This may be more of a girl thing, but have you ever said a sentence that begins: “I need someone who …”? Since high school I had an unwritten list like this.
“I need someone who makes me laugh.”
“I need someone who I can have deep conversations with.”
“I need someone who’s a strong leader.”
I suppose I was right about some of them. But I was wrong about others. One that you would hear me say again and again was, “I need someone who will draw me out and get me to talk about what I’m thinking.”
I was absolutely convinced of this one. Often when I would meet a guy it would take me several interactions with him before I would really open up and be myself. Some guys who didn’t really attempt to draw me out would never get a glimpse of who I was. If they did get to know me, they would often say that their first impression about me was false (and usually negative). So it made sense that my future mate would need to possess the ability to get me to open up. I told people often that this was the kind of guy I needed.
Well, you may have already guessed where this is going, but Kevin is not that kind of person. Not at all. He does make me laugh. I can have deep conversations with him. He is a strong leader. But he does not draw me out. (I touched on this in my post about conversational narcissism.)
Turns out I didn’t need that … or at least God didn’t think so. But there’s something odd that has happened as a result of being married to a person who does not draw me out. I have learned to not keep my opinions and feelings under lock and key, waiting for the other person to fish for them. I’ve learned that sometimes I need to volunteer the information. I’ve discovered that perhaps my motive in desiring that the other person draw me out was pride–I believed I was important enough that someone should be interested in what I thought. Interested enough to coax it out of me.
My husband does work on asking me questions, because he knows it makes me feel cared for. But he is not the “spotlight-on-Suzanne” spouse that I once imagined. And that’s a good thing. I didn’t know what I needed.
And then there are things about him that I needed desperately but had no idea about. For example, he is never critical of my mistakes. Because I am very critical of my own mistakes, this is an affirming quality that helps me be my best. I am so thankful that my wise heavenly Father knew I needed this and gave it to me through Kevin.
If you are single and find yourself frequently saying, “I need someone who …”, hold loosely to those things. You may need them, but you may not. Only God knows what you really need. And sometimes not getting what you think you need helps you grow into a better person. I love the verse that says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). The One who knows what we need has the resources to provide it. And He does so generously.
Read Insight No. 3.