Many women want to know, "what's appropriate dating behavior for a Christian woman? Are there actual do's and don'ts for dating while saved?" If you're even pondering this, I would like to personally give you a high-five and a hug just for asking this question! Your curiosity surrounding this issue simply means, you care about two things: Your relationship with God and your relationship with your male friend.
Unfortunately, not enough women are thinking that way. Many believe that being a Christian doesn't necessarily mean you should have standards that differ from the world when it comes to dating. "Why can't I just go out and have fun?" they say. While there's nothing wrong with having a great time, I truly and wholeheartedly believe that firm standards for your dating relationship are a must. Why? Because, as God-fearing women, everything we do should uphold a godly standard. We should always consider where we go, what we do, what we watch, and who we intermingle with.
For example: Being in the wrong atmosphere with a man can easily turn things in the wrong direction. If he's inviting you over to see a movie that you know is filled with inappropriate scenes and at 10PM, your red flag should immediately pop up. For many women this exact scenario has resulted in a teary-eyed ride home and a prayer that starts with, "Lord, what have I done?" I'm sharing with you today how you can avoid such pitfalls by recognizing what is and is not appropriate.
Even if you enjoy wholesome movies with that special someone, perhaps you might want to watch them during the daytime, and in an appropriate setting- not alone. Be honest with yourself. If on the day you are scheduled to watch a movie you are feeling really attracted to him, don't do it. You don't want to set yourself up for failure. Remember the scripture James 4:7, which says "Submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you."
What about romance?
Romance seems to be the bigger question when it comes to dating. Can we have romance? Should we desire romantic treatment from guys when we're single? Well, here's the scoop, ladies.
If you're dating a guy who is naturally romantic; who constantly does the sweetest things to win your affection, make sure his intentions are pure. Granted, some guys are naturally romantic. You know, the guys who know how to dine their women with fancy gifts, dozens of roses, chocolates, bears, jewelry- I mean, the works. And that's sweet. But again, make sure his intentions are not to swindle you into inappropriate situations. Most guys are smarter than we give them credit for!
And, if you're in a moment of vulnerability and he's showering you with these beautiful tokens of love and affection, you can easily get caught up in that and feel like you owe him something. I urge you to not feel that way. Instead, tell him thank you. Be firm with a standard of purity in your relationship with him, and make sure he knows he can give you gifts all he likes, but you won't bend to any inappropriate thank you's.
The Green Zone:
I like to call the Green Zone fun and safe places you should consider for great wholesome enjoyment. You don't have to go to church every Friday night with your significant other. There are many places appropriate for Christian dating.
Consider a leisurely walk through the park. This is the type setting that makes conversation easy. No surround sound interruptions. No chatter amongst strangers in the background. Just the two of you with the opportunity to get to know each other better. And you do know how we women love to talk!
And if you're just not the outdoorsy type, consider an indoor activity like indoor golf. Enjoy a nice cup of coffee or pastry at a coffee shop. Stroll through the mall if you enjoy shopping- that way you can give him some "tips or suggestions," as I like to call them.
There's so many other places that don't involve drinking, or hanging out at clubs or casinos. Just because you're grown, it doesn't automatically make everything okay or suitable for Christian dating.
The Red Zone:
The color red comes in use for so many reasons and typically they are for warning signs like the stop-sign. In this case, the Red Zone are for the places and situations you should consider avoiding.
While people think going to dance clubs are harmless, I beg to differ. After having experienced that lifestyle on my own, I can tell you first hand that there is nothing there that can help or enhance your relationship. It's filled with drinking, smoking, vulgar music and lewd dancing. And really ask yourself this. Why would you want to take your man to a place where women are on the prowl?
In fact, many will try to seduce him right in your face. For obvious reasons, flag this as Red Zone status if this ever comes up in conversation. The same applies for bars, casinos and any other place where temptation will follow you out of the door.
It's safe to say that, of course, you can have a quiet dinner- even if it's accompanied by a smooth jazz band. But, remember what your standards are. It's far better to go straight home than to regret your compromise the next morning.
Always uphold the standard of purity and holiness in everything that you do- including dating. That way, you'll have a clear pathway to love, without lust taking over.