Eight journals. That's how many I'd written in my 20s, during a time when I was trying to navigate the ups and downs of dating. They contained stories of relationships both good and bad. Some recollections were funnier or more heartening than others. Some ideas were spiritual and helpful—while other entries were merely excuses to let off steam!

But I noticed something valuable as I skimmed through those pages. With each passing year, and each dating experience, my thoughts became progressively more confident in God's loving plan for me. The tone was gentler, showing I was ready for good to show up in unexpected ways. Had I taken on a distant, "above it all" attitude? No. I still wanted to find someone special. But rather than feeling like I was waiting for a moment of arrival when I'd meet a soulmate, I'd come to learn that my bond with God was unbreakable and that my relationship with Him would never be in flux. It's a lesson that continues to help me now that I'm married.

Of course, everyone's experiences with relationships are unique. In Ginny Luedeman's interview she encourages readers to seek out the Love that is God and "never give up on expressing love." She goes on to say, "We are always in Love, and it's natural and wonderful to express delightful, inclusive love at all times of our lives" (see page 6). In a following piece, Sunny Schneberger shares what helped her, post breakup, and talks about her decision to tackle swirling emotions through prayer. Then, Camille Carandang gives us a window into what she's still learning about love and dating.

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July 6, 2009

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