Courtship Now: At what age should one be dating?

Common Dating Rules Parents Set for Christian Teens

at what age should a christian start dating

Not to mention the heartache of being rejected or dumped. As a result many teenagers go from boy to boy looking for something that only Christ can give. Dear Kim, Thank you for your excellent question and for your patience in waiting for my response! So many Christian teenagers get caught up in the idolatry of the culture and begin worshiping the idol of romance. As a youth pastor, I get a front row seat to the morally murky waters of teenage dating. For the Christian teenager this whole business of dating can be very distracting. Teenage dating is unwise because it can deceive you to bending knee to cupid instead of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Popular in the Community

Often steady dating happens because a young man and woman are attracted to each other, they start to date and then they just keep it going. Just look at the words used to describe affection between two young people: Donna Thomas-Rodgers, PhD, suggests allowing teens to go to group dances and supervised events at 14, on group dates at 15, and on individual dates at I watch them as they gossip about who is dating who. When is an acceptable age to start dating?

The answer depends on a variety of factors, including personality and maturity level. For one, group dating is more popular than ever not to be confused with double dating, this is when girls and boys hang out en masse, usually at a mall or a restaurant. As a result, fewer boys are actually asking girls out on one-on-one dates.

All but gone are the days when an invite to a movie came by way of a phone call or a shy, in-person meeting. These days girls and boys are more likely to ask each other out via text or direct messages on social media. But while the culture of teen dating has evolved, has the age at which it starts changed, and when exactly is the best time? What the research says.

On average, kids begin group dating at and-a-half for girls and and-a-half for boys, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. By the time they hit 15, most begin pairing up. I strongly encourage teenagers to reserve dating for a time in their life until they are ready to consider marriage. At that time, only consider dating a person whom you would consider marrying. It just means — be fussy!

God has placed in you certain desires that will help lead you to the right person whom He has chosen for you. If you go out on one or two dates with someone and you can see that there really is nothing there — step back. Maybe you are just supposed to be friends. Or, maybe romance will develop at a later time in life — even if you had thought the time was now.

When you begin dating, date without permanent commitment attached to it. Go out and enjoy an evening together. But when you are ready to take a relationship with someone to the next level — do it right. Enter into a formal courtship. Courtship is a time for discerning whether or not God is calling you to marriage with each other.

Courtship sets guidelines and limitations. Courtship gives you a framework to live out a pure and holy romance. It helps you to keep your head and your heart in line with each other. It keeps a relationship honest. Often steady dating happens because a young man and woman are attracted to each other, they start to date and then they just keep it going. It becomes habit to be with each other and after awhile they realize they are dating steady — exclusive of all others.

Next thing they know they are talking marriage. The problem with this is the mentality with which we approach dating, versus courtship. You might find yourself willing to date anyone you are attracted to, even someone you would never consider marrying. But after dating for a while, you might actually entertain the idea of marriage — with a person whom you would never have considered marriage with in the first place.

The relationship has just become a habit — good, bad or otherwise. Sometimes this dating approach works out just fine. We all know people who have good marriages that started this way.

But sometimes it does not work out fine at all for a couple! When a couple decides to court, they know the stakes are higher! You would never enter into a courtship with someone whom you would not consider marrying! So, right there, you are already being more open and honest. If he does possess the qualities you are seeking in a husband, then you are already off to a good start in this relationship.

You turn to family and friends for input. And through prayerful discernment you keep the balance between the head and the heart: If you decide not to marry each other, then you can call off the courtship and move on.

And because you had set guidelines for yourselves in terms of physical and emotional intimacy, you can walk away without regrets. I hope you can see how the model of courtship is an ideal way for preparing a couple for an exciting, wonderful and lasting marriage. I hope that you can also see how dating, when you are not ready to consider marriage, has no place in this picture.

I encourage you to commit yourself to courtship in your life. Set your goals high. And keep your ideals ideal!!! Perhaps, through your example of Christian living, you can draw them closer to Christ and to a life of purity! You are called to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world.

Enjoy life and live it to the full! If you keep these ideals and live them out — your life will give glory to God and you will experience the incomparable joys of what only God knows He has in store for you! What should I do if I'm crushing on someone who isn't a Christian? Is it OK for a couple to live together before marriage? Should I be looking for a future spouse? How can I stop being boy crazy?

What if I fall in love with the wrong person? How can I satisfy sexual desires before marriage? Are soul mates for real?

Why don't boys like me? What are valid reasons for breaking up? Catiana Nak Kheiyn Cat is the web producer and editor of teens. All comments get moderated, so yours will show up as "awaiting moderation" every time. Jerks will be banned. Not sorry about that.

Imsges: at what age should a christian start dating

at what age should a christian start dating

This will probably upset a few people, but my hot tip is that you shouldn't start dating until you've at least left high school, and I have four reasons for taking this line Many Christian teenagers are known more for who they date than for their love for Jesus. They should do all they can to experience God-glorifying, dynamic, exciting romance!

at what age should a christian start dating

As a Christian he knows he is supposed to be practicing chastity, but he too begins looking for how far he can go to get some degree of satisfaction. So what are you wanting for yourself in life?

at what age should a christian start dating

But it requires a great deal of self-discipline and maturity. You turn to family and friends for input. Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. If you see schoolwork start to suffer and friendships fall by the wayside, it is reasonable to restrict the number of times Romeo and Juliet can rendezvous during the school week. The Gift of Your Singleness: What chrisrian the purpose of dating? Please do not at what age should a christian start dating this field.