Doing It God's Wat

Courtship vs Dating

Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.  It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.

It is so important that I start here because if the Lord is not the builder then the Lord is not obligated to be the keeper. The bottom line is all the decisions that we make outside of Christ are subject to be vanity.  So, what am I saying in essence?  Get the blueprint from God before you commence to build your relationships.  For if you don’t, you will begin to build a house and later discover that you lack the resources to finish it.   Have you ever noticed houses or churches that were in the process of construction years ago and are still in the process of construction?  Jesus puts it this way, which of you will begin to build a house without first sitting down and counting the cost?

“…if the Lord is not the builder, then the Lord is not obligated to be the keeper.”

In the eyes of Jesus, any person that begins to build without first counting the cost is likened to a fool.  So, how does this parable tie in to Courtship?  It’s simple.  Do it God’s way and you will reap God’s benefits.  Follow me in this article very precisely as I mention a series of points that I believe are critical when considering courting.

Understanding The Purpose

 In the last article I was privy to write in Vision Magazine, I wrote of purpose and its significance to our destiny. Well that hasn’t changed and the reason why, especially when dealing with the area of relationships, is that the person you hook-up with can potentially destroy your destiny.  So, what is it that I want to speak of in regards to purpose here?  For a moment let’s deal with the purpose of Courtship and Dating.   If you do a thorough research on the topic, you will discover that courtship outlines the biblical model of how relationships should work.  Dating on the other hand outlines the world’s way.  As a matter of fact, the concept of dating wasn’t even introduced on the scene until the early 1920’s.  Prior to that, relationships were arranged – often times based on family background and the hopes and ambitions of the parents.  Dating implies that I’ll try this and I’ll try that and perhaps I’ll try this again.  It’s a system based on trial and error.

I always compare this concept to a science laboratory. In the lab, if the scientist mixes the wrong chemicals, he would probably produce an explosion.  Within Christian Courtshipthat explosion, someone could get hurt, end up scarred for life or possibly even die.  So it is when we as men float from one woman to the next experimenting, we too end up leaving a lot of hurt and scarred sisters behind.  Unfortunately, most of the people I talk to say, well if you don’t date then how will you ever know who’s the one?  My question to them and you is, if you are of the same mind, since when did God start allowing us to make decisions based upon intellectualism?  It’s an earthly leaning on ones limited intellect to choose a God-ordained mate that may potentially be with them for the rest of their lives.   But I read in Proverbs chapter 3 verses 5 and 6 that I am to trust in the Lord with all my heart and not lean to my own understanding but in all of my ways acknowledge Him and allow Him to direct my path.

“My question to them and you is, if you are of the same mind, since when did God start allowing us to make decisions based upon intellectualism?”

 

That’s why you know so many people that are in and out of relationships and in and out of marriages.   Listen, we must do it God’s way from the very beginning.  Courtship is the process that outlines this.  If you follow the path of dating, you will soon become frustrated and discouraged because your decision will primarily be based on your likes and dislikes; your backgrounds and similarities; how well you get along and how attractive he or she is. Child of God, although all of these things are important, none of them are as important as a word from God.  If the Lord gives you a word, it really doesn’t matter what or how the situation presently is – He’ll work it out!  Sure, you can meet someone who has it all together today but only God knows where he or she will be in five years.

Now let’s deal with courtship since I believe we have a grasp on dating.  While dating happens numerous times, courtship should really happen only once leading to a lifelong covenant relationship.  As with divine relationships, in what we call “the Bible days, I still believe that God ordained relationships are arranged.  For Isaac, Abraham sent out his servant to bring Rebekah.  If you noticed, there were three involved in this process: One, Abraham – the father;  two, Isaac – the son; and three the servant – as the servant (Genesis 24).  You haven’t caught it yet have you?  Keep reading!  Today, the Father {God} already knows what we need and what is needed to accomplish His purpose.  As with Isaac, we are His sons and daughters.  Oh, as for the servant who knew the heart of the father, the Holy Ghost lives within us leading and guiding us to all truth.  My God, a divine connection!  Let me give you a few scriptures that’s going to help you out tremendously.

Philippians 2:13  For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

 John 16:13  Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

You got it!  When we become saturated and engulfed with a passionate desire to please Him, our desire becomes or shall I say is His desire. The Holy Spirit is in us creating a desire towards that which pleases the Father.   And trust me when I tell you that Daddy knows what’s best for us.   I heard Pastor Tony Evans say, “While we can choose someone that’s good for us only God knows what is best for us.”   So, in courtship when God brings the two of you together,  it will not necessarily be flesh attracting flesh but purpose attracting purpose – everything else will be fringe benefits.   So, what’s the purpose of this marriage union anyway?   God has a mandate on earth written from heaven that only the two of you together can fulfill to get the optimal results.   In addition, even your offspring have been written in God’s script to do a work in their generation.

Here are a few other points I feel are vital to mention in regards to this subject.

Understanding Your Purpose

I always say, as I learned from a mentor of mines Dr. Myles Munroe some 18 years ago, that where purpose is not known abuse is inevitable. So, before entering into courtship, do a little homework first.  If purpose is what’s going to attract purpose then I need to know what my purpose is. So, here you go – for those of you who are eagerly in search of your wives and for those that are eagerly waiting to be discovered by your husbands … find out who you are and why you’re here first.  Dig deep and find out the purpose of the male, the purpose of the female and God’s original intent for both.   Then find out your own individual purpose. You may not like what I’m saying but Adam’s time of meeting Eve was after God laid out Adam’s purpose.  It is the discovering of it that qualifies you for your mate.

Falling In Love With Daddy-God First

Love Him with your whole heart, your whole soul and your whole body.  Because God is love, as we fall head over hills in love with Him, He will teach us how to love, honor and respect each other.  This type of love can only be manifested in those that are in Him.  Outside of Him (unsaved), as much as he or she says they love you, it’s not the God kind of love.  The truth of the matter is any person you engage yourself in relationship with, that’s not saved, is in essence a monster.  You say how?  Because they are without Christ – meaning they have no head.  They have no governing authority.  This is why they can treat you any kind of way and have no real conviction.

Understanding Covenant

Since courtship is designed to lead to marriage, this is a perfect time to get your house in order. Work on your character and your integrity. Understand the significance of covenant keeping.  In the Old Hebrew, almost every decision made was ratified by a covenant.  With the animals cut in two and blood everywhere, the covenanter would walk through the blood declaring that if he didn’t keep his part of the agreement then let the same thing that happened to the animals likewise happen to him.  So, since courtship is designed to lead to marriage, make sure that you are ready to make this kind of commitment.

These are just a few of the things that are essential to courtship but trust me there’s so much more.   However, let me leave you with this, courtship can be seen as embodying three phases. The first is friendship; the second is the relationship itself; and the third is the engagement.  You say, but how do I start?   If you happen to meet someone and the both of you feel like there is a divine connection, seek God for clarity.   I would suggest that the both of you fast until you get a word or a true peace from God.  Then as you begin your courtship, take your time and develop a real friendship first.  It is upon this friendship that you will build your relationship.

Agape,

Elder Rickey  (Article written for Vision Magazine)

 

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