Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Here's a peek at the first Cache' Connections Expo, which was held on 11/5/10 at Calvary Church in Naperville, Illinois. 34 vendors provided games, activities and prizes to approximately 250 singles. Singles Pastor John Absher looks forwarding to hosting the next expo on 10/28/11, so mark your calendars!
Monday, November 29, 2010
In case you didn't know, Cyber Monday is sort of like the internet's answer to Black Friday. In other words, on the Monday following Thanksgiving, there are fantastic deals that you can only get online. And have we got a deal for you!
Through midnight tonight, you can purchase a subscription (or manually renew your existing subscription) and save 50% off three months or more! Here are the sale prices:
$64.95 - 3 months - $32.48
$99.95 - 6 months - $49.98
$149.95 - 12 months - $74.98
$349.95 - Until Married - $174.98
Promo code: CYBERMON
No traffic, no need to wait in line, get up early or stay up late (although we know many of you do!) Just log on to www.cacheconnections.com to get started! And ... interested in gifting a single friend with a subscription for Christmas? Contact us to make the purchase!
So, before you step away from the computer, go to Cache' Connections. Once you finish your questionnaire, you will have connections within a few minutes. Featured in the photo is one couple who met there a year ago and have recently returned from their honeymoon!
Please help us spread the word and forward this information with your single friends.
~ Kim and Linda
Friday, November 26, 2010
At this writing, many of you readers are out fighting the crowds, grabbing the bargains and standing in long lines. Once you get home and get a nap under your belt, we encourage you to log into your account at Cache' Connections and check out our very own BLACK FRIDAY SPECIAL!
Starting today through 6:00 am on Saturday, November 27th, save 60% on a subscription or renewal of 6 months or more!
$99.95 - 6 months - BLACK FRIDAY: $39.98
$149.95 - 12 months - BLACK FRIDAY $59.98
$349.95 - Until Married - BLACK FRIDAY $139.98
Promo code: BLACKFRI
Check your remaining subscription length under Billing Management. What a great time to extend your membership before an automatic renewal! Also, a Cache' Connections membership would make a great Christmas gift. Just contact us to make arrangements for a transaction as a gift purchase. Feel free to call with any questions: 309-550-5580.
Have a great weekend :)
Kim and Linda
Thursday, November 25, 2010
We came across this beautiful prayer written by Pastor John Vaughn of Bartonville, Illinois:
My God and my all! Dear Lord, make this the frequent cry of my heart! Let me never forget how very truly You are my all. I have never spoken with You my God in person, face to face, yet deep within my heart I know I have been saved by Your loving grace. I speak with You through heartfelt prayer, And I can always feel Your presence near. What a glad and joyous day it was when I first came to you with faith and believed.
There are so many good things which have made my life worthwhile, not only those which I know, but also those of which I am unaware, and every one of these things is a loving gift from You. No matter how much I desire my own good, You think of only my good and provide for my welfare far more than I ever could. How can I ever thank You for the blessings I've received? While You have done so many wonderful things, the ones that I treasure the most are the gifts of love that You gave to me … Your Son Jesus, on a cross at Calvary, and my Comforter and friend the Holy Spirit.
So Lord, allow me to prove my deep gratitude, not just with words on a Thanksgiving morning, but in a way that I know You desire most. Help me to prove it with a daily life which seeks first and foremost to please You. I want to take each gift of Yours today and return it to You by my intelligent and unselfish use of it. In my dealings with other people, grant it that I would treat them with the generosity, love, and consideration which You have shown to me. In all my thoughts, words, and actions today, I hope to shout a heartfelt "Thank You" to You. AMEN.
Have a thankful heart and a happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Kim and Linda
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
A friend asked us this question, having been cheated on by his former wife and a former girlfriend. Here's what some of our Facebook friends had to say about regaining trust:
Joy - Fully rely on God!
Vicki - It is not easy to learn to trust again. I am still struggling with trusting someone. I do rely on God, but in the back of my mind, I do not trust. It is a struggle.
Stan - Forgive.
Anonymous - I think the second time around I am wiser and more intuitive to deceit and unauthentic men. I try and ask better questions to find out their character. I am generally a trusting person so it is hard at times but with GOD I can do it. He has given me discernment. I can smell a rat much quicker : ) Trust is the foundation of all relationships and it HAS to be built one brick at a time...one step at a time. Building a friendship first is key!
Jody - Sometimes you don't and sometimes you can't.
Jill - time and meeting the one person that makes you feel safe.
Jodi - You learn to trust in the Trustworthy One because He alone is the one who truly never disappoints. You also learn to trust in yourself. You trust that you will survive if it happens again after all look who is on your side. But it would be tragic to never trust again just on the chance you might get hurt. Love is a precious gift. Don't let your hearts be hardened. Learn from the past then let it go and move on!
Jill - I guess I took it as after that relationship is done how do you trust a new person. As far as staying in the marrage you don't ever trust 100% again.
Jerry - I believe there are many factors to consider here, The Marriage vow a couple make to each other, before God and in the presence of their friends and family is a very serious and holy commitment! Just as is the vow we take to serve Jesus, when ...we are saved. Do we ever stumble and disappoint God in our relationship with him?? If or when we do will God take us back with a truly repentant heart?? Are we to live any less in forgiveness??? or do we discard someone we loved and are committed to because we are hurt and our trust in them was shattered?? As far as the other factors here, is this a way of life for the spouse? is this spouse been abusive in other ways also?? When we are young and first married we think we are bullet proof to infidelity, then in the long journey of life, the devil and his evil plans will take over many, in a moment of sin! Must we forget and walk away or continue in love and in forgiveness, also trusting in our Lord to heal our wounded Marriage, as we continue together holding what is good and holy, and growing in our Lord and Savior Christ! In the end the only one who we can put complete trust in is the one who made us, and died for our sins, otherwise we are loving blindly to love another like we are to love him.
Whew! Heavy stuff! Aren't you thankful that our Heavenly Father specializes in heavy stuff - exchanging beauty for ashes?
Isaiah: 1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,[a]
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes, the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the LORD
for the display of his splendor.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Click here for a great video reminder of all you have to be thankful for this Thanksgiving:
Also, here's an encouraging word from our resident expert Emily Shupert:
I hope that this email finds you doing well as you enter into the Thanksgiving Season. Thanksgiving Day this year is a bit different for many than in years past. Showing thankfulness and gratitude is a lot harder to do when experiencing financial difficulties, job loss, family distress, and the fear of what the future holds. Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday but the state of thankfulness might not resonate in your heart and in your actions because of the difficulties and hardships you have experienced. While many times we hold off on celebrating and finding rest until things are complete, I pray that this thanksgiving you are able to find gratitude and thanksgiving for the blessings you have received while also holding onto faith for the things that are incomplete and unsettled. I hope that through this perspective, you will be able to experience God’s peace as He allows the incomplete things to become a gateway by which you enter into His place of rest. May this holiday be a time where you stop and celebrate the current blessings in all their goodness and hold onto faith in a loving Father who is intimately involved in the areas of life that are incomplete and lacking.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
Happy Thanksgiving and be thankful!
Monday, November 22, 2010
Singles from Central Illinois gathered at beautiful Crossroads United Methodist Church on Friday night and found encouragement through the spirit-led worship, speaker Charles Klees, and a very special couple, Craig and Phillis, who met through a Cache' Connections event. We found it interesting, however, that it was give and take with the encouragement.
Many of the guests who came out were members from our first year, before we had the computerized matching system. At that time, we spent time on the phone with members, getting to know them in order to build their profile and make prospective connections. They knew us "back when." It was such a blessing to see many of them again, and to hear them say how pleased they are that Cache' Connections is growing and making a difference in lives. (Note how many lives were affected by Phillis and Craig's connection!) They encouraged us to stay the course and "keep doing what we're doing." (I love it when people say that :) We even heard of another local couple who married after meeting at one of our events!
Charles Klees, LCPC, and his wife Joyce encouraged singles to use godly wisdom in their approach to relationships, using this outline for levels of relationships:
• The first level is superficial involvement. This occurs in relationships where people interact in a casual manner and little investment in and absolutely no commitments to one another.
• Second level – is Companionship. A companion is a relationship where two persons associate for the purpose of sharing common activities. In companionship, the activity is more important than the person.
• Third level -- Friendship. In a friendship, it’s the reverse. Two people associate for the purpose of mutual support and enjoyment of each other.
• (*) Romantic love. This is a shared activity, friendship and chemistry is present. Romantic love has grown into trust and is a quiet understanding and mature acceptance of imperfection. This is a friendship which has caught fire. It’s not based on sex.
(*) Marriage. Romantic love emerges into a functional association with the other person. As you begin to share your life with that other person, you make commitments in the real world to meet each other’s physical, emotional, and social needs.
When you look at building relationships this way, you begin to realize that normal people do not get married in a very short amount of time. That’s not healthy. At any rate, before you plunge into a human relationship with expectations that can never be met, build a solid foundation with Christ. Internalize His Peace, His rest, His joy. Allow Him to meet the needs that even the most ideal man or woman on earth will never be able to meet. Then you can approach dating and marriage from a position of fullness rather than emptiness, from a state of satisfaction rather than desperation.
As usual, there was something for everyone to take away from this event, including maybe a tasty homemade cookie for the road! Our heartfelt thanks go to Crossroads UMC, S.O. who took the reins within the church, all of the volunteers and musicians, and to all of the singles who took a step of faith and came out for this event. Our prayer is that each of you will be blessed for your involvement.
Friday, November 19, 2010
This is a question we hear often. Seems no one who is in the age range of 30 to 60 finds dating as easy as it was when they were younger. It didn't take long for us to learn the answer to this question. We are dealing with hurting people. It is a harsh reality, but singles in this age range are dealing with:
- ticking biological clocks
- unmet desires
- fallout from divorce
- painful breakups
- deep emotional scars from as early as childhood that may or may not be identified
- sexual temptation
- mixed messages from the world and the Church
- single parenting issues
- financial issues
- feelings of inferiority
Well, the list goes on and on but you get the gist. Let's face it, we were much less jaded and much more naive in our teens and twenties.
Don't we all wish that things could be easier? I know, for instance, when Kim and I started Cache' Connections, we thought we were just going to put up a website and sit back and watch the sign-ups roll in. Ha! We couldn't have been more wrong. It quickly became quite evident that God had a much bigger job in store for us. He knew that his unmarried people needed an advocate, an avenue for community, support, understanding, instruction and much more.
I'll never forget what one single woman told me over the phone in our first year of business/ministry. We had scheduled a dance in Peoria, IL that we ultimately had to cancel due to few sign-ups. This woman encouraged me, telling me that she really appreciated what we were doing and how much needed it was. She went on to inform me that singles are fickle and don't like to make their plans until the last minute; they are really hard to get a commitment out of, but she really encouraged us to go on with what God had laid on our hearts to do. That was hard to hear, but encouraging at the same time.
We know that God does his best work on us in the hard times. If life were easy, we'd have no reason to lean into God. Kim and I have learned so much in the nearly 4 years since starting Cache' Connections. There have been some very tough (and expensive) lessons. Through it all we've had to fully rely on God - wouldn't think of operating any other way. You can learn from your dating life, too. Relationship experts often say that you can learn about yourself as much as you have an opportunity to learn about the person you are dating.
God may be trying to show you something about YOU in your dating. We just want to encourage you today to hang in there, as we have, and continue to listen and be aware of how God is trying to grow you. He has great plans for you and me (Jer. 29:11), but those great plans may well be realized on the journey to what we THINK we want ...
Have a great weekend!
Thursday, November 18, 2010
To celebrate the upcoming holidays, we are offering two free weeks to ANYONE who does not have an active membership - all you have to do is ask! In the spirit of being thankful (Col. 3:15) for the privilege of working with you, we want to give back. So for a limited time, simply contact us and request two free weeks, whether you are a new member or a returning visitor! No strings attached!
Cache' Connections is the place to be for Christian singles who are serious about their faith and being connected with other believers. Here's what one member had to say:
"I am actually very impressed by your service. It is very personable and the system is to the point. You know you are getting professing Christians and not people who are just nominal Christians. The system is friendly from day one and you are allowed to compose your own correspondence. All and all, it is a great tool to meet someone. Without compromising on quality, it takes minimal amount of time to screen people and to initiate correspondence. Good job and I have nothing but good things to say." - Valentina
Please let us know if you have any questions.
Kim and Linda
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
One of our single friends posed this question anonymously:
"Could a kiss turn a "maybe" into a "yes" if you are on the fence with your feelings for someone you have been on several dates with or would that be putting the cart before the horse?"
While our friend was actually asking for a poll on Facebook, we thought this was a question we could answer with a degree of confidence. It is something that is addressed in Cache' Connections' new DVD, Christian Dating ... Redefined. Allow me to share "Dr. Steve's" (Stephen W. Simpson) opinion on this topic.
Great question! I can understand your frustration in trying to decide if this is a love connection or not. However, we feel that kissing is not the answer. Here's why:
Your level of physical intimacy should never be more advanced than your emotional connection. While a pleasant kiss could certainly tip the scale, it could very well be for the wrong reasons. If you allow your physical intimacy level to be more advanced than your emotional connection, your reasons to maintain the relationship could very well get blurred. Kissing is a very intimate act that should be enjoyed by two people who are committed to a relationship. Once you involve any level of physical intimacy, even holding hands, there are many physical, chemical and emotional bells and whistles going off that are perhaps too premature to deal with, when you are not sure if you have a solid foundation.
We would recommend, instead, asking yourself (and having a frank discussion with your guy) if the two of you have similar values, life goals and world view, do you enjoy one others company, do you highly anticipate the next time you will see each other, etc. If the answers to these questions (and others) are an agreeable yes, then hopefully you can each state your intentions about being committed to the relationship and seeing where God leads it. In our opinion, then, to kiss now would indeed be putting the cart before the horse :) (However, I'd like to be a little mouse in the room after this discussion if it leads to a resounding yes from both of you!)
What is your opinion?
For more information on Christian Dating ... Redefined, CLICK HERE.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
This title is a headline from a chapter taken from Joyce Meyer's book, Never Give Up! It isn't a book about being single, but it's focused around overcoming adversity to live the life and purpose God has created for us. As I was reading the book, I found it interesting that she talked about singles under this subtitle, "Failing to Follow." Here's what Joyce Meyer had to say:
"Sometimes we pray for something but aren't willing to follow the Holy Spirit even when He tries to lead us into the answer to our prayer. For example, I know of people who refuse to attend singles groups at church because they don't want to go by themselves. They want to date and eventually get married, but they want God to work on their terms. I can understand where it might take some courage to go alone, but doing the difficult thing is often good for us. It stretches our faith and often leads us into the very thing we are looking for. We must be careful that we are not planning and praying that our plan will work, when we should be praying first and then following God's plan."
Joyce even goes on to say that her daughter Sandra met her husband by attending a church function that she went to by herself. I have found personally that if I go to a social outing by myself, even though it is hard to do, it forces me to be more social and meet more people.
So, if you've been putting off attending a Cache' Connections event alone or some other event, whether it be in your church or somewhere else, maybe it's time to set a goal to give this a try. Even if you don't meet someone special, you'll feel like you have accomplished a goal and will feel more confident going somewhere alone in the future.
Monday, November 15, 2010
By now you know that one unique aspect of Cache' Connections is that we not only connect singles online, but at live events. There are "no excuses" for our Illinois members and non-members who are itching to meet new Christian singles in their general area. The events calendar is packed between now and New Year's Eve, as we look forward to the holidays and take a peak into 2011.
This Friday night, 11/19, Central Illinois singles will gather at Cache' Connections Live! at beautiful Crossroads United Methodist Church in Washington. We expect singles from the Springfield, Bloomington, Peoria and Galesburg areas to attend this event. They are sure to make new friends as they enjoy socializing, worshiping, and hearing the wise words of Counselor Charles Klees as he speaks on building healthy relationships. CLICK HERE for all details and to register for just ten bucks!
How about a coffee date with approximately 15 to 20 new potentials? Chicagoland and Peoria area singles can register for one or several Cache' Coffee Connections events that are coming up soon:
Cache' Coffee Connections, Bannockburn, IL
11/19 - Friday
6:00 to 9:00 pm
Cache' Coffee Connections, Evanston, IL
11/20 - Saturday
6:00 to 9:00 pm
Cache' Coffee Connections, Wheaton, IL
11/21 - Sunday
4:00 to 7:00 pm
Cache' Coffee Connections, Peoria, IL
Copper River Coffee & Tea
12/5 - Sunday
6:30 to 8:30 pm
Note: Need not drink coffee to attend :) CLICK HERE for details on all coffee events - just $10 to pre-register, $20 at the door.
We've scheduled another of our widely popular social mixers for Christmas. Make plans now and register for the Cache' Connections Christmas Mixer that will be held on Sunday, December 5th at The Clubhouse in Oak Brook from 5:00 pm to approximately 8:30 pm. Hors d'oeuvres and soft drinks are on tap so that singles are free to mingle the entire evening. This is a great atmosphere to make new friends and possibly a love connection, so we've heard :)
New Year's Eve!
Stay tuned as we finalize the details on an event to be held near the O'Hare Airport on New Year's Eve. (Hint: You might want to polish up your dancing shoes.)
We are in the initial phases of planning our next Cache' Connections Expo, which is scheduled to take place on 4/1/11 at New Life Fellowship in Jacksonville, Florida. This just might be a good reason to fly south for a weekend getaway.
Lastly, we've sent our DVD - Christian Dating Redefined, to several churches in several states. Many pastors and singles leaders have agreed to preview it and possibly show it to their groups, using Dr. Stephen Simpson's study guide, which includes exercises for each series. So - mini Cache' Connections events could be sprouting up all over the nation! Please let us know if your singles leader might be interested in participating in this movement. We appreciate your prayers for this effort to change the dating landscape of our culture and for a new message of healthy, intentional dating to permeate our country.
Speaking of the praying, this is a reminder to fast and pray on Mondays at lunchtime for 1) marriages for those who long (or should long) to be married, 2) courage for men to move into relationship and marriage with a woman, and 3) courage for women to see where we need to change and to change.
Sunday, November 14, 2010
We often receive comments from members who are disappointed that other members that they've sent notes to do not respond back, if even to say they are not interested. So, every once in a while it's time to address this issue.
Because Cache' Connections is all about being bold, intentional and authentic, we ask our members to respond to all of their messages. "Don't leave them hanging!" It only takes a minute to write something such as this: "Thanks for the message, but I do not feel this would be a good connection."
Here's what I wrote to a member yesterday: Keep in mind that their accounts may have expired between the time you received their profile and when you sent them a message, or they may not be logging in for some other reason, such as exploring another relationship. Try not to take it personally, and we don't recommend writing a very long initial email, or anything too personal.
We know it can feel a little mean ... but trust us on this. We've heard the cries of our people, and they would much rather know that you are not interested ... than to not know and be left wondering. So, be bold. Be intentional. It's the right thing to do. It's always a great idea to respond with an encouraging note, too!
Friday, November 12, 2010
It's that time again - to try to make some new contacts. This is definitely one of the hardest things about this business, introducing ourselves to new churches and trying to convince them in a few minutes of time that we're not scammers or the typical worldly dating site.
So we set about cold calling again, but this time armed with a product, our new dvd, Christian Dating - Redefined. Before I go on, I have to add that my heart was beating out my chest when I left a message for the singles pastor at Greg Laurie's Harvest Church... at least the secretary was very nice :) Well, the great thing about our new dvd is it explains our foundation in a succinct, edgy manner that resonates with everyone, whether they are singles or pastors. You should take a minute to check out the Trailer if you haven't already. We especially hope to convey that we are all about the same mission, helping singles stay committed to biblical principles. Although our emphasis is on keeping God in the center of building love relationships, we're all really doing God's business. And as much as pastors sometimes would like to overlook the issue of dating and romance, we know God has hardwired man to love and be loved, and this need and desire can't be denied. So why not meet singles where they are today and help them strengthen their faith along the way? Okay, enough of this...
We found that most singles pastors are open to receiving something for free so we decided we will use the first shipment to send out to pastors and ask that they preview the dvd. If they like what they see, we hope they will agree to use the materials for their singles groups, which will in turn promote Cache' Connections. Whew! I know it sounds like a long shot, but, God willing, this will be just another piece of the puzzle that eventually will connect the pieces and whalah - Cache' Connections becomes a household name across the nation!
Well, onto another day of cold calling - as Linda and often say when we face something unpleasant - "It's our favorite thing!" :)
Have a great weekend!
P.S. If you think YOUR pastor would be interested in viewing the DVD, please contact us!
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Sometimes it's quite a challenge to interpret the meaning behind a response, especially when you ask someone on a date and you get an ambiguous reply. For instance, what do you think it means when a guy asks a girl out for coffee and she says she doesn't like coffee or tea? Here's what our Facebook friends came up with:
1. If she was interested, she would offer up a alternative plan, I would think.
2. some ladies are very awkward in turning down men, I'm not as concerned with rejection at my age, but just be honest....
3. unless she offered a counteroffer I'd consider it a rejection and move on...
4. Maybe she is just being honest and would rather you take her somewhere else.
5. If'n I was a guy, I would ask her if she was interested in an alternative, instead of assuming. Maybe she is being shy. lol
6. I am surprised that someone wouldn't like coffee OR tea...and any place that serves that will ALWAYS serve another beverage alternative. So..IMHO (in my humble opinion), if she declines, it sounds like she isn't interested ...just be honest and say you're not interested. If she is interested, I would think she would quickly come back with another idea.
7. If no alternative is offered, it is a definitive NO!
8. Seriously? Are people really so ingenuine? Why can't it mean she just doesn't like coffee or tea? Perhaps he needs to offer an alternative?
9. I agree with Jim if there wasn't an alternative suggestion its a NO! Remember Dr. Steve says ANY excuse is a NO!
10. I say she just was scared and wasnt thinkin it thru. she might still want to go but her first thought was "i dont like tea or coffee" ask her if she would like to go for a soda would be the best thing.. if you ask for a drink she may think like a beer.
11. My 11 yr. old son says, "its self explanatory she doesn't like coffee, tea or him"
Ha! What other questions would you like us to poll?
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Today is the day! Kim and I often start our day with that statement based on Psalm 118:24, but today is really the day! LAUNCH DAY FOR OUR NEW DVD, Christian Dating -Redefined. We have an amazing offer for those who would like to purchase their copy: Buy a DVD for $19.95 (plus the usual stuff) and receive THREE MONTHS membership at Cache' Connections FREE! That's an added value of $64.95! CLICK HERE for details on the DVD and to make your purchase. Offer expires 11/16/10.
- For those who are already members at Cache' Connections, we will simply add three months to your existing subscription upon receipt of payment.
- For those who have never tried the website, just make your purchase and then visit www.cacheconnections.com. Click "Join Now" and begin the sign up process. When you get to the Billing page, contact us and ask for your three free months! We will then open your account with no strings attached.
So what's this all about, you ask? Well, hopefully you know that Cache' Connections is all about providing expert advice for Christian singles to make healthy choices. There are dozens of books on Christian dating - in fact, you can easily become confused with the different theologies on how to approach dating. Courtship only? Kiss dating goodbye? Date as many people as you possibly can? Confusion runs rampant! Also - it is far too easy for Christian singles to get caught up in the dating patterns of today's society. We decided it's time for a new model for dating in the 21st century. We've partnered with Dr. Stephen W. Simpson, (What Women Wish You Knew About Dating, Assaulted by Joy) professor and Director of Clinical Training in the School of Psychology at Fuller Theological Seminary to create this new model via video.
We think you'll appreciate Dr. Steve's casual approach in this series on such topics as how to be authentic in your dating, the importance of putting Christ first, how to handle physical intimacy when in a dating relationship, and much more!
CLICK HERE to view the trailer. The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive! Please consider hosting a viewing of the DVD with your single friends, small group, singles ministry or Sunday school class. Study guide coming soon! Let's send a new message and bring clarity to all of the dating confusion!
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Emily Shupert, LCPC from Atlanta, Georgia leads a monthly chat in The Meeting Room on the Cache' Connections website. One of her favorite topics is "boundaries in dating." Here are some highlights from this week's chat:
Emily: Boundaries are property lines that separate us from one another and keep the good in and the "bad" out....they keep us healthy in relationships by not overly connecting with someone and losing who we are in the process, being smothered, or overpowering someone else.
Chatter: so a form of appropriate balance? so we maintain our identity and our identity is not "blurred" by getting involved with another person.
Emily: Yes, right on! Many times we get into relationships and lose who we are because we get so excited in the relationship that we either overpower the other person or let them do that for us.
Chatter: does taking it slow and keeping the physical "at bay" help to keep the relationship healthy and boundaries intact?
Emily: It can for sure. There are several types of boundaries made such as physical boundaries (what you will and won't do physically), time (how much time you have together and separate), and relational boundaries... These are all taken and adapted from Cloud/Townsend's Boundaries book but I use it specifically for each client.
There are several dimensions and while one might display physical boundaries (only kissing, no sex before marriage, etc.) they might lack boundaries in others.
Boundaries are wonderful in relationships because they help us maintain our self in the relationship and thus help the relationship thrive.
Emily: Anyone else have any questions? Have either of you all been in a relationship where you wondered if there were/were not boundaries present?
Chatter: I have a female christian friend with whom I'm pretty upset right now because...of lack of boundaries in her dating relationship with men... she will go on a picnic to the park for a first date...pretty intimate for a first date!!
Emily: Sounds like you are watching her make unwise decisions. It is really difficult watching people we love make decisions that we believe to be unwise but it is hard because we also have to exhibit healthy boundaries when we see them go in that direction. I would encourage you to be a supportive presence and if she says something to you/asks for feedback, I'd ask that you consider sharing your insights. With grace and love of course....but sometimes people aren't available to hear.
Chatter: I think same-gender accountability is very important.
Chatter: I'm afraid this may reflect poorly on me....by association I mean.
Emily: You get to decide if it is someone who will be open or not to feedback. However, I would encourage you to maybe ask her "are you available for feedback?" If she isn't, then you get to decide to move forward but you might be able to help her by saying "I've seen some things and wanted to share my observations..."
Come from the offense versus saying "you always" or "you shouldn't" because using defensive terms will shut people down, trust me. If you say something, I hope it is helpful but if she isn't open to feedback then you get to move away. Not because she reflects poorly on you but because she might be toxic in your environment where you are trying to create healthy relationships. It isn't that she is a horrible, awful person but if she is negatively going to influence and take away from your relationships, then it is negligent for you to keep her "hosting" on your healthy relationships....does that make sense?
Also, love her when she responds as if she is a rival. The greatest way to combat insecurity and a difficult person is by loving them but not feeding into their game.
Yes, friendships do have to have boundaries and many times we confuse loving others with enabling their unhealthy and childish behavior. In friendships, as in relationships, we are able to say "this is ok with me and this is not ok with me" as a form of boundaries. She is a great person or you wouldn't be a friend with her but it is important to make sure that her unhealthy behavior doesn't negatively affect you. Love her well by speaking truth and love if/when she is open.
Chatter: How do you know the difference between a woman playing hard to get and running for her life?
Emily: I think I lost him but will try my best to give as much helpful feedback with the knowledge I have from the situation.... If the person gives clear responses that she isn't interested by commenting about wanting to be only friends, not wanting to date, or not being available to go out several times in a row...these are typically signs that she might not be interested. In regards to playing hard to get, she might be playing hard to get but eventually she is going to have to show that she is interested. She might be shy so it would be helpful to tell her that you are interested. Or, she might just be someone who likes making someone race after her..... Not sure what type she is but I think eventually you have to let the games stop and be direct with one another....but then again, I'm biased b/c I don't really promote games :)
Life is short, let's tell each other that we are interested or not....go straight or go home :) Some folks love the rush of the game but if you like someone, just tell them...life is too short!
"Expert Emily" leads a discussion monthly at Cache' Connections. CLICK HERE for scheduled events and chats.
Monday, November 8, 2010
Months of planning and endless phone calls and emails proved to be worthwhile, as the first Cache' Connections Expo was well received by virtually all who participated! Friday night, approximately 250 singles from Chicagoland came out to enjoy this unique event.
After being greeted by our friendly volunteers, guests were handed a goody bag and encouraged to explore the booths, participate in the games and activities offered by the 35 vendors, and sample their wares. The casual and open atmosphere lent itself to new introductions as singles took on the various challenges and activities. Some of the hot spots were the booths that offered food and drink samples, hand and chair massages, hairstyling, a basketball challenge, twister with a twist (still haven't figured that out - somehow juggling too was involved), but most guests hit each booth to register for their fantastic door prizes! Here are some quotes:
".. and it was a great night last night! I'd say 25 of us or so went out afterwards, so it was a really good night. The Christian singles community around here is really growing and we owe you and Kim a lot for that."
"I had a great time and will definitely be attending again :)"
"I really enjoyed getting to know new people. I also invited several of my friends, so it was nice to see them mingling."
"Linda, what a great night last night at the Expo. I met so many interesting people. It was a wonderful networking opportunity. Thank you and Kim for all your hard work. You guys are the best."
Although considered a huge success by all, this event was not without its technical difficulties. We had put together some videos and photos to be projected during the stage time at 9:00 pm, leading up to the door prize awards. This was the first time that Kim was "techie at large" at an event and I was the sole speaker. Although Kim had run through all of the presentations prior to the event, they would not work when it was "go time." So we had a little lull, a few awkward pauses and almost had to resort to telling jokes while everyone was gathered around, waiting with eager anticipation to see our videos :)
It was decided that "the show must go on" so I winged it and spoke briefly about upcoming events and our new DVD - Christian Dating Redefined. (We were most disappointed that we couldn't project the trailer.) Then Pastor John Absher gave an informal invitation for salvation, which was really appreciated, we heard afterward. God had a plan ... He wanted the emphasis on Him and not our "talking heads!" To God be the glory!
Bunches of great prizes were given away, then we just had a few minutes for a final swoop of the vendor displays and for new members to take advantage of Cache's membership special.
Good teamwork helped to ensure this was a successful night for all, so our thanks to Calvary Church, all of the vendors and volunteers. Many of the vendors reported they were so privileged to be a part of this event, and their contacts have grown tremendously. Most importantly, however, we are always glad to see singles enjoy a night of fun, encouragement, and new acquaintances. Who knows what blessings may be in store for those who stepped out? (New relationship reports are always welcome here :)
Have a great week - and remember to fast and pray today (Mondays) for singles desiring marriage.
Friday, November 5, 2010
Watch the trailer of our newly released DVD titled "Christian Dating - Redefined."
Dating is fun, right? It's supposed to be a magical time of laughter, connection, and meaningful looks over coffee with a member of the opposite sex who smells nice. . . right? Unfortunately, it doesn't always work out that way. Dating makes a lot of singles feel crazy. Beyond big questions about things like compatibility, faith, and physical intimacy, seemingly small questions like "how long do I wait to call" drive people nuts. Throw in ever-changing cultural norms about relationships and sexuality, and Christians looking for love can end up feeling lost. But Christians should have a spirit of courage instead of fear when it comes to dating. In Christ, we can find the right answers (or at least start asking the right questions) when it comes to romantic relationships. Dr. Stephen Simpson (What Women Wish You Knew about Dating, Assaulted by Joy) explains how to overcome the obstacles -- big and small -- to having a healthy, holy, and fun dating life. While this video series might not lead you right to that special someone, it will make the process of looking for them a whole lot easier.
CLICK HERE for more information and to order your copy! It will be great for your small group, singles ministry or Sunday school class. Here's what one single had to say about it: "I believe this video is part of a Catalyst for a revolution of change that must take place within the Christian community that up to this point in history, is so much like the unbelieving world around us. We need to rise up, and let our light shine before men (and women too!)"
~Kim and Linda
Thursday, November 4, 2010
On Tuesday night in the public chat we discussed the first kiss and other questions you don't want to ask in Sunday School. Here are some of the highlights:
Linda: so questions on the first kiss?
Chatter: I think committed dating only. the boundaries are appropriate to this now.
Linda: first date? 2nd? 3rd?
Chatter: it's a serious matter, not for fun any more, as it was in college or high school. when the relationship is exclusive, not when dating around. so it could be the 6th date!
Chatter: has anyone heard of waiting 'til the wedding day to kiss?
Chatter: That would be brutal ::glare
Chatter: but could I do that? It would take enormous respect and resolve to save that for the wedding day!
Chatter: Yeah, it was kind of awkward at the ceremony though.
Linda: has anyone read this chapter in Dr. Stephen W. Simpson's book What Women Wish You Knew About Dating?
Chatter: I think I'd need to kiss someone to see if there's romantic chemistry. Is it possible that, with practice, the chemistry will improve?
Linda: I think so ... Dr. Steve recommends that there is some physical intimacy before the wedding date. Otherwise it can lead to too high of expectations, frustration, and more after the wedding.
Chatter: also, for people like me who have touch as their love language, that would be terrible.
Linda: ah, good point.
Chatter: what is the some intimacy b4 wedding date?
Linda: anything from holding hands to cuddling, kissing, massaging.
Chatter: I think the couple needs to talk about what they are comfortable with before things progress...and set boundaries ... also be accountable to someone for those boundaries.
Chatter: ah yes, accountability. I'm thankful I already have that in place, even though I don't really have the woman (sort of, but it's only a friendship, not dating yet)
Chatter: it's especially important when you have made mistakes in the past.
Linda: so, when do u think is a good time for first kiss?
Chatter: i have no idea.
Chatter: Sometimes that's a little hard to tell.
Chatter: I'm not good at reading the cues.
Linda: going back to Dr. Steve's book, not until the 3rd date, and only if things are going well. Le's talk cues.
Chatter: please define going well.
Linda: you had good first few dates, she is responsive, smiles a lot when you are together, you have plenty to talk about, shall i go on? "amazed" that you have this, that and the other in common ...
Chatter: I think 3rd date and only if I think it's someone I want to continue to date.
Linda: right. that goes along with "going well."
Chatter: that's pretty good, except, some ladies are just plain friendly. Is there more I ought 2 be aware of? Okay, I'll admit I'm not 2 bright, that's why I'm here. To learn.
Linda: i have some bad signals. "no kissing" signs. if her hand is on the door, she keeps turning away, looking past you ... these are signs Not to kiss her. These are covered in Dr. Steve's book "What Women Wish You Knew About Dating" and also you can find out more about this stuff on our new Dvd - Christian Dating Redefined.
Chatter: ooh better make sure that's on the top of stacks of books on my night stand, better yet the only one. I'm getting that Dvd - looking forward 2 it!!!
Linda: good signs: she is smiling up at you, standing, leaning close to you. looking into your eyes. did i mention smiling? laughing, playing with necklace or neck, or shaking her hair back. Those are all good signs.
Chatter: I know I can handle that!!! (=
Chatter: don't forget smiling.
Linda: any horror stories of a too soon kiss?
Chatter: I can't think of any too soon...but I've had a couple of guys who didn't know how to kiss properly...awkward!
Linda: tell us about a bad kiss.
Chatter: A good kiss should be like the one described on here awhile ago.... Like taking a small, delicate bite of an ice cream cone. Not smacking...and not juicy...like biting into a juicy apple!
Linda: right, right!! guy's mouth should never open wider than the girls!!!
Chatter: something like a decent handshake...not chopped liver and not crushing the hand!
Chatter: I don't like to be slobbered on...reminds me of a dog that drools...yuk.
Chatter: what kind of friendship is there here before getting to the 1st date?
Linda: the kind where you've been hanging out, enjoying each other's company, and you feel like you want it to go further. Then you ask her on a date. you will like the video :)
Chatter: thanks Linda! I am soooo looking forward to seeing that video!
Join us next Tuesday night at 8:00 pm CST. The requested topic is how to get that first date? Go to The Meeting Room and enter with your first or nickname and the room password: cachecommunity. The public chats are intended to help singles gain insightful information on dating issues. Slowly but surely, Cache' Connections is committed to changing the dating landscape of this country!
Footnote: For information on Cache' Connections DVD, "Christian Dating Redefined," click here.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Since this is Cache's first event of this type, some folks are a little unsure of the flow of the evening and what to expect. So here are some "great expectations" for you to help make your decision:
1. DO - Expect to meet hundreds of singles from Chicagoland! Pictured above are just a few of our guests and volunteers.
2. DO - Dress casually. There will be a huge variety of activities, so dress for comfort.
3. DO - Bring your friends! This can be considered a great outreach event! There will be a short presentation of the gospel message around 9:00 pm, when we gather for door prizes, etc.
4. DO NOT - expect to sit back and watch! This event will have the feel of something like a home show or a carnival, with lots of action, interaction, and opportunities to meet other guests. A few tables and chairs will be set up for socializing.
5. DO NOT - expect to be bored!
6. DO NOT - plan to leave empty-handed, as there will be lots of giveaways and prizes.
It is not necessary to arrive at 6:30 pm when the doors open. Those guests arriving after 9:00 pm will be charged a reduced rate of $10.00. Come with a wing man or without, you're sure to have a great time and make some new friends as you enjoy ...
- Guessing games
- Chocolate truffle tasting
- Hand massages and oils
- Laser Quest Game Pack
- Memory game
- Mini boot camp
- pancake eating contest
- hair styling
- twister with a twist
- professional photo booth - just $15!
- ping pong mania
... prizes, and much more!!
CLICK HERE for more information and a list of vendors. We will see you there!
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
People constantly ask us how Cache' Connections is different than the other web sites out there, and I always want to say, for the most part we are somewhat the same on the surface, but our underlying foundation is worlds apart. (somewhat literal)
Maybe this devotional from Dr. Charles Stanley can help me explain this a little better:
"Making God's principles an integral part of our lives is a delightful experience. Instead of feeling a passing fancy for a new concept, people who make an idea their own rejoice in it. And they dig back into the Word to learn more of the Lord's statutes.
A believer who has little to say about God's work in his life is probably not applying Scripture. Simply hearing and believing doesn't make a concept yours. A principle is yours when you explore the truth, discover its place in your life, and apply the concept so that God can make it work."
So how does this apply to Cache' Connections? We believe this is the true formula for successful relationships. To clarify, it is imperative singles apply and obey the scriptures in their lives, including their dating relationships. Anything else falls short.
"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful." Hebrews 10:23
So if you feel something is holding you back, get in the word and apply it liberally to your mind, heart and actions!
Monday, November 1, 2010
We've been reminded lately of our two greatest commands: love God, and love people. This is the new law of love, and we would all do well to examine how we're doing in them, maybe even daily. Kim and I have seen tremendous strides in those whom we have mentored through the Cache' Mentoring Services. Additionally, Kim and I have both arrived at the position in our lives when our "nests are empty" and we seem to have some extra time and a little leftover energy, and we want to use those assets to benefit others for God's kingdom. Lastly, it's been revealed that God wants us to trust him more with Cache' Connections and not put ALL of our time and energy on this one ministry.
Linda: I've always been interested in discipling. I feel it's very important to have someone come alongside a new Christian or someone who needs extra TLC and work with them on a one-on-one basis. I've had some experience with this, So when I revisited my former church and they were starting up a new coaching program, I felt prompted to put my ring in the hat as a coach.
Kim: My biggest fear of getting older is slipping into complacency and being satisfied with "status quo." God calls us to do his work until the day we leave this planet and to glorify Him in those areas he has gifted us. Since my children have left home, I have felt that I still have a lot to offer and have been asking God to show me how and where.
Linda: Also, as I've been praying the prayer of Jabez and following Bruce Wilkinson's practice of asking folks one simple question: "How can I help you?" I am finding all kinds of new friends that God is sending to me. What is surprising me is that they are mostly young women. (Don't think I'm awful, but I never would have thought of myself as a minister to young women. I've never been attracted to "all things women" such as women's ministries, nor have I much experience dealing with youth, besides my own and their friends.) Of course, I knew that I would be coaching a female, and God recently sent me a very special angel who just gave her broken heart to the Lord a week ago. She is a 26- year old product of the foster care system and has lived an unbelievably sad life. My husband and I are excited to model a healthy lifestyle in front of her and help her get on her feet, as well as get grounded in God's word.
Kim: Well, I have always had a love for children and recently God brought a 15 year old young lady into my life who has come from the Foster Care system and is now living with a friend of mine. I have spent time mentoring her and hanging out with her. It has been such a blessing to BOTH of us. My husband and I also have been going through Foster Parenting classes together and will be licensed at the end of November, so we look to the future with anticipation (and a little nervousness) of what God has in store. We would appreciate your prayers for our future "Foster kids."
We encourage you to give it a try. Pray the little prayer of Jabez: Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain. Then ask some folks how you can help them. Most of us could use some help, as well as a listening ear. We're learning that most people simply want to know that someone cares, and being a good listener is a huge part of that. We would all do well to sharpen our listening skills - it's a great way to bless someone!
Have a great week!
Kim and Linda