I never thought I would be dating again late in life, but when my beloved husband Raul passed away in November of 2021, I sensed that God was saying he would provide another husband as my life partner for the rest of my years. So I began that crazy, sometimes frustrating, journey of dating!
I began applying some of the dating insights I had gleaned over my many years here on this earth along with guiding Bible principles. So, I want to pass on some of that to you in this short little devotional.
First, God makes it clear that a Christian should not be linked in close partnership with an unbeliever. 2 Corinthians 6:14 Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers. How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? This is critical! If you end up marrying an unbeliever, Satan has total entry to wreak havoc in your marriage! You two will not be pulling the same direction. Also, without the Bible as a moral compass, your husband will have no constraints on immoral or disrespectful behavior, and that can definitely lead to heartbreak for you.
Next, keep in mind that a lot of guys might SAY they are a Christian, and they might even attend church, but that does NOT mean they are a true follower of Jesus. You need to look for evidence of Christ’s presence in their life. Do they show any fruit of the spirit? Galatians 5:22-23 the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control.
And here’s one other huge tip. Stay sexually pure while dating. Save sex until your marriage. This is clearly God’s will, and when we obey God, he blesses us. I don’t know about you but I want to have God’s blessing!! Here are 4 quick little tips to avoid falling into sexual sin while dating:
Don’t get horizontal!
Don’t stay overnight at each other’s homes even if you have good intentions to sleep on the couch.
Don’t stay together after midnight because that’s usually when temptation creeps in.
Resist the urge to French kiss before marriage. I know it’s tempting, but it’s also super arousing and may lead to where you vowed not to go until marriage!
If there’s one thing I’ve learned after observing many Christian marriages over several decades, it’s that ANY two people can build a fantastic marriage IF they both are seeking to honor the Lord and seek his guidance on all things.
Think of it this way. Whoever you date is going to be imperfect, just like you also are imperfect. However, if both of you are regularly seeking God’s guidance in His Word and seeking to obey his guidance, God can then start smoothing out the rough edges! When a husband and wife are both striving to follow the Lord and his promptings, God can refine them day by day. He can heal their broken places. He can teach them new healthier ways to communicate and handle conflict.
It’s all about seeking God above all else! This reminds me of the verse that finishes the famous section of Scripture about worrying in Matthew 6. Jesus says stop worrying about everything and seek to follow him and he will take care of everything. Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Another verse also comes to mind. Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make you path straight.
So what is the number one question to ask a person you’re starting to date? Here it is: What has God been teaching you lately? Then be quiet and listen. If the person has that “deer in the headlights” look, that’s probably a good indication that they really aren’t seriously seeking God and his guidance!
One thing I’ve learned over my many years is that a great marriage doesn’t just magically happen. Being “in love” when you exchange vows on your wedding day isn’t going to be enough. You must be intentional. Please allow me to share 5 simple but profound keys to building a strong, lasting, healthy marriage. Conveniently, God gave me this acrostic to help both you and I remember these 5 keys! Together, the letters spell G-R-E-A-T.
G: stands for God, as in making sure that God is your number one relationship instead of trying to get your husband to meet all your emotional needs and expecting him to be your source of happiness. (Matthew 22:36-37)
R: stands for resentment, as in making sure that you address resentment quickly so that it can’t choke the life out of your marriage. (Hebrews 12:15)
E: stands for effort, as in being diligent to speak your husband’s love language, show respect to him, pay attention to him, create fun moments with him, do small things he appreciates, and build a vibrant sex life with him! (Proverbs 13:4)
A: stands for ask God to show you how YOU need to change, grow, and eliminate old unhealthy patterns in your own life such as conflict avoidance or having a critical tongue. (Colossians 3:5-10)
T: stands for treasure, as in purposely reminding yourself of the good qualities you can treasure in your husband instead of allowing yourself to dwell on his imperfections. (Philippians 4:8)
We all want to be viewed as mature, but how does a wife actually go about becoming mature? The Bible gives us some hints. In short, the Bible indicates that maturity comes from persevering, from disciplining yourself to discern between good and evil choices, from speaking the truth in love, and by receiving wisdom from the Word of God.
Here are the verses that reveal these 4 means of becoming mature. James 1:4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. Hebrews 5:14 But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Ephesians 4:15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. Colossians 1:28 He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ.
By the way, the very best way for you to receive wisdom is by spending time reading God’s Word! By that, I don’t mean simply reading one verse per day from a daily devotional. I mean reading ALL of God’s Word. It might take you two years to make your way all the way through it, but it will be totally worth it. You will find so much of value along the journey 🙂