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Thus began a journey to know God and understand life; a journey from bondage to grace; a journey she's still making.

I usually don’t realize it until times when I try to explain them to someone else. A dear friend and I were talking about our kids and how to help them transition from children to adults. More posts by darcys | Visit the site of darcys This is one woman's opinion (and she's talking as if the whole world agrees with her) and I disagree with it.

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Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken.

I leave you with the words of a very wise man:“To love at all is to be vulnerable.

It somehow validates my belief that some of the teachings I grew up with were very wrong. I rejected the teachings of courtship and emotional purity when I was 19. In fact, I have identified several ways that these teachings can damage a person’s heart. Shame because that’s “sinful” and “emotionally impure.” Shame because it sets a standard and proclaims that you are somehow shameful if you cannot keep it. Because your heart is whole and she just gave a piece of hers to a guy she isn’t married to. You have more to give your future husband than she does. This has nothing to do with the righteousness and grace of God, and everything to do with the accomplishments of man. I was trying to explain this to my friend, and it came out sounding so . I have given my life to God, and I treat my body and my life likewise.

Lately, I’ve also started facing the ways in which the teachings of “emotional purity,” (a la Josh Harris, the Ludys, and others) have damaged the part of my brain that makes healthy relationships function. You are considered damaged goods if you have fallen in love and had your heart broken. I remember watching a video in which one of the biggest names in the courtship movement bragged with obvious arrogance that he didn’t tell his wife he loved her until their wedding. We took something as simple as saying ‘I love you,’ built a straw man rule around it (‘saying I love you is defrauding’), then hung it like a trophy on our walls.” Job well done, folks. They create skewed views of relationships which lead to dysfunction. Where others see nothing wrong, I am suspicious of every look, every situation, every witty exchange. I feel ill at ease sometimes even talking to other men. I’m really good at pushing those feelings away and acting “normal.” But I am bothered by my reaction to everyday situations. Through the grace of God I don't have pride about this. If you are "determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified" (1 Cor 2:2), everything else will fall into place.

It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.