Have you ever heard someone say that chivalry is dead? I’m sure most of us have. That is an absolutely crushing statement. Now, I’ve taken it upon myself so speak out on the fact. I think we, women, are killing chivalry -- guys I’m very sorry, but you’re also aiding in the demise of this beautiful practice.
This past weekend, all around the US there were marches supporting women's rights [this is not a blog about that, so calm down] in almost every state. Women from all over gathered together in the name of “feminism” and equality to make a statement. I got to thinking about the effect we, as independent women, have on the culture of dating. I firmly believe that a feminist is someone who believes in equality between men and women, which I totally support that, but sometimes people get a little cray.
This brings me to chivalry; this rise in independent, empowered women is beautiful but us women do not need to be disrespectful to kindness. If a man opens a door for you, he is not saying that you are weak or incapable of opening that door, he is most likely just being kind and respectful. If a man you go out with pays for your meal, it’s probably because his mama raised him right, to treat women with respect. Sure, there are some really awful dudes out there lurking around, treating women like pieces of garbage to be disposed when the morning comes; I’ve had my fair share of dealings with those types, but most guys are actually really great. They are not trying to buy our affection, they are being kind and CHIVALROUS, and I fully support that. Ok, that addressed the women, men -- it’s your turn.
Men, I get it, there have probably been a time or two when we haven’t said thank you for opening that door, or grabbing the check, or just being nice to you -- that doesn't mean you give up on chivalry. It just means some people are jerks, you get over it, move on and realize that most women will say thank you because they were raised right; with manners.
Seriously you guys, chivalry is just a good example of manners, respect, and kindness. We should be all for that stuff. It’s fantastic. I would say that I am a very strong, independant woman, but I love having a sweet man hold the door for me. It does not make me less than, in fact I think it speaks to my grace and worth, knowing that I am strong even if a man does something for me.
“Then the LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him."
If you have ever read scripture, you know that Adam was created first then God was like “Hey, actually, you shouldn’t be alone.” so, He made Eve. She wasn’t a second rate person, she was created to be Adam’s partner, friend, team-mate, wife. They carried the same worth, it was just complementary to one another. Women, you can be delicate and strong. Men, you can be gentle and tenacious. Teamwork makes the dream work. We’ve got to stop killing chivalry. It’s as simple as mutual respect and believing the best in people's intentions.
“So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh at that place. The LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. 23The man said, "This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man."
All of that being said, now I’m going to talk about dating. That’s right, I said it. Did you know that going on a date with someone does not mean you’re agreeing to marry them? WHAT! ARE YOU KIDDING?! Nope, you guys, I am not kidding. Just because a cute guy asks you to coffee, does not mean he’s hiding a ring in his pocket. And guys, asking that girl out just means you are interested in finding out if you could be more than just friends. It is absolutely imperative to define your initial intentions -- defining your intentions is simply respectful, it’s also not signing a marriage license. I think we make this thing too serious, especially Christians. We’re trained from young ages to not pursue something unless marriage is the end goal, but bro, how am I gonna know if I wanna marry you if you never take me on a date? But for real.
We live in this culture where “You wanna hang out?” counts as asking someone on a date if the time spent together goes well, BUT if it doesn’t go well then it wasn’t a date so you have no obligation to speak to that person again. Sorry, but that’s just shady.
If you disagree with me, I totally get it, “I kissed dating goodbye” for a while too.
Here’s the thing, I’m not saying go date literally everyone who wants to go on a date with you, that would be stupid. There are some people you know you just love as a friend and that is so ok, in fact, it’s awesome! I’m just saying; coffee is not a marriage proposal.
Relationships are like ballroom dancing, the man proposes the step and it's the woman's choice to follow. But if you wanna dance, you’ve gotta get out there on the floor first, you can’t do it sitting in a corner, alone.
It’s scary, to say yes, and it’s scary to ask because what if, it turns out horrible or what if it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to you. I think dating is just a really good way to exercise your bravery, and you know what else is cool about it, it helps you learn how to hear the Father’s voice better. If you’re tight with Him, you can trust your choices, knowing that He’s the one leading your steps.
Final thoughts, before I write a novel, stop killing chivalry, one date isn’t saying yes to a marriage proposal, trust Jesus and keep Him at the center -- you’ll be just fine, besides bravery and dancing make life more fun anyway.