The trajectory of lives and eternities are in the balance. Laying out guidelines for dating as followers of Jesus will alter lives by keeping people out of toxic and unhealthy relationships (and ultimately marriages). “The one” says you need to find the perfect person. The beauty of marriage is God sustains you despite your flaws. The shells of a shotgun are stuffed with tiny round balls. You are asked to go from a mentality that says “End a relationship as soon as difficulty arises,” to one that says, “Don’t end the relationship regardless of the difficulty that arises.” That’s a tough switch to flip.

I've arrived at this conclusion by thinking through a number of biblical principles.

One of our bedrock governing principles in biblical dating — and in how we treat our brothers and sisters in Christ generally — is not to "defraud" our single brothers and sisters by implying a greater level of commitment between us and them than actually exists (see 1 Thessalonians 4:6).

The essence of a true soul mate relationship is that of deep spiritual connection.

This dynamic book, Devotions for Dating Couples, offers guidance for deepening your commitment to God as individuals and as a couple.

The first instance in the Bible where God is not pleased comes when God sees Adam living in the Garden of Eden alone (Gen. Singleness can be a gift from God, but don’t use it as an excuse to be lazy. And to my church’s credit, they drilled this one point home constantly. Dating and marriage are not for those who rely on another person for joy, peace, and purpose.

Enter Eve, pro-creation, and marriage (not necessarily in that order). And the most intimate community on earth is the relationship you will have with your spouse. Disclaimer: If you are single (or if you’re married), steward your time well. “Sex before marriage is bad.” This was the extent of my understanding of Christian dating as a teenager and young adult. But understand purity begins with the mind and heart.

My boyfriend firmly believes that Christ brought us together, yet I am the one who practices my faith.

I came to this site to ensure that God remains the principal focus here and that whatever happens, God will protect both of us." reading this article and watching this video, I'm meditating on the topic of relationships.

As you read through the devotions each day, you will: Samuel Adams, Psy. He earned his master's from Western Seminary and a doctorate from George Fox University.

He maintains a full time counseling practice in Austin, Texas.

If you aren’t ready for marriage, or if you do not want to get married, you are not sinning.