Red-Flag Love Songs

You’ve been asking about relationships. When a guy is into you, what kind of clues about his character should you be on the lookout for? Today, I’ll share two “dating red flags” deserving more press—and I’ll be taking my examples straight from the pop charts.

#1: Are you his everything?

Just turn on your radio, and you’ll hear it. Lyrics will roll about how some guy loves some girl more than anything else—how she’s his everything. To my ears, he might as well be belting out WARNING! WARNING! EVACUATE THIS RELATIONSHIP IMMEDIATELY!

You don’t want to be a man’s greatest pursuit; you want to join a man in his great pursuit of Christ.

If you’re looking for a boring relationship, a short-term fizzle-out relationship, or an unhealthy, train-wreck relationship, then yes—being a guy’s world is a good idea. Otherwise, not so much.

Sure, it’s appropriate to desire to be treasured. But the alarm bells need to go off loud and clear when a guy makes you his sun and orbits his life around you. That’s not romantic. That’s a worship disorder, and you need to run as fast as you can in the opposite direction. You don’t want to be a man’s greatest pursuit; you want to join a man in his great pursuit of Christ. Matthew 6:33 doesn’t say, “Seek first the guy/girl of your dreams.” It says, “Seek first the kingdom of God.” We’re not the kingdom. We’re not big enough to live for.

The same principle goes for you, too. Are you making deliberate choices to orient your life around Jesus, not the hope of a relationship? Neediness for male attention will not attract a mature Christ-follower. No man is great enough to be your purpose, and a strong man won’t want to be your “everything” any more than you want to be his.

#2: Does he think you’re better than him?

Somehow I can’t believe/ That anything should happen/ I know where I belong/ And nothing’s gonna happen/ Yeah, yeah/ ‘Cause she’s so high . . . High above me . . . / What could a guy like me/ Ever really offer?/ She’s perfect as she can be.

As I was turning the dial on my car radio, I heard a man singing what appeared to be a love song about a girl who was, in his estimation, “like Cleopatra or Joan of Arc.” She was way up there; he was way down here.

Oh boy. Watch out for this guy.

The right guy will admire who God has made you to be, praising Him for the strength he sees in you.

It almost looks like humility mixed with in-loveness and respect—at first. But true humility doesn’t crow “I am so much less than you”; true humility is simply self-forgetful. Jesus is our model of humility. Do you think He considered himself the worst of all people? And sitting on a pedestal is a dangerous place to be found, let me tell you.

You want to marry a partner and a friend, not an adoring puppy. He needs to see you rightly, not an idealized version of you. We all have blind spots and weaknesses. If your guy thinks you’re so high above him, he won’t have much serious interest in seeing you grow. And if he isn’t interested in seeing you grow, you’re not looking at the kind of man you want next to you for the rest of your life. Being challenged is a necessary and good thing.

By “challenged,” I don’t mean your guy should face off with you Victorian dueling style, throwing a glove to the ground and loudly revealing the top five ways he’s seen you sin this past week. Good challenging is gentle, motivated by love and a sincere desire to see you thrive. It isn’t always direct, either; sometimes the greatest challenges come simply by observing someone else’s life. None of that will happen if you’re sitting high above someone.

So if dramatic insecurity and pedestals are red flags, what does a green light look like?

The right guy will admire who God has made you to be, praising Him for the strength he sees in you. He’ll affirm the work of the Spirit in your life. Yes, he’ll accept you as you are. But it won’t stop there, either— he’ll also inspire you. He won’t be intimidated by you, think you’re superior, or want you to plateau in your own development. In fact, he’ll be excited about watching you grow even stronger.

Again, the flip side of this applies to you as well. Do you idealize guys and think they’re “so high above” you? Respect is good; demeaning yourself and elevating others to a superhuman level is unhealthy. Even if a guy you like is significantly more mature than you are, singing about your unworthiness won’t help anyone. Focus on your own growth, not your perception of the gap between you.

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“WARNING! WARNING! EVACUATE THIS RELATIONSHIP IMMEDIATELY!” Relationship red flags to look for today on @lywblog. (Be sure to include a link to today’s post.)

About Author

Lindsey Lee

Lindsey Lee's greatest passion is to see the glory of Christ, cherish Him unreservedly, and assist others in doing the same. She makes her home in Toronto.

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