Christian dating breakups are common. Most 20-to-30-somethings have been in multiple dating relationships. Not all breakups are because of sin. Maybe after time, the two of you just realized it wasn’t meant to be. Or perhaps some of those relationships were sinful and ended because God wasn’t in it.
Regardless of the reason for the breakup, the weeks and months that follow can feel like you just got shoved down a river without a rafting guide and now you need to figure out how to survive class V whitewater rapids on the fly.
Jesus doesn’t want that for you. While the Bible doesn’t talk about Christian dating breakups, it does talk a lot about forgiveness, healing, and living a healthy life for God’s glory.
So here are four quick biblical tips that will help prepare you for the future by helping you deal with any past breakups that were unhealthy.
Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.-Luke 12:48
In a broken world, there are endless needs. So how do we decide who to support, who to serve, who to lead, and who to give our time and resources to?
There is no hard and fast rule about such things in the Bible. We are told to take care of our families (1 Timothy 5:8), we are told to help support other Christians (Romans 12:13), and we are also told to show hospitality to strangers (Hebrews 13:2). But to what degree should we offer the help since the needs of the world can be endless?
“Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her.” – 2 Samuel 13:15
One common expression many Christians say is that we should all try to be balanced. But what does being balanced really mean? And what does the Bible say about being balanced?
In one sense this is not a hard question. As Christians, we should be “balanced” in such a way where we are level headed, not overly dogmatic, and respectful of other people’s beliefs even if we don’t hold them ourselves.
Christians should also be balanced in that we should not hone in on one doctrine, trying to make the Bible and the Christian faith all about this one point, for as John Stott said, “Every heresy is due to an overemphasis upon some truth, without allowing other truths to qualify and balance it.”
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. – Ephesians 4:29
Jesus spoke to the masses, he visited towns because that’s where the people were, and every Christian is told to make disciples of all nations. Like Jesus, to love well, we must go where the people are.
When Paul visited Athens, he spent his time in the marketplace where the Athenians “spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas” (Acts 17:21). By roaming the city streets, Paul gathered precious info about their pagan beliefs, thus giving himself a better opportunity to share the gospel in the most effective way possible (Acts 17:22-23).
So where are the people today? Where do they “spend their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas”? Where can we go to better understand their beliefs, culture, and current trends with the hope of giving ourselves the best opportunity to present the gospel most effectively?
And Jesus said to them, “Let us go on to the next towns, that I may preach there also, for that is why I have come.” Mark 1:38
In response to growing up in a dead church environment where the deeds often didn’t match the words, there is a movement in the American Church towards emphasizing social justice. If you ask most people about why they don’t like Christianity, hypocrisy is the number one answer. Nobody wants to be fake. It makes sense, then, of why Christians are seeking to live out their faith by helping the poor and less fortunate (besides the biblical command to do so).
This is right. Jesus clearly healed the sick, provided food for the hungry, and had a special affection for orphans and widows due to their helplessness. James 1:22, 27 states, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. . . . Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”
Jesus Actually Healed Less So He Could Preach More
With all of that said, helping people with their physical needs is not the main point of Christianity.
Isaiah 62:5, Mark 10:9
The difference between teen romance and a deeply committed marriage is persevering faithfulness. When you date, you are gauging whether or not you want to remain with that person. When you get married, your only thought is to remain, love, and be faithful no matter what happens. Likewise, to be Christian, you must move past the dating season and fully commit to your marriage with God.
-1 Samuel 24:12,13
If you could, you’d make sure everyone was happy with you. Normal people don’t want other people to hate them. But no matter how hard we try, eventually someone becomes our enemy.
You don’t have to hate someone for them to be your enemy. They just have to hate you. Romans 5:8, 10 explains, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. . . . For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.”
God didn’t hate us. He loved us. But the Bible says we were his enemy. Likewise, even if you don’t hate anyone on earth, this does not mean you don’t have enemies. As hard as we try, some people just don’t like us. They may hate you for your faith, your skin color, your gender, or just for the sound of your voice. Sinners sin, and often times sin comes in the form of hate.
We all have enemies. So what are we to do?
Colossians 4:3-6, Galatians 1:10
Does the Bible say we should not care what others think about us? No, but it does say we must seek to please God over people.
As every Christian matures, one of the things the Holy Spirit will surely convict us of is seeking the praise of man over God. In our sinful nature, we care about what others think of us for the wrong reasons.
Caring What Others Think of You Can Be Expressed Wrongly in Two Ways
When we seek the praise of people, it can be expressed in many different ways. The two ends of the spectrum are obsessive pursuit and obsessive avoidance. One person may do anything to be praised by people, while another person will do anything not to be seen by people, but both can have the same root issue – caring too much about what people think of them.
Taking orders is difficult. Like players yelling at the officials in a sports competition, our natural reaction is to rebel against anyone who may exercise their authority over us. When a professor gives us poor marks on a paper we thought was top quality, we instantly feel the need to attack them verbally behind their backs not because we disagree so much but because we despise the idea of the professor being able to do what she likes to our paper.
Matthew 7:11, Proverbs 29:17
Parenting seems like an impossible balancing act. On one hand, you don’t want to be harsh, overbearing, and cruel to your child. You want to show grace and mercy like God shows you.
But you also don’t want to spoil your child, turning them into a rotten person who feels entitled, yells to get their way, and needs to be pampered to be appeased.
So what does the Bible say about spoiling your child?