It was a sense of entitlement.
I suffer from a case of Chick-Flick Syndrome. I spent my adolescence swooning over the magic of 90's rom-coms. The Notebook came along and completely ruined me. You've Got Mail is still my favorite movie. And I've never really gotten past those ideas about love. Socially awkward, reserved girls nabbed their Mr. Rights (see: She's All That, Never Been Kissed), and the guys just sort of showed up for these women. After a little turmoil that was obviously going to turn out just fine, they got their happy endings. Maybe not perfect endings, but happy. The heroines of those films found love, and hey: They really didn't have to work all that hard at it. In fact, these women could blow guys off and they would just continue to persistently pursue them until things ended in bliss. Reclaiming Rom-Coms: 4 Reasons To Love Them
More from YourTango: Striving For An Equal Marriage? That May Be Why It's Failing
And want to know what? Too often, especially lately, I feel entitled to that. I think I deserve romantic love just for existing. I think it's OK to blow guys off now, and try again later. Subconsciously, I don't think I should have to work at it. I've been told all my life that men should have to pursue me, and since love is generally considered one of our basic rights as human beings... Well, I just assume I will stumble into it eventually. I think that if one guy doesn't work out, if I stay silent and miss a chance—it's fine, because there will be another tomorrow. And anyway, when the time comes, the man I'm supposed to be with should just fall from the sky right in front of me.
"When it's the right time, it will happen," I constantly tell my friends, in relation to my own singleness, and theirs too. And I believe it. I believe it because I know God's plan unfolds according to his good and perfect timing. The Bible says, "Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours" (Mark 11:24, NIV). It's a comforting verse, and something I lean on. I've prayed my fair share about love and finding the right guy, so I've always had faith that God has someone in store for me. But I haven't been doing my part.
It suddenly hit me. I need to stop believing that just because I can trust God's timeline when it comes to romantic love, I don't have to put any effort toward finding it. There's a difference between allowing God to work in your life, and making him do all the work. This week, after meditating on it, he taught me an important lesson. When It Comes To Love, Would You Let God Decide?
God has given me every tool I need to help in finding love. He's given me a mouth to speak, to actually say that "hello," and ears to hear a response. He's given me friends for advice, and family as a support system as long as I'm single and well after that. He's given me a rational mind to keep me smart, and The Bible to guide me along the way. He did not give me shyness as a crutch to blame the world for my dating misfortune, but opportunities to get past it and grow.
And if I don't use all these tools he's placed in my life? Well, it's my own fault.
No one is simply entitled to romantic love. No matter what the movies say, it rarely ever comes about with no effort on the the human end. Is Mr. Right not happening for you, either? Before getting upset or giving up, look around in your life. Have you actually been given all you need to find it, and you're just not using the tools? Are you leaning on a crutch, instead of working to stand on your own? 2 Peter 1:3 says, "By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life." And that includes finding a love God would be proud of. We just need to look around and appreciate that. Are You Feeling Appreciated In Your Relationship?
I'm going to work on it. I'm going to start trying more—not forcing things, but actually putting out the necessary effort, actually being more open to opportunities that come my way. And I am going to stop feeling so entitled. Because as long as I believe that romantic love should simply be handed out on a silver platter, I truly don't deserve it.
More from YourTango: Please, Put Down Your Dating Checklist Already
Do you feel entitled to romantic love?