Saturday, September 18, 2010

LCM: The Last Christian Man

You know him. He's tall/dark/handsome, with a killer smile and a style that mixes JCrew jeans and blazers with Perry's loafers and a maybe the occasional gray sweatshirt. He's got a few bandanas or bracelets from his trips to the Adirondacks, and his water bottle is a BPA-free Nalgene, or he sports a sturdy Northface fleece jacket and carries a guitar with him from lounge to lounge, serenading residents. Whatever his major is (and you may never be quite sure), you do know he's studious but not too studious, taking breaks from reading to grab food with his buddies and play Ultimate Frisbee at night on the Quad. He spends plenty of time with the Lord, may sing or play guitar in a Chapel band or at All-Hall worship, and certainly knows what it means to "hear God's call."

When we fall for the last Christian man, it's for good reasons: he is smart, interesting and fun. He is kind, he is Christian, he makes us laugh and our hearts flutter. He has a style we didn't need to teach him, he encourages us in our faith, and he's honorable, polite and definitely beloved by our families and friends.

The only problem is that LCM isn't, in fact, the last Christian man.

My apartment mates and I were up late talking the other night about dating and relationships, comparing our college experiences and laughing about the similarities between our very different schools. In all of them, though, the girls outnumber the guys by a significant margin, which gives the guys much more choice in potential "MLCW"s (My Last Christian Woman). In all our schools, single girls wonder how it is that cute, eligible guys stay single, don't ask them out, or half-heartedly "date around" without choosing anyone. We see our friends getting married and our roommates find love, we see so many "DTRs" that we name particular benches or ponds on campus after them. And we, like Carrie Bradshaw and her iconic old-school Mac computer, "couldn't help but wonder... what is with Christian college dating culture?"

LCM isn't the last Christian man we'll ever meet. He isn't the only cute guy in a world of six billion people (and counting). In fact, LCM may not even be the second, third or twentieth to last Christian man. I can't deny it will be harder to meet people (after all, we spend 4 years or approximately 26, 880 hours running around small campuses with only 18 - 24 year olds in sight). But what about graduate school, jobs, cities you move to, new churches you join, small groups, dance classes, movie theaters, gyms, libraries, bookstores, clothing stores...? (admittedly I've never heard of a couple who met in a clothing store but it could happen, I'm just saying). There may not be a Christian man waiting to sweep us off our feet in all of those situations, but we certainly shouldn't believe that, when graduation arrives, a puff of wind blows the eligible men out of our universes and we then walk slowly towards a fate of feeding our cats Moe and Curly and crocheting baby blankets.

If I'm learning anything in the city of Washington, D.C., it's that life is full. It's full of Kristina on the bus telling her sister, "I'm sitting next to the beautiful lady!" when she plops down next to me. It's full of my coworkers at my internship stopping by my half-office to check in and see if I want to talk to Au Bon Pain and grab a sandwich. It's full of striding confidently out of Union Station after your first day at your internship and knowing, "I can get home from here and not need to ask directions from anyone! AND I can do it wearing cute Nine West wedge heels!"

It's full of people that we can know and love, full of work that is good and fruitful, full of challenges that are difficult, full of joys, full of hope. In a life that full, it shouldn't be so hard to believe that, far from the last Christian man, the guy who lives two floors below us or sits behind us in Intro to American History or who stops by our room "just to say hello" may just be the first.

Christian college women: I am you. I fall for that LCM (and his Gap/Banana/EMS style). I wonder why he doesn't ask me out. I wonder if I will ever meet anyone who wants a relationship and not the vague "hanging out" that miraculously seems to appeal to guys (why IS that? I have never known - the awkward sitting there on the same couch, close but not couple close, watching a movie that neither of you are paying attention to but both of you are trying to pretend that you find it fascinating while you sneak peeks at each other).

But now, in the city of Washington, D.C. (or Wenham, MA, or Chicago, IL, or Santa Barbara, CA, or Memphis, TN, or Portland, ME), we are able to live fully. And the FCM (First Christian Man) will arrive when there is room in the fullness of our lives for him, and in the fullnesss of his life for us.


1 comment:

  1. Hilary, I loved reading this post! Glad DC is treating you well.


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