In our fortnightly column ‘Great Sexpectations’ the Woman Alive panel answer your questions on sex, faith and intimacy. Drop us a confidential email on email@example.com and ask us anything. Here, we tackle the tricky topic of dating someone who isn’t a Christian.
Dear Woman Alive panel
I had always planned to date Christians but I recently met someone at my work who has been so kind and attentive (in a way I never get from men in the Church). I agreed to have dinner with him and we’ve now been dating for three months. He takes an interest in my faith and I’ve said it’s important to me, he respects that completely but just doesn’t share my beliefs. He’s agreed to my physical boundaries but said he’s not keen to come to church with me. Should I walk away? I really like him and would be heartbroken to leave, especially when I can’t see any dating prospects with the Christian men in my life.
This is a big concern for many Christian woman, and it’s something we hear a lot of people wrestle with. As the only man on the Woman Alive panel (yes that’s right there is one!) I thought I’d jump in here. Finding someone who you’re attracted to who treats you well is a challenge for anyone and this person does sound incredibly kind.
That said, as I was reading your dilemma, the question that came to my mind was: “What’s most important to you in a relationship?” Is it that your partner loves God or that he love you? In an ideal world it would be both.
“What’s most important to you in a relationship?” Is it that your partner loves God or that he love you?
It also sounds like you have dated Christian men and it didn’t go well. You haven’t said why, but it sounds like you haven’t been treated with the kindness and attentiveness you deserve. While the man you’re now seeing treats you with respect and consideration. It sounds like he also allows you to pursue your relationship with God without making you feel guilty or putting any demands on you, which could compromise your walk with God. Your blessings covers your partner.
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Let’s be frank, these are unique situations, and there’s no one size fits all answer to the question of dating someone who doesn’t share your faith. He may grow to love Jesus in time, but you need to assume that he will never convert. This is one for you to take to God. He knows your heart and your partner’s. Time is the master and God is the master of time. Here are a few verses of scripture that might help you.
“Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives.” 1 Peter 3:1.
“For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy.” 1 Corinthians 7:14.