I received many wonderful responses to my piece “When God Provides.” I got texts from old friends, girls I knew in high school, former students, and e-mails and messages from many other women. Some wrote with hopeful hearts, some with broken hearts, many had expectant and joyful hearts. Some wrote sharing they knew they were settling for less than they deserve. The overarching sentiment from all these women was this… “Thank you for reminding me that I deserve the best.”
So today I write to the young women settling for far from the best.
Life is too short to mince words here. I say this because I have a great love in my heart for you even though I may not know you. I say it because I want the best for every woman born to this earth. So yes… today is the day. The time is now. If you are settling for a relationship that is not good for you, today is the day that it comes to an end. Consider this your pep talk, a sign you have been waiting for, or some other form of courage… today is the day you must break up with your boyfriend.
I know well that relationships are tough work and they are never perfect. I also fully acknowledge that men are not the only ones who have the power to use another, belittle another, or infiltrate a relationship with negative actions and words. But today I speak only to you, the woman who knows it deep down—that the place you find yourself in is not right or good.
Perhaps you have already been mulling this over… maybe for a day, or a month, or a year. There is no need to over think it… you know well and deep in your heart if what you are involved in is good for you or not.
It is the duty of every man to uphold the dignity of every woman.
– St. John Paul II
A relationship with a good man does not make you feel used, dirty, stupid, or put-down. A relationship with a good man does not lead you away from God and a life of faith, make you cry yourself to sleep, fill you with shame or guilt, or make you feel ignored. A relationship with a good man does not make you feel empty or disposable.
A relationship with a good man makes you know that you are honored, strengthened, set apart, respected, and of great worth. A relationship with a good man helps you to see the face of Christ and move toward Christ. Settling for a boy or a man who makes you feel any of the former is a waste of your precious life.
“But I am in love with him…”
“But we have been together for so long…”
“I told him what I felt and I think he is really going to try to change…”
“I know in my heart you are right but I. just. can’t…”
Yes. You. Can.
Tell me a million reasons why you cannot let it go—I have heard them all. And to all of the reasons you can find, with all the love in my heart for you I want you to know this—love is not about a feeling. It is and always will be about sacrifice and the lifting up of another. Authentic love fortifies the other, magnifies God, and brings one deep peace and joy above all. Love is not about the amount of time you have been together, nor is love about breaking up and making up and jumping back in because this is what you know, this is what is comfortable. Relationships are not everything—you do not need a boyfriend to feel joyful, esteemed, or fulfilled. I want authentic love for you, and I know you desire the same. That is why today is the day.
Yes, ending a relationship is a scary thing. Be brave, be honest, be open, be respectful, and be bold. Life can look very different all of a sudden and your heart may very well break—but the dawn always comes after heartbreak if you press into the One who loves you endlessly. The Lord is indeed near to the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:19). He is the One who will tell you by His death as many times as you need to hear it: “You are loved, wanted, precious, believed in, and of infinite worth. I have called you by name, and you are Mine.”
Stay in a relationship that is bad for you—and you may very well miss the man God wants to write into your story now, if that be His will for your life. Spend time settling and you throw away the time you could be using to prepare your heart for the man God created you to be with.
If you need personal encouragement, contact me. I will e-mail with you, talk to you on the phone, whatever it takes to help you take the step you know you must take. I want you to feel encouraged, loved, and supported in choosing what you know is best for you. Take heart and know that I am here cheering you on in choosing good for your heart and in your waiting and preparing for a good man. Because you—yes, you—deserve the absolute best.
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified, for the Lord your God goes with you. He will never leave or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6
Emily Wilson planned her whole life to become a sports reporter but ended up as a Catholic musician and speaker at the hand of God. She lives out of her suitcase and travels across the world speaking and singing with people of all ages. The heart of her ministry is offering encouragement to teen girls in their search for their true identity. “The world doesn’t need what women have, it needs what women are.” -St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. You can visit her website and listen to her music at www.emwilsonmusic.com.