Winning at the Dating Game
It’s the beginning of a new school year. You haven’t thought about that guy all summer. (You know the guy I’m talking about.) It’s been somewhat of a nice break actually, but then . . . it happens. You walk through the doors of your school on the first day back, and he’s standing right there.
You worry your face has turned beet red. Your cheeks feel flush. In that moment, everything comes flooding back—butterflies flutter in your stomach, your head is spinning, and you break out in a grin that you hope no one else sees (except they do because you can’t wipe it off your face).
A few weeks go by, and your dream guy seems to notice you. You hit it off, start talking, then texting and liking each other’s photos on Instagram. One day he asks you out. All the butterflies flutter back into your stomach in a major way. You can’t breathe. So you come to me and ask my advice on where you should go with this guy. (Because in this situation I’m playing your best friend.) And I give you this answer:
DON’T DO IT.
Or at least don’t do it YET.
You can’t believe it. The guy you dream about just asked you to go on a date with him, and I’m telling you not to go? Yep, you heard me right. Don’t go on that date. Even though you’ve had a crush on this guy since third grade and he’s got a six-pack. I’m not nuts like you think I am. Let me explain.
The Dating Game
There’s this thing I call the “The Dating Game.” It happens around the world and usually starts when you’re in high school. Everybody seems to play it, which is why it seems normal.
Here’s how it works: A guy asks a girl out, they go to dinner and “date” for a while (a.k.a spend a bunch of time together). After awhile, one of them might get bored or angry or jealous and dump the other. They both move on to the next person, and so it goes until one day they find someone to marry and start a family with. It can be fun. A lot of fun. But it can also get you into a lot of trouble.
Can I be brutally honest with you? I want to give you some insight into a guy’s mind. I know how a lot of high school guys (and college guys and post-college guys) function, since I was/am one. Sometimes guys want you so they can use you. They might want to use you to feel valued and looked up to by other guys, or they might want to use you for something else (like sex).
Certainly, not all guys are like this. But dating when you’re in high school can sure open up a lot of doors for trouble to happen, because young guys are searching for their identity and there’s a lot of pressure to do what their friends are doing. This can be great if they have good friends, but not so great if their friends don’t yet know who they are either. Because you and the guy are both figuring out your identity, if you play the dating game early on, there’s more chance something hurtful will happen to you rather than something helpful.
I believe that we date someone to get to know them and see if there might be potential for marriage in that relationship. Just because you date someone doesn’t mean you’ll marry them, but it should mean that you’re not opposed to the idea. The average age for a woman to get married today is around twenty-five. That means if you start dating at fifteen, you likely won’t get married for a decade. That’s a long time to wait.
Win by Waiting
I’m not proposing that you don’t date. I’m just saying you should wait to date. Don’t wait forever, but if you’re in high school, wait for now. I want you to look in the mirror and ask yourself if you’re really ready to get married—because like I said, that’s really the reason we should date anyone, to see if they would be a good marriage partner.
Friends will probably call you weird when they see you not dating. That’s okay. It’s better to be called weird than to look back on years of your life and wish that you had done things differently and saved yourself for your future husband. Even if there’s no sex involved, your heart is involved, and I guarantee it will get beat up because you’re emotionally invested in that guy you’re with.
The Bible doesn’t specifically state, “Thou shalt not date until you’re out of high school.” However, it does give advice on how we should act around others. These can be applied to any relationship you’re in now or in the future. For example:
-- Philippians 4:8 talks about the fact that we should think about whatever is true, honorable, pure, just, lovely, and commendable. When faced with a decision, ask yourself if it’s true, honorable, pure, lovely, or commendable.
-- First Corinthians 13:4-5 gives us an example of what love is: “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude.” Do your relationships measure up to that? Practice treating those around you well, and that will carry over into how you treat your boyfriend down the road.
Below is a list of verses you can look up and apply to any dating relationship. Get to know these verses, treat others well today, and pray that the Lord will guide you when you begin to date.
2 Timothy 2:22
1 Corinthians 15:33
1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
2 Corinthians 6:14-15
By Beecher Proch
Revive Our HeartsView Website
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