As a single Christian, maintaining a Godly relationship is one of your greatest concerns when it comes to dating. Dating in today’s corrupt world can be scary and discouraging, but there are like minded individuals out there and you can enjoy a relationship with them- one that glorifies God. Here are some tips to help you maintain (and find) a Godly relationship.
Dating VS Waiting
It is human nature to not want to be alone; relationships of all kinds are essential to our well being. However, fixation on finding “The One” has led many Christians to date around, instead of prayerfully awaiting the unfolding of God’s plan for their personal lives in respect to the romantic aspect. There are many reasons why waiting on the Lord is a better choice than dating:
- God knows who will bring that which we need into our lives and we are often drawn to others for the wrong reasons; we also lack the ability to see another’s heart as clearly as God can
- God’s timing is perfect, ours is often off. Insecurity and past hurts may not have been dealt with and can ruin relationships and only God can say when we are ready to love another romantically
- God wants to be first in our lives and when we are actively seeking someone to love, we may be silently saying that his love is not enough and we are not content with serving and pleasing him alone; a relationship would be a distraction in this case and would draw you away from, not closer to, God
- We are not trusting God to provide a mate for us, and we are not allowing him full control over our personal lives in determining whether or not we are to have a mate
If you do decide to date, ask God to lead you to the right individual and be sure you know what you are looking for in a mate and that they are biblically based traits, not mere personal preferences.
Make Boundaries a Basic and Christ the Center
Date with the intention of marriage and do not pursue any relationship before this is your intent. Make your boundaries known from the beginning and do not put yourself in bad situations, don’t underestimate the power of temptation. Remember that the spirit may be willing, but the flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41).
What are your boundaries? They aren’t a list of what you are and aren’t comfortable with, they should be biblically based and designed to honor God. While finding likeminded Christians with shared interests is ideal and can lead to great spiritual growth for you both, whomever you date should respect your faith and boundaries. The top issue for Christians as they begin dating is remaining pure. Even when dating another Christian, this can be a difficult task.
However, sex was created by God to be shared within the marriage relationship and it is in your best interest (whether you are a virgin or a born again virgin) to avoid being physically close with the person you are dating. Holding hands and sharing a brief hug can be satisfying as you spend time together and begin to care for one another. Avoid being alone, heavy petting and kissing, as these three things make up the recipe for sexual sin.
Don’t be ignorant to your fleshy desires, take them to God and pray together as a couple for his strength and blessing in your relationship as you face temptations and make decisions in your relationship as it develops.
Good Godly Date Ideas
Once you’ve met someone you’d like to get to know better and vice versa, here are some ways to have fun while courting each other:
- Serve together within your church and community
- Attend Church services and activities together
- Join a bible study or book club
- Go to a Christian concert together
- Have a game night with another Christian couple
- Have a movie night at home with another Christian couple (pick an appropriately rated movie, if not a Christian film!)
- Explore a local museum
- Chat at a coffeehouse
- Go to a fair or carnival
If you won’t be double dating, consider having a chaperone accompany you and your date. Another option is to meet your date at your date locations (public places) and don’t linger after the date is done. Try to meet up during the day, afternoon or early evening.
Inviting your date on family outings is also a great way to spend time together, while in the presence of others, which lessens temptation.
Always behave as if Christ himself were your chaperone, because truthfully he is watching over your date!
Whether you choose to actively date or patiently wait for your God sent lover for life, remember that honoring God and your partner will bring blessings your way and into your relationship.
Falling in love can take time -as getting to know someone takes time and is the best way to determine if that person is right for you- but do treat each person you date with respect and love them in a Godly way even before you develop a more passionate love for them.
Love them unconditionally, forgive them easily and encourage them also in their Christian walk and search for love.