The Blessing of Delayed Gratification

Future Jonathan and Emily Ryan

We live in a culture where instant access is expected.

We have the ability to obtain knowledge about almost anything right at our fingertips.

If we’re hungry, it doesn’t take more than a swing though the fast food drive thru to curb our cravings.

Waiting is begrudged.

We think we should be able to satisfy our desires at all costs. Any time we can’t immediately obtain what we want, it feels like we’re experiencing something burdensome.

While this is the norm of society at large, it doesn’t make it the best thing for us.

Sure, there are major benefits to being able to do things more efficiently. I love productive systems as much as the next person. Organization means I can better enjoy time with the people I love.

But even with the benefits of new technology and quick access, there are negative consequences for us as people.

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Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

Some Advice for the Dating Girl: Just Enjoy Him!

Advice for the Dating Girl

To the Dating Girl:

I know you quite well.

You’re me.

Well, kind of.

I know we aren’t all exactly the same, but we probably have a lot of the same hangups when it comes to relationships. It’s how girls are wired. We crave connection and desire to be loved. We each want the man we love to pursue us well and show us that he cares.

There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s good to desire true connection. It’s how God made us.

But what happens in a dating relationship when things don’t go exactly as we hope, dream, and plan? Some of us girls tend to get discouraged. That discouragement can then bring out the worst qualities in us. The awful qualities that show how much we want to control.

Ehh… Just thinking about what happens when I don’t get my way makes me feel icky inside because, honestly, I don’t want to be someone who insists on everything going my way. I want to be easy-going and fun. I want to be faithful and patient as I trust God’s timing for things in my life.

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Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

Why Hasn’t He Proposed Yet?

{Full Disclosure: Jonathan gave me permission to share this with you}

I went into my relationship with Jonathan believing that he was the one – the one I was going to marry. Our story is quite different than the average dating story.

We didn’t just meet each other, exchange numbers, text a lot, hang out, and then decide we should probably make it official. He didn’t go the more traditional route of asking me on a date to see how we interacted, either. In fact, Jonathan didn’t tell me that he liked me until I had moved back to China – halfway around the world. Not exactly an easy distance to travel to see one another…

Why hasn't he proposed yet?

We began to fall for each other while attending a Bible study at his church, which has now also become my church. Jonathan and I knew of each other back in high school but we weren’t friends. In fact, at one point I even had a friend who crushed on him and I remember saying something like, “He’s fine, I guess…” in response to her telling me about the crush. I never imagined that just a few short years later I’d find myself with feelings I couldn’t shake.

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Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

Why I Won’t Claim That My Boyfriend is the “Best Boyfriend in the World”

This piece of writing started out as a Facebook post that I began to create in my mind earlier this week. However, as my thoughts deepened on the subject, I realized that I needed to write a blog post to share more than I had originally intended.

What initially was going to be a few sentences about how much I appreciate my boyfriend turned into something else. And, no, it’s not because we got into another fight and I no longer wanted to tell the world how great he is.;)

My boyfriend is not the best boyfriend in the world

I have been thinking a lot about the gift I have in my boyfriend Jonathan. I can’t even begin to express my appreciation for this man.

When he comes to mind, I smile.

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Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

7 Mistakes I Made in Dating

7 Mistakes I Made in Dating

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Jonathan and I haven’t had the easiest relationship.

…and that would also be a bit of an understatement.

Those who know my heart know how much I adore him and am proud to call Jonathan my boyfriend. I love him more than I ever imagined I could love. Yet, throughout our relationship I have had a roller coaster of emotions, making me question again and again whether it was all worth it. The answer to that question has relentlessly been “YES,” even amidst the trials we have endured as a couple.

When you bring two people from two different backgrounds with two very different schedules together, conflict will arise. It’s bound to happen, but how you deal with that conflict will either make or break the relationship.

These two years of dating have taught me more than I ever could have imagined. Without ever having a real long term relationship, I thought I knew what it took to make it work. I had watched many of my friends date and I figured that if I found a good Christian guy it would go smoothly. After all, he should know how to lead and would be intentional with everything.  That’s the way he should be if he wants to glorify God, right?

I didn’t stop to think that maybe the way he saw life was just different than the way I saw it, even if we followed the same God and both wanted nothing more than to make Christ known.  I never realized how much personality differences would either help or hinder our connection depending on how we responded to one another. A few thoughtless words here or a lack of communication there could turn our seemingly smooth sailing relationship on a downward spiral out of control.

Over and over, we didn’t know why we kept getting into the same arguments. We had the same goal, but different ways of going about it. This caused us to keep turning against instead of toward each other.

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Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.