What are Your Thoughts on Dating? By Grace (age 17)

As a Christian teen, my thoughts on dating have always been not to date someone that I wouldn’t want to marry, and in fact not to date anyone if I wasn’t ready to marry. I always thought this because after reading so many Christian dating manuals and promulgation on the subject, I was scared of sharing anything special with someone that I wasn’t going to spend the rest of my life with. But the simple truth of the matter is almost everyone is going to date someone that they’re not going to marry. People fall in and out of like really quickly, especially in highschool, and that’s not a bad thing. It’s taken me a little while to realize that it’s not dating that I should be wary of, it’s how much of me I’m going to share with another person that I have to fringe around. A while ago I was talking to an adult married friend of mine, and when I asked her if she regretted any of the guys she’d dated, she said no. She said that even though she’d dated many men that she never got married to, she didn’t regret it because she never crossed her personal boundaries and always went away from the relationships with a clean conscience and no regret. That, to me, was a little bit of a breakthrough in my thinking towards this subject. I realized that I didn’t have to shy away from relationships forever; I just had to make personal guidelines between me and God that I am not going to cross. It’s not about how many people you date; it’s about how much you share with them.

I’d say pretty much what it all comes down to is staying close to God. If you’re not close to Him and can’t hear His voice it makes it a lot harder to do the right thing and follow what He’s telling you to do; with relationships or otherwise. My new prognosis on dating, as a Christian, is as follows: Stay close to God.
That’s it. Really simple and easy to remember. Because if you follow Him, he’s going to give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4), whatever they may be.

Also, if you’re staying close to God it’ll help you keep away from detrimental relationships, such as one with an unbeliever or a person that has different moral values than you.

Which leads me to my second topic: Personal boundaries. I believe that these should mostly be a decision between you and God, but it does help to have someone keep you accountable to make sure that you’re sticking to the rules you made for yourself in regards to dating. Mom’s are great for this. Also, if you find yourself in a relationship with a person that you notice is pushing your boundaries, then get out. You don’t want to have regrets to look back on, and you don’t want to give yourself away to someone that you won’t love forever. Again, this is made easier by just staying close to God and letting the Holy Spirit lead you.
1Timothy 1:5, “The purpose of this order is to arouse the love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and a genuine faith.”

By Grace (age 17)

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