Wednesday Wisdom Tip: Set Those Expectations
Today, I am so excited to be sharing a post for our girls from my friend, Sharie King. Sharie shares wisdom on setting expectations when it comes to guys and dating.
Before I was married, I dated because:
- I wanted to make new friends.
- I was afraid to be alone.
- I thought I would be a good influence on his relationship with Jesus.
- I had a crush for years and he finally noticed me.
- He was fun to be around.
- I needed a date for a dance, prom or an event.
- I thought it was God’s will.
There are many reasons we date. I’ve had a relatively mild dating experience with few regrets. But like most people, I have a few I wish I could wash away. I’ve often dreamed a time machine would show up on my doorstep so I could change a few situations. But, I’ve changed my mind. Instead, I think I’d take myself out for coffee and say,
“Sharie, You wouldn’t believe the amazing love story God has planned for you. But, if you’d like to avoid some heartache along the way, you need to sit down right now and decide what kind of guy you are looking for. Do you want a guy who encourages your faith, or one who is embarrassed of your love for Jesus? Do you want him to share the commitment to purity, or are you going to choose someone who finds your goals absurd? Do you want a best friend, or a fling? Set your expectations now because most relationship mistakes originate from our lack of vision.”
It is essential for you to decide what kind of person you are looking for before you start looking. Ask God to help you set a list of expectations. Expectations are your first line of protection against compromise.
Maybe you think having expectations is intolerant, rigid and unkind. But if you ordered spaghetti at a restaurant and you got a slab of salmon instead, you’d probably send it back. If you interviewed for a position as a finance director, but got a degree in psychology, they’d probably choose someone else. If a pro-football team kept loosing, they’d fire the coach and find someone who could get the job done.
Psalm 119:9-11 says, “How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” Living a sexually pure life is not easy.
If you want to stay on this narrow path, if you want to glorify Jesus as his child, you have to set some expectations to make it work. Here are some expectations you should have according to Psalm 119. You should both be:
- Living according to God’s word.
- Seeking God with all your hearts.
- Be open and willing for God to keep you from sin.
- Learning the word of God so that we can live by it.
- The above expectations are essential. Now take some time to set some personal ones and give your list to God in prayer.
- Share your list of expectations with someone who loves you and wants the best for you.
- Find someone to hold you accountable and pray for the openness to listen to them.
Offer It Up: Jesus, we all need help letting the gospel define our purity, giving our sexuality to you. I pray for you to give us victory through your grace and self-discipline.
- Most relationship mistakes originate from our lack of vision.
- Expectations are your first line of protection against compromise.
- Psalm 119:9, “How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word.
Today, I’m giving away a copy of Sharie’s book: 40 Days of Purity for Girls, which is part of the True Love Project, which she co-authored with her husband, Clayton King.
To be entered to win, share in the comments below, what is one character trait you would encourage your girl to look for in a mate. If you are receiving this via email, please be sure to share your comment on www.LynnCowell.com.
Honesty, purity and a true relationship with God! Absolutely!
I would tell her to look for a mate who fears God above all else.
I encourage my teenage daughter to look for someone that loves and is actively pursuing his relationship with Christ.
A man who loves the Lord with all his heart, soul and mind and who is going to encourage her to be all she can be as a woman of God.
I love this, “who encourages her to be all that she can be.” We all need people to see our gifts and want us to live out our dream and calling.
Being with someone who encourages her in Christ.. Who doesn’t just push her higher but is going higher himself.
Thank you for sharing this great post on dating! As believers, we must understand how the impact of dating can affect our future marriages. Living a life with purity and only seeing dating as a purposeful step towards marriage is very counterculture but necessary to honor God and bring blessing to our lives.
Thank you for writing this article to shine light on our motivations to date. May we honor God with our decisions and surround ourselves with biblical community who can keep us accountable as we date.
God Bless and Be Encouraged,
The one character trait I encourage my girls to look for is someone who is pursuing God. Everything else will fall into place if both people are growing spiritually.
I would encourage them to look for some one who is respectful, pure, caring, and he respects his parents!! You can not find a lot of guys like that anymore.
A man who is open and continually leads his family to Jesus with every situation they face.
A man who will put God before you. Someone who constantly reminds you that you are a daughter of the King.
I’m looking for someone who will eill encourage me in my walk with Christ as well as teach me more about Jesus in his actions and words on a daily basis. Also, I’m praying I’m becoming the helper God intends me to be for him.
One character trait I tell my girl to look for…or will when she is old enough to date…would be sense of humor. Punctuality and generosity would also be important. But also to watch for his level of respect for his parents, especially his mom. Guess I couldn’t limit my response to just one trait…oops
Honesty is one trait that I would want my daughter to have in a mate .
I agree that honesty is so essential because trust is an important relationship foundation for sure.
I encourage my daughter, Rozzy, to seek a man who loves God more than he loves her, who inspires her heart to be on fire for God. 🙂
First and foremost, watch and listen to see his relationship w/Jesus – have friends around to ‘see’ him. How is he serving God? What are his interests? Oh, sweet ladies, the enemy is more than willing to give us his best and people so often fall for it, not trusting God. I was widowed after 25 years of marriage – we had some very challenging years because of our stubbornness but God grew us and the love He gave us for each other was a sweet gift! The evil one put a man into my life at a vulnerable time as a widow – thankfully, God had shown me some good boundaries which kept me safe. A short time later, a Godly man of integrity crossed my path and began pursuing me. He courted me for 3 1/2 years as God was healing each of us. We have now been married for 3 1/2 years! Was the wait hard? You betcha but oh so worth it! Is it perfect? Not on your life – we’re still human but it’s been so much better, letting God do His work in His way. Hang in there, ladies – the only perfect lover/husband/friend is God; seek Him and His plans, trusting and waiting! Blessings on you in this journey! I’d love the book to share with single family and friends!
Deb. Thanks for sharing your story.
I would tell her to look for a man who is passionate about Jesus over anything else – other things will fall into place!
I heard once “don’t flirt to convert” and it has always stuck with me….. You can’t expect to win someone over to Jesus by being in a relationship with them…. Trust me I KNOW….. find that one person who draws YOU closer to the Lord. 🙂
Amber, I love what you said about someone drawing you closer to Jesus. My husband and I have been married 16 years this May and he has taught me so much about how Jesus loves me.
Thank you for the encouragement that I can share with my teenage daughter.
You’re a brave and good good Father to be si concerned for your girl! Thanks for loving her so well!!
Definitely the most important trait is that he loves the Lord more than anything. But I encourage them to look for evidence of that love through their lives, not to just take their word for it.
Yes – the way they love others…especially what some would consider the “unlovely”.
The most important character trait I can think of is integrity. Definitely a man who is pure, a leader, and a lover of Jesus too! That’s #1!
I so agree, Chels! Integrity calls all of the other positive qualities to be consistent and committed.
A great character trait is someone who will pray for you and love you unconditionally.
So true, Chandra!
To be a God fearing people loving girl!
When my husband and I were dating, I cherished honest and effortless conversations about God and the meaning is scripture.
To respect and lover her, who is a great support and most of all loves Christ! 🙂
I would tell her to look for a man who loved God with all his heart soul, mind and strength and who loved others as he loved himself.
There are so many character traits that are so important that it’s hard to choose one. The first one that comes to mind is Kindness. It is a character trait that should all possess according to the fruit of the spirit. Kindness spurs respect and consideration for their girlfriend/wife. Being kind seems to go hand in hand with having a servants heart which is ultimately GODS desire for all of us.
I really enjoyed reading your blog. I came from proverbs 31.