There are a lot of Christian philosophies on dating and sometimes it’s difficult to know which one is best for you. A good place to begin before dating is on your knees and clearly communicating with God about His will for your life. Many people have suffered greatly in their relationships because they neglected to spend time with God before dating.
It’s important that believers conduct themselves in a gracious and honorable manner in their dating experiences. The world has lost the beauty of discovery in courtship as it pushes people towards sexual relationships. The following are 6 Christians dating do’s and don’ts for those who want God’s will more than their own way.
1. Do make it a habit to pray first before responding yes or no to a date.
“Then he prayed, ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, make me successful today, and show kindness to my master Abraham’” (Genesis 24:12). Abraham sent his senior servant to seek out a wife for his son, Isaac. He was adamant that Isaac wouldn’t marry a woman in the country he was living. Abraham’s belief underscores the significance of dating and marrying someone within rather than outside of the faith. This servant took his job seriously enough to stop and pray for God’s guidance. It should be no less serious for a child of God to seek His wisdom and direction before the first date and on every date afterwards. This habit will pay off in huge dividends in spiritual growth and the ability to follow God’s directions.
2. Don’t disregard your own inner convictions or Christians standards to please your date.
“Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God” (1 John 3:21). Even if you date a believer—it’s a good chance you are both not at the the same level need to grow up spiritually. It’s necessary to have your convictions thought out and settled before your date. Will you be troubled if your date drinks or not? Will your conscious be convicted if the movie is rated R? Your convictions shouldn’t be buried under the stronger desire of having a date. Be gentle and courageous to speak up if you are uncomfortable and need to feel secure on your date.
3. Do seek out the advice of wise people about your date.
“The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice” (Proverbs 12:15). It’s not that you need permission as an adult to date; however, it’s most helpful to communicate with a wise believer about your intentions. Keeping secrets about your dating desires or experiences can complicate your situation as sin loves to hover in the darkness. Be open and honest about your expectations in dating situations. Allow a third person of accountability to be a part of your decisions so that you keep yourself from the appearance of evil.
4. Don’t be afraid to be yourself in Christ.
“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect (1 Corinthians 15:10). Some Christians make the grave mistake of not really being who they are in Christ when they are dating. There are times when people play down their faith when they really feel convicted or they play up their faith to give a faulty impression of spirituality. God knows your heart and motives—stay in tune with God even during the date. You don’t have to be on a soap box preaching about your Christian experience, just be yourself in the Lord trusting that God will give you wisdom on what to share and what to keep to yourself.
4. Do respond to your date as your brother and sister in Christ.
“Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and Treating your date as your brother or sister in Christ will take the edge off of worrying about “is he/she the one?” Take your time to get to know them as how they are and not how they could fit into your life as a future spouse. As a believer in Jesus Christ, you don’t want to pollute your relationship by being overly engaged and inappropriately affectionate. Always seek the presence of Jesus in your dating time— His presence keeps the focus on the brotherly/sisterly aspect of your date.
5. Don’t allow yourself to get so caught up in the romance and emotion that you lose objectivity.
“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). Romance, infatuation, and emotions are always readily available in the beginning of a relationship. However if you allow yourself to be immersed in any of them, you will lose your focus and direction in the relationship. You also run the risk of not seeing your date as they are, but rather how you imagine them to be. Recognize your weaknesses and desires with a willingness for the Holy Spirit to gently prod you towards a realistic view of your date.
6. “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it” (Proverbs 4:23).
Dating can be a wonderful and fulfilling experience if you are willing to trust in the Lord and take the steps to guard your heart.When the time is right, God has the best interest for you and your date. Begin your relationship with a God focus so that you can look back in honor with no regrets.