For those of you who have never heard the flower story let me start but explaining the back story …
Once, there was a girl. She was looking for the perfect flower, and spent much of her time searching the field of flowers in her backyard. Unfortunately, she couldn’t find the flower she was looking for and was discouraged. Other girls had found their flower, why could she not find hers? Then a wise person told her, “Don’t be discouraged! This is not the only field. There are plenty of other fields to search in.”
In case you didn’t understand the metaphor, she isn’t actually looking for a flower, she’s looking for her spouse (and depending on who you are telling the story to, the girl might be a boy … it’s very easy to adjust). The field is the stage of life or the place you are in.
College kids tend to fall prey to the idea that we have to find our mate while we’re at school or else we’ll never find them. So much about this idea is wrong, and it leads to unhealthy behaviors like freshmen mating season and ring by spring craze! Girls, at Christian universities especially, get it in their head that this is the best place to meet guys because there is a better chance they are quality guys.
The thing I find most discouraging about this, is that so many girls don’t even realize they’re in bad relationships because they start to justify unhealthy situations. He makes a couple of missteps and she says, “it’s okay that’s not who he really is” or “he really is a good guy, he was just having a bad night.” Jealousy is seen as caring, and going to dinner in the cafeteria is seen as a date.
How do we break the cycle? The cycle of justifying and settling… Why does our self worth increase when a guy affirms us? A kind word from a friend just isn’t enough anymore; unless a guy tells us we are beautiful or awesome we don’t tend to believe it. It breaks my heart that our generation has put so much value in the opinion of the world.
At any rate, I’ve already given up the college field of flowers. All the good ones here have been picked and many of the leftovers are dandelions. They look nice at first, but eventually their weed interior comes out and spreads to grow more weeds. I’m setting a higher standard for myself. A standard I know I deserve, even if it means more waiting and searching different fields.
Girls, I’d encourage you to set your standards high. Don’t give in to the idea that we need to get married right away to be happy. Take your time, live your life, and wait for God’s timing. His timing is different for everyone. But don’t forget to pay attention … what you’re looking for may be right in front of you.