Last week, I wrote a post about 5 questions a girl should ask about her date. I was blown away by the response. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been; after all, who you are in a relationship with is one of the biggest decisions you make. However, as a sweet friend pointed out, asking questions about the guy you’re dating is only half of the equation. It’s also important that the person asking the questions is the type of person she should be. So, as a follow-up, here are 5 questions a girl should ask herself before she dates.
1) Do I truly love God? – If a girl is seeking a guy who truly loves God, who makes God their number one priority, than it’s important that she share this allegiance. Before you can be ready to be in a Christ-centered, godly relationship, it’s important that Christ is the center of your own life. After all, it’s way too easy for girls to put their relationship with a guy before their relationship with Christ. Even when the girl is a committed Christian, she is probably going to battle this temptation. If she’s not already 100% invested in her relationship with God, it’s going to be a temptation that’s exceedingly difficult to resist. Love God first. If you know you don’t right now, don’t get in a relationship that’s going to compete for that priority position. Who you date is a critical decision, but putting God in His proper place in your life is the most important decision you’ll ever make.
2) Am I willing to trust? – As I wrote previously, it’s important to look for a guy that you can trust, because their decision will inevitably end up affecting your life. However, it’s important to realize that you have to be willing to trust in order to make that relationship work. It’s hard in a world where we are often taught that we can have it all, be it all, and sustain it all, all by ourselves. Not only is this diametrically opposed to the truths of Christianity which demonstrate that every good gift comes from God (and therefore is not of our own doing), but if we’re living under this pretense, we are not ready to be in a relationship where we are aligning our lives with another. After all, if you want to do everything on your own based on your own wisdom and your own abilities, what’s the purpose of sharing your life with someone else? If you aren’t willing to trust another person, if you aren’t willing to walk the same road together, than it would be better, for both of your sakes, to walk it alone.
3) Am I willing to sacrifice? – Now I’m sure when some people read this, they immediately think of the other dreaded “s” word, “submit.” However, regardless of your view’s on the biblical concept of submission, I’ve never seen a healthy relationship that didn’t require some sacrifice, on both parties’ behalf. When two people are doing life together, they are not going to always agree on what direction their life should take. At times, you are going to have to sacrifice what you want, in order for the good of the relationship. You’re going to have to give up your rights to “mine” for the sake of “ours.” If you are not at the point of your life where you are already willing to make sacrifices – where you are wiling to stay up late to help a needy friend, where you are willing to do your brother’s chores just because you know it would bless him, where you’re willing to serve at church because you know that’s what God has called you to do – than you aren’t ready to be in a marriage. After all, to think that the willingness to sacrifice will magically appear the day you fall in love is nothing more than a fairytale. Short-term infatuation may prompt it at the beginning, but the warm fuzzies will quickly dissipate in the messiness of life. If you aren’t already wiling to give of yourself for the sake of another, than you aren’t going to be willing to do it in your relationship. And you need to sacrifice in order to make a relationship work.
4) Do I show respect? – Perhaps after the word “submit” no other word is more improperly maligned in conversations about godly relationships as the word “respect.” This is probably because this word is found in the same challenging passage (Ephesians 5). However, again, regardless of the discussion regarding what this means about leadership in marriage, it’s important to recognize that healthy marriages exhibit respect – respect for the person’s feelings, ideas, and priorities. However, the question here isn’t whether or not you can respect your one-day husband, it’s whether you are already exhibiting respect in your life. Do you show respect to your parents, your teachers or your boss? Do you treat those with problems as worthy of respect, even when they can’t give you anything in return? Is your respect contingent on someone conforming to your desires, or do you show deference to people because, regardless of whether you agree with them, you know that as God’s creations they deserve it? If you don’t, then again, we have to recognize that there’s no magic switch once we’re in a relationship that’s going to suddenly bring about this character trait in our lives. Showing respect to others now helps prepare us to build a relationship that exhibits it later.
5) Am I willing to accept the responsibility? – We tend to think of marriage as being about the two people who take the vows, however, as I have written about previously, for the Christian, this is simply not true. Marriage is the picture that God chooses to use to represent the relationship between Christ and the church. Therefore, marriage is not only about my relationship with my spouse, but my marriage is one of the ways that I bear witness to Who God is, and what He has done for me. If I am not willing to accept this responsibility, to realize that part of the eternal evaluation of my marriage will be the extent to which it brought God honor and accurately displayed Him to the people who were outside of the relational covenant, than as a Christian, I have no business getting married. I must be willing to accept that calling before I pursue a relationship, because God tells us this is the type of romantic relationship that honors Him.
It’s easy to have a checklist of the list of things we want in a guy, but let let us make sure that if God grants us a godly man that loves Him, cherishes us, and whom we can trust, that we are the type of girl who could be considered worthy of such a man.