Written by Abigail Morgan of Grand Bay Westfield, NB

My parents have reminded me since I was a young girl that they often pray for the man I will end up with. I never truly understood why they did this.

I thought it was my decision who I dated, married or if I decided to stay single. I dated who I wanted and I dated too young, but I was naïve. It seemed like fun and games, spending time with my boyfriend, going out to eat, having double dates, texting all day long.

You can be blinded by the fun and not realize the hole you’re slowly digging yourself into. It could be months before you find out this person is not a believer. And then what happens?

Your first thought may be, like me, “I am a strong believer and will not let the opinions of my significant other diminish my beliefs.” Unfortunately, no matter how strong your faith may be, the Bible says very clearly in 1 Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.’”

In other cases, people believe they can do “missionary dating” which is exactly what it sounds like. Date someone who is not of your belief system, but believe you can change that. Sometimes this interaction does work, and I think that would be amazing to fall in love with someone while teaching them to also love Jesus. But I believe that loving Jesus comes first, and the Apostle Paul writes that we must not be “unequally yoked” with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14).

God did not create dating to fill a missing gap in your life. He doesn’t want you to abuse the company of another to reduce your loneliness. God wants us to find an equal match and use it to His benefit.

If you are feeling lonely, seek Him. If you are tired, seek Him. If you are weary, fearful, sad, or hurt, seek Him! Your partner should not replace your love or desire for God. He has a plan for all of us. Do not grow weary, continue to seek Him and trust in His plans for you. God has greater things in line for your life than you can even imagine.

You may be thinking I’m jumping the gun here. But if you can’t see yourself marrying your partner in the slightest, then you’re in the wrong place. You are setting your heart up to be hurt or you’re intentionally hurting another.