In my last blog post, I shared my experience about dating a non-believer and how I thought our relationship would succeed despite us having different spiritual beliefs. When you’re dating someone, you want to be on the same page about everything else, right? So why should it be any different for spiritual beliefs?
Being unequally yoked DOES NOT work!
- You end up compromising your beliefs and values: you used to attend Bible study every Tuesday but now that you’re seeing Tyrone, you’ve stopped going because he’s always planning a special date…but you promise to attend next week, right? You tell Tyrone that you want to have sex when you’re married, but he says he can’t wait that long. In order to not be a total prude (plus you’re not even sure if you can wait that long), you try other things like grinding, oral sex, etc. in the heat of the moment. Although these actions are not intercourse, they’re still sexual and they’ll increase your desire for sex. If you really want to wait, stick to your decision and don’t put yourself in compromising situations. Usually when you take time and get to know someone, his/her true colors emerge and you’ll be glad you didn’t take things further.
- Unable to share important aspects of your life: you love and value your relationship with God but when you try to talk to Tyrone about Him, Tyrone isn’t interested. You don’t want to force your beliefs on him so you keep quiet. When you’re dating/in a relationship, you should be able to share everything that’s important to you. I remember reading comments online from women who married nonbelievers—these women stated that they felt lonely because they felt like they couldn’t discuss God with their mate. Been there, done that, and took the class. Imagine not being able to share how God answered your prayer, revealed information to you, or protected you from a certain situation. To nonbelievers, your experiences will not make sense to them and they may even try to convince you that your experiences only occurred because of logic and coincidence. Only YOU know what God has done in your life, so you definitely want to date/have a relationship with someone who has that same understanding. It’s bad enough when Christians become fearful and doubtful of God’s abilities because of our own fears and lack of control and it definitely won’t be helpful if your nonbelieving partner feeds you more doubt.
- You hope that the other person will change: Even though Tyrone doesn’t have a relationship with God, you still find him desirable and don’t want to lose him. You hope and pray that God will knock some sense into him so you can be together. I came across 1 Corinthians 7:13, which states: “And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him.” This had to be a good sign, right? I actually thought that this verse was approving unequally yoked marriages, so there was no need to end my relationship. Wrong! God explicitly states in His word to not be unequally yoked with nonbelievers because we have nothing in common (2 Corinthians 6:14); we tend to become influenced by those who are close to us and start adapting their negative qualities and habits. God can change people but it has to be for His glory; He’s the only one who has the power to change a person. People who sincerely want to change need to come to God and repent for their actions. It doesn’t hurt to pray for them, but it’s also best to walk away from the situation as well. Otherwise you might look like this:
I never understood what unequally yoked meant until I experienced it in my last relationship; it’s something that I don’t wish to experience ever again. Many women (myself included) tend to believe that good men are so scarce that we have to lower our standards. Sometimes men and women don’t know what they really want (or look for) when dating so they play it by ear: “She drinks but she’s really smart and funny…but I hate that she always smells like vodka! Maybe I can overlook that…after all, she can still function!”
It’s time to let God choose our mates. He knows what we truly need; the superficial things that some of us want in a spouse (six pack abs, money, flashy cars, etc.) will not help or satisfy us. Just because a person has all of those things doesn’t mean that he/she will know how to treat you. God will not put you with someone who will hurt you or disrespect you; He will not put you with someone else’s husband or wife! Waiting can be a frustrating process but it can refine you and protect you in the end. When God shows that you are valuable and worthy, you will refuse to settle for less.