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If our heart is not there — if our soul is not already safe through faith, if our mind is distracted and focused on other, lesser things, if our best strength is being spent on the things of this world — jobs, sports, shopping, entertainment, relationships, and on God — we simply will not date well. Listen to Jesus, and “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Seek him first (Matthew ), and dating will be added according to his perfect plan and timing. It’s not the first rule, but I have found that it is a “golden rule” that most often makes the difference between healthy and unhealthy Christian dating relationships.

But after embracing and applying the first and greatest commandment, I have found that the . If you’re not a Christian — if you haven’t dealt with God before trying to date — you don’t have a chance of having a truly healthy Christian relationship with someone else.

You will not truly love anyone else if you do not love God first and most.

And no one will truly love you if they do not love God more than they love you.

My golden rule in dating is a warm, but unpopular invitation to — has dried out and gone stale in your life.

Only they will be willing to say something hard, even when you’re so happily infatuated.We leave the safety of the doctor’s office and choose the freedom and ease of the gas station convenience store.Instead of getting the qualified perspective and direction we desperately need from people around us, we walk away eating a candy bar for dinner, again, and washing it down with Dr. Real friendship, with real life-on-life accountability, may not offer the same amount of information or advice, and you will not always like what it has to say, but it will bring one new critical dimension to your dating relationships: it knows — your strengths and weaknesses, your successes and failures, your unique needs.These guys didn’t guard me from every mistake or failure — no one can — but they played a massive role in helping me mature as a man, a boyfriend, and now as a husband.And I wish I would have listened to them more in dating.

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