Gated Dating

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Have you ever lived in a gated community with a homeowners association? I haven’t but in college, I heard stories of how strict some of them can be. There always seems to be some president or marshall who patrols the community measuring lawns with a ruler to hand out penalties if the grass is more than 1/2 inch in height. 

Want to paint your house purple? You could be in violation of the rules. Have more than 3 guests at your house for a rousing party, they may limit how many cars can be parked at your house or cite you for being too loud. 

Basically, if you don’t look the part, act the part, play the part, you could have the entire community come down on you to force you to conform or try to force you out. I think the same could be said about relationships. Sometimes a person’s circle of friends can be like that. 

I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, If you find my beloved, That you tell him I am lovesick! What is your beloved More than another beloved, O fairest among women? What is your beloved More than another beloved, That you so charge us? (Song of Solomon 5:8, 9 NKJV)

In Song of Solomon, the woman is out all night searching for her man. She tells the other ladies if they find him “tell him I am lovesick!” The other ladies want to know what’s so great about him that we should be concerned. Sometimes the guy or girl you’re dating has a group of friends that need to be convinced that your date is worthy of being associated with their group. 

He or she must look the part, act the part, and play the part well enough to be accepted. Common questions are “what kind of car does he drive”, “is she as good looking as our girlfriends”, “who does he hang with”, or “is she one of ‘those’ girls”. It’s a type of control they use to maintain their image. If they don’t fit the mold, friends may try to force them out. 

The sad thing is, many single people have dismissed their future spouses because their friends didn’t approve. Others weren’t even given a chance because their potential date’s friends wouldn’t let them in. 

Here’s my advice: don’t let your own or someone else’s single, relationship challenged, social status conscious, wouldn’t know a good man or woman if they met one, friends pressure you into dating a cookie cutter copy of the men or women they’ve never been able to hold on to. 

Choose your relationships for yourself. Ultimately, if the relationship leads to marriage you must be happy living with your spouse, not your friends. Be like the woman in the scripture who had been out all night searching for her man: “if you see my boo, tell him I love him and I’m looking for him.”

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