It happens to the best of us: someone catches your eye or maybe you caught theirs. Perhaps there followed a nice stimulating conversation after that initial attraction. The atmosphere seemed perfect, the dialogue phenomenal, and you can’t help but think, “Hmmm, this may just lead to something.”
Maybe there was an exchange of contact information—even a “be-friending” on Facebook counts! But then as time goes on—whether or not there was follow up—whatever spark there was, it fizzles out. They don’t pursue. And you’re not really sure what happened between the time you had that great conversation and the time it should have taken for them to let you know their interested in more.
Then something happens. You’re around them again and realize why there was no follow up: they like someone else.
Isn’t it the game of life? To like someone who likes someone? Oh, but it doesn’t stop there! More interaction around Your New Like and Their Like reveals the person they like also likes someone else! Ah, it is the Dawson-Joey-Pacey Love Triangle all over again.
Why can’t we just like each other at the same time? Why is it that the love stories where boy meets girl and girl likes boy and marries boy isn’t always the outcome of our interactions when attracted to the opposite sex?
Even as Christians we can feel a little jipped at this phenomenon. Ok, ok, especially as Christians. We can feel like romance is supposed to be easy. God gives us everything else in this life, isn’t the mate supposed to be a given too? Adam didn’t play the Waiting and Dating Game. All he did was wake up and Eve was there. Sounds pretty simple to me.
But alas, since the fall of man nothing has been easy, especially when it comes to the human heart (Jeremiah 17:9).
In my personal life I keep seeing this occurrence, and I have been on both sides of the playing field. I have been the Liker and the Likee. (Bear with me on these titles, please, people.) In the case of being liked I can see how it feels to have someone look at you with rose-colored glasses and yet your heart is simply not stirred by their interest. As great as they are and as much as you appreciate their character and qualities, you know they are simply not The One. And then I have been the one doing the rose-colored staring, yet I could not seem to capture his heart—even with my triple threat of beauty, brains, and success.
What I’ve learned from these experiences is the importance of guarding hearts. Guard your own and guard your brother’s. If you are not interested in more than friendship than make it clear and keep boundaries on that friendship. If you’re on the other end of things, be honest with yourself that the person is simply not interested in you and value yourself enough to believe you deserve someone who is.
Above all, do not personalize rejection. Their disinterest is not because you are not someone worthy of interest but simply because they are not the best match for you. I know it may be difficult to believe, but not everyone can appreciate your purpose, identity and strengths. Yet more than likely, there is someone out there who does!
As I recall Joey and Pacey ended up together. So hey, if the characters in Dawson’s Creek can figure it out, surely we as believers can.