I personally believe that one of the biggest reasons Christian girls date unbelieving men is that

So many of us truly believe we have the power to change other people.

We think:

  • If I love him enough, he’ll change for me.
  • If I love him enough, he’ll see that he needs to accept Christ, and he will.
  • My love is so strong, he won’t be able to resist doing anything I want him to do.
  • I’ll just tell him he has to accept Christ.  I’m sure he will and then we can get married and everything will be great.

As a formerly controlling wife – I believed that lie, too – that I had the right and the power to change other people.

Here is what is at the root of my thinking I could change other people:

  • I believe that I am sovereign, not God, and that it is within my rights to convict and change and save people.
  • I believe that I am necessary, not the Holy Spirit.
  • I believe that I have control over things that I do NOT actually have control over.
  • I believe that my love can force people to do what I want them to do.  (God’s love does not force people to do anything, by the way!  God doesn’t force Himself on anyone.)
  • I do not accept people as they are.
  • I don’t accept that each adult has the God-given right to make his/her own choices.  I blur the boundaries with other people and believe I can overstep into their lives and make important decisions for them – since, I am obviously “right” and “I know best!”
  • I am prideful – thinking myself equal to the power of the Holy Spirit or, even more powerful than the Holy Spirit.
  • I make an idol of SELF and being in control – I feel “safe” as long as I think I am in control.  I don’t realize it is all a facade.
  • I am overly responsible for other people.
  • I see God as small, impotent and wimpy and myself as huge, mighty and powerful – I have a warped understanding of my identity and God’s identity.
  • I don’t understand God’s sovereignty.
  • I really trust SELF not God.  I think everything is ultimately up to me for me to make it all “turn out right.”  That’s a lot of pressure and stress, by the way, so that is why I am very anxious, fearful, worried, stressed and overwhelmed most of the time.

HOW MUCH BETTER IF I COULD:

  • humbly acknowledge that God is God.  I am most definitely NOT.
  • see that He is HUGE and POWERFUL and MIGHTY and I am nothing!
  • understand where my responsibility ends and accept God’s sovereignty and the free will of other people.
  • accept people as they are and not try to change them, but leave room for God’s Holy Spirit to work in them.
  • repent of my pride and my idolatry of self and mourn over my sin.
  • trust God completely, not my own deceptive heart.
  • seek God with all my heart, mind, soul and strength.
  • find my contentment and purpose 100% in Christ Jesus alone.
  • delight to obey God’s Word because of my deep love, reverence and worship of Jesus.
  • seek to be the woman God desires me to be.
  • only consider dating godly men who show consistent Fruit of the Spirit in their lives: real love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
  • see the enemy’s snare and avoid the ungodly, carnal men who seem so appealing but in the end will bring me misery and incredible pain.
  • seek godly advice and counsel before beginning to date/see/court a man if I am not sure about his character or his relationship with Christ.
  • understand that I can influence people – but others are ultimately responsible for their decisions.

HEALTHY BOUNDARIES IN A HEALTHY ROMANTIC RELATIONSHIP:

  • I am responsible for my own emotions.  I am responsible for my happiness. I am responsible for my feelings if I am upset.
  • He is responsible for his emotions.  He is responsible for his happiness.  He is responsible for his feelings if he is upset.
  • I am responsible for my walk with God and for finding joy in Christ.
  • He is responsible for his walk with God and for finding joy in Christ.
  • He will not try to force me to do anything.
  • I will not try to force him to do anything.  It is very disrespectful to try to MAKE someone do what I want him to do.
  • It is ok for either of us to say how we feel, what we want and what we need.
  • It is safe for me to share my feelings.
  • It is safe for him to share his feelings.
  • I respect him as a person and respect that he has the right to make his own decisions.
  • He respects me as a person and respects that I have the right to  make my own decisions.
  • I pray for him and desire the best for him.
  • He prays for me and desires the best for me.
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