I wrote a post a while back about setting boundaries in romantic relationships and what that is all about. Here, I’m referring to dating relationships, or when two people are getting to know each other for the purpose of discovering if they are compatible for marriage.
Now, I want to dive a little deeper into this topic and define some areas where it is important to define these boundaries. Again, I remind you that the setting of boundaries is for the purpose of protecting our hearts and developing healthy, thriving relationships that will always leave both people involved better off (Proverbs 4:23). Ready? Here we go!
Now this boundary seems like it would be obvious, but you’d be surprised how many girls I speak with are unclear on what this means. I mean, is kissing, hugging, or just holding hands allowed?
Well, the Bible is very clear about waiting until marriage to have sex (Hebrews 13:4). That’s one boundary that is black and white. Also, the Bible does state that even looking at another person with lustful thoughts is considered sinful, so that’s pretty clear as well (Matthew 5:28). Then, what about all the other stuff?
This is when we must look inward and examine our own hearts to determine where our intentions lie. This is when we must pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide us (Psalm 26:2).
Some practical ways to guard a relationship and keep physical boundaries could be to set a curfew for dates. Obviously, two people alone in a car after midnight can give off the wrong appearance. Also, limiting dates to public areas can be a great way to keep from unnecessary temptations. Going out on group outings is a great way to not only keep the relationship accountable to others, but also a great way to see how your date interacts with your family and friends.
Now this is one area that not many people speak about. It is important that when one enters into a romantic relationship to allow the relationship to grow in intimacy as it grows in trust. Many of us want to share every single detail of our lives with a new person, but it is important to also understand that the hidden corners of our hearts are reserved for a relationship that has grown over time. Just as a flower grows and blooms, so does love. The key is to create a fertile ground for love to grow through intentional conversations and welcoming wise counsel.
Also, it is important to not allow a relationship to become co-dependent. No person could ever fill our hearts the way Jesus can. Many of us make the mistake of demanding another person to fulfill every single one of our needs. This simply put, is impossible. Only God can fill and heal every single void in our hearts.
This boundary goes hand in hand with emotional boundaries. It is vital to understand that the single most important relationship in a person’s life is the one with Jesus; the lover of our souls. There is no one and nothing that can be more important than him.
This is where many people begin to stumble because romantic feelings can be so strong. These feelings constantly keep that special someone in our minds and we begin to dream about the future, but it is important to keep our hearts in check. Our hearts are like an altar, and we were designed to be worshipers. At the end of the day, our original design will lead us to bow down in worship to someone or something. It is important that through prayer and connection with God we seek to keep God at the center of our hearts.
I hope that I have somehow helped you to understand the deep need for boundaries in our lives. Boundaries are a good thing, but it is important to remember that in guarding our hearts we can’t neglect our need for connection. Being transparent and vulnerable (at the right time) can help deepen intimacy and trust between two people seeking marriage.
Written by Carla Lopez, Cofounder of Empowered Beauty
Our names are Paola and Carla. And yes…we are identical twins! We are pastors, ministers and young women who are absolutely in love with Christ. Our passion is to empower other young women through the message of Jesus Christ to fulfill their live’s purpose.
Although we are young (23 years old if you’re wondering😉) we have been preaching, teaching and serving in ministry for almost ten years. We hope that through our writing you may be encouraged and empowered to step into the calling that God has over YOUR life.
Thanks for reading, sis!
Always praying for you,