Most of marriage involves time together, one on one, in a friendship.I don’t have first-hand knowledge, but thanks to reality TV, I believe it appears to involve asking the woman’s dad if she is available to date, and possibly not kissing until the actual wedding.Outside the Duggar-verse, there is the less overt but just as prevalent “ideal spouse” dating. Did she want my sweatshirt because she was cold, or because she likes me?At the opposite extreme, there is “Faux Christian Dating”—in which young Christians have no idea what to do with dating, so they avoid it. “Hanging out” leads to all kinds of mixed feelings. Stop evaluating whether the new girl at church is hot enough and “low-maintenance” enough for your liking.If you take notice, if you are intrigued or interested, make a date! We are talking about one afternoon or evening together, not a lifetime.As my friend Lindsey, married and in her thirties, recently remarked, “I’m sure glad I wasn’t much of a Christian when I started dating my husband!” Whether over coffee in my kitchen or on the hallowed ground of women’s small groups, I hear these murmurs constantly.
Nicole Unice is the author of â Brave Enough: Getting Over our Fears, Flaws and Failures to Live Bold and Free.â (Tyndale, 2015) and travels frequently enough to almost feel like she can fly. Read More A wise man once told me that there were only two outcomes for dating relationships: getting married or breaking up.
“The secret,” he said, “is knowing how to handle a dating relationship so you know if the other person is worth marrying or he or she is honored in the breakup.” Unfortunately, it seems like many young singles struggle to figure out just how to handle dating–and I’m not the only one who’s noticed how weird the Christian dating scene can be.
And unless someone’s making arrangements for you, it’s worth spending at least a little bit of time with the person before you decide if they are worth marrying. But it’s foolish to think that the way a girl or guy acts in a group of friends is the same as how they’ll act one on one.
Dating helps two people sort out what it would be like to be together, to be in a friendship.
This involves judging a potential guy or girl for the 38 qualities you are looking for in an ideal mate—before even grabbing coffee together. Sometimes the “hanging out” leads to hooking up, sans dating, which is another uber-confusing side effect of the Faux Christian Dating cycle. What if Christians just began to date like normal people—not dating toward immediate marriage and not eschewing dating for the less-desirable “hanging out” no man’s land?It’s like arranged marriages where no one is making the arrangements, and it doesn’t seem to work very well. Here’s what I think it would require: Stop evaluating whether the guy who’s taken an interest in you is strong and tenderhearted enough to raise your future kids.