In the society we live in today, dating has become prevalent for nearly any age group. Teenagers are nearly always seen with a boy or girl on their arm. Being in a relationship has become a large status symbol. In order to become popular teens begin relationships for the wrong reasons, and then eventually ruin the relationship and their lives because of progressively poorer choices. Rather than the selfish use of dating, the Christian view is more conducive for a healthy, lasting relationship.
It is commonly known that people are self-seeking and selfish. They are constantly looking out for their needs, wants, and desires. They are human; it is only natural. In a worldly relationship, two self-seeking human beings attempt to come together to rely on each other for everything from emotional to physical needs. Yet, they stay focused on themselves, and the relationship eventually crashes around them because they only focus on themselves, they don’t support each other. Because of that, the relationship comes to an end.
However, when two Christians come together to have a loving relationship, they attempt to be selfless. In this way, they consider the other person’s thoughts and feelings and they try to support each other. Indeed they are humans, so they still fail, but when they are both attempting to have a selfless relationship they can help each other to their goals. They also forgive each other when they fail.
Most people dread that feeling of failure. Sometimes teens in a worldly relationship hide their relationship until they know it will succeed. Once they have hidden it for a while, they want to end it because they feel ashamed. Even worse, they purposefully hide it from people who may disapprove, even if they may have good reason to.
Hiding is the last thing a healthy, lasting relationship needs. Christian teens in a relationship try to get approval from those whose opinions they care about. They will ask their parents, siblings, close friends, their youth group. Although they are dating, they are looking for someone for the long run. Some Christian couples even call this kind of dating “courting.”
When dating in the world, the “love at first sight” is more common than people think. People fall in love quickly, that is why it is call “falling.” This works because they let themselves fall in love. In courting, at the beginning, there is a lot of second-guessing. Questions fly around in one’s brain as to whether “this is the one,” if it is the “right time,” or if they’re “ready” to be in a relationship. Sometimes these over thought questions stop the falling halfway down the preverbal cliff, for better or for worse.
Sometimes the love slows down. As time passes, the love fades and the world-based couple has to try to love one another. Sometimes stress comes into that making it difficult. When they are out socializing, one of the couple may make the other jealous by talking to someone. Even if there is no real interest, this causes a stress on the relationship and they become distrustful.
Because of their basis on a selfless relationship, those in a Christian based relationship trust each other. They support each other through any fear or jealousy that may arise. They attempt to prevent what stress they can.
In the world we live in today, there is an information overload that is difficult to avoid for both sides. There are movies and TV, music and their videos, photos fill up the ecosystem of the Internet, and magazine advertisements that sell bad messages for teenage relationships. These messages include what the “perfect body for a girl” is, and how the couple “should” treat each other physically. Most of those messages are idealistic dreams of the creator of the message. They are not what any real human can attain.
These lies are dangerous for a dating relationship because it is unattainable and when failure occurs, stress comes and begins to force the couples to do things that they would rather not do. This stress eventually leads to casual sex with whomever and wherever they please amongst teens because they’ve been lead to believe that sex will make them feel better and takes all their worries and stress away. Commonly this nonchalant sex is taken to an extreme of being counted and kept track of, but the girls’ emotions are abused in the process. The high number is a status symbol for a worldly male. However, when girls have high number, they are degraded as a human being. That degradation affects their value of life.
In stark contrast, couples in a Christian relationship make an agreement to abstain from sex until marrage; some even wait for their first kiss to be on their wedding day. Because of this, purity rings have become popular, even among some non-Christian couples. They symbolize their loyal purity to their future spouse, a person they have probably not met yet. Not only does this vow prevent STDs, it prevents regrets. It prevents hard moral questions in the moment. It makes the dating relationship easier when that vow has already been made.
One danger to the commitment to purity is society’s effect on the couple. Christian couples are treated as if they are lying, or as if something is wrong with them when people learn of their vow. Most of society doubts they are telling the truth about their purity, and that discourages the couple. Society not only pulls couples down into a pit of impurity, it also doesn’t believe when it hasn’t succeeded in trapping people.
When the Christian couple can escape that trap until they make vows of marriage, they have created a strong foundation for their future relationship together. Since they have learned to be selfless, serving, open, trusting, and loyal, they can have a long healthy relationship that can last through the bumps of life and the disrespect of society.
There are couples in the world that don’t base their relationships on Christian values and they do last. However, most commonly, worldly relationships don’t last. With a basis of Christ, selfless servitude, trust, and loyalty most relationships can thrive. Not only that, if more teenagers adopted these ideas, society could potentially change. A relationship based on Christian values could have a strong effect on anyone that it reaches.