Hi Friends, Jemeia here! Are you ready for part two of Hanha and Keith’s couple interview for the To the Single Woman series? Last week, you heard from Hanha, founder of the Transparency Blog. If you missed her interview, be sure to read it before you read Keith’s. You can find her interview here!
This week, I am happy to share with you Keith’s inspiring words on sanctification in Christ-centered relationships. Keith is the Co-Founder of Nvision and he has his own podcast, both of which you will learn more about in the interview. Gosh, I truly admire Keith’s honesty and desire to honor the Lord. You are in for a treat! Enjoy!
1. What has been your experience with dating in the past? Have you pursued other relationships before Hanha? If so, how has your relationship with Hanha been different?
I was in two previous relationships before dating Hanha. My relationship with Hanha has been different than my other relationships because it is more God-focused and I am a lot more mature. I was at a different stage in my life in the previous two, and I was not really focused on God being in the relationship as much as I am now.
2. What is your side of the story on how you and Hanha met?
I met Hanha at a church in Durham, NC called World Overcomers. She sat in front of me during one of the worship experiences and I thought she was beautiful. I knew I had to talk to her before I left church that day. So, after church ended, I went up and spoke to her. We had a conversation which concluded with me getting her number and from there it was history.
3. What do you admire most about Hanha?
I admire her excellent spirit. She is a perfectionist and she works so hard. Everything she does, she does with excellence! I also admire her drive and determination. She can accomplish anything she puts her mind to. She is also very caring and empathetic. I aspire to be like her in many ways!
4. I truly consider you and Hanha to be a power couple #forHISKINGDOM, because she founded the Transparency Blog and you are the co-founder of Nvision. Also, you have your own podcast! Can you tell us a little bit about Nvision, your podcast, and some exciting future projects through those platforms?
NVision is a platform that I co-founded with my best friend, Gene Mance. The mission is to inspire the millennial generation through network and support. Through our creative projects, we hope to raise self-awareness in the millennial generation.
My podcast is going through a rebranding stage right now but, it will be more focused on helping people become effective leaders through conversations and lifestyle lessons. I’ll have a special guest on each episode. Maybe we can get you on!
My future projects include the rebranding of my personal ministry and the start of my itinerant ministry. If you don’t know what that means, it basically means being a present-day evangelist, a.k.a. Robert Madu or Daniel Gray.
Now, we are going to talk about sanctification in your current relationship with Hanha.
5. You mentioned that purity and emotional intelligence have been highlighted in your current relationship. For each, topic tell us the following:
a. What did that issue look like before this relationship AND during?
b. What are you learning about it in your relationship? How do you feel it impacts your partner and your personal life/relationship with God?
c. How have you grown in this area as a result of your relationship and where do you still need to grow?
d. Give us some practical advice for dealing with this issue?
a. Purity and Emotional Intelligence: Purity and emotional intelligence have been the biggest struggle of every relationship I have been in. Before being in this one, it was a struggle for me, not only physically but mentally.
Mentally, I struggled with lust, which every man struggles with. Physically, I struggled with pornography. Emotionally, I had a hard time knowing what to say and being empathetic when it comes to being in an intimate relationship.
I could blame my parents, but I am at the age where I need to take responsibility for my own emotional health. At times, It was difficult for me to say the right things to Hanha or give her the words she needed, which would lead to frustration and arguments in the early stages of our relationship.
b. What he is learning: I am learning that it is important to have boundaries. As men of God, it is our job to lead the relationship, and if there aren’t any boundaries, then we are setting the relationship up for failure and disappointment.
Hanha and I have struggled in both these areas, but we have made so much progress since the start of our relationship. I feel that having no boundaries means having no peace in the relationship with your significant other, and compromising your relationship with God. Before this relationship, purity was a problem for me and it spilled over at the beginning of this relationship.
This negatively impacted my relationship with Hanha and robbed me of peace. God wants us to choose Him in our relationship and I wasn’t doing that. This also negatively impacted my relationship with God. When we are doing things that we have no business doing, it can cloud the voice of God in our lives and be a major distraction.When we are doing things that we have no business doing, it can cloud the voice of God in our livee and be a major distraction. Click To Tweet
c. How he has grown: I’m glad to say that I have grown in the area of purity. Hanha and I put boundaries in place after hearing a message from Pastor Michael Todd, called The Myth of Dating. It has been hard, but discipline ain’t easy.
We know that if we can honor this relationship, God will bless it. I still need to grow with my emotional intelligence. Sometimes, I literally don’t know what to say, like at all. Pray for me in that area but I definitely have made progress.
d. Practical Advice: Practical advice that I would give guys for boundaries is to not spend the night with their partner. Trust me, you might not do anything the first few nights, but eventually the flesh gets weak. Also make sure you are intentionally dating. Don’t get too comfortable. Take your partner out, go to the movies, have picnics, do something sporty. A favorite for Hanha and I is to go to coffee shops. We love coffee shops!
Here are three C’s for Godly dating:
- Confide: Be able to tell your partner your dreams and goals.
- Communicate: This is something that most men struggle with. YOU HAVE GOT TO COMMUNICATE!! It’s the biggest part of a relationship. More communication is better than less.
- Commitment: If you want to date someone long-term and marry them you need to be able to commit. No matter how bad the fight was or what the person did/said, be able to commit. If they do something and it is non-negotiable, then do what you have to do. But other than that, there has to be a level of commitment that is understood by both parties.
6. What advice would you give your single self?
The advice I would give my younger self is to intentionally date myself. Sounds silly I know, but it is important to be self-aware before you start dating someone else. Get to know yourself and love yourself. This will happen by spending time with God. Knowing God is the key to knowing you.
7. Now, picture your sister (old or young) future daughter, or a female in your life that you really care about. What advice would you give her about what she deserves? What red flags would you advise her to look out for if/when she starts to date?
The advice I would give to my daughter is number one, know that you are beautiful and worth everything. Don’t let a man place his value on you. Your value comes from what God says about you.
When you know what you cost, you’ll know what you’re worth. I’d tell her that she deserves the best: someone who has integrity, who is loving, encouraging, trustworthy, who treats you with respect and honor! The biggest red flag is someone who is controlling and jealous.
Stay away from them! The advice I would give single people, male or female, is to love who you are and find someone who loves you for you! Spend a lot of time with God and focus on your calling and not someone else’s. Make yourself a list of standards before you date someone! If they match the standard, then they are worthy! This will result in less wasted time or confusion.
8. Now, picture your son, brother, best friend, what advice can you give him on any of these topics (being single, intentional and pursuing women, and how to respect women).
For my son, I’d tell him to date women with intentionality. Don’t waste their time and honor your word. Encourage her, love her, and support her. The red flags would be the same for him as with the red flags I mentioned for women.
Personally, a big red flag for me is if a woman is dirty. If she’s dirty, run away! Not because it means anything deep, but because it’s unattractive. LOL Also, I’d tell him to look at the patterns rather than the potential. If someone has bad patterns and habits and they are consistently doing them, spare yourself the pain and walk away.
Was that not AMAZING? Thank you, Keith for your wisdom and transparency! If you haven’t already read Hanha’s interview, be sure to take a read here.
These pictures were taken by Anna Taylor Photography.
Jemeia is passionate about Jesus, social justice, health and wellness, self-care, and self-love. She started writing because she’s a firm believer that the Gospel can speak to any situation we face in life. Her heart is to be vulnerable and share what she’s battling in hopes of assuring women that they are not alone. Even though she’s a huge introvert, she says that she can eat for about three people and loves discovering new music! But most time, you can find her binge-watching a series on Netflix or Hulu.