I have never been much of a fan of Christian relationship books. I guess we got off to a rocky start when my girlfriend broke up with me in high school some time after reading “I Kissed Dating Goodbye”. But there have also been other reasons for skepticism, as there hasn’t been much worth reading or reccommending. That, and I didn’t feel that I needed to read a book on relationships to receive godly instruction.
When I was in high school, it was a moot point, really. There just wasn’t really much of an opportunity for a dating relationship. There were certainly temptations to pursue relationships with girls that I knew weren’t Christians. I remember being so divided in my heart with my attraction to a girl, but knowing I just couldn’t mess with a deeper relationship. So they just remained friends, with the hope that they may turn to Christ.
When I moved on to College, the challenge shifted a bit. I was certainly in possibly the best situation to find a good Christian girl: a solid Christian college in Southern California. I did manage to find one that led to a horrible situation, and fortunately I was able to get out before falling to too much comprimise. But four years passed, and I graduated without ever having a serious relationship. Again, not necessarily due a lack of effort or pursuit, but God never brought anything into my life.
There were times when I sincerely struggled with being single, but I knew I needed to find my satisfaction and contentment in Christ alone. I was convicted that God would bring the right girl around and that I shouldn’t rashly pursue something for the sake of a personal, fleshly desire. But I hadn’t necessarily read this anywere, short of the pages of Scripture.
Recently, I realized the need to be able to reccommend a book to students struggling with the issue of relationships. I had heard good things about this book, so this is where I started. After reading it, I’m not sure I would have to read much else. That isn’t to say that there aren’t any other valuable books on the subject, but the book the Ludy’s write thoughtfully deals with all of the issues students struggle.
The main point of the book is to trust God with your love life. Every believer needs to come to a point where they will not make rash decisions and relationship choices they know don’t please God. Instead, they need to trust that God, the all-knowing, grace giving Savior, to do what is best in the life of a believer. That can be scary and difficult, but we need to understand that God has a better idea of what is best for us. We must surrender this portion of our hearts and minds to God.
Another section of the book that I admired was the stressing that we must preserve ourselves, not just physically, but also emotionally and spiritually, for our future spouses. There is much emphasis on saving yourself for marriage, and that is appropriate, but there is hardly any emphasis on protecting themselves from giving themselves emotionally to their boyfriend or girlfriend. That can just as damaging. And we can’t make the mistake the Pharisees did in thinking it was just the act, not the heart or thought, that condemned a person.
This book not only speaks to how to properly pursue a relationship, but gives adivce to those dealing with singleness. They stress the importance of that time in their lives, and how beneficial it can really be. They not only speak to this, but also provide applicable steps a person can take to know whether the one they are with is the one that God has brought around for them.
I would say this is a must read for all teenagers, and we are going to be starting a relationship series in our high school group. I have noticed recently that more and more of our teenagers are making comprimises in this area of their life. And if there is a dangerous area of your life to comprimise in, this is it. Sin in this area can lead to widespread destruction, and often times leaves a wake of consequences and painful scars in its path.