This is a segment from John Dickson’s book – Hanging in There which has chapters about what is the deal with church, prayer, Satan, the holy spirit, living with parents who are Christians and dating among other things. If you want to read the whole book or chapter grab the book from Koorong or ask Kez for a copy.
‘If you are a Christian and single and you really want a partner, why settle for second best? By ‘second best’ I do not mean that Christians are great people and everyone else is bad. I simply mean that a relationship between two Christians who put God first will naturally be more fulfilling than a relationship of differing beliefs and priorities.
Romance is not our invention – it’s God’s. In fact, there’s a whole book in the Bible devoted to the topic of passionate, sexual, romantic love. If two people love their Creator and treat one another the way he designed, it makes sense that their relationship will experience a deep level of enjoyment. It’s not simply that they both share a common ‘hobby’. They share a common Lord. More than a hobby (though some Christians treat it like one), Christianity is a new life, heading towards eternal life. When two people ‘in love’ know this life for themselves, there is a bond and dimension to the relationship that is incomparable. It’s a relationship by the Manufacturer’s instructions.
Realising this fact, a number of my Christian friends have refused to settle for second best, and have waited until the right girl (or guy) came into their lives – someone with whom they can pray, talk about their faith and who will challenge them in that faith. This may sound corny but to those who have experience this kind of relationship, it is by far the better plan.
Some time ago, one of my closest friends fell for a guy who was not a Christian. He was a top bloke and was even willing to listen to her explanation of her faith in Jesus but he didn’t accept Jesus for himself. For a number of weeks she struggled with her own feelings of love, and guilt for having that love. She is a very mature Christian but found herself torn two ways. “Do I go out with this guy (who certainly returned her feelings) or do I stop seeing him as I feel I should” Finally, after some very hard and painful thinking, she rang him to say she would no longer see him in a romantic situation. She still had deep feelings for this guy for a long while afterwards (I firmly believe there is no wrong in that) but she didn’t allow her feelings to govern her life. Her Lord governed her life. It was hard but there is a peace in doing what you feel is right that brings comfort to any hurt. As it turns out, she later found another top bloke who was just as devoted to Jesus as she was. I went to their wedding a few days ago.
Then, of course, there’s the problem of not being able to find a partner. What if there are no Christian guys or girls on the scene, or the ones that are around are not interested in you? It’s great to have a partner but I think we’ve become sucked into believing that if you don’t have one, you’re some kind of alien. That is not the case at all. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t get too down about it and whatever you do, don’t go looking for just anyone to fill the space. I think some Christians feel frustrated by not having a girlfriend or boyfriend and end up going out with someone who doesn’t believe simply because they can’t be bothered waiting. Hang in there; don’t get too intense. Instead, trust God who knows all your needs and wants. Tell him how you feel, but whatever you do, don’t take something you think is ‘good’ and miss out on the ‘best’.
In the end, no one can make your mind up for you. Either you will follow this advice and discover for yourself the value of Christian relationships or you will do it the hard way and learn as I learnt. Either way, God loves you and desires only good for you. In his time he’ll get you to where he wants you.’