You've identified the other person's strengths, but have also discovered some traits that leave you scratching your head. Well-meaning friends and relatives might be inquiring about your love life, wondering when you plan on taking "the plunge." Your own sense of loneliness and that God-given desire for connection can nudge you further in a relationship until the steps toward the altar just seem to get easier and easier. But with so many of them urging you toward marriage, it's wise to pause and ask yourself some questions that might prevent heartache down the road.In either case, you have probably found that many forces push you forward in your relationship. You need to decide what to do with this relationship; no other person can make that decision for you.
The trajectory of lives and eternities are in the balance. Laying out guidelines for dating as followers of Jesus will alter lives by keeping people out of toxic and unhealthy relationships (and ultimately marriages). “The one” says you need to find the perfect person. The beauty of marriage is God sustains you despite your flaws. The shells of a shotgun are stuffed with tiny round balls. You are asked to go from a mentality that says “End a relationship as soon as difficulty arises,” to one that says, “Don’t end the relationship regardless of the difficulty that arises.” That’s a tough switch to flip.
Once married, they wanted to be faithful to that covenant, but they experienced difficulties that could have been avoided.
I'm grateful for their commitment to marriage and the desire to be faithful "till death us do part." Once a couple has committed at the altar – short of a few biblical exceptions – that is indeed the true path of faithfulness.
Dating with a trajectory towards marriage doesn’t mean you only date one person ever. So, if you choose not to get coffee or watch a movie with the opposite sex, then whatever. The ultimate purpose of marriage is sanctification (becoming like God). If you have no idea what values are important to you in a future spouse, exit the road to marriage at the next off ramp.
That would be awesome, but it’s not always realistic. If you are a Christian, God isn’t a piece of your pie. Why date someone who doesn’t even have God as a piece of the pie? Pull over at the closest gas station and decide what you want in a future spouse. Your list is designed to give you a framework for dating, not be a checklist for it. Your heart and the holiness of marriage are too important to flippantly give away because you are frustrated, impatient, or settling.