Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Debunking Relationships and Marriage Myths Series (Post #2)

Myth Number Two: 

If you follow the christian dating process, you will get the results

If there is one myth many Christians believe wholeheartedly, it's the myth of 'Christian dating' and what it entails. There is a general belief that if you follow the rules of Christian dating, then your marriage will be successful. Why then are many christian marriages hitting the rocks and lacking fulfillment? Many churches have different definitions of what christian dating entails but here are some constant points that are not debatable: 1.) You must ensure from the on-set that your partner is a born-again christian 2.) You cannot spend time together without a chaperone else you fall into temptation.

Image result for Christian dating
First things first, you have to ensure that your partner is a born again christian before you even take a step further in your friendship or agree to a courtship. How do you ascertain this fact? By asking two important questions "are you a born again christian?" and "when did you give your life to Christ and what happened?" I have my own questions: How does answering yes to the first question prove anything besides the fact that the person you're asking responded to an altar call in church? Does it prove that his/her mind has been renewed? Does it prove that he/she lives each day in line with God's word? Nope. 

 Secondly, how does narrating the commitment of one's life to Christ prove anything? What assurance do you have that the person's life is still with Christ? People give their lives to Christ and they take their lives back sometimes. Why does something need to happen for a person to give their life to Christ? And why is it deemed an 'incomplete' decision if nothing significant happened for that person to take that decision? Do favorable answers to these two questions set the foundation for a stable relationship? NO. Do they tell you what you really need to know about the other person? NOPE. What they do is give that person room to prepare textbook responses that suit the image you are looking for. After you get married, you start wondering how this born-again sister/brother is capable of emotional, physical and psychological abuse. You followed the due process why aren't you getting the results? This leads me to the second condition.

You cannot spend time alone lest you fall into temptation. While I understand the need to prevent couples from engaging in pre-marital sex, I see no reason why self-control is not preached above hiring a chaperone. In what space with a chaperone do you get to really know if you vibe with the person you are with? In what space with a chaperone do you get to discuss openly without feeling like your private lives and plans for your future are on display? I don't understand it, and I've seen many people complain secretly because  of it (God forbid they do it openly and be labelled as rebellious). Where did we get this idea that by asking questions and getting the responses we expect, we are on the right course for marriage? Many men have responded 'yes' to the born again question, and even shared touching stories of how they met with Christ, yet they pummel their wives and cheat at every opportunity. Many women have given reassuring responses to the questions posed, yet they cannot stand the sight of their husbands. Why? The dating process was so mechanical, none of them really got to know the other. 

What kind of dating should you engage in then? I don't have a word for it, but drop the mechanical bits and textbook questions. Stop asking questions that will prompt textbook responses. Create an atmosphere where the other person can be free to truly express themselves, and get to know him/her that way. Raise issues and listen to the opinions aired - are they in line with God's word? Are they fueled by logic or faith? Go out on dates (ALONE) and discuss what you'd like to have in your future - you cannot marry a person you're not in agreement with about certain issues (will touch on this in post #3). Observe how this person treats other people (waiters included); observe how this person reacts to unfavorable situations. Observe spending habits and personality traits, then make an informed decision on who you want to marry. Asking spiritual questions won't reveal anything. There are people who don't spit fire or chase demons, yet have the word of God  is engraved on their hearts. Don't get caught up in following a process, that you end up with someone you can't live with. Marriage should be enjoyed not endured. Stay blessed XOXO.

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