First Things First
Do you want to be the type of person who is kind and loving to other people? Do you want to be a person who shows the kind of love to others that God shows to you? Do you want to be a source of life to your family, friends, the person you are dating—and the person you will eventually marry? Then you need a source of life. This is how it was always meant to be. Love embraced becomes love extended. It is the natural outworking of being loved first by God (see 1 John 4:19). When you have a source of life, you can be a source of life.
In John 4, Jesus explained how each of us have a deep longing in our souls to be loved. Jesus was talking to a woman at a well, and at one point he said to her, “You have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband” (verse 18 niv). He also said, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water” (verse 10 niv). Jesus was saying, “You have been looking for satisfaction for your deep soul thirst in the arms of men—and you cannot find it there. You have misdiagnosed your need.” Jesus was saying the only satisfaction for the longing in her soul was found in God, the source of life, and not in any human relationships.
When you use a dating relationship to validate yourself, it only leads to sucking the life out of the other person. This is how toxic dating relationships are formed. This is why so many go wrong. When you bring God-sized needs to other human beings, there is no way they can meet those needs. Nor can you offer them unconditional love on the days they are struggling, because they are the ones who represent your source. But when God is your source, it becomes the most natural thing in the world to let his love flow through you and into the person you are dating. When you know you are truly beloved, it is easy to love others. When you have an inexhaustible resource of love, you can then be a source of love for others.
If you are in Christ, you know you are cherished by the most beautiful and powerful being in existence. He knows your name. He sees you. He gave all to make you his. He will never give up on you. So, before you date—and before you choose to marry your mate—you need to be meeting with your Maker and forming a relationship with him. It is in the stability of walking with Christ that you have the resources to bless the person you’re dating.
Why is it critical to have God as your source of life so you can be a source of life for another? What happens when you get this order wrong?
How does your relationship with God impact your relationship with the person you are dating? How does your relationship with God impact the way you see yourself?
What do you need to do today to grow in your relationship with God? What practical steps will you put in place to make this happen?