How To Find a Date Worth Keeping

1459190_10201344609605162_207257741_nBefore I met my husband a friend invites me to a seminar called “How to Find a Date Worth Keeping” hosted by well-known psychologist Dr. Henry Cloud.

I don’t really want to go and I think to myself: “I’m educated, I have a minor in psychology and I don’t really need advice from the ‘experts.’ Plus, I know how to get a date!”

Unfortunately, most of them are either on drugs, in jail, on their way to jail, broke, unemployed, or all of the above. As you might imagine, I often play chauffeur since most of them don’t have a car. My favorite rendezvous is with the guy who suggests we share an appetizer and split the bill. So, you see, I know how to find a date, just not one worth keeping.

If anyone knows how to do that, certainly it should be a shrink. So I accept the invitation, but only because the ticket is free.

At the time I’m still drinking heavily so the morning of the seminar I’m bleary eyed and fuzzy. Luckily, I have a good supply of breath mints in my pocket which I inconspicuously pop periodically hoping the minty smell will whisk away the evidence and the good church people won’t smell my affairs of the previous evening.

About midway through the seminar Dr. Cloud starts talking about how two half people only equal one, when there should be two. In other words, two broken people tear each other apart trying to get their own needs met.

That’s it, I realize, as I begin contemplating all the dreadful endings. I’m dating half men! Surely with me in the mix, together we equal 1 1/2 I estimate, popping another breath mint.

On the drive home I guess you could say I have a ‘moment of clarity;’ It’s when you suddenly get “a deep understanding of some truth that’s been out of reach for you-when your vision becomes unclouded and focused.”

I hear Gods voice. Now don’t get too worried. It’s not an audible voice and I’m completely sober. But I’ll never forget His words: “You are the problem; you are the problem with your life.”

Why didn’t I realize it sooner?

Denial is like a disease that infects your soul, with tendrils that attach themselves to every part of your life. Once infected, you don’t see the destruction it causes, but other people usually do. Often times God uses them at the appropriate times to open our eyes.

It was then I started to focus on my part of the ‘people places and things’ that were causing dysfunction in my life. Once I got honest with myself, my life began to change. Then I became a ‘date worth keeping.’

It’s been over seven years of marriage now.

Jodie Stevens

(P.S. – the moral of the story: if you are popping breath mints at a Dr. Henry Cloud seminar, you might not be a ‘date worth keeping.’)

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