Category Archives: Respect

First Come First Serve: The Insecure Woman’s Motto

Media says if we as women behave in a free-loving, easy-going manner we will snag the man of our dreams. I know girls that practice this behavior. They give their bodies in order to receive love. They are desperate to be wanted and loved by men. However, in giving everything to each of those men they are saying, “I don’t respect myself so why should you?” I wish I could snap each and every friend out of that approval-based love. If we have to act or be a certain way to receive “love” then it’s not love. Here are the lenses of an insecure woman: she sees the flirty, provocative woman flaunt her body and receive an abundance of attention. She sees magazine covers with perfect-shaped faces and curves. She sees actresses, all the same size and unattainable beauty. She wants that image. She craves that attention. Little does she realize if and when she gets it, she will feel empty and unfulfilled. I can only speak from experience on this. I have been that girl. I wore the outfits that left little to the imagination and acted in a way that promoted trouble. I remember the looks from guys. I felt like a freshly cut slab of steak dangling above a sharks tank. The kind of men that respond are hungry, and not for our sweet personalities or quirky humor. No, they are hungry for the body we unabashedly show off. Their eyes mentally undress what remains and there we are, naked to them, vulnerable to be used to lust’s content. So as much as we may desire attention, it is not worth it. The images in guys’ minds are not easily erased. Just another female added to a pile of pictures that men will probably fantasize about for a phase of time. There will always be beautiful faces. The beautiful ones desired a decade ago have been tossed to the side as a fresh, young group arises. Do we want to be the pretty face a handful of guys lust after until they see another pretty face? I surely hope not. I hope we continue to become women respected by all; women who stand firm, confident, and modest. Modest women don’t desire to attract many suitors. Instead, they are concealed in Christ so that only godly men know where to find their hearts.

“A woman’s heart should be so hidden in Christ that a man should have to seek Him first to find her.” (Maya Angelou)

There has been a destructive pattern in Jill’s dating choices. Like a continuous cycle, she has chosen jerk after good-looking jerk. A lot of guys take advantage of her because she makes it easy for them. How could a guy resist a tasty free morsel put before him?

Jill had just received the break-up line, “I’ve met someone else. And you don’t do it for me anymore.” She was familiar with the procedure, but it still cut a new one in her heart. She and John had been dating for five months. She moved in after three months, caught him cheating after four, forgave him and kept living with him until the fifth month. No matter how many break-ups, it still hurt like the first one. “I’m so stupid,” she sobbed. “I knew better. But I just keep waiting for a guy to tell me I deserve better.” Unfortunately, that hope may be a long time coming. “Why wait?” I said, “You do deserve better. You need to make the changes in your patterns. You need to realize your worth before you can join into a quality relationship with the right kind of man.” If we behave with knowledge of our spiritual value, we will not display our treasures for all to see.

When we walk into Wal-Mart, chances are everything we come across is cheaply made and affordable. We buy everyday trinkets at Wal-Mart that are useful for a short period of time and easily replaceable. If we lose our Wal-Mart sweatpants or toothbrush holder it’s not devastating. On the contrary, when we walk into a Louis Vuitton store, we can smell the value. We’d take delicate footsteps and mull wistfully over every article of clothing. Half a life savings could be spent on one item. And how would such an item be cared for if the purchase was made? It would be treasured, handled carefully and lovingly because of the value.

The same principle applies to the value for which we’re perceived. If we act like Wal-Mart, we’ll be treated as such: easily replaced. However, if we walk in the knowledge of humans created in the image of God, our value will shine with everlasting evidence of priceless and irreplaceable worth. No man can take it away from us and no circumstance can devalue our worth in God’s eyes.


Rearranging Relationships; Respectfully

“If one doesn’t respect oneself one can have neither love nor respect for others.” – Ayn Rand

We think about ourselves all the time, whether the thoughts are positive or negative. And let’s face it; we care for our bodies though we may claim to hate them. We force ourselves to work out. Some withhold food from their bellies in order to lose weight fast. Others gorge and purge. And even some scrape knives down both arms in punishment for bad choices. We do a lot of things to our bodies, some beneficial some not so beneficial. We chase after guys who clearly have no interest. We flaunt and flirt just to catch their eyes. We do atrocious things when there is a lack of self-respect. How is this behavior helping us? How do we live with such compromises?

“If I just show some skin, I’ll get his attention.” Sure. We’ll get plenty of interest, just like a piece of meat held above a pack of hungry wolves. If any of them get close enough, that bite may be an injurious one. If we have to compromise our modesty in order to get some guy’s attention, desperation glistens on the skin we’re showing. If we do not respect our own bodies how can we expect others to?

I spent the majority of my teen years looking for, if not demanding respect from guys. However, I wouldn’t show respect until a guy earned it. Is that fair? Not in the least. It took a lot of Scripture and a lot of God softening my heart before I concluded guys do not need to earn my respect. I need to respect them because of who God created them to be. Some guys may be living outside of God’s intended purpose. They deserve respectful disassociation. We must respect ourselves enough to stay away from those guys.

We can look at our routine behavior toward our brothers, fathers, and guy friends. Do we ever make comments-even witty and humorous remarks-directly attacking their roles, their intelligence, jobs, or lifestyles? It is especially important to realize, guys were created by God to be leaders. Men were created to protect, provide, and honor. We want to be a part of God’s perfect plan of uplifting others. Disrespect poisons relationships. We must change the way we speak, treat, and interact with men. It is a gradual change. When God reveals something this significant to us, we must be willing and open to change. But it doesn’t just happen overnight, in most cases. Often, we try to change, but fall short. We make a mistake, cringe because we should know better, and then try to make right the situation. The training continues and we notice every word that comes out disrespectfully from our lips. We reevaluate and try to do better next time. As this whole process takes place, we retrain ourselves to use our words differently and be more cautious. As we grow and as we understand patterns in our lives, we are more prepared for future situations that may be similar.

It’s a tragedy when women demean their husbands, boyfriends, brothers or fathers. That behavior fosters insecurity and anger in our male companions. When we belittle them or make them feel stupid, especially in front of people, we are slicing into their very core. It hits the very place they are most insecure about: their adequacy in leadership.

If we learn to respect all guys, we will have a much better perspective on relationships. They deserve our respect from start to finish. If we treat every guy like the valuable brothers they are, we will benefit their lives, not hinder them. When a dating relationship proves unworthy of marriage, the goal is always to leave the other person better than when we first met them.  Their values have been strengthened and personhood uplifted.  Relationships are exciting, especially when we have proper focus in them. When we realize our purpose is to build up and make men stronger for the future, all of our relationships will have a selfless flare to them. We will respect guys for the men they are becoming. We will respect their future wives by not leaving a scar on their hearts. And we will respect ourselves enough to keep our hearts protected in the hands of God.

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