In this article, I’m specifically talking about a relationship situation that involves two single people who are not currently dating but one of these people has romantic feelings for the other.
If the feelings are not mutual, is God leading you to wait so this person will come around and start liking you too one day? Or if you two dated but then broke up, yet you want to give another shot, is this God’s will or not?
Here are 4 instances where God may lead you to give someone a little more time before you decide to fully move on.
1. If You Tend to Move On Quickly as a Defense Mechanism Against Getting Hurt, God Could Lead You to Give Someone More Time
As Christians, sanctification is a lifelong process (Hebrews 10:14, 2 Corinthians 3:18). If you wait until you are 100% ready for something, you will be waiting your whole life.
One mistake we often make when assessing ourselves is by thinking in absolutes. For example, we might say things like, “I’m ready for a relationship” or “I’m not ready for a relationship.” That may be true, but in most cases it’s more accurate to say that “most of me is ready for a relationship” or “something in me is not ready for a relationship.”
I’m pointing this out not so we can add these extra phrases when talking about ourselves. I think it’s fine to talk in generalities. I’m pointing this out so you can be aware of issues you may have compartmentalized that are sabotaging the rest of you that is ready for a relationship.
For example, it’s possible to have a fear of rejection and to cope with this fear, you’ve created a defense mechanism of moving on quickly as soon as someone does not instantly match your level of excitement about the relationship.
While it’s true that two people do need to generally be on the same relationship timeline for things to work out, it’s not true that they need to be on the exact timeline to the second. If you know you tend to run away as a way of avoiding pain, God may lead you to give someone more time.
2. If You’ve Been Watching This Person and Thinking About Them for a Long Time But They Just Started to See You in This Romantic Light, God Could Be Telling You to Give Them More Time
Proverbs 14:10 states, “The heart knows its own bitterness, and no stranger shares its joy.” It’s important to remember that people don’t know how you feel until you make your feelings known. It’s easy to live in your head so long that you forget where a relationship is actually at with someone in the real world and who is not just in your mind.
For example, if you are a man who’s been working up the courage for months to pursue a female friend you have, you might be disappointed when you finally say something and then she’s not so sure about you yet. You have to remember that you’ve been thinking about this for months before making this choice. She might just need some extra time to explore the idea of seeing her former friend as something more.
3. If They Are Not Ready for a Relationship But You Are, God Could Lead You to Give Them a Little More Time
Maybe you’ve liked someone for a long time but you’ve always kept your distance out of respect because this person was dating someone else (Luke 6:31). It’s not the right time to charge into the situation as soon as this person goes through a breakup.
Or maybe a new person starts coming to your church and you learn they’ve just become a Christian a few weeks ago. It’s probably not the most loving thing to do to instantly inject a romantic relationship into their life and complicate their experience at a new church they’ve been benefitting from.
Of course you don’t want to wait too long. However, if there is a practical reason for why they are not ready for a relationship even though you are, it could be loving and wise to give them more time.
4. If You Will Look Back with Regret One Day Because You Did Not Give Someone a Little More Time, It Could Be a Wise Decision to Do So
In the last 3 points, I’ve been talking about relationship opportunities that might turn into a real relationship one day. But now we should also talk about those instances where you will never date someone even though you have feelings for them. Will God ever lead you to give this person more time?
Yes. I believe God might lead some of you to give someone a little more time not because this person needs this and will start to like you too one day but rather so you can have peace of mind that you did what you could.
If you know this relationship will never happen, it’s hard to accept, but do it. Move on and let it go. However, if you’re unsure and you are really worried about missing out on something good by moving on too quickly, it’s not the end of the world to just give it a little more time (Proverbs 16:3).
If you do give someone more time, I would consciously choose a wise timeline and then once that deadline passes, I would then move on. I would not wait indefinitely for someone because you might just wait forever with no change.
So even if you are wrong and you and this person never date, giving them a little more time can still be useful for your own heart so you can be absolutely sure you did the right thing once you do realize it’s truly time to move on. By giving it a little more time, you could be avoiding future regrets.
When God introduces you to the one, the time will be right eventually.