Before you marry, know your marriage budget. This isn’t about how much you can spend for a wedding, reception or for invitations. This marriage budget is about how much  your heart can afford to take or to lose. A heart is a sensitive resource and the cost of its repair requires a great deal of time, effort, tears, ice cream at 2 am and maybe even counseling. No one wants to pay this!

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We’re going to look at some basic requirements and actions needed when meeting someone online to reduce heart repair or damage!

1. Ask yourself, how much time and cash flow you have to invest to know if someone meets your criteria. If you cannot afford to travel to Timbuktu, quit following and liking the pics of the Timbuktu heart slayers on social media! If your Southwest Rapid Rewards will not let you be great enough to access Timbuktu love, then keep your love within a 2-block radius of what you have the capacity to do. Keep your love in your vicinity!

If your job does not allow you to take time off at this time to visit the Timbuktu Love Of Your Life, then consider local loves. Look a lil harder when you go to the grocery store. What about the man who always repairs your car? He’s kinda cute!

2. It only requires the cost of the internet or your already-paid cellphone bill to connect, to run game, to meet, to begin liking and to talk with someone online. A heart has much higher expenditures. In today’s technological world, you can virtually date someone in Turkey this Friday night and not speak Turkey-talk at all! However, your love language needs to be able to verbalize itself and to communicate correctly. Just because you can meet native Turkish citizens, Kemal and Ayse online, and talk for days, it does not mean your heart needs to invest in Tuonline_0.jpgrkish love. You don’t even have a passport! This contact will go no further than Instagram and Facebook. This isn’t fair to anyone at all.

It costs to do your due diligence to meet a person,  to see their home so you can know how a person lives, to meet their family and to go to the city the person resides in if she/he isn’t local to you. In addition, premarital counseling outranks many of the actions you can take to learn if this person is able to devote their life to paying the costs to loving you for life. Go HERE to get the help needed to make this happen. Wouldn’t it feel great to not only be in love, getting married, but to have a “shout-it-all-out” type of security about your partner? You can.

If you cannot afford the travel costs and time required to to court someone, OFFLINE, you cannot afford to marry this person.

Using your limited funds with cash and time as an excuse to not follow through with the basics for marriage means you exceeded your marriage budget. Stay within what you have the capacity to allow your time, money and heart to do.

There are some fool-proof and signature differences between a single and unmarried person. We defined a single man in our last blog. Today, we’re gonna sniff out the unmarried person. An unmarried person may be single, divorced or widowed. They show up with all types of relationship history. The primary brand and seal you should seek on this person is that he or she desires a committed relationship. This person has a lifestyle that reeks commitment in some form or fashion in their life.

Tip No. 1: This person is committed to more than Jordans, their passport, car or designer bags.

For an unmarried person, commitment will peep out in ways such as a stable job history, an attachment to a program in the community or a long-standing relationship with a family member that extends bunmarriedeyond the mandated holidays, graduations and birthdays.

Tip No. 2: They slay, but it doesn’t get in the way.

An unmarried person has taken some personal inventory, but has also done some marriage preparation. They exude some self-awareness, but not an ego. An unmarried person may have a few coins saved or secured a few prized personal possessions, but this doesn’t interrupt who they are. This person understands they have a life, but an unmarried person seeks to add value to their existing life with meaningful companionship. Basically, they look good, and carry themselves well, but they aren’t stuck up.

Tip No. 3: They got baggage.

An unmarried person has been seeking marriage without success, and they ain’t happy about it. In the process of the search, shots were fired and they got hit! An unmarried person has been hurt, but this is where they will be different. They won’t lie about it. An unmarried person admits their dodo stinks, but will use some Febreeze for your smelling pleasure. Now, they won’t tell you err’thang, but their attempts at honesty will be genuine. You should also be able to ask questions and get the real deal from the folks in their life to be found in Tip No. 1. Her aunt, who she loves dearly, should be willing to talk to you at the door, one-on-one, after the family dinner. Talk to the people around this person. Ask a question. And then another question. If everyone tells you how great this unmarried person is, and nothing else, they don’t like you. Everyone has  flaws and someone should tell you the truth.

These three tips should help you better identify your target while single to shed the layers of your unmarried lifestyle. An unmarried person is more than single. This person has a life that is prepared for a husband or wife to make their entrance into their life.  There is a transition between being single and being unmarried. You don’t want to go into marriage as or with a single person. They will  learn to make the shift in the marriage. No one wants their husband or wife acting single! If you don’t have your affairs in order yet, start changing your habits to attract your future husband or wife.

I don’t look like what I’ve been through, but I pray like I’ve been through it.
I pray while remembering crying so hard my cheeks burned from my salty tears. A homeless shelter was my destination with a 5-month old in tow. I pray like the room I slept in at the homeless shelter became my office years later. Allah brought me back to the same place, a new way, an employee not a resident. I pray like I’ve had to take out a restraining order. He choked me, pushed me into a wall until it caved in & stabbed himself in the leg afterwards. I got the restraining order free cause I “petitioned to sue as a pauper”. Basically, I could prove I had food stamps. I pray like a man I loved pulled my mouth apart until my lips cracked. It felt so barbaric.

I pray like I hid $2000 in my infant son’s diaper pail in the shelter. I figured no one would think his crap was worth anything. I pray like a man I loved took money I saved to get a car & used my money for his benefit.I found out when he told me what he did. I pray like I had a Momma who helped me get a car anyway. I pray like I’d rest in the examination rooms while doing my clinical residency cause my blood pressure would be so high I couldn’t stand. I refused to go to the hospital cause they always admitted me & I couldn’t get the clinical hours needed from a hospital room. I pray like I had elder women who protected me when I didn’t have sense enough to know I was in harm’s way.

I pray like the masjid came through for me when laid off. I pray like I graduated & didn’t have my degree cause I owed the school money. I pray like I have my all of degrees in my possession. I pray like I’ve seen a child I raised make decisions I don’t like & I have to figure out a new way to love him. I pray like I’ve called my aunt while driving, pulled over, and said, “Don’t say anything. Just let me cry.” She did. I pray like I struggle with narcolepsy & try to live like I’m “ON” & alert when my sleep disorder has cut me off from you. I pray like I’ve shown a child, a burn victim, my vitiligo so she wouldn’t hide her talents behind her scars. I pray like I’ve watched a man I love go blind & still see God in his life. I pray for my mother who suffers from dementia & continues to find evidence of God’s grace in her life even when she can’t remember her own children. I pray like this cause I’m in awe of My Lord & unceasingly grateful.
I don’t look like what I’ve been through, but I pray like I’ve been through it.- Naa’ila © 2017I