Read: “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds…” Hebrews 10:24
So you’ve developed a crush, their character seems to check out, and now you’re ready to test the waters and see what comes next. If you look at culture, finding your next step can be a little confusing. For all its love songs, and its obsession with true love, the world has found itself spiraling into a hookup culture. This idea teaches that the next step is to make sure you’re sexually compatible, THEN discover if there’s something more there. But when we look to scripture, we learn that culture’s approach to intimacy is completely backwards to what God intended. Long before exploring sex in the context of marriage, the next step after attraction is dating.
When our attraction is reciprocated, we get to enter into the big scary world of dating. Now before we move on, a quick note. This is another concept that the world has taken and twisted. Pay special attention to that word “reciprocated.” There is nothing romantic about continuing to try to pursue someone that has told you they aren’t interested. It doesn’t make for a great love story, it makes for harassment. We should do everything we can to respect others, especially someone we claim to have feelings for. If the person we like doesn’t have feelings of attraction for us, we’ve got to trust that God knows better than we do, and that He is ready to shape our story in a different (and better) way than we imagined.
Dating is a chance to continue to discover someone’s character, to encourage and uplift them in their walk with Christ as your feelings for each other grow. And that’s something really important to remember when dating - don’t just look for someone who returns your sense of attraction, look for someone who will put Christ first in your relationship. Look for someone who will encourage you to grow closer to Him as you grow closer together, because years into your love story, the physical characteristics that sparked attraction will fade, but character remains.
Don’t miss the rest of this week as we explore what a Christ-centered dating relationship looks like.
Pray: God, thank you for knowing my story better than I do. As I seek to navigate the relationship you have put into my life, surround me with someone who will put you at the center of it all. Let me be someone who encourages and uplifts, as I get to explore all that you have for us in this relationship. In Jesus’ name, Amen.