A desire to date: have you ever felt that? If so, I hope this text can help you understand it better. Before you read this, I would like you to know: this post is not a complete and definitive manual about this subject and how to deal with this.
Hence, what is spoken here is intended to give you very specific help related to dating. For many people this help will be enough. For others, it will be necessary to seek more help from youth leaders and pastors of the churches.
In fact, it is always important that you seek out a youth leader in your church before you even talk to the person you like. If you have already talked with her/him and now you are about to start dating, I highly recommend you talk to someone older than you, like your spiritual guide or helper. Personal help and guidance is always very valuable.
Dear young person, this post was written to discuss 3 items: the desire to date, the hunger for a relationship, and anxiety.
How do these three items relate to one another?
Well… I will tell you. But first, let me explain why I decided to write about this.
Are you desiring to date?
I saw a picture on Facebook that called my attention: a friend of mine is dating. It was obvious in the picture that he was with his girlfriend (by the way, they make a beautiful couple). Well… it is questionable whether or not she is Christian. And he is Christian for sure.
We have already seen that “making out is sin”. If you have not read this post, I recommend you stop this reading right now and go to it and check it out. Did you check it out? I also recommend you read post about Unequal Yoke (Not available in English).
Looking at this situation objectively, my friend’s relationship doesn’t bear the best quality seal in the world (not from a spiritual nor biblical perspective, although from a human point of view we know today’s society doesn’t care about this, does it?). He is dating without a defined purpose and is with someone that is not even a Christian. These biblical principles are being disregarded and dishonored.
However, this post isn’t about analyzing my friend’s situation. In fact, this post is for the purpose of analyzing what occurs before that happens.
At the time I saw the picture and that beautiful girl in my friend’s arms, well …. I felt like dating! Perhaps this feeling had already shown up before in other occasions, however, I had never felt it as clearly as I did this time. It became very clear to me that I had a need for a relationship with another person.
I believe you also have or have had this feeling before. Within this context, I would like you to consider the following question:
Is it wrong to feel like dating?
The answer is: no, it’s not. In fact, it is normal to feel like dating.
It is normal to feel like you want to date
Just look young one, it is totally normal to feel like you want to date! This happens because we have a need for an intimate human relationship with the opposite gender. So, if this thought has entered your mind, you can be at peace to try to understand it. You do not need to condemn yourself, nor should you think you are strange. This feeling is part of the normal flux of life; it is natural.
Now, if this is normal, why do we sometimes run into troubles related to this desire to date? The answer is also simple: sometimes this desire grows and becomes something uncontrollable, making it into something that causes us anxiety. If this is the case, my friend, you will be facing a great challenge.
The desire to date is different from anxiety
Viewing it from a practical perspective, the desire to date is like hunger. Have you noticed that even when you eat properly, as certain hours of the day draw near, you feel hunger? Exactly. The desire to date is something as natural as hunger.
Now anxiety can be compared with an ungovernable hunger that makes you eat whatever is in front of you, even to the point of making yourself sick. Have you ever been in a situation like this? I remember once I ate so much feijoada (a typical Brazilian food with black beans and pork) that I felt sick the whole afternoon.
Anxiety does this to you: It generates an uncontrollable desire to date in you, leading you to act quickly in ways that harm. Because of anxiety, you disrespect your principles, get involved in relationships that are not good for you, and negatively affect future relationships. Is it worth it? Not at all.
How to deal with anxiety related to dating?
Praise the Lord, we have two remedies against anxiety: prayer and fellowship with the saints.
If you feel that you are in a situation where dating is mainly a desperate thought, in other words, when you think of dating, you think “I have to start dating soon”, then these remedies are for you. If you would put the image below on your social network, then you are definitely anxious and you need to deal with this.
Philippians 4:6 says: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God”. To be free from anxiety, you need to pray and place your requests for a relationship on God. After that, you should trust and rest in Him.
It is important that you seek fellowship with the saints and share your anxiety with them. This is important for two reasons: First, this will lead you to commit to living a sanctified life with people you know and this is going to keep you. Second, you will be able to count on the experiences and companionship of these people to help you to deal with anxiety about this matter.
These two suggestions work well for those who have anxiety related to relationships. Remember, they are not definitive or complete solutions. It may be that in some cases you need to deal with this in a different way, as oriented by your spiritual guides and/or your fellowship with God.
Dealing with the desire to date before it leads to anxiety
It will likely be less work, smarter and more effective of you if you deal with the desire to date before it leads to anxiety. If you take this point away after reading this post, I will be super happy.
The key here is to make sure you understand, control and satisfy your spiritual, psychological, and biological needs. It is necessary they be very well nourished so that you don’t hunger for a relationship.
Therefore, the strategies are as follows:
1) Spiritually. Intensify your fellowship with God to be inwardly supplied by His Spirit so that you feel fully loved. Do you want to know how? Practice these five spiritual exercises from God’s “gym” and find a partner for this spiritual exercise.
2) Psychologically. Live your relationships with your family, friends, and Christian brothers and sisters with intensity. Sense the love from each one of these relationships and realize that you are loved in a broad and unrestricted way by so many people around you. Decide to be happy with these relationships, fill yourself with positive thoughts related to them, and feel the love they provide you with.
If you are alone, ask to the Lord to provide you with people that can be with you on this journey. If this is your case, I suggest that you pray asking for friends that can be spiritual companions to you, and that you also ask Him to provide you with older brothers in the Lord that may guide you and provide you with healthy spiritual advice. These relationships are going to help you and you are going to feel loved.
3) Biologically. It is difficult to control hormones which are produced by your body whether you like it or not. The key here is to spend the energy you accumulate. A great way to do this is by practicing sports and moving, bringing your body to feel active and eventually tired.
As I said before, the goal of this text is not to give you a definitive and complete solution. It may also be that the things mentioned here may not be the best solutions for you. But, believe me, they do work. They work for me, they work for other believers I know, and they may work for you as well.
May God bless you with inner peace to understand that the desire to date is normal, yet the anxiety that it can create is a danger that you have to be aware of.
In addition to this, may God give you peace to live with this feeling and desire to start a relationship with the opposite sex until the right moment arrives. And when the right time comes, may He grant you an excellent and wonderful experience.
If you like this post and were helped by it please comment below.
See you on the next post.
Author: Victor A Cavalcanti Cardoso