Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Guest Blogger Wendy Griffith Asks, Are You Worth the Price of Dinner?

posted by Linda Mintle

Anchor woman,Wendy Griffith’ feels strongly about men and dinner dates. Read her guest blog and let us know.

Do you agree? 

In today’s world, it can sometimes be confusing about who pays on a date.  Stop right there!  Ladies, there should be no confusion. The man pays. Yes, there are exceptions but in general, especially when you are first going out, the man pays.

A few years ago, I was asked out by a college professor who I assumed had a good paying job, although the jalopy he drove said otherwise. But, it had been a long time since my last date and I was determined to give this guy a chance. On our first date, we went to a nice steak house. On our second date, we had pizza and on our third date, we were at this cute little fish house and he brought up the bill. “I think we should split the check,” he said. “Excuse me?” I said.  He went on to tell me about a platonic girlfriend that he went out with occasionally and how they always split the check.

“Well, are you dating her?,” I asked.  “No,” he said.  “Have you ever kissed her goodnight?,”  I asked” “No,” I’m not sure where these words came from but this is what I heard myself saying to him as I got up from my seat to go to the ladies room.  ”I am worth the price of dinner and dessert!”  The look on his face was priceless!

Not surprisingly, that was our last date.  He told me I was “extravagant” and not a good “steward” of money.

I was upset at being called extravagant just because I expected him to pay so I asked one of my male colleagues what he thought.  He told me, that when he was pursuing his wife, no expense was too great.  He always paid and was happy to do so.  He also pointed out that God’s love toward us is extravagant.  He gave us everything – His only begotten son – so we could have everlasting life.

Scripture uses an extravagant verb to describe the enormity of His love for us when it says, “How great is the love that the Father has lavished on us” (1 John 3:1).  So the pursuing man has the great opportunity here to imitate God!

When my sister was dating her now husband, not only did he always pay for dinner, he bought her a car! and paid off her student loan debt even before they got married. Now, that’s what I call extravagant. A dinner and a movie is nice. But expecting the man to pay for dinner is not extravagant. However, whether he does so or not could give you an important glimpse into his heart and his beliefs.

Fortunately with God, there is no confusion when it comes to His extravagant love for us.

“That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Eph 3:17 (NKJ)

From Casting Crowns…

Your love is extravagant
Your friendship, it is intimate
I feel like moving to the rhythm of Your grace
Your fragrance is intoxicating in our secret place
Your love is extravagant

Spread wide in the arms of Christ is the love that covers sin
No greater love have I ever known You considered me a friend
Capture my heart again…

Maybe it’s not like this for all women, but I know for me, if a man pays, it makes me feel more like a woman, I feel valued, safe, taken care of. It makes a statement. I recall after our first date at the nice steak house, he mentioned how expensive it was. Ouch. That’s like saying, I really didn’t want to buy you that nice dinner.  And ladies, let’s be real.  If he can’t afford to pay for your dinner, can he afford to buy you a ring?  Can he afford a house for you both to live in? I’m not saying you should never pay for anything. When I am in a relationship, I like to occasionally buy breakfast or lunch or even cook, something my two sisters, who are now happily married, say they never would do. But, I feel like “date night’s” are his responsibility.

God wants you to know that you are worth the price of dinner and dessert and so much more!  You are worth someone being “extravagant” over.  After all, you are a daughter of the most high King,  A royal treasure, A beautiful masterpiece, a pearl of great price. You are a lady and a true gentleman will recognize your value and act accordingly.

To read more of Wendy’s blog, click on this link.

Stressed? Do You Have the Resources?

posted by Linda Mintle

Today’s blog is a a video blog on how to reduce stress using your resources. Of course, your greatest resource is your relationship with God. He is always with you, empowers you through His Holy Spirit and will walk you through the most difficult days. There are also other resources to use as well. Take a look and check off how many you have at your disposal.

 

Stressed? Take A Holistic Approach to Self-Care During the Holidays

posted by Linda Mintle

It’s hard not to feel stressed during the holiday season. There is so much to do–parties, cleaning, cooking, shopping and gift wrapping .. OK I am getting stressed just listing it all out!

This season, don’t let stress get the best of you. Take care of yourself so you can at least enjoy the season.

Take a quick inventory of your self-care practices. Are you attending to all areas of your life? If so, this holistic approach will help you reduce stress.

1) Emotional Self-Care: Pull out those assertive skills and say NO! ” Sorry, I can’t bake two dozen cookies for the school party.” “I know you need a volunteer but I just can’t work it in this year.” “Yes, I would be honored to come to your gathering but I have too much on my calendar already. I am going to have to say NO. Maybe next time.”

2) Financial Self-Care: Have a budget and stick to it. One of the biggest stresses is spending too much. You don’t want those January bills to freak you out! So as hard as it is, come up with a budget, a list of people to buy for and stick to your plan. Your mind will be at ease.

3) Physical Self-Care: Don’t forget about exercise, eating and sleeping well. Yes, you will not be as routined as usual, but don’t give up just because it is more difficult to work physical care into your day. The more you take care of your physical body, the better you will feel.

4) Spiritual Self-Care: Plan time for morning meditation and prayer. There is no better way to de-stress, then to begin your day with God. Quiet and center yourself. Ask Him to order your day and give His peace. When I get too busy to spend time with God, I get stressed.

5) Relational Self-Care:  My mom died right before Christmas a few years ago. Feelings of loss sometimes hit me. When they do. I sit with them. I grieve and allow myself to feel the loss. Be aware of your emotions and relationships that trigger you during this time. Work on difficult relationships and don’t allow the extra stress to make you more irritable.

10 Tips to Deal With Difficult Family Members During the Holidays

posted by Linda Mintle

1. Anticipate your reactions. Because of past experience with those difficult family members, you know what to expect. So, anticipate how you will react ahead of time. Think it through. Imagine a scenario and how you will respond. This anticipation can help you feel in control of problematic situations.

2. Pick your battles. There will always be the relative that asks why you are not married yet, have kids or aren’t in a better job. Decide if you want to take this on or simply respond with a preplanned response like, “I don’t know. Got any ideas.” Sometimes it is best not to engage because it will upset you.

3. Practice restraint and extend grace. This is one time of the year that you may want to refuse to engage in conflict or deep family issues. Keep it light with the focus on the positive things of the holiday. Redirect conversation to subjects of gratitude and joy. If a difficult relative tries to pick a fight, don’t go there. Determine to show mercy and grace this time of year.

4. Limit alcohol. When some people drink they get belligerent and combative. This only makes matters worse so opt for an alcohol free celebration or make sure people are not over indulging.

5. Have enough variety in activities that everyone can find something he or she likes to do. Take a walk, start a card game, play touch football, join in on games with the kids, etc. Keeping people engaged helps stave off opportunities to get on each other’s nerves. Getting involved with the kids can relieve stress and get you out of difficult conversations.

6. With really difficult families, limit your time and have an exit strategy. If people start to become verbally abusive or drink too much and get combative, kindly excuse yourself and have some where to go. Asa  grown up, you don’t have to put up with this type of behavior.

7. Use this time to watch and learn. It may help to become an observer of your family interactions. Watch how people relate and interact. Study the family and decide if you are part of the dysfunction and how to make changes. Family get togethers can be learning situations if you are aware of the patterns of interactions.

8. Be realistic. Unless your family has been in therapy, not much will be different. But these are your relatives and do not have to be your best friends. Be respectful and kind but don’t expect too much if nothing has changed.

9. Know what triggers you. It helps to know your hot buttons and be prepared to respond calmly. You have control over your reactions so don’t expect others to change. You change how you respond to those hot triggers.

10. Pray and remind yourself that you are a grown-up now. Family get togethers can bring back painful memories. It helps to remind yourself that you are not that helpless child anymore, that you are not a victim and can behave in ways that take care of you. If you need a break, go for a quick walk, or in to a room and just deep breathe and get your thoughts together. Pray and ask God to help you be lovely to those not always so lovely. By God’s grace, you can do it.

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