For as long as I can remember I have wanted a boyfriend.
I fantasized about the “perfect” relationship, like what you see in the movies. I wanted someone to call my own, someone who treated me like a princess.
Skip ahead to my 18th birthday, and I had not had a real boyfriend yet. I had never been on a date, I had never held hands with anyone, and I had never kissed anyone. I couldn’t believe that I was going into my freshman year of college never having been in a real relationship.
At this point, I felt like being single was God’s plan for my life. I started to accept that idea, but then something wild happened: I was asked out on a date.
This boy that I had liked since I was 15 asked me out.
I was ecstatic. I couldn’t believe it. Anyway, we went out on that date. It was fun and it went really well. However, “us” didn’t last that long. Nothing bad happened, it was just that we lived a great distance away from each other, and I didn’t feel like he was everything I was looking for.
I felt hopeless. This guy that I had been waiting on for over three years finally came around and I ended it. I questioned my standards and whether they were too high. I began to accept my original idea of God’s plan for me.
Around the same time that fling ended, I was on the mission trip that we took to Mexico. Out of all the students on the trip, only one was a guy, Sam. I didn’t know him that well, but he seemed really cool. I wanted to be his friend, so one day I decided to talk to him. From that point, we became super close, as if we’d known each other for ages.
(I know he hates this picture, but we don’t have that many together so I just had to use it. Sam, if you’re reading this, sorry love 😂)
As the week went on, I realized I was starting to like him as more than a friend. I felt kind of silly, considering I had only known him well for about a week. Still, I couldn’t help it.
After the mission trip, Sam and I stayed in contact. He told me he felt the same way that I did about him. We went on our first date the week we got back, and that was the first time I held his hand (or any boy’s hand for that matter). A few weeks later, he asked me to be his girlfriend. Of course, I said yes.
Although we have only been dating for a few months, I’ve learned so many things through this relationship.
First off, being in a romantic relationship with another Christian is so important.
Not only does God call us to do this, but it’s so beneficial. You both have the same overall goals and can hold each other accountable. Sam and I both agree on waiting until marriage not only to have sex but for other intimate things as well. We also are able to have amazing conversations about our beliefs, as well as about the bible. I thank God that he has put someone in my life that will help me grow in my relationship with Him. We are about to start to do a bible study together, and I couldn’t be more excited.
Respect is key.
I understood this before I started dating Sam, but not to the same extent that I do now. Some things that may seem small to one person may be a big deal to the other. Because I hadn’t kissed anyone before, I told him I wanted to wait a little bit until I was ready, and he respected that. Kissing wasn’t a big deal to him, but it is to me. He was willing to be patient with me and respect my feelings.
Similarly, Sam is not a big fan of making our relationship widely public, for he wants it to be between us and not between us and a bunch of noisy people (don’t worry, I got his permission before writing and publishing this post). Making our relationship known to everyone doesn’t bother me a bit, it is actually what I prefer, but I know that respect should go both ways, so I need to respect his preference.
Taking things slow is amazing.
Going slow makes everything exciting. Even the small things like hugging and holding hands fill my stomach with “butterflies.” Waiting a few months before kissing has made those moments so special. We always have something to look forward to, and it’s spectacular.
Not everything is going to go perfectly.
Because we are human, we argue. Sam and I disagree on certain things, as to be expected. Knowing this, we are able to work it out. Most arguments are over silly things that aren’t that big of a deal in the long run so knowing how to handle them is crucial.
For example, Sam and I have a long distance relationship. It’s really difficult sometimes, harder than I ever imagined. Sometimes we get into disputes about not talking to each other enough or about things we can’t control. Sure, those reasons may sound silly now, but at the moment they mean a lot. Thankfully, we have been able to recognize that and resolve the issues fairly quickly.
I know I still have so much to learn, and I excited for those moments.
Being with Sam has taught me so much about loving others, but has also taught me so much about God. Our relationship has taught me that I will never truly know what God’s plan is for me until it happens, therefore I need to trust Him to guide me in the right direction. I know that he has put Sam in my life for a reason, and I’m beyond excited to see where He takes us.
(This is by far my favorite picture of us. I love how goofy we can be ❤️)
What the Bible has to say about: romantic relationships
2 Corinthians 6:14
“Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?”
God calls us to be equally yoked, meaning we should be in romantic relationships with another believer. This way, two people are able to keep each other accountable and respect each others beliefs. I’ve always loved this verse because it reminds us that God ultimately created relationships to glorify Him.
1 Corinthians 6:18
“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.”
Especially in today’s society, the temptation to give into sexual immorality is strong. Premarital sex is so normalized, and it’s easy to conform to the ways of the world. God calls us to wait until marriage and to respect our bodies. Personally, I think that sex is a special act that God made specifically for a man and woman joined in marriage, and therefore we should wait.
Tip and tidbits about romantic relationships*
- Find someone who believes what you believe. God calls us to do this, and it just makes things so much easier. It makes you more compatible with each other and allows you to keep each other accountable.
- Keep it appropriate. I know you’ve probably heard this a million times before, but it is so important to stay away from situations that could allow you to slip up. Spend time together in public areas, and try to avoid private, closed off places that could allow for inappropriate things to happen.
- Set boundaries. This ties into keeping things appropriate, but it also allows you to feel comfortable. Discussing boundaries early on in the relationship can prevent “I didn’t know” moments from occurring and setting boundaries that will prevent you from even being close to crossing the line is important. This can also help you get to know the other person better and may allow you to learn new things about them.
- Be patient. Go slow. Things don’t have to go at a million miles a minute. Everything in today’s society happens so fast, but that doesn’t have to be the case in relationships. Be patient with each other. Not only is it more enjoyable, but it can prevent silly arguments.
- Be understanding of one another. Whether you live four minutes or four hours away from one another, you will be going through different things than your partner. Bad days happen, people get too busy to pick up the phone, and sometimes people need space. All of that is okay and communication and understanding are crucial for a healthy relationship.
*These tips and tidbits are specific to me and my life. Although they may work for the reader, I am not a professional in this area. These are merely suggestions that God has put in my heart and may or may not work for anyone.