Dating With a Grain of Salt
- James Laymond Real Christian Singles
- 2004 24 Jun
Did you know you weren't created to live this life by yourself? It's true. God intended for you to find love with another person that would be your opposite, yet He designed the two of you to fit together physically, spiritually and emotionally like pieces of a puzzle.
So it’s easy to see why the ability of being a contented single was not given to many. If you recall, the book of Genesis tells us it was "not good for man to be alone" (Genesis 2:18). The Hebrew word translated "alone" better translates into a phrase that means something like, "incomplete" or "part of something greater."
This suggests that, in a way, God created Eve to "finish" or complete Adam. The creation wasn't finalized until both man and woman were together. Eve "completed" Adam just as Adam "completed" Eve. That's how humans were made—except for a few who have been specially gifted to live a permanent single life.
God put within us the longing for that completeness and that longing leads us into dating (or courting).
The Dating Game
Looking back on dating I have to say it can be deceptive. That may not make since if you're dating someone or looking for someone to date right now. But maybe after reading this you'll have a better idea of what's really going on in your mind and heart while you're dating—or looking for someone to date.
When we date, we see the absolute best of the other person and they see the absolute best of us. We bathe, dress for the occasion and act our best. We focus on the other person and do nearly everything to please him or her. When the date ends, we return home to an entirely different world where we live to please only ourselves. We dress how we choose, we eat what we want, watch what we want, etc. All of this applies to our date's return to reality as well.
In dating, most of us purposefully hide what we think might cause the other to reject us and, in turn, see an incomplete version of the other person as well.
In addition to seeing only the best side of your dating partner, if you ever grow tired of him or her, it's very easy to take a few days off without harming the relationship (though you do have to be careful).
Is Dating a Good Predictor of Married Life?
The apparent health of your dating relationship doesn't guarantee you'll have an easy transition into a healthy marriage. As discussed above, dating isn't a realistic look at your relationship's ability to persevere. Therefore, you can't use your dating experience as a definite measuring stick for marriage.
This is important because it's possible for a dating couple to assume that commitment won't play a large of a role in their future marriage. After all, if having a successful marriage relationship is as easy as dating, who needs commitment? It's easy to be committed when two people are not sharing bills, bathrooms, babies or beds.
So enjoy dating. It's a lot of fun and can help you get to know someone extremely well. But remember that no matter how wonderful this person seems right now, marriage will serve up days when you think you’ve married the wrong person. That's when you know that dating is over and real life has begun.
Perhaps that day is far away or maybe it's coming very soon. But remember to take dating with a grain of salt. And be prepared for more effort and commitment if you marry the person you are dating right now.
James Laymond works with Real Christian Singles, an organization that brings Christian singles together. He also published The Blank Cookbook, a recipe book that families write together about their traditions and memories of dishes that brought them to the table.