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Real Love in Real Life - The Secret to Real Romance, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
February 17, 2022 5:00 am

Real Love in Real Life - The Secret to Real Romance, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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February 17, 2022 5:00 am

What would you think of an inventor who designed a model that failed, but instead of fixing the design, he just kept building the same model over and over? Well, that’s the way a lot of people are living their love life these days and they can’t figure out why they keep crashing and burning. Chip explains that there’s a model for the secret to real romance that really works!

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You know, every romantic movie or fairy tale ends the same way, and they lived happily ever after. But as many of us know from experience, that's not how real relationships end up. So here's the question.

How do we find real love in a relationship that really lasts? That's today. Stay with me. Thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram.

Living on the Edge is an international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. I'm Dave Pruey, and I'm sure there are many of you nodding along with what Chip just said. We all know how culture and entertainment overly romanticize the perfect spouse or relationship. But in real life, we've all experienced disappointment and heartache when it comes to falling in love. In just a minute, Chip continues his series, Real Love in Real Life, by breaking down the unhealthy expectations society has placed on love, and then shares God's formula for a lifelong relationship.

And be sure to stick around after the teaching as Chip shares some additional insight into what he's learned in this area and points us to a helpful resource. Well, if you have a Bible, open it now to Ephesians chapter 5, and let's join Chip for his talk, The Secret to Real Romance. Love, sex, and lasting relationships. You know, we are all, we just are made and wired and longed to be loved and to give love.

We are made and designed by the creator of the universe to have spiritual, emotional, and connection, physically, with a person of the opposite sex that does something in our soul and our heart. And we are longing for that experience to not fade, not end in divorce, but to last your whole life. And the question is, if you're single, how do you find that right person, right? If you're married, how do you keep that kind of love alive? If you're widowed or a widower, how do you avoid that pitfall of when to move forward, and because of the great need and the hurt and the hole in your soul, of getting connected too early in some way with someone that usually ends up in a disaster? Why is it there's so many relationships, but most of them just don't turn out very well? I mean, over half of all the marriages don't work.

Where I want to start is with something I think is pretty basic, is what's the secret to a lasting relationship? I mean, let's face it, there's some people that love each other, it's rare. I mean, you know, you can see them at all different stages and decades, and man, they are in love, and there's something to what they know that a lot of us don't. And what I'm going to suggest is there's two basic models out there that we're going to look at. Hollywood's model is one, and God's model or God's prescription to enhance your love life is the other. And so I want to look at Hollywood's model, and then I'll look at God's model, and maybe we can learn some things.

Imagine, if you will, that this small little tube is filled with multiple silicon tiny little chips that can take information, and then you can turn it this way, and it can synthesize it through an algorithm to take all that information to come up with the basics of what's inside of it. So what, hypothetically, I put inside of here is the last 40 years of movies, the last 40 years of all television shows, the last 40 years of all self-help books, the last 40 years of all romance novels, the last 15 or 20 years of reality shows, and anything that's been written about love, sex, and relationships. And then when I take this and I say, okay, of all the movies we've seen, the magazines, the books, the world that we've grown up in, if I could shoot that out through some sort of algorithm to say, is there a step-by-step process to find the right person to be in love and have this great, awesome relationship with amazing sex, what would it be? Hollywood would say this. Number one, you need to find the right person.

I mean, right? We all grew up, there's someone out there for you, you need to find them. Where are they? I wonder when and how are you going to meet them? And so what we're told in each one of those movies and in the songs that we sing and the Netflix that we watch is, there's someone out there, but you've got to attract them. In other words, if you're going to find them, it's kind of like, you need to be honey so the bees will come for you. And what Hollywood says is there's a way that you attract people.

And what they say is that you need to be really good bait. You need to look a certain way, you need to dress a certain way, you need to drive a certain car, you need to be sort of hip or cool or neat or whatever word you want to use. And then there's a theme that's very, very physical in how you attract the opposite sex. In fact, I did something, I'm going to take you on a quick little journey. This is very, I just went to the typical drugstore and I went to the magazine rack and I thought, I'm going to do some very anecdotal, non-scientific research. And I'm just going to take ten magazines and say, is there any theme about who I'm supposed to be to attract the opposite sex? And so I'd like to invite you to join me on my research. So I started off kind of mild. Let's focus on our self. So self magazine says I can burn fat faster.

And as I go through these, see if you can see some words or themes that developed. And then I can tone and tighten, don't have to go to the gym to do it. And then here's something, sporty sex, how many calories can you actually burn?

I didn't realize that was part of the diet program, but I can see where it would sell a magazine. So I go beyond simply myself because I want to be glamorous, because if I'm glamorous for glamour, attract other people. And a very attractive young woman here will tell me 65 ways to play up your body. So apparently how my body looks is really important. But I like this, ladies, you don't just need to look good with makeup. You don't need to look good after you've been rested, been to the gym, got a little tan. In this magazine, how to look ridiculously good on zero sleep.

I mean, hey, the expectations aren't getting too high, are they? And then just in case you kind of wonder, are you wondering that man and how do men really think? In this edition, 1,001 men answer your questions, ladies.

This is what you're going to find out. How to be good bait. About sex, about your body, about babies, about falling in love and falling out of love. Well, you know, it's a fitness world, it's a diet world. We all know that we want to be in good shape, so I thought Shape magazine would be a good one. And so what does this tell us? Well, you can drop seven pounds in two days, amen, right? And then it's the better sex workout. I'm catching a theme, I don't know about you. There might be a theme emerging here.

Here's what I like at the very bottom. One week plus four moves equals your new hot body. Is that like amazing? You don't have to diet, don't go to the gym, just in one week? Are you beginning to realize you have been inundated by every form of media to say how you look is the key to attracting the opposite sex, and sex is the ultimate goal of every relationship?

That's what it says. Well, let's get on a little more, you know, focused toward health. And so women's health, how do you get healthy? Flat abs, that's how.

Hold it, not only flat abs, but more sex, better sex, up the action and the satisfaction. Hey, you know what, it's not like I pulled these from years. I just went to the drugstore yesterday, all right?

This is just a for real. Now, here's the moment, though, things are changing. It used to be that there was an expectation if you're in your 20s and your 30s and, you know, hard body, all the rest, but we used to at least think that like, you know, 20, 30 years later, 40 is the new 20. So if you're not married, if you're 40 and you don't look like her, you have a problem. And here's the thing, if that message keeps going, your husband looks at you and looks at her and says, you know, maybe, so what's the deal?

Or flip it around, and you look at him and say, you know, he didn't have that when we got married. Well, guys, let's not let the women take all of it. This is The Bachelor, and so just an average normal-looking guy from my opinion, actually. Right, guys?

Kind of looks like a little stubble, hard body. But now think of this, that this show has so many followers. We have 17 women, all who happen to be gorgeous, who want to line up that don't know anything about him but want to marry him. What's he like?

I have no idea, I just want to be on the show. But he found out three of them have dark pasts that want to take him down. This is Men's Health, and this is the most unusual Men's Health I've ever seen. I do this research when I walk out of the grocery store, by the way, often. And usually, the Men's Health has a guy with his shirt off.

Ladies probably don't even notice. But he has his shirt off, and he doesn't have a six-pack, he doesn't have an eight-pack, he's got like a 12-pack. Now, you do understand that he's been working out for years.

This is his full-time job. He takes creatine and probably little steroids here and there because he's not playing the NFL, and he looks amazing. And what he says to me is, Chip, you can burn flat abs 24-7, the new all-Spartan workout.

Ooh, okay. And muscle secrets from the real Fight Club. Guys, you get to that gym, your wife's going to go, Wow. Or if you're not married, or if you're looking, the whole key is, for some of you, you're thinking, It's too late for the gym. Maybe it's in the clothes.

A little more sophisticated. In this detailed magazine, build a perfect wardrobe, the eight pieces every stylish man should own. See, if you've got a shirt like this, they can tell where this came from. I mean, the women, I mean, then Starbucks.

Unbelievable. Do you see that suit? But that's not enough. If you can't afford the wardrobe underneath of it, the haircut of the moment. Guys, how cheap could it get?

Well, it's not really all that cheap, except for some. You have this haircut, and she goes, Unbelievable. I think I'm in love.

We're having a bit of fun. And we laugh because it's in the air, it's in the water, it's in the movies, it's in the songs, and we all care about what we look like. And we all have these private thoughts that we wish we looked a lot better. And we all have now been inundated with a culture, and it's in the air and water that says, If you don't look like this, you don't measure up.

And worse, we can get deluded in thinking we kind of do, but the person that we're married to doesn't. Or we can feel like if I don't look like one of these people, and I'm single, I'll never get married. And you know what, here's the thing, the expectations are now so false and so unrealistic, this message destines you to fail in every relationship. It destines you to try and become something you're not. It destines you to compare inside your relationship where any flaw now is up against these 1% of the gene pool in all of the world who have private chefs, work out four hours a day, and have unlimited expenses on wardrobes, and then they do these shoots, and then they touch up the shoots afterwards. And it gets worse because it never ends.

The last one is the most sad for me. I don't know about you ladies, but if you don't look like this at 60, there's a big problem. And so now, it's not like you can't even grow old.

There is no room for sags or lags or anything else. And what I want you to know is that Hollywood's formula is find the right person, and that's the way. And then when you find them, you fall in love, right?

I mean, in all the movies, you just fall in love. The picture is you're driving your car, and you stop your car, and it's at a red light, and you look over, and she looks over. You look again, she looks again. Your eyes meet.

Electricity starts at the top of your head. You begin to shake almost uncontrollably inside your car. She has a Volkswagen, you have a Volkswagen. You don't know her, but you're in love. She pulls off, and you want to follow her.

Or sometimes it's a little less dramatic. You're just walking in a coffee shop. You notice her. She notices you. You go to refills at exactly the same time. You brush one another. Magic dust pours down upon both of you.

I've got to know his name. You go back having not done any more than that, hoping that the same day at the same time at the same coffee shop, he or she will be there. But you return home to say to your roommate, I'm in love. Your IQ drops 30 points.

You start acting in ways that are ridiculous, spending money you don't have, dressing up. Does this look good? Does this look good? What do you think? Should I buy a new outfit? Why? I'm going to the coffee shop. Why?

To meet a guy I've never met, that I don't know his name, that I know nothing about, that I think I'm in love with. Now, is that not Hollywood's formula? You believe that a lot.

I believe that a lot. The third step in Hollywood's formula is, once you find that person, and once you sort of have this mystical, infatuated experience that we'll literally talk about later because there's a chemical reaction that happens when we're infatuated, and God designed us that way, and it's a good part of a relationship, we just need to understand what part, then you fix your hopes and dreams on this person. And what you do is that, so all the songs are, I can't live without you. In fact, once you find him and you fall in love, if loving you is wrong, I don't want to be. How did you know those words?

You're amazing. Over and over and over and over. And then when you fix your hope on this person, and probably most everyone's been there, and then there's the breakup, your life, you can't eat, you can't sleep, you can't drink. Life is meaningless. You put on weight, you drink too much, you do all kind of things because what was going to make your life work is gone. And if you don't believe it, ask all the pretty people who make all the movies, who are the most beautiful with the most money, who seem to not be able to stay together for more than a few months or a few years.

And then finally, when failure occurs, you repeat steps one, two and three. And it goes like this, in a marriage, it goes like this. We've fallen out of love. I guess it just wasn't the right person. What was good for a few years, and she was that way and I was that way, but we've grown apart. All these euphemisms, the belief system is there's someone out there, and therefore, once you break up, you go back to the gym. You ever seen how many 40 to 50 year olds there are in the gym?

Right? Now you get a new wardrobe, you get a new car, and you play the same game except the next time, the chance of failure goes up to 75%, not 50%. This is the mantra that you have been sold that destines you for dissatisfaction or to never find the right person or to have heartbreak that God never intended. The results are the success rate of Hollywood's formula is since 1960, the divorce rate has doubled. About 41 to 43% of people are divorced now, but since we don't count those who cohabitate and then break apart, a good round figure is about 50%. Over half of all divorces happen in the first 10 years, usually between year three and six is the most devastating time because reality hits in.

Some young kids come, people don't endure. The pain and the fallout is really beyond what we often think. Despite all the words and talk shows that it was an amiable divorce, we're still friends, it was just a mistake. The research indicates that the pain, fallout, and damage to the children, to the economics, half of all women who go through divorce live below the poverty level.

Or just the fractured relationship and the pain is the tip of the iceberg. And that our problems and the tragedy of divorce follows us into adulthood. One of the most interesting studies I've ever read was children of divorce 25 years later, a landmark study that tracked kids from broken homes, longitudinally tracked them for over 25 years to find out what happens to kids, not now, oh, they're resilient, everything's going to be okay. Wallerstein is the founder of the Center for Families in Transition, one of nation's leading experts on divorce, and her book, The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce, 25 years later.

Landmark study. She gives an example. Karen was 36 when she detailed to Wallerstein the long shadow cast by her parents' divorce. Like so many other children of divorce, James had embarked on a search for lasting love. Yet was so deeply anxious that she was unable to trust others. A fear of abandonment kept her cling to a string of unsuitable and troubled partners. I mean, it would be too embarrassing to ask you to raise your hand of how many in this room have been down that road or have a sister or a brother or one of your kids that you say, yep, that's what happened. It goes on to say, by the time the children of divorce reached their 30s, she found only half of them were doing well personally.

Interestingly, it seemed that it had absolutely no impact on their work life. We substitute and we compensate. Here's all I want you to hear very clearly. Hollywood's formula is all that we've heard. You don't even have to try and not believe it or believe it. Every time you wake up and watch a commercial, read a book, glance at a magazine, watch a movie, this is the mantra behind it. And if you don't understand that you are being hoodwinked, seduced, and used, then you're a fool, because it doesn't work. Chip will join us here in studio with his application in just a minute. You've been listening to the first part of his message, The Secret to Real Romance, from his series Real Love in Real Life. Have you ever wondered what real, genuine love looks like, or what it means to be in love? Well, in this five-part series, Chip tackles these tough questions and helps us understand the depths of God's love for us. Chip also reveals what causes failure and dysfunction in relationships, and how we can not only find real love, but grow it, keep it, and make it last a lifetime.

You're not going to want to miss a single part of this series. Learn more about Real Love in Real Life and our many resources by going to livingontheedge.org or by calling us at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003 or livingontheedge.org.

App listeners, tap Special Offers. Before we continue, here's Chip to talk about something that's really close to his heart. You know, we're living in a time where circumstances are super, super hard. In fact, it can be downright traumatic at times.

So how do you endure and face seemingly impossible situations like that? Here's what I want to tell you. God has spoken, and these times aren't new. In James 1, He provides a blueprint for us. It's called the art of survival. And in our new Daily Discipleship with Chip, I'm going to teach you from James 1 how you can survive and learn to thrive even in the midst of the most difficult circumstances.

Now let me tell you how it works. Each day, I'm going to meet with you one-on-one for 10 days, and we're going to discover what James 1 teaches about the art of survival in life's trials. We'll start our time together where I'll literally get a cup of coffee, open my Bible, and I'll talk directly with you one-on-one, and we'll walk through how to study the Bible.

You'll learn to study the Scriptures for yourself in a way where you hear God's voice and have God speak in such a way that gives you the strength to make it through life's hardest and most difficult times. So here's the challenge. Spend 10 days, 10 minutes a day with me, 10 minutes on your own, and then let me encourage you.

Invite 10 people to join you. Let's be difference makers. Let's learn the art of survival in the age of chaos. You know, those early disciples turned the world upside down, and that's God's plan for you and me.

Won't you join me? Thanks, Chip. Well, we're so excited to share with you our new daily discipleship with Chip, The Art of Survival, based in James 1. Through this free video series, we'll discover how to handle circumstances out of our control, guard our attitude against discouragement, and trust God in His provision. If you're ready to learn the art of surviving in these challenging times, then pre-register today to take the Daily Discipleship with Chip Challenge. And when you sign up, we'll send you a new leather-bound prayer journal as our gift to you. To take this free 10-day Daily Discipleship Challenge, go to LivingOnTheEdge.org, or call 888-333-6003.

That's 888-333-6003, or go to LivingOnTheEdge.org. App listeners, tap Discipleship. As we wrap up today's program, Hollywood's model, or kind of what the culture has taught us from literally almost every book, every song, every Hallmark movie, is find the right person, number one. Two, fall in love. Three, fix your hopes and dreams on this person. And then, if all else fails, repeat the cycle over and over again. And what I can tell you, both from personal experience and pastoring for over 30 years, countless people have followed that pattern only to be disappointed and heartbroken again and again.

You know, maybe that's you. You know, as I meet and talk with people, so often they're coming out of a relationship or that's been the pattern. The real issue is knowing the difference between love and what's called infatuation.

And we've got a resource that I found super helpful. There's a chapter in the book Love, Sex, and Lasting Relationships on how to know if you're in love. And what we've done is we've taken a test out of that chapter that you can go online, 13 questions, to know is this real love or is this just that kind of infatuation, those emotions, the spark, the chemistry that, you know, we have and can have with multiple people. But real love is about one person. It's deep and it's real and it lasts. So let me encourage you to go to the website livingontheedge.org.

That's livingontheedge.org. And download that resource and just get a clear picture of the difference between love and infatuation. In our next broadcast, we're going to talk about how God has designed relationships to actually work. And if Hollywood's model doesn't work, what's God's model?

You don't want to miss it. To find the resource Chip just mentioned, go to specialoffersatlivingontheedge.org or on the Chip Ingram map. Today's culture is inundated with so many ideas on what it means to be in love. The problem is, they're nearly all wrong.

This test, How to Know if You Are in Love, will help you identify what genuine love looks like and what's just emotions. Download this free resource today or pass it along to a friend. We'll join us next time as Chip continues his series Real Love in Real Life. Until then, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge. .
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-04 03:53:28 / 2023-06-04 04:04:20 / 11

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