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by Mandy den Dekker

Remember how, when you were a little girl, you used to love those movies about a princess, looking for her one true love, her prince. They found each other in the end and lived happily ever after. Obviously, the prince was extremely handsome, heroic and everything the princess ever needed to be happy. He completed her. Remember that? Yeah, me too. I remember that I loved it even when I wasn’t a little girl anymore. Every romantic movie on earth is based on this same principle. ‘Find your true love, because he is the only one to complete you. Your life will be perfect when you finally find him.’ I have believed that for a long time. Longer than I care to admit. The thing is, it’s not true. It’s not true that you can find someone walking on this earth who will completely fulfill you. Of course, people can make you happy, but completing someone is another matter entirely. If another person is going to fulfill you, that person must be perfect. And I have yet to find the perfect human being.

Growing up, going through high school, I based my idea of a boyfriend on the image the movies gave me. And boy, did he have to live up to a high standard. My boyfriend would be super romantic and he would pursue me, and of course, he would be extremely handsome. He would be the one to make me happy, and if I had finally found him, all my worries would disappear. Looking back, I realize how unhealthy my view on a boyfriend and a relationship was. I decided a boyfriend would fulfill me, and would give my life meaning. I was constantly waiting for him to come into my life, and every romantic movie I watched fed that overly romantic side of me that said: he is going to make your life perfect. Just wait.

Now believe me, I’m a fan of relationships. I think it’s a blessing and a place where God can bring growth and healing. But my view on relationships when I was younger wasn’t healthy. And it’s not what God has intended either.

I know there are a lot of girls out there who, like me, believe or at one point have believed these things. If you’re one of those girls, this is for you. It was never God’s intention you would find your meaning and fulfillment solely in another person. He wants to bless us through relationships, sure, but He doesn’t want another person to take that place in your life – a place that was actually made for Him. As people, we are not perfect. If you put your life’s entire happiness in someone else’s hands, that person will fail you, even if they have the best intentions of loving you. I’m sure people have hurt you when they didn’t intend to, and you have hurt other people too. The only one who can take on the task of fulfilling you completely, and can really live up to the challenge, is God. He is the only one who can take care of your entire life’s happiness, because He is perfect. He will not fail you nor hurt you.

Coming from a place like this, looking for perfection and fulfillment first and foremost in Him, will make your relationships better and healthier. Not needing your boyfriend or significant other to be perfect is a great way for the both of you to start or continue a relationship together. And it will surely save you a lot of stress. Maybe you rejected someone before, because they weren’t perfect enough in your eyes. Of course it’s great to think about the things you find attractive and important in someone else, there’s nothing wrong with that. But don’t take it too far, try to not give someone else the impossible task of being perfect. Let perfection be up to God, and let that be a blessing in your relationship. I’m the first one to admit I occasionally forget this truth myself, and I stumble a lot. But I’m thankful I get so many chances to learn. Isn’t that what life’s about anyway?

Are you still looking for your happily every after? What are some personal tips that you use to put God first and not a relationship?

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