Monday, January 2, 2012

Dating rules: Make them or break them?

This is a dilemma of mine.  In a perfect world, Mr. Perfect will not only be tall, dark, and handsome, but he will: be strong in his Faith, have kids my age or older, have a solid work history, have the ability to perform home repairs (or the financial ability to pay for a professional), work out in lieu of taking blood pressure and high cholesterol medication, smell good, be divorced/live alone for 2+ years, wait 3 months to meet each other’s kids, have access to a pick-up truck, live within 20 miles, enjoy outdoor activities, be taller and weight more than me, appreciate drinking wine on the patio…..  You get my drift?  What if he doesn’t know how to operate a screwdriver or has a toddler or is between jobs or has only been divorced for 1-month?  Should we rule him out based on our own set of rules?  Do you think that we as women get too hung-up on some perfect man, then complain that there are no good ones out there?  I mean, we know our lifestyles, we know what we can/cannot tolerate – or do we?  Let’s ponder this for a moment.

It all comes down to this for me - he must be a Christian and he must be good looking.  Of course, good looking comes from the inside out, so there are no set rules here.  I don’t have a particular “look” that I am attracted to - except the “look” of a man who loves Jesus.  Loving Jesus makes a man very, very attractive to me.  Do you know that song “Lead Me” by Sanctus Real?  That’s the man I want when it all comes down to it.  By Christian, I mean a fully devoted follower of Christ including: assuming his duties as head of the household  (1 Cor. 11:3), loving me ( Ephesians 5:33), and setting an example in what he says, how he lives, and in love, faith and purity (1 Timothy 4:12).    

Let’s be careful at the same time to NOT over-Spiritualize this.  If he is too far from your gut level of  a possibility, and the relationship has a few red-flags, God is not going to bring it all together magically just because you are Christians.  Seek wise Christian counsel (friends, pastors, etc.), give the relationship time to develop, watch how he treats his mother/children, read Christian relationship books (“Boy Meets Girl” by Joshua Harris is my favorite), get a clear understanding of where he sees his role as the man in your relationship, understand his willingness to compromise, stay pure, and listen to God.  And make sure he smells right!     

Have you ever looked outside of your box?  What attracts you to a man?  What are some of your rules?    


  1. this is a great blog! it would seem to me that as time goes on, either your standards for finding a mate can get higher, or...sink to a low and take whatever comes along. i myself, just have one request~ that the guy is still breathing. lol!!!

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  3. Thank you! Yes, breathing is good! You're funny! I am so glad you found me, but am curious as to how. This blog is new to me, so I am just learning. Happy New Year!

  4. I know sister that you are trying to get some dialogue going here, but I think it's really important to realize that the Christian life is about freedom. What would it look like if we take the emphasis and energy off of our wish list or rules and just relax? Why all this emphasis on our desires? Doesn't God know us better than we know ourselves? Can't we trust Him to ultimately know what is best for us?

    I don't believe we can truly love others or receive love from others until we know who we really are in Christ. God pours love into our hearts (Romans 5) and we are no longer under the law but the spirit. If we have a list of rules or expectations then frankly, we will always be disappointed because we are still trying to control the process.

    I do understand your interest in the song "lead me" but I think the song is more about how men need help from God to be the leader instead of a christian cliche of what a leader looks like. Men are works in progress just as we are. To have a rule that men have to "arrive" is frankly very unrealistic. I'm sorry to be so frank, but by having this "list" in dating you are entering a relationship looking for what you want out of the relationship instead of what you can give the relationship. I'm not saying that we shouldn't be discerning, but I am trying to emphasize that we are no longer under the law so we can just relax about this by staying tuned into God and the leading of the Holy Spirit.

    Surrender. Be filled with the Holy Spirit. He will guide you to become the kind of person that you want to attract. You will really know "the" man because the connection will be spiritual and you'll know it's God's handiwork and not your own. You see sister, in Christ and in grace, it's all about freedom. (Rom 7:6)

  5. Yes, that's my point. We think we know ourselves and what we like, but do we really? Not at all! My point is that we need to chuck the list and focus first and foremost on the rule that he loves Jesus. My reference to "Lead Me" implies that I want the kind of man who wants to be led by the Lord (himself) so that he can then lead his family. I don't think I implied that men have to "arrive" and if so, I apologize. I'll never arrive - so would never expect my mate to either. Arriving would take the fun out of this wouderful journey called life!

    Thank you for your thoughts! I certainly do not claim to have everything figured out, and appreciate your feedback!