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It is time for Christians to start talking about dating. Establishing principles for Christian dating will set men and women on a course towards Christ-centered marriages. I hope and pray these words spark conversations in your ministries, relationships, and homes. If you need to take a minute to let that sink in, I will be here when you get back… Here’s the deal: marriage isn’t a divine lottery where every person has one winning ticket. Hopefully one will end up as my spouse.” Not a good idea. So, the default for years is to leave as soon as a flaw arises. This requires discipline, restraint, and abstinence from activities that don’t promote holiness. A pure mind might be the greatest gift you can give your future spouse. ____________________ I hope this discussion continues. I pray parents, church leaders, friends, and family begin to spark conversations about God’s design for dating.

The trajectory of lives and eternities are in the balance. Laying out guidelines for dating as followers of Jesus will alter lives by keeping people out of toxic and unhealthy relationships (and ultimately marriages). Here are 10 important principles for Christian dating. That would make God a gambler, and the Bible clearly says gambling is from the devil (only joking). Marriage isn’t as much about finding someone totally compatible as it is about committing to someone despites difficulties and differences. I fear this mentality in the dating culture is actually promoting divorce. Suddenly, when marriage begins, you are asked to flip a switch. It allows you to jump into marriage with a clear conscience.

I am fearful the Christian community has irresponsibly coerced men and women into marriage through cultural pressure.

If you aren’t ready for marriage, or if you do not want to get married, you are not sinning.

Dating with a trajectory towards marriage means dating with a purpose. You might get into a relationship with someone who loves Jesus, meets the values you have in a future spouse, and is compatible with you. Just end the relationship, and continue to seek the Lord. Again, please don’t be a freakish weirdo and give Christians a negative label. My wife loves the Lord, and I can say with all certainty I wouldn’t be following Jesus without her. It’s dangerous riding on the road to marriage without an idea of where you are going. Don’t sit someone down on the first date and interview them to make sure they meet all of the qualities. But once you get into the relationship, you realize things aren’t as they seemed. Having coffee or going to eat dinner with the opposite sex is not dating. There will be days when life is crashing down, your faith is wavering, and the only thing left is your spouse. In this scenario, your spouse is there to pray for you, put his or her arm around you, and walk with you. It means dating someone who meets the values and goals you have for a future spouse (more on that later). Casual or purposeless dating has no benefit for Christians. We are designed to know why we do stuff and where we are going. Now, please, please, please don’t be a freakish weirdo. It involves sharing personal struggles and vulnerability. If you believe God is preparing you for foreign missions, is it important the person you marry shares this passion? If you love the Cowboys and your future spouse loves the Packers, is it important to work through this before marriage?

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