In this relationship mini-series, last week I addressed a widely held concept within the church of “the one” that I believe is straight up wrong. Essentially, my point was the Bible never says God has one specific person out there that He’ll bring to you “in His time” or when you “seek first the kingdom of God.” God is not in the business of granting us the “perfect” mate when we’ve somehow managed to earn it, and, no, married people are not more spiritually advanced or more focused on God, or at least that wasn’t how they found their spouse.
No, I believe that the steps for getting married are not mystical, super spiritual or all that complicated. There are two simple plans for getting into a relationship, one for each gender. I’ll explain it for the guys this week and girls next.
Find a girl you’re attracted to for the right reasons and ask her out.
If she says yes, take some time to get to know her.
If, after getting to know her, you think you should marry her, propose.
If she says yes, get married.
It’s actually quite simple.
Not easy — I totally agree — but simple.
Now, the point of this blog is to give you helpful information, so if you’re a guy and not in a relationship (though you want to be), it might help to know there are likely only two reasons why.
1. You’re not asking.
2. No one’s saying yes.
So here are my top two tips for guys on getting into a relationship.
1. Man up.
If you’re not asking any girls out, well guess what, you’re never going to get into a relationship. If you want one, you need to man up and do something about that.
If you know her well enough, let her know you’re interested in something more than friendship. If you don’t know her that well, ask her out on a couple of dates and get to know her well enough to make that call.
Yes, I’m well aware it’s scary, and, yes, there could be many consequences. However, that’s just what you need to do as a man — you take the risk. And, hey, any girl you’d want to date wouldn’t make you look bad even if she said no.
2. Be awesome.
If you are asking girls out on dates and you’re finding that they’re all saying no, then that tells you something: You need to become more awesome.
Sorry to have to be the one to tell you, but it’s simple logic. If you were an attractive guy, girls would be more likely to say yes to when you asked them out, thus if they’re consistently saying no (or just making excuses why they can’t have dinner with you), you need to become more attractive in a variety of ways.
Sure, you could blame it on timing, coincidence, chemistry, culture, wrong expectations or bad luck, and it might be some of those things, but it’s probably not.
Guys and girls, godly or not, are looking for traits in the person they’d be willing to date. Thus if you want girls to be willing to date you, you need to have more of those qualities in your life.
Some examples are:
- A reliable and stable source of legitimate income (i.e., a job)
- Responsibility (i.e., someone who can be counted upon)
- Attractive appearance (being fit and dressing nice make a huge difference]
- Romantic skills (cooking, poetry, dancing, guitar … or all four)
- Confidence that stems from an identity in Christ
- Humor (Studies show that humor is about as important to a girl as looks are to a guy. Go watch some comedians and slowly try to imitate them.)
- Protectiveness and encouraging-ness
- Pretty much everything Proverbs, James, Timothy and Titus say
Now if you’re looking at that list and thinking, Wow, that’s too much work, that probably explains why you’re still single. As I said last week, getting into a relationship is hard work, and God designed that to be the case as part of the sanctification process. Yes, it’s a lot of work, so let’s get started.
Tell me what you guys (and girls!) think. Anything else you’d add or remove from the lists?
A: Obviously I’m assuming at every stage of this process you’re praying about it and seeking advice from wise/older/married mentors who know both parties.
B: I’m assuming that as a guy you’re looking for a biblically grounded, Spirit-led, missionally focused young woman who loves Jesus and likes you.
C: Being in a relationship is not the same as engagement. Both parties need to protect their hearts within a relationship just as much if not more than before they started dating.
D: The purpose of a relationship is not the warm fuzzies of having someone who’s “yours,” but seeking clarity on whether you want to get married. This is Boundless: I’m sure someone else has written about it — like Scott Croft’s Biblical Dating series.
E: There are several other reasons why people aren’t in relationships that I don’t have space to cover, including lack of someone you’re interested in or lack of openness to a relationship (e.g., recovering from a breakup, working too much, etc.)