I recently saw pictures of what is called the “Scariest Trail in the World” on a mountain in China. It has since been added to my bucket list. As I scrolled through the pictures, the first part of the journey began with a steep climb up the “Heavenly Stairs” that led to narrow rudimentary planks attached to sheer rock cliffs, with nothing to hold onto but chains on the wall. This trail is crazy, dangerous and unexpected from start to its wonderful surprise finish.
As I sat down to write tonight, I thought, “Wow … I wonder if that is what a woman’s heart looks like to a man?” Then I started to laugh, because it is probably way scarier than that! Such mystery, precarious pathways and seemingly impassable depths and heights that make the air seem thin at times. Guys, you know you are in trouble when a girl starts an email with, “I warn you now … I am a deep deep well.” Maybe next time, I will add, “My heart is a scary treacherous mountain trail …” and see if I still get a reply.
Staying on the surface in any relationship will just never do it for me. Here is some background. Mine is a story of complete and total grace from a girl who is continually learning to lean deep into a Father who has answers I could never comprehend with my natural mind.
About 8 years ago, I crossed a line and made a choice to stop striving for that unattainable “point of perfection” that taunted me like a mean bully at school. I finally pressed the eject button on the “Journey to the Finished Product” roller coaster. I went cold turkey and discontinued the torturous life of transition, waiting and hoping to someday emerge into my season of “being all He has called me to be!”
That all just made me laugh! Boy, was I exhausted after years of ministry and performance-based theology before I really accepted Jesus and what He had finished on the cross for me.
I began to embrace my flaws, age, laugh lines, fat parts, broken places, tainted past, mistakes, voice and my purpose. Finally, I actually believed the messages I had preached so well. God loved ME, right here in my now! He wanted more than what I could do for Him. He wasn’t sitting around waiting for me to get it together. He saw me, pursued me and wanted an authentic relationship with me, right now.
For the first time, I had the guts to say “yes” in my current state and trust him to fill in the blanks to what I said “yes” to. All of a sudden, this girl who had once let the fear of man and fear of rejection be her road-map, decided to embark on a new journey, burn the boat that got me there, and go forward with no way of escape or backup plan.
What does this have to do with a man taking the leap of exploration into a woman’s heart? Everything. Because the door to this heart is not for the faint of heart. It’s not that I am purposefully trying to kill any guy attempting the journey, or even torture him with a terrifying gauntlet. The fact is, there is a road with surprises at every turn in the lives of pioneers, and the only way to survive it is by doing it together. I just happen to think that my heart is a great place to start.
The “encounter” I had with God’s GRACE and LOVE changed everything for me personally. It was more than just a phase or a season of life. It led the way and began my forever.
So, you wanna know what wins over the heart of a woman?
A man … fully content in his now, while trusting God in the process that only makes us better everyday. A man willing to take the risk and enter into a relationship with nothing to hide, nothing to be ashamed of and nothing to protect, because he trusts His brilliant defender. A man who will never quit, or let us quit.
Even as I was writing this, a ridiculously talented, successful and godly friend texted me out of the blue. “I want a husband who expects me to step up to the plate and step into my calling. I know I have not yet begun the ministry God has for me. Or just barely.” We then began to text about how we couldn’t wait to do that for our men, and how amazing it would be. She then said, “A couple that pulls greatness out of each other at every turn! And expects more and more of God to meet every new challenge!”
Yes! A man who sees through God’s eyes. A woman who feels safe enough to trust. A couple who embraces the call of curious adventures, and who are so enthralled at every step of the journey that the destination is just icing on the already wonderful cake.
A man who knows we are walking, living encounters with the Creator of the universe, fully accepted, and able to rest in that reality. A woman who sees herself through the cross, while being perfected daily in all humility and grace. A couple who can live constantly in a state of learning and growing because of God’s vastness, while knowing we are already ONE with Him.
A seriously attractive man is one who knows he is loved and is deeply in love with his Creator. He is taught, by the One who accepted and pursued him, how to truly see, choose and pursue a woman.
There is a journey, involving risks that are worth it in the heart of a woman and a man. There is a partnership that can be filled with adventure, memories, abundant laughs and grace upon grace. It can only be found by two people surrendered to an identity that can’t be shaken by crazy winds, precarious pathways, deep wells or unknown lands.
By the way. At the end of this perilous trail in China … is tea … a beautiful tea house on top of the mountain, that only the brave and adventurous ones will have the audacity and pleasure of enjoying.