DEAR ALI: “What are some Principles for Godly Dating?”
Last week, we talked about how there is no black and white formula laid out in the Bible on how to date in a way that honors God in the process. But, there are some distinctive principles from God’s Word, which we can apply to our dating lives, should He lead us in that direction. This week’s principle out of the 10-part series is:
Godly Dating Principle #2: Fear Not Rejection.
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” ~1 John 4:18
What keeps many from even pursuing relationships is fear of being rejected. I am pretty much speaking to the men here because I am of the belief that it is men who should be the ones initiating. Proverbs 18:22 says, “He who finds a wife, finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.”
There is risk involved in ‘finding’ a person to date, but when our identity is firmly rooted in the Lord and we have fully put our trust in His plans, there should be no reason to fear! If a woman turns you down, it will inevitably hurt a bit. That’s to be expected. But you can trust that she wasn’t the one God has for you and start praying for the next opportunity!
And real quick men, here is a little secret: WOMEN LOVE TO BE PURSUED. No matter what we say, it’s true…we do!
Rejection can be felt on the female side as well. There are times in a dating relationship when, after a few dates, the guy will no longer want to pursue the relationship further. I recently experienced such a situation and well, I am not going to lie and say it didn’t hurt. It did. Rejection, so matter how major or minor, is never a pleasant feeling! But, when our identity is rooted–really rooted–in God, we have only reason to rejoice when God closes a door on a romantic prospect. It is simply God’s way of saying, “This is not my best for you, and you were not my best for him…just yet.” And we simply have to trust Him on this. It may suck the wind out of our sails for a few days (or more), but that’s okay. It is but a reflection of the raw and mysterious beauty of the human experience. Soon enough, God’s Spirit will breathe the wind back into our sails once again, steering us in a new direction.
Are you facing the sting of rejection? Just remember the song, “I get knocked down, but I get up again…you’re never gonna keep me down!” Oddly enough, it was these very lyrics that helped me pick my temporarily wounded heart off the ground and approach rejection with a bit of humor. Yes, we may get knocked down, but We WILL get up again because with God, nothing can ever keep us down!
However, we must beware, because it is in these times when the enemy tries to weasel his way into our souls, whispering lies like, You’re not good enough… You’re not worthy of love… You’ll be alone forever. But don’t believe any of it for one second. I repeat: don’t believe ANY of it for one second! Instead, let these words of Truth from the Apostle Paul sink into your soul, “…we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). And how about these from Jesus Himself, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
No matter who we are, we will face trouble from time to time. And when we take the risk of putting our hearts out there, we will experience some momentary boo-boos every now and then. But we can rest assured that God will always provide us with the strength, hope and confidence we need to bounce back from rejection and keep moving forward with JOY on our journey of faith in Him. See, rejection isn’t so bad after all. 😉
Share your thoughts on this faith-based principle of dating. And don’t forget to check back next week for Godly Dating Principle #3: Be Equally Yoked.