“The problem with our world today is that we’ve taken a consumer mentality and put it into our relationships with human beings, and we treat human beings like commodities.”
Cover Image by Rachel Thackerson
What comes to mind when I ask you, “what do you look for in a girl or guy to potentially date?”
You might give me qualities like “compassionate to strangers” or “smart and confident.”
You might describe physical characteristics like “he has to be tall,” or “she has to have a pretty smile.” You may even add some non-negotiables that align with your religious or political morals and beliefs.
But what if we approached dating as a process of evaluation instead of seeking a fantasy person that fits some list of characteristics in our head?
About a year ago, I watched the series Single, Dating, Engaged, Married, by Ben Stuart at Breakaway Ministries in College Station, Texas. In a previous Messages + Series post, I spoke about how this series opened my mind and heart to dating. I want to share with you the third episode of the series, “Who to Date.”
Ben does a great job of describing who to date and who not to date, and he tells the funniest stories too!
The Bible does not give an outline of the dating process, but it does talk about evaluation. One of the examples that Ben used is Proverbs 25:28 which says, “like a city whose walls are broken through, is a person who lacks self-control.”
The walls can represent security and peace. If your end goal is to marry the person you are dating, you want to be with someone who has self-control and will bring security and peace to the relationship.
If we only seek a person that will satisfy our needs, and matches the characteristics of a fantasy person, we will be met with disappointment. Don’t seek a relationship with someone out of loneliness or to fill a God-sized hole in your heart. Seek a relationship to do life with someone, get to know them over time, and have the attitude of giving.
Ben also pointed out the false assumption– that we actually know what we want. You might end up with someone you never thought you would, and that’s okay!
“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”
Outside appearance, beauty or handsomeness, will fade. It’s not something to base a relationship on. Instead of looking at the outside characteristics of a person, look at their inner character.
7 Important Things to Determine Who to Date
(#1-3 are non-negotiables, and #4-7 are flexible to personal preference)
**These 7 things are by Ben Stuart, and I added my highlights/ notes from his message. Watch the full message and click here!**
1. Are they a believer of Jesus Christ?
This will determine the allegiance and direction of their lives. In my opinion, this is something to ask on Day 1 of dating.
2. Are they an active pursuer of God?
Anyone can say they are a Christian, but look for someone who pursues God in service and on their own. This is something you observe over time. If they are only going to church or pursuing God because you are, you might want to reevaluate things.
I’ve also noticed in my life, and with people I’ve dated in the past, that actively pursuing God makes a difference in everything– how they treat you, their character, and the quality of your spiritual conversations.
3. Look for someone who can keep the same pace as you
I love when Ben says, “run with someone who makes you play your best game.”
4. Are you both theologically compatible?
This is the area where you both talk about the details. Where are you going to go to church? You want to explore the many values of your faith, and agree on as much as possible.
5. Are you both socially compatible?
Do you like hanging out with this person? When you are hanging out, are you enjoying their company or waiting until it’s over? I also liked how Ben pointed out that the person you date should compliment you instead of be a copy of you. You might be an introvert, yet they might be an extrovert (me). Also, does this person bring out the best version of you?
6. Are you philosophically compatible?
Are you both headed in the same life direction?
7. Do you have physical attraction to each other?
Physical attraction does play a part in dating, but it’s not the first thing to look for, nor is it something to base the relationship on. You might not be physically attracted to someone at first sight, but as you get to know them they might become more lovely in your eyes.
So, what do you look for in someone to potentially date? Comment your thoughts on these 7 things and what you look for in the dating process below! Thanks for reading!
Petit à Petit,
If you want to watch episode 4, HOW to Date, click here!