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Let’s be very clear and honest from the beginning of this review. I got Dating with Purpose for free because Ashley “Empowers” Brown had a special deal where we only had to pay shipping. I wanted to read it to see if she really knew what she was talking about and how real she was. I had only been following her for maybe two weeks on Instagram when I got her freebie and I barely knew how I made it to her page.
Fast forward a few weeks later, a Saturday afternoon, I see a box sticking out of my mailbox. I thought to myself, I didn’t order anything this week or did I? I did. There it was, the book, I was slightly skeptical of reading. But I wanted to give it a try, why not? It talked about Purpose and dating so it has to be something there for me, right? Right!
I opened the package as soon as I got in my car, my son and I were heading to a birthday party. As we waited for the party to begin I cracked open this book and began reading. the very first word in the introduction…God. Welp, I’m sold.
As I went through the 120 pages of this book, Ashley began to tell her story, her story of romance, her story of love, brokenness, healing, and marriage. I’m sure she has more to tell and I’m waiting for the next book. She poured out on these pages words that will make you stop and think, words that will cause a shift in your atmosphere and words that will challenge you.
I’m a writer, I write in my books, so it’s rare that I if ever share a book with someone else because I scribble all over the pages, highlight and more. But out of this book, I want to share a few pointers that I highlighted and wrote in the margins.
- Ashley spoke about Deuteronomy 1:2 (grab your bibles) and how the Israelites spent 40 years wandering around the wilderness for an 11-day journey. She made two points 1) It’s a journey and 2) “If you don’t learn from your mistakes, you can spend more time wandering than God ever intended.” When I read this, I went back and re-read it again. I went back and underlined it the third time I read it. The author is speaking to her journey in marriage and her dating mishaps, but this message gave me a bigger AHA moment. This one section speaks to every aspect of our lives and not just marriage and dating. It speaks to life in general. Our everyday life is a journey into our purpose, the longer we dwell on and not learn from mistakes or missteps the longer it will take for you to get to your purposed destiny.
- “Sometimes you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, and sometimes in the middle of nowhere, you find yourself.” Silent seasons honey! Silent seasons!! There will be times in your journey that you will have not one choice but to sit still, stop talking and trust God. Allow God to make and mold you into who you are supposed to be. In the context of the book, you have to be alone for God to make you the wife He desires you to be, not the one you want to be. But catch this, when you are sitting still in the middle of nowhere, you are forced to commune with God so his desires become your desires. Get it! Be thankful for the making and breaking.
- She almost married the wrong man. She realized things weren’t in alignment. Alignment is real in this season of your life, it is real. She realized that guy who got away (Thank God), was in the wrong position. She was pursuing him, not him pursuing her. In the Bible, it tells us “He who finds a wife, finds a good thing” Not she who finds and pursues her husband. She also stated that the “peace of God was not in it.” She was working hard for something that wasn’t blessing her, she was being pulled and drained. Remember, if we want the sustainable relationship God intends for us we have to ensure we are in the position he has asked us to be in, in His Word.
- Fourth and Final because I want you to read the book, FOMO, the fear of missing out. “Truth is that oftentimes, when you think you are missing out on something good, you are being redirected to something great.” Listen…It’s okay if the relationship fails if it doesn’t work out, if you walk away. If it’s not meant for you, it’s not meant for you and God will replace what is missing.
Let me tell you a secret, come in for this, I got all of this from the front of the book, there are more lessons and more underlines and highlights in the back of the book. I want you, whether you are single or in a relationship, to go grab this book. Take time to read and understand it, re-read, digest, take notes and prepare yourself to move from dating to Dating with Purpose.
I believe God wants to build all of us up to be the wives after His heart, Proverbs 31 women, nurtures and lovers, supporters and prayer warriors. God has a plan for us all and this book allowed me to open my eyes even more to the direction I need to take to prepare for my wife walk.
Until next time…