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Now undeniably there will be more involved in your discernment while dating.

Apart from questions of attraction and chemistry, which are not insignificant, the Bible articulates some roles for wives and husbands.

If Christian dating, the intentional, selfless, and prayerful process of pursuing marriage, sounds like slavery, we don’t get it.

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From far too young, I longed for the affection, safety, and intimacy I anticipated with a wife. I experimented too much with our hearts and allowed things to go too far. And now my singleness is a regular reminder that I messed up, missed opportunities, or did it wrong. Maybe all the suggestions and advice you’ve collected has become a confusing mess of good-intentioned contradictions and ambiguity.

Sadly, my immature and unhealthy desires predictably did much more harm than good. Maybe dating has been hard for you, too, for these reasons or others. It’s enough to leave you like an 8-year-old, asking, “Mom, where do weddings come from?

With the sex, there ought to be a deep sense of safety, a sense of being loved and accepted for who you are, a desire to please without the need to impress.

When God engineered the sexual bond between a man and a woman, he made something much more satisfying than the act itself. And the more is found in a mutual faith in and following of Jesus.

It was not an oversight on the part of the God of all history, as if he couldn’t see into the 21st century.

The qualifications are wonderfully clear and simple: 1) they must believe your God (2 Corinthians ) and 2) they must be of the opposite sex (Genesis –24; Matthew 19:4–6; Ephesians –32).

Fathers ought to lead their families in God’s word (Ephesians 6:4).

Parents must love and raise their children in the faith (Deuteronomy 6:7).

Don’t sit around waiting for a boy to make you a priority, communicate his intentions, or even call you on the phone. And this God created and rules his world, including men, women, the biological compulsions that bind them together, and the institution that declares their union and keeps it sacred and safe.

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