• Paige Barker

Page 30: RelationTIP #1

A few weeks ago I asked what y'all wanted me to write about and a common response was relationships. I definitely do not have it all figured out, especially when it comes to relationships, but we're all learning, right? So I'm just going to share what I've learned and what's helped me along the way. It may not be what works for you, or you may not agree with me, but that's okay!

RelationTIP #1: BE OPEN

Be open. Ladies, be open to saying "yes" to a first date with a guy...even if they don't seem to be your "type."

Approximately five years before meeting my boyfriend, I created a list of everything I wanted in my dream guy. From certain qualities, preferences, physical attributes, etc. I had non-negotiables like "has to love Jesus (duh)" and negotiables like "6'3" or taller" and "has muscular hands." Let me tell you... this list was long and slightly embarrassing ha (maybe I'll share the list with y'all one day). But I listed out every single thing I could possibly think of for what I wanted in a man.

For a while, I allowed that list to determine who I even thought was attractive. In my mind, saying yes to even one date with a guy who didn't have every single thing on this list was settling. Very superficial, I know. After a few years, I started to feel hopeless that this list could be fulfilled, so I forgot about the list and moved on. I got on a couple of dating apps in hopes that maybe I would meet someone. I went on a few dates with a few different guys who I knew weren't the best for me because I was desperate. I wanted to be loved by a man so badly.

It was about two years of this when I decided to delete the dating apps and just trust God. I am NOT saying that dating apps are wrong or that God cannot use dating apps to bring you your dream person...because He absolutely can! I have several friends who met on dating apps and are now married! I just knew that dating apps weren't right for me because I was starting to focus on swiping right than trusting God with my future.

During those two years, I was never open to getting to know someone before saying "no" because I had this particular ideal in my head that I wanted. I decided to let go of this ideal and just be open. If a guy were to ask me on a date, I would say "yes" to get to know him BEFORE deciding he wasn't the best fit for me.

When I talked to my boyfriend for the first time, I learned he was four years younger than me. FOUR. YEARS. YOUNGER. But something about him was different and instantly intrigued me. I always desired to be with someone older, or at least my age, so when I learned that he was so much younger than me, I hesitated a bit internally. I started having thoughts like:

Our first picture together :)

"Younger guys are immature."

"How can he lead me if he's younger than me?"

"I've always said I would never date a younger guy."

"What will my friends think?"

And so on.

But I was reminded of my decision to be open. About a month later Logan asked me to be his girlfriend (rather...he told me I was his girlfriend lol).

Two months into our relationship, I remembered the list I made years ago. I found the list and was flabbergasted. Logan checked off every single thing I wrote on my list...down to having muscular hands and being precisely 6'3". Only God, y'all. Only God.

If I didn't decide to BE OPEN before meeting Logan, who knows where we would be today, but thank God we will never know because I now get to love and do life with my bestest friend.

So my encouragement to you today: Be open! You just never know who/what God has waiting for you. ;)

I'd love to hear your relationtips and what's helped you! Leave a comment or send me a message!