8 Steps to a Godly Healthy Dating Relationship
“The best love story is one that is led by the Author of Love.”Unknown
What Is a Godly Dating Relationship
A godly dating relationship is one in which two people of the opposite sex pursue a relationship with the intention of eventually getting married.
The relationship is characterized by mutual respect, love, and a commitment to living in accordance with God’s will.
While a godly dating relationship may have many different components, its ultimate goal is to prepare both partners for holy matrimony.
This involves learning to trust and rely on each other, as well as developing the ability to work together as a team.
It also means taking the time to grow spiritually and emotionally so that both partners are ready to enter into a lifelong covenant with each other.
Ultimately, a godly dating relationship is one that is rooted in Christ and focused on His glory.
Steps to a Godly Healthy Dating Relationship
Are you looking for some guidance on how to pursue a godly dating relationship?
If so, here are eight steps that you can take to make sure that your relationship is healthy and godly:
Step 1: God First
“And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul (life), and with all your mind (thought, understanding), and with all your strength. (Mark 12:30)
God always comes first in everything we do in this life.
It is not just saying that God is first.
It is not only praying every day and not just going to church on Sunday.
Firstly the verse mentions the heart:
Your heart must place God at the center of your life.
That space belongs to him.
I am reminded of idols and how we identify them.
If you really want to know if you are worshipping anything other than God, there are two tests you can do:
Firstly the love test.
The love test asks the following questions:
- What excites you?
- When you have nothing to do, what occupies your thoughts?
The second test is called the Trust test:
- Where do you turn to in times of trouble?
- What do you do when you are angry, sad, etc.?
When answering these questions honestly, we can see easily how many of us are flawed in our worship.
When we say God first, He should be our first thought in the morning, in every decision, and in everything we do.
This brings me to the second point mentioned in the verse.
To love God with all your Soul:
This is to love Him with your whole life.
In every aspect, how do you put Him first?
Here are a few categories you can put God first in:
- Vision or Dreams
- Daily Routine (Time Management)
Involving Christ in all the choices you make is mandatory to live a successful life in all aspects.
A successful life, according to what the Bible says.
With all your Mind:
What do we think?
When we think, do we think about how certain things we do would bring glory to God or if it would bring His displeasure?
When we put God first in our thoughts, it will be so much easier to put Him first in our hearts and in our lives.
All Your Strength:
This means that we ought to put all our efforts into loving God with all our hearts, lives, and minds.
STEP 2: Prayer
Prayer for a Godly relationship
Prayer in any Christian life is paramount.
We live to please God, and it satisfies Him when we seek a relationship that brings Glory to Him above everything else.
“ Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable and pleasing in Your sight, O LORD, my (firm, immovable) rock and my Redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)
STEP 3: Mentorship
Seek out Mentorship:
This comes in so handy because when we seek out advice from stronger and more knowledgeable experienced Christians, we tend to also be held accountable if we doing something wrong.
Also, you need someone locally who you can ask all the hard questions like:
- How soon should you start dating after a breakup?
- Should couples live together before getting married?
- How far should we go physically while dating?
- What things should I be looking for in a man or woman?
The right mentors:
- would be from your local church, hopefully,
- they would be people who put God first,
- they would be the people that study scripture and teach scripture well,
- they would preferably be a married couple or
- would be in church leadership.
STEP 4: Forgiveness and grace
What would a Christ-honoring relationship be without forgiveness and without grace?
The best example is Jesus Himself, who died on the cross for us.
“But God clearly shows and proves His own love for us, by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. – (Romans 5:8)
Forgiveness is rarely about forgetting.
The saying “Forgive and Forget” is honestly not the real and true description of what we experience as humans.
However, forgiveness is never about you or the other person, it is about Christ. He gave it freely therefore you should do the same. (Ephesians 4:32)
Whether you forget about the fault of the other person or not, you need to forgive them, even when it hurts.
Having a relationship with any other human being on this planet requires forgiveness because we have all sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.
No one is perfect.
Therefore, they will not live up to your expectations all the time.
But we ought to love them regardless by following the ways of the Lord.
“If God is going to write your love story, He’s going to first need your pen.”
(Eric Ludy, When God Writes Your Love Story)
STEP 5: Honesty
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor”(Exodus 20:16).
This is a pretty straightforward commandment.
A healthy relationship is based on honesty, which is something God values very highly.
Lie-based relationships fail.
The other individual gets to see the real you with all your flaws and faults when you’re honest from the beginning.
Putting all cards on the table requires honesty.
Let the other person know how you view the world and your values.
Hold yourself to your limits and communicate them to others.
Share your testimony:
Taking pride in our weaknesses brings glory to God because he uses these weaknesses to glorify His name.
As a result, it shows His greater power which is to change a person’s heart.
Transforming someone so drastically that they no longer desire flesh but put Him first.
Sharing the truth glorifies God.
STEP 6: Encourage each other to follow christ
“Let us seize and hold tightly the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is reliable and trustworthy and faithful (to His word); and let us consider (thoughtfully) how we may encourage one another to love and to do good deeds.” (Hebrews 10:23-24)
Holding each other accountable is desperately needed.
You need someone who holds your relationship with God in high esteem.
You want that person to help you grow closer to God.
Don’t be led by someone who will offend God.
It is important that the person you choose lives up to these principles and values a relationship with God, and puts Him first.
“Choose to be with someone who brings out your truest identity in Christ”.Unknown
Step 7: Value that you are an image-bearer
What I mean by image-bearer is this:
We were created by God in His own image (Genesis 1:27), so it is our duty to represent Him as ambassadors in the world to illustrate His goodness.
“So God created man in His own image, in the image and likeness of God He created him; male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27)
As ambassadors, we should value our bodies and treat our relationships with respect since we are to follow the rules as defined by God.
This means abstaining from sex before marriage or with someone who belongs to another (married).
We are sinning against our own bodies when we commit sin as insolent as sexual immorality (1 Cor 6:18).
It is in our bodies that we carry the presence of God, just like in ancient temples.
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is within you, whom you have (received as a gift) from God and that you are not your own (property)? (1 Corinthians 6:19)
Our Creator created us with a higher purpose than our own desires, and therefore, we ought to respect His wishes above our own.
You should practice sex with a spouse, and there is nothing more beautiful than waiting for marriage because it is not just a physical act but also a spiritual one.
“Boyfriends do not get husband privileges. The End.”Unknown
“For we are His workmanship (His own masterwork, a work of art), created in Christ Jesus (reborn from above spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used) for good works, which God prepared (for us) beforehand (taking paths which He set) so that we would walk in them (living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us). (Ephesians 2:10)
Step 8: The purpose of a relationship
Generally, in scripture, marriage is the primary relationship mentioned, but dating is not mentioned.
The purpose of dating someone is to see if that person is the one you are supposed to marry.
It’s not about sex, it’s not about fun, and it’s not about companionship.
Only through marriage can one truly commit to someone and love them as Christ would.
The purpose of marriage according to scripture:
- It is not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18).
- A man should find a woman to be his helper (Genesis 2:20).
- To produce godly children (Malachi 2:13-15)
- To love selflessly (1 John 3:16)
- The temptation to sexual immorality (1 Corinthians 7:2)
- He who finds a wife finds a good thing (Proverbs 18:22).
- Sanctification- Becoming more like Christ (Ephesians 5:25-26)
The ultimate purpose is that we glorify God in all that we do.
When we live to please God, it brings others to His throne.
In everything we do, whether it be dating, dancing, singing, walking, or eating, we do it all to glorify God.
So let’s set our eyes on Him, who should be the love of our lives first and foremost, and the rest will follow suit.