‘My son (my daughter), pay attention to what I say;
turn your ear to my words.
Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;
for they are life to those who find them
and health to one’s whole body.
Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it’ (PV 4:20-23)
There is good dating and sinful dating. Recreational dating is wrong. It is sin. Young people exercise their emotions by dating many without any clear purpose. These relationships are generally based on flesh attractions. They consume time, money and energy. Their foundation is wrong. The common ground of these worldly relationships is based on worshipping the same idols together. Sometimes, they are infatuated with different idols but they have ‘peace’ when these do not clash with one another. All these are sinful relationships, the wicked work of familiar, seductive spirits. There are ‘serial daters’ who become very skillful in manipulating others’ emotions. They are a stronghold of lust, pollution and wickedness in the church.
True relationships in the body of Christ must always be based on PURITY, PASSION AND PURPOSE. Like Job, make a covenant with your eyes not to look lustfully to others. Be sensitive with ‘the sign of peace’. The Holy Spirit will warn you if you go too close to one another, or if love degenerates into lust, and purity into wickedness.
If you feel led to marry, pray that God will open only one door and close all others to you. Marriage is not hunting. Marriage is not trial by error. Marriage is God’s gift to man and the Holy Spirit does the connection.
‘Do not awake love’ until you are ready to marry. This is a paraphrase of Song of Solomon SS 2:7, the most passionate, erotic Book in the Bible. The high levels of stirred emotions between a man and a woman are to be found only between husband and wife. During dating keep your emotions under the control of the Holy Spirit, controlling your body in a holy way. Please remember that your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit! Honor it! The worldly books and movies can never be your standard as you prepare to marry. Read the Bible and apply the principles you find there. Also, imitate other couples who clearly are mature spiritually and still intoxicated with the wine of the passion for Christ and for one another. These couples are rare to find even in the church, but if you seek, you will find them. They are treasures. Tell your pastors or other mature believers about your intent, even at the beginning of the relationship. Tell them you want to be accountable to them.
During courtship, do not touch one another physically except to hold hands in prayer. All this sacrifice is worth it as God watches and approves the laying of your marriage foundation. Under no circumstances have sex before the wedding! That fire will destroy the seal of anointing from the Holy Spirit and the marriage will be vulnerable and weak. Sexual premarital abstinence is good but purity of heart and motives is even better. Seek holiness and purity in your dating and marriage! Have purpose during your relationship. Do not propose marriage if you are not ready to marry. Long time indefinite dating is not good.
Purity in the relationships is like incense as you worship God. Hypocrisy in the relationships quenches the worship of God.
May God give you wisdom as you prepare your heart and your body for the marriage ahead! In Jesus’ name, amen!
Beloved children, I wish you well as I continue to pray for you!
Your mother in Christ,
(In the picture, our youngest daughter, Jemine and her husband, Matthew, on their wedding day)