It’s so good to be back. I have another interview for you all, this time with one of my former small group leaders, Patrease Douglas.
I’ve always liked Patrease, simply because she seemed to always be herself. She never seemed to try to fit into other people’s boxes for how she should look or behave. When I was in a small group with her, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am glad to see her success over the years since. Read more about her below!
1: What’s your salvation story? We’re you saved as a child or later in life?
So I’m just glad that Jesus saved me for real. I grew up in a small baptist church and was my grandmother’s partner in crime for about 15 straight years. I was the type of kid that went to church every Sunday because it was instilled as a value. I loved my small, Baptist church and was involved in everything. Around 16 years old things got a bit rocky for me with the church scene because I no longer had much of an interest in God.
I started to explore other options to help me deal with the pain of rejection and abandonment from my father. God always had and has a plan for his children that go astray. His plan for me was to meet my 10th grade music teacher who was super nice and took an interest in my postive growth and development. I was still doing all types of stuff but that music teacher become my mentor and shared the love of Christ with me.
The love of Christ was what drew me back to God. It was something that I knew I needed and something that could mend my broken heart. I remember in the summer of 2004, I decided for myself to accept the Lord as my Savior. I’ve been rocking with God ever since and it’s been a BLAST. Life is not easy but it’s so much better with Jesus.
2: Why are you so dedicated in your walk with God when you could be living however you want? Do you ever feel living for God is inconvenient or unnecessary since you’re young and single?
I’m so dedicated because any alternative other than Jesus is not worth it. How can I say that? I can say that because I did everything else and it never got me anywhere. In fact, it made things worst most of the time. It was a quick fix but nothing lasting. It was a lie, it’s all deception, and leads to death. I’m not SINGLE anymore but when I was single I did have the moments where I felt like the God-thing was boring, inconvenient, a waste of time and simply not fun. I felt like that because I was socialized and conditioned to think that everything else was better. I felt that having a relationship with God meant that l couldn’t do anything or had all these rules. When I truly start understanding what “life more abundantly” truly meant I desired life with Jesus above everything else.
3. How long have you been single, and what lessons have you learned about dating and remaining godly in relationships?
The #1 lesson I learned about dating and relationships is that I can’t control the outcome. The outcome is up to God but my responsibility is to follow God’s leading. I know that I’m special to God and that He wants the best for me. I can’t expect anyone else to respect or treat me a certain way until I set that standard for myself.
So, the best lesson in singleness is learning yourself. Who are you really? What do you like? What do you value? What makes you happy? What is your purpose? The list goes on.
How much of an investment have you made into yourself? Those are all the questions I asked when I was in my journey of singleness. I only reached that journey after being hurt MANY times but it was a good journey that helped me become the woman I am today.
4. So many women (including me oftentimes) are really discouraged about marriage since it seems most young men today aren’t interested marriage. What would you say to young women to encourage them to wait for a godly man or the man God has for them?
Don’t focus you ALL your attention on getting married. I say this because if you focus so much on getting married and being found by the right guy you will MISS the opportunities to live and grow. I had to make a decision to trust God with my desire to become a wife. I mean I had to give that thang OVER to Jesus because it consumed too much of my mind and emotions. Once I started the process of giving it to God, I started to feel better and focus on other things. It was in that process that God healed me, taught me about His love, gave me great strength, and courage, built me up as a woman, and had me focus on PURITY. My husband came when I was not even thinking about it. Let it GO, Grow, and trust God to do it.
I started this interview series just to remind other young ladies who are struggling setting boundaries that it’s possible! Other young women have done it and are doing it. Although we all have stories and journeys and pasts, when we surrender to God He gets all the glory in the end.
peace and love!