For a Christian dating a non practicing Christian it can leave us wondering; What is the next step?
It can be difficult during these times, as we wrestle with our own religious beliefs around what it means to be a good Christian and dating someone who doesn't share the same relationship with God as we do.
As Christians, it is important to understand everybody exercises their Christian faith differently. This essentially means although Christians share the same religion, everybody displays their faith and love for God differently. Although it can be a daunting prospect to start dating a non Christian, you should embrace the opportunity and see where it goes, as long as you are both up front with each other from the get go, you can look to build a loving relationship with that special person who can become your best friend.
It's important to take a step back and put everything into perspective. Just because your partner isn’t necessarily a practising Christian and currently close to the Lord, it doesn’t mean that they aren’t the right fit for you and a relationship with the Lord may develop over time. Remember, your emotional connection, and mutual respect for each other are intrinsic parts of your relationship.
You can also help guide your partner towards God, and gently encourage them towards practising their faith and building a relationship with God allowing them to accept Christ at their own pace.
Chatting with your partner and giving them advice on how you practice your faith, and your relationship with God, helps you articulate your faith in ways which you may not done have before, and thus only serves to strengthen your relationship with God.
Finding new ways to engage your partner with your practices, in a non-traditional way, helps them to feel included in a big part of your life, and encourages them to further explore their belief and new ways in which they can express them.
Organise to catch up with other Christians from the same Church and bring your partner along! Perhaps a relaxed picnic, dinner or games night might be the perfect setting. Including your partner when you catch up with your friends from Church, allows them an amazing insight into your life with God and helps them feel included, appreciated and loved. It may also help them form new friendships and strengthen their relationship with God, or may help them begin their journey to finding God.
You can also explore alternative ways that you can both express your religious feelings together, in ways that suit your belief system. Perhaps you like expressing your feelings through acts such as saying Grace before each meal together, or praying together, whereas they prefer smaller acts of expressing their faith, such as wearing a crucifix or reading the Bible for guidance when they are feeling lost.
Each of these ways is beautiful, and perfect in its own right, and it’s important to have a relationship where all aspects of expression are included. As a Christian you can decide to say Grace at every meal, and read the Bible together each morning, or wear matching Crucifixes, symbolising your love for the Lord and each other.
At the end of the day, you are both disciples of the Lord, and how you express your love and admiration for Him is up to you. However, it is an important part of every Christian relationship to express your faith with each other and learn to find balance and harmony within your relationship. If you support one another, you will grow together and may find that your partner will actively practice their faith in new ways as they move even closer to leading a Christian life centred around God.
God Bless you all,