Author Jonathan Pokluda confronts two myths that prevent men and women alike from making the most of their single and dating years.
First is that being single is merely a waiting period for something better. The truth is that singleness is not a problem to be fixed; it’s a gift to be used to live life more fully.
Jonathan tells Christian singles, “You will never be more uninhibited, more available, and more ready to serve God than you are right now as a single person. You’ll never have more time or fewer responsibilities. You’ll never have more freedom or a greater opportunity to take chances and risk something for the gospel.”
The second myth is that marriage isn’t a worthwhile endeavor. According to an April 2021 study by the Institute for Family Studies, 47% of Evangelical Protestants between the ages of 15 and 22 said they saw nothing wrong with living together with someone before marriage. Among Evangelicals who already live together, only 49% go on to marriage.
Jonathan recommends that singles treat dating like a bridge that leads to a specific destination: marriage. Instead of drifting along and expecting God to reveal your “soulmate” to you, focus on making wise, godly choices. Don’t pursue a dating relationship that isn’t moving toward marriage. Couples who want to date should be clear about their intentions and interests and avoid ambiguity about whether or not they want the relationship to continue.
God’s desire for every single is to maximize your “now” while you anticipate your “later.”
Jonathan Pokluda, along with Lisa Anderson, our Director of Young Adults and our Boundless ministry for singles, are our guests on our Focus on the Family Broadcast “Dating Tips for Today’s Singles.” They offer pointers for dating well and reminds Christian singles of their value to God’s family.
Conventional wisdom emphasizes finding a mate with whom you share common interests. Jonathan encourages singles to focus on five essential character qualities, reflected in the acronym CROSS:
- C – Controlled: While we all sin, is a person marked by self-control?
- R – Responsible: Marriage is hard work, so is the person you’re dating willing to work?
- O – Obedient: Do they listen to wise counsel and are they teachable?
- S – Serving: Are there signs of service in their life?
- S – Steady: Do they have a good reputation among godly friends and peers?
Jonathan Pokluda’s book Outdated: Find Love That Lasts When Dating has Changed is available for a gift of any amount. Visit our website for more information.