In the Meantime: Finding Yourself and the Love You Want

In the Meantime: Finding Yourself and the Love You Want

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by Iyanla Vanzant
     
 

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You know where you want to be, but you have no clue how to get there. You know exactly what you want in life, but what you want is nowhere in sight. Perhaps your vision is unclear, your purpose still undefined. On top of it all, your relationships, particularly your romantic relationships, are failing. If these scenarios feel familiar way down in the deepest part of… See more details below

Overview

You know where you want to be, but you have no clue how to get there. You know exactly what you want in life, but what you want is nowhere in sight. Perhaps your vision is unclear, your purpose still undefined. On top of it all, your relationships, particularly your romantic relationships, are failing. If these scenarios feel familiar way down in the deepest part of your gut, then you, my dear, are smack dab in the middle of the meantime. The bestselling author of Acts of Faith and The Value in the Valley -- whose books have empowered countless women -- now reaches out to anyone who yearns for love, in a book about relationships that can help them reach new levels of awareness, spiritual growth, and fulfillment.

Your mother, bless her heart, and your father, with all of his good intentions, did not prepare you for the meantime. They did not because they could not. No one can prepare you or help you find what you are looking for. What you need is love, not romance. Love, not more money. Love, not a new car. Love is the only thing that can make the meantime worthwhile. Once you find love, true self-love, and unconditional love for everyone all the time, things will look, feel, and be a lot better. The question is: What do you do in the meantime? We must mop and sweep away the stuff that trips us up, keeps us confused, and makes the meantime miserable. In this book, Iyanla Vanzant tells us how we can do this thorough mental housekeeping. If we do a good job of it, the light will come through. Once that happens, our spirits will shine, bringing in the light of true love and happiness.

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Editorial Reviews

USA Today
Iyanla Vanzant taps the universality of spiritual yearning.
From the Publisher
USA Today Iyanla Vanzant taps the universality of spiritual yearning.

Los Angeles Times Iyanla Vanzant focuses on healing lives and letting people know that someone cares.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780671316488
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster Audio
Publication date:
08/28/1999
Edition description:
Abridged, 2 CDs, 2 hrs.
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 5.00(h) x 0.50(d)

Read an Excerpt

People cannot fulfill your needs. They may want to, they may try to. They may convince you that they can, but they cannot. What people can do for one another is make the need seem less urgent. We distract one another so that we forget, temporarily, what we need. We help one another replace a pressing need with something else. In the meantime, the need does not disappear. It dissipates. In a nutshell, people need love. God is love. What we need is God, but that's too esoteric for most of us to handle. It's also pretty frightening!

To say we need God conjures up some pretty frightening images for most of us, the most frightening of all being those things we believe we will have to give up to get to God. Instead, we say we need the love of another person because this is the kind of love most of us believe we can handle -- to some degree or another. We also think we need a house, a car, a few kids, and a job so that we can feed the kids. Of course, these things are important, even essential to our well-being, but what we really need to live on, and live in, is love. We also think that things and people bring more love into our lives. Do they? On some level they do. What they do in actuality is provide us with the opportunity to share the love we are and the love we have within, which is God's love.

We are not always aware of how our needs lead us into dark corners. Try as we might to be alert, strong, and positive when it comes to love matters, many of us seem to always end up someplace we do not want to be -- alone in the meantime, looking for a relationship.

Over the years, I have heard absolute horror stories about the goings-on called love. At times I have been amazed that we could believe that something as divine as love could show up looking so ridiculous. In other situations, I have been appalled at the foul things people do in the name of love. Finally, I had to stop. To smack myself. To realize -- there is a pattern here! The players are different. The events are different, but somewhere underneath it all there is a sameness. Men and women have a tendency to do the same things when they are trying to get their needs met. I decided to keep a list. I wrote down the thirteen most common things we do in search of love or a relationship in which we want to be loved. Each of these things will inevitably fail to meet our needs. They will take us to a hellish meantime experience:

1. All the signs say this is not the one, but you ignore your internal alarms, and move ahead into a love fantasy.

2. Because you fear being alone, or because you believe you cannot have what you want in a relationship, you accept the first person who comes along, only to be left, beaten, ripped off, or impregnated and then left, beaten, ripped off.

3. You confuse friendship and niceness with romantic love.

4. Because someone is nice to you and you are not used to it, you don't know how to say no to them when you realize they are not who you want.

5. You get caught up in the packaging and promises.

6. You force your desires for a relationship onto another person, or issue an ultimatum. Because the person does not know how to say no, s/he goes along with you . . . for a while.

7. Because the other person expresses an interest in you, you respond without really exploring if this is who or what you want.

8. You allow blind faith, which leads to blind love, to take you into a relationship that is unhealthy.

9. You choose to believe that what your partner has done to another person, s/he will not do to you.
10. Sexual compatibility is mistaken for love.

11. You stay in a relationship although you are miserable, trying to work things out even when your partner shows no interest in working through the difficulty.

12. You don't express what you really feel because you believe it will hurt your partner's feelings.

13. You choose to believe your partner's lies even when you know the truth. You act like you do not know what is going on when you do.

LOVE IS NOTHING THAT GIVES YOU EVERYTHING

What can you do when a relationship is not going the way you would like? When things are not working the way you want them to work? How do you learn to take what you have and make it work to your advantage? As I ask these questions, I am reminded of a story I heard about a woman named Luanne Bellarts, who was born with cerebral palsy. As a result of this disease, Luanne had full use of one toe, on one foot. Raised by very religious parents, she learned a great deal about truth, trust, patience, faith, and love as it related to her capabilities. I am sure most of us would consider this kind of physical limitation to be an insurmountable or monumental defeat. Luanne, however, learned to type on a computer keyboard using her big toe. She wrote the story of her life, Bird with a Broken Wing, in this way. Her book was her testimony to the power of faith, in which she eloquently described how to turn trouble into triumph, tragedy into victory. She wrote about the meantime, about learning how to take what you are, what you have, and what you can do, and make it work for you.

Luanne's story is not about relationships per se. It is, however, about principles. Truth, trust, patience, honor, and faith are the cornerstone principles of all life's relationships. They are also all the things we receive in the presence of unconditional love. Having learned so much about family relationships, friendships, and, more important, the selfship, Luanne documented how to develop and nurture all relationships with the vigilant employment of loving principles. What she learned while lying flat on her back, sitting in a wheelchair, and being totally dependent on others is exactly what we able-bodied beings stumble over, muddle through, fall into, and fail to recognize about relationships. Although Luanne never experienced an intimate, loving relationship with a man, the way we believe it should be, she did with one toe, on one foot, what we spend most of our lives trying to do. She discovered love. Love for herself. The love for and of others. The love of God. She figured out what love looks like and what it should not look like. She understood what love felt like and what it felt like when there is an absence of love. She discovered how to find love, nurture it, and make it last in yourself, for yourself, and within your life. At age thirty- six, Luanne died of cancer. In the meantime, during the course of her life, she lived in and for love with a tremendous amount of dignity. Finding love and maintaining our dignity is something we often struggle to do in our relationships. The experience of the struggle is called the meantime.

Excerpt from IN THE MEANTIME, copyright © 1998 by Iyanla Vanzant. Published by Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

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