A lovely fifteen-year-old friend of mine recently asked me, “Is there a godly way to like a guy?”
What a great question! This smart girl is thinking through her decisions and not just following wherever her emotions lead her. I love that.
Her question got me thinking. There are three questions I would ask myself before I even decided to like a guy. That’s right. I used the word “decided.”
We make a decision to like someone; it doesn’t just happen to us. “Liking” someone is different than noticing he’s cute. There are plenty of cute guys in the world, and we can’t help noticing their cuteness—I’ll give you that. Noticing that a guy is cute or smart or funny (or whatever it is that gives you chill bumps) is not the same thing as setting your affections on him.
Before you write your first name with his last name in purple ink or imagine how your kids would look with his eyes, think it through! Our thoughts are where matters of the heart begin. That Bible puts that this way,
“Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life” (Prov. 4:23).
So before your thoughts run away from you and you find yourself in the deep end of a heartache, ask yourself these three things:
1. Would it be wise to enter into any romantic relationship right now?
Am I old enough?
Do my parents approve and give me their blessing? (That was three questions, but who’s counting?)
If the answer is, “No, it wouldn’t be wise right now,” then don’t even go there in your mind. Instead, invest the time and energy you would have spent dreaming about “the guy” into something else that will be an investment in your future. Spend time in the Word, get ahead in that math class, practice your guitar, help your folks around the house, invest in your friendships, etc. The possibilities are endless.
2. Does this guy also have a romantic interest in me?
This may be the number one heart crusher I’ve seen—giving your heart to a guy who doesn’t feel the same way about you. Has he expressed his interest in you in a clear way? I know this can be tricky to discern sometimes, but I’m a firm believer that if you’re in a position in your life to be in a relationship, it’s up to the guy to make his intentions about you clear. If the guy isn’t interested, it doesn’t mean you’re uninteresting! It just means God hasn’t turned his heart toward you.
Don’t set your romantic affections on someone who doesn’t feel the same way about you. Don’t do it. (Are you getting ready to tell me how that could change? How he’ll see the light if you try hard enough? How you’re sure you can get through to him? I’m putting a gentle finger over your lips right now to shush you.) Don’t do it. Just don’t.
3. Is he a follower of Christ, too?
Give your heart to someone who is united with Christ. A person’s faith or lack of faith is not an indicator of his or her value or importance or worth. Some of the most amazing people I know are people who don’t share my faith. We’re all made in the image of God, and God’s fingerprints on us are spectacular. However, if you link your heart to someone who isn’t following Christ, and you want to follow Christ, does that make sense? Will your commitment to that person lead you toward Jesus, or will you find your heart divided?
Finally sisters, as you’re thinking through these matters of the heart, I encourage you to once again, moment by moment, turn your heart over completely to the One who loved you so completely that He gave His life for you.
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal. 2:20).
We don’t follow Jesus because He promised us a designer life. We follow Jesus because He is our very life. He’s not an added ingredient; we are hidden in Him. We belong to God because of Him. His death gave us life.
If we believe that, can’t we trust Him to handle our love life? What do you think?