The Complexity and Beauty Of Christian Dating
Dating and the Christian Faith
Modern dating can be confusing and difficult for men and women of the Christian faith due to the focus on God. New relationships commonly raise questions regarding both God and faith. There are no simple answers to these questions.
Christian singles interested in getting married, and having a family need to consider the lives they intend to lead prior to looking for the ideal partner. The scripture provides guidelines and rules important for Christian dating.
These rules are intended to enable Christians to have a successful marriage, without sacrificing their core beliefs and faith. I believe it is possible for two Christians to marry and embrace their lives and faiths together.
The Key Principles of Christian Dating
I realize not everyone has the same opinion regarding Christian dating. I also believe the core principles must be embraced to protect the couple, ensure God remains a central figure, and to find a mutually enjoyable relationship.
The relationship must take both the couple, and their faith into consideration to be successful. According to NT Relationships..., Christians looking for love may consider:
There is no such thing as a dating plan suitable for everyone. Every couple has different requirements and needs to help ensure a happy marriage and life together. Attempting to create a relationship through specific rules will not work.
I have found rules are generally too rigid to encompass the experiences, fears, dreams and hopes of Christian couples. The bottom line is no process will result in success for everyone.
Some Christians have never dated, others have dated frequently, many have experienced difficult breakups, and some have enjoyed a successful relationship for several years. Each situation requires different principles to succeed.
If the same principles are applied to all of the above examples, the result will often be disastrous. Just because two Christians have the same beliefs does not mean they are meant to be a couple.
Yes, I believe having the same or similar beliefs is critical for a good Christian relationship, but there are many other factors that are just as important. I have watched too many couples fall apart because they attempted to follow a rigid plan.
Dating is not easy for any religion. Evaluating each individual relationship eliminates a lot of confusion and doubts. The idea is to preserve the most important aspects of the Christian faith in addition to the values of the individuals.
Christian Dating in the Modern World
During the 1960's, the combination of spiritual mayhem, and the sexual revolution was the beginning of modern dating. The basic concept of courtship or biblical dating decreased in important for modern society.
Courtship provided the structure necessary for two Christians to learn about one another prior to beginning an emotional entanglement. Today's culture considers dating a requirement for any adult that is still single.
Unfortunately, I have seen numerous Christians relationships are simply for fun as opposed to finding the person they can spend their life with. Some people are unable to attain happiness until they find their ideal partner.
I have also seen more Christian dating sites than I can count. According to Pure Life Ministries learn more..., there are 10 million search results for matchmaker, with 400 million for dating.
Some of the websites about Christian dating are good, while others appear more concerned with making a profit than helping Christians find a life partner. Thorough research is necessary before joining any dating site.
Numerous surveys indicate many Christians are not on the path required by their faith to marry and have children. Many believe the Lord is grieving the path followed for modern dating instead of being pleased.
Modern dating is often too casual, enticing Christians to become immersed in a relationship before they really know one another. Despite this, numerous Christians are still dating according to the dictates of their faith.
The Biggest Myth Regarding Christian Dating
The biggest myth I have ever heard is God will show every Christian the ideal partner the moment they first meet. According to Crosswalk..., this myth states God determines who Christians will marry immediately.
I do not believe this is true. To determine the type of partner every individual needs, they must get to know different types of people. Only by understanding what will not work can the ideal partner be found.
God is not going to send down a flight of doves, or a neon sign to tell anyone who to marry. Some people are afraid to date due to the risks sometimes leading to pain. Despite this, dating is necessary for anyone interested in a strong marriage.
Suffering leads to the knowledge and experience necessary to find the right partner. If God really did send a flight of doves, Christians would not learn and grow because no work would be involved in finding a marriage partner.
I am glad I did not know who I would marry when I first met my future husband. We met at a church picnic, and I had no idea at this time this was my ideal partner. I did not realize this until I took the time to get to know him.
Had I known, I would have missed out on the beautiful experience of discovering our faith together, discussing new ideas, and learning what was really important. The worst part is had I known from the start; I would not have grown as a Christian.
The experience of dating is critical. There is no book or scripture to tell you who is meant for you because this is a discovery every Christian must make for themselves. I believe dating is about listening to your heart, head and subconsciousness.
I have had friends who knew almost immediately they found the right person, but this knowledge did not come from any plan, book or program. This knowledge came from within.
I have found boundaries are important for dating. There is a YouTube video I like explaining why boundaries are important learn more...
The Importance of Faith for Christian Dating
The bible states partnership has nothing to do with lawlessness or righteousness. This does not mean there are not numerous opportunities to meet Christians including through friends or the church, dating sites, or even in a coffee shop.
What is important is meeting someone with both shared interests and similar Christian beliefs. Two people can meet at church, and have the exact same faith, but if they have nothing else in common the relationship will most likely fail.
Although the Christian faith is a key factor in a relationship, there are no specific boxes that need to be checked. What is important is the ability of the couple to deepen their relationship and understanding of the Lord.
According to Desiring God..., the willingness to grow faith in Christianity is one of the cornerstones of a good relationship.
Understanding the belief of any potential life partner is critical, but this can be accomplished in many different ways such as attending church together, reading the bible together, or simply by taking.
Using Social Media for Dating
Sometimes social media can be an important tool for meeting someone. Christian singles have been coming together on social media sites for years. Some of the platforms provide a good system for matching Christians.
I know couples who never would have met were it not for social media. God is present everywhere. This does not mean there are not pitfalls for both social media and modern technology. The type of interactions available must be considered.
A good Christian relationship is not possible simply by teasing and flirting through social media. Faith will never be determined with a wink. A lot of people use social media to hide with no intention of making a commitment.
Understanding some Christians are interested in finding a life partner while others are not is critical. Ask questions, and really listen to the answers. If something does not feel right, the chances are good you have not found what you are searching for.
One of the worst mistakes any Christian can make is falling for a photograph posted on social media with no substance to the interaction. Liking a post or making a comment is easy. Looking for substance and faith is much more difficult.
Singles must consider character, integrity, and attraction in addition to faith. Defining a relationship according to a few interactions on social media is a recipe for disaster. Take the time to get to know someone before taking the next step.
If the couple are openly pursuing a commitment without trying to hide anything from public view, social media becomes an acceptable way to meet. Every situation is different, so there are no set rules.
The Position of Purity According to the Christian Faith
Purity has always been an important concept regarding the so-called rules for Christian dating. According to elite singles..., an ultimatum should never be a part of any serious relationship.
Unless the situation merits a discussion, there is no reason to discuss either purity or chastity. I repeat, every relationship is different. A good example is found in the Song of Solomon.
The Song of Solomon states the desire for intimacy and physical closeness is both inevitable and beautiful. Scripture can be helpful for determining the basics required for modern dating.
Godliness and common sense are not mutually exclusive but can work together. The Song of Solomon explains how the couple removed all temptation right from the start. This was accomplished by spending time together outside in the public view.
In some instances, remaining secluded together indoors can result in too great of a temptation. Taking a sensible and practical approach to dating often results in success.
The Concept of Too Fast Might be a Myth
The best definition I have ever heard regarding moving too fast is the concept is defined by the couple. The progression of each relationship moves at a different speed. Some couples require years prior to marriage, and others only need months.
Each individual needs to look deeply within themselves to know what is right. One person may value intelligence, and another may require a partner with a good sense of humor. There is no right or wrong here.
The most important aspect is knowing in your heart you have met the ideal partner. Security can be found simply by making the choice right for each individual. If the couple believes the relationship is progressing too quickly, slow down.
If the couple feels everything is moving too slowly, speed it up. There must be an intuition regarding how fast any relationship should proceed. According to Frank Powell... , the right relationship triggers a sense of knowing.
Never settle for less than you deserve, sacrifice you faith, or base a relationship on anything superficial. Christian dating can fulfil your dreams.
Friendship Can Transform into a Beautiful Marriage
The best dating advice I have ever heard applies to every religion. The strongest basis for any relationship is often a solid friendship. There are many reason a good friendship can begin including faith, interests and hobbies.
Friendship enables Christians to get to know one another with no pressure. A couple can initially meet online, get together for the first time over a cup of coffee, and realize they are compatible.
As time passes, this compatibility can grow into something more. According to life church..., Christian singles often worry about physical attraction.
Just because a couple starts out as friends does not mean the relationship is unable to develop further. The truest beauty of every Christian is what lies inside, not their physical characteristics.
Even if the attraction is not immediate, a spark can develop once a friendship is formed. Friendship is often the first step toward finding the person you can happily spend the rest of your life with.
The Final Word
You are the only one who knows what you need in a relationship. Your common sense and intuition are excellent guides in determining what is right, and what is wrong. Consider the virtues and faith of any potential partner.
Once you know what you are searching for, dating becomes much easier. No matter which medium you use to begin dating, make certain you do not settle. The only way to find your ideal mate is to begin dating today.