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Please do not be offended by that, but the odds are slim to none that a relationship in middle school and high school will continue. More often, I see relationships built in student ministry, and then a result is horrible and ugly break ups that affect the friendships, cause drama and, in a lot of cases, tend to be uncomfortable for other students surrounding these dating issues.

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The trajectory of lives and eternities are in the balance. Laying out guidelines for dating as followers of Jesus will alter lives by keeping people out of toxic and unhealthy relationships (and ultimately marriages). “The one” says you need to find the perfect person. The beauty of marriage is God sustains you despite your flaws. The shells of a shotgun are stuffed with tiny round balls. You are asked to go from a mentality that says “End a relationship as soon as difficulty arises,” to one that says, “Don’t end the relationship regardless of the difficulty that arises.” That’s a tough switch to flip.

This issue shapes our young people, friends, and family more than we could ever imagine. “Let’s just sit back and see what happens” might work in certain scenarios, but Christian dating isn’t one of them. I hope and pray these words spark conversations in your ministries, relationships, and homes. If you need to take a minute to let that sink in, I will be here when you get back… Here’s the deal: marriage isn’t a divine lottery where every person has one winning ticket. Hopefully one will end up as my spouse.” Not a good idea. So, the default for years is to leave as soon as a flaw arises. This requires discipline, restraint, and abstinence from activities that don’t promote holiness. A pure mind might be the greatest gift you can give your future spouse. ____________________ I hope this discussion continues. I pray parents, church leaders, friends, and family begin to spark conversations about God’s design for dating.

Casual or purposeless dating has no benefit for Christians. We are designed to know why we do stuff and where we are going. Now, please, please, please don’t be a freakish weirdo. It involves sharing personal struggles and vulnerability. If you believe God is preparing you for foreign missions, is it important the person you marry shares this passion? If you love the Cowboys and your future spouse loves the Packers, is it important to work through this before marriage?

Dating with a trajectory towards marriage doesn’t mean you only date one person ever. So, if you choose not to get coffee or watch a movie with the opposite sex, then whatever. The ultimate purpose of marriage is sanctification (becoming like God). If you have no idea what values are important to you in a future spouse, exit the road to marriage at the next off ramp.

While you do not have to commit to marrying this person right away, you should realize that any guy-girl relationship you begin has the potential to end in marriage. That is why it is important to consider some warning signs you will look for while dating someone. If you desire to have a marriage relationship built on Scripture, you will want to marry a man who will be a strong spiritual leader to you and your future family. Your spiritual maturity may result in frustration and leadership struggles if he is not as strong as you in his relationship with God. Ultimately, your spiritual condition is up to you and you alone.

If there is always that possibility, then you must ask yourself whether this person has the qualities you will need in a husband. Ask yourself these questions: How strong is his relationship with Jesus Christ? How passionate is he about reading God’s Word, prayer, and fellowship with other believers in a biblically solid church? However, in Ephesians Paul compares a husband’s role toward his wife with that of Christ’s role toward His Bride, the Church, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, the she might be holy and without blemish,” (Ephesians -27, emphasis mine).The move has been criticised amid fears it unfairly targets Muslim people, however the White House has insisted the policy will protect against Islamic extremism and terrorism.The policy has provoked outcry both in the US and around the world, with demonstrations and protests planned outside airports and legislatures.Join CLA and prepare to take full advantage of the countless opportunities for you to receive, give, and grow.It is time for Christians to start talking about dating. Establishing principles for Christian dating will set men and women on a course towards Christ-centered marriages. Here are 10 important principles for Christian dating. That would make God a gambler, and the Bible clearly says gambling is from the devil (only joking). Marriage isn’t as much about finding someone totally compatible as it is about committing to someone despites difficulties and differences. I fear this mentality in the dating culture is actually promoting divorce. Suddenly, when marriage begins, you are asked to flip a switch. It allows you to jump into marriage with a clear conscience. That would be awesome, but it’s not always realistic. If you are a Christian, God isn’t a piece of your pie. Why date someone who doesn’t even have God as a piece of the pie? Pull over at the closest gas station and decide what you want in a future spouse. Your list is designed to give you a framework for dating, not be a checklist for it. Your heart and the holiness of marriage are too important to flippantly give away because you are frustrated, impatient, or settling.

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