Christian friendship vs dating
If we don’t ask ourselves this question, someone will eventually pay the serious consequences. with perverted heart devises evil, continually sowing discord; therefore calamity will come upon him suddenly; in a moment he will be broken beyond healing” (Proverbs , 14–15). The spark of sexual immorality may be the difference of an inch, a glance.If we blindly wander into male-female friendships with the naïve notion that they are no different than same-gender friendships, we are blindly and dangerously mistaken. Tragic and heartbreaking trends in the church suggest affairs very often begin subtly or even innocently, and end in horrible destruction. This is the wrong attitude: “We aren’t fooling around. It’s not like that.” The calamity of fornication almost occurs suddenly. It always shows up at our door with an innocent smile. The question we must honestly and consistently ask ourselves is: “Does the structure of our relationship look like kindling primed for a forest fire?Is it because we are subtly aroused by flirting with the boundaries of something that feels off-limits?God rewards a thoughtful answer that honestly reflects the state of our hearts.Patterns of one-on-one intimacy between members of the opposite sex cultivate the kind of intimacy that leads to romance. ” If your attitude about your intimacy is relaxed, it is likely set to blaze.It’s common for single people to be demonized as the “temptresses” or the “bait,” while the married folk are just the victims of preying mistresses (or misters).But friendships between men and women in the church are one holy expression of the hard-fought intimacy God has earned for us in Christ (Galatians ), especially as we draw others into those friendships as safeguards.
Since any godly male-female friendship will be friendship between two disciples of Christ, the first step in building that friendship is to “count the cost, whether [you have] enough to complete it” (Luke ). Male-female friendship always brings the possibility for awkwardness, for conflict, for heartache. Whether we’re the desiring or the desired, let’s be honest with ourselves: do we both want the same thing from this friendship?It’s easy for the church to split itself into men’s ministries, women’s ministries, and couples’ ministries.The singles become the wild card, often throwing what might have been an easy system of purity out of sync.What may be a beautiful and holy male-female friendship in one instance may not be translatable to every male and female, and certainly cannot be absolutized to every male and female. But when the risks have been weighed and the rewarding structures have been established, we can, with a clear conscience, come before God and ask him to bless our friendships with the opposite sex. And like all beautiful things, it requires patient investment, open-handed humility, ruthless selflessness and self-awareness, and self-control.This confidence is earned through a mature and godly track record: “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap” (Galatians 6:7). Paul encourages us, “Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality” (Romans ).