Tonight I attended the “He that Finds a Wife” Relationship Symposium hosted by Praise 102.5 and Jack A. Daniels, the author of I Need a Wife: Where Are the Real Women? The panel consisted of men who were “marriage minded”, and, according to radio host KD Bowe, were “single, successful, ready to commit and emotionally stable.”
I took three pages of notes, jotting down the ideas and concepts expressed by the male panelists and audience members (which consisted of 100+ women and about 20 or so men) and here are the things I heard:
- Most important thing in a relationship? Self awareness.
- You don’t have to understand all men or women — just the one you’re with.
- Men have a hard time making decisions. We live in a time where there’s such an influx of information and decisions, that it makes it harder to decide. This idea was compared to a study conducted where consumers had to choose one type of jelly in a store. The more choices there were, the consumer only bought one. The fewer choices there were, the consumer not only chose faster, but bought more jars of jelly.
- 1,000 men were interviewed for Daniels’ book and one of the number one things the men said they wanted was for a woman to “celebrate them and not tolerate them.” (at this point, women in the audience were saying, “WE DO TOO!”)
- Build relationships one step at a time, don’t give everything up at once.
- Men don’t like to approach women because when women are in big groups, it’s hard to have a conversation because of the pressure to impress the woman he’s interested in and her friends.
- Women should smile more. It makes us more approachable.
- Women should NOT approach men. Men want to hunt and catch.
Um. I think that was it. I’ll let y’all decipher through that on your own. >.<
Now, let me address some things:
The absence of men at this discussion was disheartening BECAUSE this initiative was created by, promoted by, and purposed to be a forum for men to share their views. As I mentioned on Facebook, the absence of men here was very indicative of their absence in other places, but that’s a conversation for another time.
In addition, when the men tried to share their perspectives, some women in the audience groaned and moaned about their dislikes, and tit-for-tat “y’all do that too!” complaints. This is why our discussions on relationships go nowhere; someone is always trying to one-up their counterpart to prove a point. Let the men have their space to share their views. Listen.
Finally, and probably most importantly, this was a room of “believers”, an event hosted by a Christian radio station and there was not one iota about God’s purpose and design for dating — the only man who hit on this was J. White, the motivational speaker/tap dancer/author whose words were poignant, spirit filled, and reflective of what we really should have discussed at length: knowing who you are in God.
I addressed the idea of purpose and relationships on my blog already, so I wont go into that. But what believers need to know and remember is that you can’t expect to get God like results (“He who findeth a wife finds a good thing…”) with worldly standards and expectations (“let’s play reindeer games until someone just gives in and I settle for you…”). You’ll never get God results that way.
Yes, there should be natural application to our day-to-day experiences, but when you’re talking about finding the ONE for you, that’s a result of divine intervention. It’s not wrapped up in the games, the theories, or the in the pages of Essence or KING Magazine.
I wanted to hear something different. I wanted to really delve in to how believers were applying their knowledge to seek God about their own lives and the process they’re using to filter through who’s worth your time and who isn’t. We just threw the darts of accusation back and forth until time ran out.
We did have a chance to mix and mingle (but you could image how that went with a 15-1 women to men ratio) and I met some really cool people. I also met a young lady who is coming to visit my church this Friday. I think I sealed the deal when I sang impromptu style in the middle of the hallway at Paschal’s. Ha!
I’d like to hear from you guys — as a Christian, how does dating work for you? Do you find yourself stuck in the rut of doing things the world’s way or do you try to really seek God about who you date and what kinds of interactions you have with men/women? Do you think we over think the dating process?
On the Chase,