EDITOR'S NOTE: He Said-She Said is a biweekly advice column for singles featuring a question from a Crosswalk.com reader with responses from a male and female point of view. If you've got a question about anything related to singleness or living the single life, please submit it to email@example.com (selected questions will be posted anonymously).
I am in my early 30s. I would very much like to be married. I find, unfortunately, that I am rarely in a situation where I am interested in someone, and on an even rarer occasion that he would be interested in me. Recently I met someone that I am interested in. He is godly, we have similar interests, and a great conversationalist - things I really appreciate. Unfortunately, we don't spend a lot of time together and aren't in the same circle of friends. We occasionally see other at church, but asides from that we do not hang out, nor do we know each other well enough to be communicating on social media / texts.
I have been praying about this situation and asking God to lead - to show me where he wants me to trust, and where he wants me to take a step of faith as well. To what extent is it a good idea to initiate? Should I start texting him and inviting him to group events? It would be a bit out of the blue. Should I ask him for coffee? Would it be appropriate if I just directly told him how I felt? I almost feel it's a bit dishonest otherwise.
I know that God has created relationships where men lead. I'm also conscious that it is a rare situation I am so interested in a guy, and would like to know what would the wise next step.
I fully believe and agree a guy should be the leader (especially spiritually) of a family and relationship. However, there are times at the outset when we (speaking of guys) just don’t realize when someone may be interested us, and sometimes we need a little inspiration (or kick in the pants) to open our eyes.
Whatever the situation, we should always try to be deliberate in our actions; taking advantage of every scenario open to us.
Too often we bury our chances (or gifts) before we even start for fear of what may happen or in consideration of “what if.” Opportunities are short-lived and we shouldn’t allow them to get away without at least trying.
Although texting and private messaging has become more of the norm, I suggest you ask directly if he would like to join you for coffee, a concert, a group activity or whatever. Otherwise it becomes too easy to misread a response, non-response or delayed response.
The next time God gives you an opportunity to run into your “interest” (and if it’s of God, He will), just ask if he’d like to get together….and schedule a time. Don’t let it be left open-ended.
You mention you have similar interests, look for a chance to share in one of those activities with him. If it’s music, see if there’s something happening in your area. If it’s getting out athletically, see if he wants to join you.
At some point during your time together you can share your feelings and see if he feels the same. With the informality communication and “hanging out” has taken, it becomes easier to press the issue without leading.
Several years ago a female acquaintance asked me if I ran, and even though I didn’t do it regularly it made me take notice of her. We scheduled a time and it soon began a dating relationship.
So what’s the worst thing that can happen to you?
Live without regrets.
I can totally relate to you and your circumstances. When you're really young, you are attracted to a lot of people. It may be something as simple as their smile or that they paid attention to you. However, as you get older and wiser you really want it to be someone you like for spiritual reasons. Someone that God would have you date/marry. Someone that you are attracted to beyond physical reasons.
First, I want you to realize that God did reveal that there are men out there that you can be attracted to for the right reasons. And at any time God can bring them to you or you to them. So it’s not a matter of who is out there but what direction to take when you do meet someone you like. Because your circles are not the same, I would investigate where he is hanging out so that you could get to know him better. I would find out what ministries he is serving in, what Sunday school or small group he attends. Now I am not saying be a stalker but am simply encouraging you to find out more information about him. You could also ask people you know who might know him, folks who can tell you more about him.
Now regarding whether you should pursue or chase as a woman, here is one woman’s advice. I personally prefer the man to lead/chase. However, I know the Bible speaks of women, specifically Ruth who did the initial pursuing of Boaz. We know that Boaz was interested in Ruth but due to their age difference, he felt she was more suited for a younger relative (so he didn’t initiate). But Ruth was interested and pursued Boaz. This chase doesn’t mean that Boaz was not the leader of his home, it simply means God gives women permission to let men know we are interested. The key though would be how much we initiate and for how long. While some men invite women to chase, others might find it too aggressive and be turned off. So what should you do?
Well, because this guy may not know you exist, you do need to find ways to be together so you can learn more about each other. But please do not manipulate; instead, through prayer, allow God to line up opportunities. I also encourage women to ask open-ended questions to men so they can learn more about them. In some cases, you can take it a step farther and say something like, “you are an interesting person, I'd love to get a cup of coffee with you sometime.” Or subtler, “Hey, there’s a few of us going to dinner this Friday, if you want to join us...”
Life is short so if there is someone you like, go for it. Keep each step in prayer, trusting the Lord for His will. Worse case, if he is not the one— you may end up with a great friend. And well, we can never have enough great friends.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13
HE is … Cliff Young, a Crosswalk.com contributing writer and a veteran single of many decades. He has traveled the world in search of fresh experiences, serving opportunities, and the perfect woman (for him) and has found that his investments in God, career and youth ministry have paid off in priceless dividends.
SHE is ... Kris Swiatocho, the President and Director of TheSinglesNetwork.org Ministries and FromHisHands.com Ministries. Kris has served in ministry in various capacities for the last 25 years. An accomplished trainer and mentor, Kris has a heart to reach and grow leaders so they will in turn reach and grow others. She is also the author of four books.
DISCLAIMER: We are not trained psychologists or licensed professionals. We're just average folk who understand what it's like to live the solo life in the twenty-first century. We believe that the Bible is our go-to guide for answers to all of life's questions, and it's where we'll go for guidance when responding to your questions. Also, it's important to note that we write our answers separately.
GOT A QUESTION? If you've got a question about anything related to singleness or living the single life, please submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org (selected questions will be posted anonymously). While we are unable to answer every inquiry, we do hope that this column will be an encouragement to you. Click here to visit the He Said-She Said archives.
Publication date: August 18, 2016