“Ain’t Nothing Going on but the Rent” was a song that was popular when I was a young girl. It was a song where the woman said, “You got to have a J-O-B if you want to be with me.” This was news to me. At that age, I just thought a boy sent you a note asking if you liked him and you checked yes or no. I didn’t know there were conditions!
But it was true. I’ve seen firsthand what it’s like to date someone who wasn’t working. They cannot function until they get their money right. It’s horrible for both sides. I can also say, I met a man once who told me he wasn’t working, but he had a plan. He did.
The part of the song that I’ve been thinking about in writing this piece is where she says, “No romance without finance.”
Why? Because romance and finance have a lot in common.
Both makes us feel on top of the world. Both are for daily use. Both can be saved up for special occasions. Both can be blown with one mistake.
And, where both go ridiculously wrong is when we jump in irresponsibly without paying enough attention.
Good Buy, Hold, or Sell Off?
No banker makes an investment without research.
They look at facts, trends, history of performance on the market, and evaluate whether it’s a short-term or a long-term investment.
Bankers do not invest based on emotion.
“I’m lonely (or nervous about being broke or haven’t had money in a long time) so let me invest.”
Although some will tell you that there is the presence of instinct, financial pros mostly rely on cold hard facts because the goal is to make sure there is a return on investment (ROI).
What they invest must result in a profit. Or else what’s the point?
I’m thinking, it would be pretty wise for us to approach love and dating in that same way.
Read the Prospect(us)
Oftentimes, we meet a guy and we jump on the phone. “Girl, he said he could see us getting married and having kids!” “Dang, we look good together.” And for those of us who have unwisely jumped into the fire before marriage – “But the sex was so good.”
Our emotions about things that have yet to happen catch us in a stranglehold and we can’t see why he might be a “stock” that will flop. We say “I do” to something that should first be an “I don’t know yet.”
I’ll probably say this on every post that I write about singleness: Wait.
Listen. Watch. Wait. And then wait some more.
You are listening for his words, plans, and intentions. Watching for his actions to match up with his words. And, waiting for the boogie man to jump out of the closet.
Most importantly, you are waiting to hear from God.
You are waiting to see if you and he will be compatible. Does he “get” you and do you “get” him? You are waiting to see how or if he worships. And what he does when he thinks no one is watching.
Having some of the same interests is good. I happen to think opposites can work. A funny person can help a straight-laced person loosen up sometimes. I’m not certain about the benefit of a straight-laced person. Maybe they’ll save you money on your taxes or invent a high-heel shoe that feels like your favorite slippers, I don’t know. But they need love, too!
Before you get to know all of this, it makes no sense to invest your heart.
What I won’t do here is tell you men are this or that or they do this or that. Men are people like we ladies are people. They are flawed like we are flawed. They either have character or they don’t. Just like us.
What I can say is that we each have the responsibility to choose wisely. And men and women both get it wrong sometimes.
Chasing Ponzi Schemes of Love
Ponzi schemes are built on and fed by people’s ego and greed, not need. And, by laziness, too. Your ego will make you believe that even if it looks too good to be true, you think you “deserve” it because you’re you. So you don’t do the independent research, and that’s how you end up losing your entire investment.
And by independent research, I don’t mean your friends. Or Google, though it’s useful to make sure he isn’t on America’s Most Wanted.
Ask God and pay attention!
He’s perfect. He does this, this, and that. He floats on air. He says everything right. The bathroom never smells after he goes. He never lies. He never gets mad. He has no enemies. He loves everybody. Everybody loves him. According to him.
A real person is going to be flawed, but their flaws are not going to be harmful, cause distrust, or drain you of your joy or finances.
I can’t tell you what to look for because, as I showed you in the man without a job scenario, each situation is different and should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
But, the banker’s approach will help us make an informed investment and minimize some of the risk.
So, what’s the play call?
Discern from your listening, watching, and waiting to see if he’d be a 1 Peter 3:7 husband. Will he honor you and delight in you? Treat you like an equal heir to grace so his prayers don’t run amuck? Flowers are nice, but are they given from a pure heart? How he treats you now will be how he treats you later.
Evaluate short-term or long-term investing. Is he fun to date, but not the marrying type? Or is he a long-term investment with consistent payout – a lifetime commitment.
Keep watch on his performance, so that you will know when it is time to buy more stock – or sell!
Tell your feelings to hush until you believe the return will sustain you and be what you need.
I am not certain what your desired return might be, but investing based on consistency, perceived ability to love, trustworthiness, enjoyment of each other’s company, whether he has the desire for marriage and a family, has the desire to build a legacy, and seeing to it that you serve God together – is wisdom.
With the ultimate return being a Godly marriage…and free license for lots of good and righteous whoopee.
[You know you thought it, too.]
Be blessed y’all.