Friday, November 21, 2014

4 Tips For Courting Couples




I want to take the opportunity to provide more alternatives to the dating culture we have today. Relationships are the bedrock of our society. Our communities are made and broken by the health of the families that make it up. The community suffers as the family suffers. I will provide a series of posts purposed to help individuals who desire to court. My goal is to help them on their journey so they can be successful and enjoy a lasting marriage. I am only providing a few alternatives. You can get more of them by reading my first book, So, You Want to be Married. It can be purchased at www.corneliuslindsey.com, www.amazon.com, or kindle.

I encourage you to check out my blog post “The Differences Between Courtship and Recreational Dating” at this link:


That particular post shows the major differences between the two practices. Read it before moving forward. Let's begin.

Go out in groups.

www.thegonow.comI know. I know. You are not a child, and you do not need supervision. I get it; I do. Just bear with me and keep an open mind. Most believe they are strong enough to handle the temptation. A wise man does not place himself in situations where he is tempted. He avoids it at all costs. He is charged to not even go near the house of the adulteress (Proverbs 5:8). A wise woman avoids temptation so it does not awaken love in her until it is time (Song of Solomon 2:7; 3:5; 8:4). She is well aware of her ability to be nurturing and loving. She knows that love birth at the wrong time brings heartache and pain. These emotions can last for a long time, and they are usually brought on by immaturity and loose boundaries. Love awaken at the right time is lasting and pure. An on-time love is a faithful and lasting love. God is not trying to keep you single, and those who promote waiting, modesty, and purity are definitely not trying to keep you single. We desire to keep you from trouble, which is the consequence of dangerous premature love.

Going out in groups helps to keep you accountable. It allows others to check your actions and make sure you are not doing something you are not supposed to do. It allows others to monitor your conversation, which will keep both of you from inappropriate actions. The group setting takes away the idea that you need to be responsible for your courter’s attention. It also allows the group to pick up on things about your courter that you could easily miss because you are blinded by affection and the possibility of marriage. A friend can hear her sarcastic remarks or the way he glances at every woman who walks in the room. Being in groups is important. What is more important is the caliber and character of persons in the group. That brings us to the next one.

Try to spend as much time as you can around wise and happily married couples.

My wife and I loved to go out in groups when we were courting, but we both felt like it was wise to go out with married couples and other courting couples. Does that mean we did not go out with single folks? Absolutely not! We just limited our interaction with them. We wanted to move beyond that mindset so it was important for us to get around people to help us achieve that goal. We desired to be around people who were in the position we desired to be in. Married couples usually do not have extra time to go out to dinner or hangout at night. My wife and I know that so well. Having children creates even more of a strain to hangout. When I was courting my wife we found the best times to get around other married couples. We conformed to their schedule since we were seeking their wisdom {MESSAGE}. We went to their house and sat there for hours as they told us about marriage. We asked a lot of questions. We watched their interaction, how they communicated with one another, how they disagreed, etc.

We also spent time with other couples that were courting. They had the same mindset we had, so it was easy to find things to do and hold each other accountable. We were very selective with those we communed with because we did not want to place ourselves in a bad situation that would cause us to fall.

I sit with couples nowadays who allow anyone and everyone to be in their circle and go out with them. They fail to realize that the other person’s influence can greatly impact their actions. The old saying holds true: If you hang around trash, do not complain when you begin to stink. I am in no way referring to people as trash; I am mostly referring to sinful actions. I believe you understand my point. Let’s move on to the next one.

Keep the physical interaction to a minimum.

This is a no-brainer. Let me give you an example so you can gain clarity of what I am saying. I want you to picture a major fire raging through a dry forest. It is destroying everything in its path. Many fail to realize that the raging fire started with a very small flame. My wife and I did not kiss until we were married, and it is a practice we advocate. We viewed the "innocent" kiss as a small flame. We avoided the small flame, which allowed us to avoid the raging fire--sexual intercourse. Is it a law? Well, we believe we have to be qualified to give a law, and we do not have those qualifications. Servants do not make laws; they follow them. Servants also live to please their master. Our God is holy and blameless, and He fully expects that from us. We desire to give Him nothing less through and by His strength. Nevertheless, physical interaction (cuddling, heavy petting, arms around one another, etc.) can open the door to temptation. And temptation leads sin and sin leads to death (James 1:13-15).

It is also important to remember that courting does not mean marriage. It is the journey to the altar; it is not the ceremony at the altar. A courting couple begins their walk down the aisle to the altar the moment they meet one another. The ceremony is a formality--a collection of symbolic customs where two families are able to join as one under the righteous authority of God. For many, it has lost its luster and significance. They look past the purpose of their union--which is to honor God and one another--and fill their ceremony with purposeless fluff. The ceremony becomes a big, expensive party where the families invite people they do not talk to, do not really like them, and will probably just complain and criticize everything anyway. They will probably eat all their cake, too. (Can you tell they ate all my cake at our wedding? Yes, they ate all of it. Make sure you get a slice and tell them to put it to the side. Thank me later. LOL) I digress. Let's get back on topic. Oftentimes courting couples like to practice being married before they are actually married. They desire to have the benefits of the marriage union without completing the journey. I assure courters that they will have enough time to do all the hugging, kissing, and romancing their hearts and body desires after they are married. Obedience is greater than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22-24). Honestly, most of us do not care for either of them. It is better for you and your courter to be obedient to God because sacrifice is the action you will have to make to appease the one you have disobeyed. Obedience keeps you from having to make the sacrifice. {Use the sacrifice of Jesus as an example.} Keep your distance and avoid temptation.

Communicate as much as possible and ask all the right questions.

Communication is the lifeblood of a relationship. It keeps the fire burning and the emotions alive. This is why it is vital to end all communication when ending a relationship. Keeping the communication alive keeps the flames of lust burning and creates a greater potential to fall back into temptation. There are many exceptions like if there is a child involved. The mother and father are encouraged to communicate for the sake of the child. But their communication should be washed in wisdom, saturated in patience, and filled with love.

I have over a hundred questions in the back of my book, So, You Want to be Married. They provide couples with a great starting point and help them understand one another. Just asking a question does not mean the two will mature. They must ask the right questions. They need to ask about each other’s views on religion, politics, extracurricular activities, desire for children—or lack thereof—, where they want to live, their childhood, etc. The first question I asked my now-wife on our first date was: Will you move to Atlanta when we get married? That was important for me. I knew she was my wife. I was not interested in playing any games. And I knew I did not want to move or live in New York. I was born in the South, and I am just a southern boy at heart. My wife was born in the North, and she lived in New York for seven years. I did not want to adopt that lifestyle. Her desiring to live in New York would be a big problem that could have resulted in us terminating our relationship before it ever got started. That was not something I was willing to compromise on. Thankfully, she was more than willing to leave the North and join me in the South. Praise God! I have sat down with married couples that failed to have important conversation before they got married. They are paying for it now. They argue over things they could have settled before the altar. This is why it is important to ask a lot of questions and communicate often.

There is so much more I could have written. I encourage you to get more information from one of my books. Just click the banner below.

http://www.corneliuslindsey.com/books/
 

1 comment:

  1. Amazing post... It's good to see that there are men out there teaching other men about purity. Great job!

    ReplyDelete