to say would not fit in a text thread lol. I explained to him my current dilemma with this guy I had known for over 15 years and his response blew me away. Here’s a lesson in love via Anthony Brown, Author and content creator of weirderthingshavehappend.com.
“I have two things for you:
1. A man should always put his best foot forward when he wants to court a woman, you need to let whomever it is know your expectations and intent when dating. Communication is key. You challenge any man with that and you watch what he does, his actions or lack there of will tell you what you need to know.
2. You’ll never find love hiding from pain. That heartbreak you felt was love done wrong, it only hurts for a little while. Love done right heals for a lifetime. You are a gift, a priceless treasure and a man should always seek you. If you’re afraid, do it anyway. You’re an intelligent woman, use your mind and heart, pray, go out and date without worry.
Dating is all about vulnerability but in the wisest manner possible. Men carry the responsibility to provide and protect and not on no materialistic shit. We must provide a safe place for a woman’s vulnerabilities, her fears, and her weaknesses. We have to protect them all the same. Look at a man’s character, how he treats people who can do nothing for him, how he handles his anger and frustrations. Does he make excuses or does he work from the inside out for understanding? How does he approach his spiritual walk if he has one? All factors of a man who knows what hard work is. Ya’ll are hard work! There is going to be a time where a man steps up to you and scares the shit out of you. He’s going to actually mean what he says and keeps his words. He’s going to shower you with affection and let you see what a man emotions looks like instead of acting like he doesn’t have them. He will speak life and truth into you and somehow you’ll find this all hard to believe. You’ll probably search for the flaw in him which you will find. Resist the impulse to say “aha! I knew it” and understand that he’s just a man. You’ll probably try to run but he’ll chase you. A man like this will be the iron that sharpens you as you he. It’ll be the most frustrating yet satisfying feeling to feel. You’ll have to choose what feeling to feed.” – Anthony Brown
Anthony’s words resonated so much, that every time I need to I revert back to them. There are very few people in our lives that take the time to speak life into us. There are very few people who will give us the words we need that prevent us from failing or falling into situations that are detrimental to our personal peace. Love and relationships are a responsibility. Only a man who chooses to actively pursue God and honor himself will truly be worth you aligning with. I am very blessed to have such great men in my life who never let me forget what I deserve and how I should be treated. I hope this lesson in love inspires you just as much as it inspires me.
Be Inspired. Be Encouraged. Be Blessed.