So I’ve had a few conversations about the above statement I made in different places including my local church. I’ve had a few queries about what I mean, so I thought to just write about it. I haven’t even tried to make this a theological discourse per say even though we could go there.
But in my own relationship(s) and in my role as a Pastor, I have had the privilege of working with people of all ages and in all stages in relationship. My experience has shown me that the boundaries in dating and marriage are different. We always run into problems if we don’t recocognise or honour these boundaries in dating relationships or in marriage.
One of the heartbreaking things I have seen has been seeing people who have been cheated on, abused verbally or physically, absolutely wrecked because they set up the dating relationship with the same level of commitment as a married relationship. Maybe through sex or huge financial commitments. These actions, whilst they are demonstrations of loyalty on social ne level are huge things that binds you deeply to someone who has not made a commitment to be with you forever. I have seen people who make these commitments, on the basis of marriage, which eventually never materialised after even many years.
This is why I have seen people have their hearts wrecked more than is necessary. A break up of a dating relationship is sad and heartbreaking. It’s part of life. But when boundaries are crossed it has a disproportionate effect on those involved.
When I dated my wife I learnt quickly I needed to treat her right, honour her, respect her and love her, because there were others interested in her. I also know God has a great future for her. I knew she was good for me. I thought she was a good catch! I still think so. I don’t think she deserved anything less. Because when you find someone good for you, you treat them right.
I also expected her to treat me the same way for the same reasons. Thankfully this became the foundation of my relationship with my wife. Mutual honour and respect.
If someone can’t honour you by not cheating on or treating you right when they don’t have a ‘marriage obligation’ to do so, then they simply are not good enough for you. This shouldn’t be up for debate.
Be loyal & committed to your friends. Be with someone you choose to be with. Understand that God doesn’t want you to be with someone who doesn’t value you enough to treat you as royalty. Be with someon you want to be with not someone they have to be with.
Be with people who want to be with you. Someone who doesn’t just say they want to be with you but act like it too by treating you right.
If the person you are dating doesn’t consistently honour you and treat you right in a dating relationship, do not be afraid to exercise one of the privileges I believe you have in a dating relationship, walking away. You deserve better! Much better! Your future deserves a WHOLE you. Not a broken YOU. Broken by someone who didn’t see your worth and value.