June 19, 2013

Help! I'm A New Christian. What Are The Rules On Dating? (3)

“When I first came to church I found the women a bit confusing. I thought they all fancied me because they kept talking to me and asking me stuff about my life. Where I come from that means a girl fancies you. I thought I was a right stud with all these girls after me. Then, I realised they didn’t fancy me, they were just being nice and polite. Now I have no idea how to talk to one. How do I know if I should ask a Christian girl out?”

Young men from non-Christian homes find this whole topic confusing and perplexing. We have been looking at the issue of dating this week on the blog. Here are some more tips:

9. Do you talk about the deep things of God? In other words, is your conversation based around more than superficialities? Once the early high has worn off, what will you be left with? If there is no initial substance, then you will be building your relationship on quickly shifting sand. To build a firm foundation for your relationship you must start off well. Pray together. Read the Bible together. Discuss spiritual truth together. Every time you are together. If you build that discipline in from the very beginning then you will carry it forward into the rest of your lives.

10. Have you seen the worst side of her yet? In other words, once you get past the hair flicks and the flirtatious laughing, what’s she really like when her heart issues come to the fore? Is she bitter? Is she angry? Is she jealous? Where are her deep struggles and is she open to spiritual challenge on them?

11. Have you disagreed on anything yet? The real test of any relationship is how you handle conflict. Does she sulk and pout? Does she storm off? Does she sit and talk things through in a mature manner? All important considerations.

12. Does she love the local church? Does she have a critical spirit? It is far too easy to be negative about everything and to focus on the failings of the church. Is she seeking to be part of the community and engaging with others in accountable relationships? Or is she merely standing on the sidelines commentating on how she sees things?

13. Does she love other people and have a variety of relationships in her life? In other words, will she want exclusivity over you? Nothing is more damaging than over possessiveness. Every strong relationship works hard at being together but also at encouraging one another to have outside interests and relationships.

14. Will she love you despite your faults? Is she the type of person who wants to change you, or will she submit to the Lordship of Christ and recognise that this is his job through the power of his Holy Spirit? Picking at and praying through your faults are two entirely different things with two entirely different end results. Nagging is a relationship killer.

The most important consideration?

15. Will this relationship lead you both closer to or further away from the Lord Jesus Christ? Do you inspire one another to spiritual purity and submission to Christ? How easy it is for relationships to become an idol in our lives. The answer to this question will become clear very quickly. Remember, anything that leads you away from Jesus is to be removed and repented of, and that includes pretty girls with nice legs and a winning smile.

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