Maybe some hand holding — but only after you're engaged. And we'd not only held hands before betrothal, we'd actually kissed. So what had started as a quest to honor God in our dating relationship, led only to an overwhelming sense of confusion and guilt (for things we weren't quite sure why we should feel guilty).

i kissed dating goodbye bn-10

My first experience with a Christian dating book was less than positive.

I was in college and at an Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship retreat where the theme of the weekend was relationships.

My then-boyfriend and I wanted to extend the wisdom of the weekend so we bought a book there about dating to read together.

I don't even remember what it was called — something about dating and integrity, I think — but it had a bright green cover so we referred to it as "The Green Book."Our motives were good — and I think the motives of the author of The Green Book were, too. After telling us to view, treat, and honor people of the opposite sex as brothers and sisters in Christ (a paradigm we could buy), The Green Book laid out a plan in which you don't really date, but find a best friend of the opposite sex by hanging out in groups. — one day the guy of this best-friend relationship asks the woman to be his bride and they live happily ever after (that is, after the guy picks the girl up off the floor because she's broadsided by his proposal! According to the book, one-on-one relationships are a no-no, as is any kind of physical contact. )Well, as you can imagine, my then-boyfriend and I already had a one-on-one relationship.

Finally one day when we were at one of those romantic outdoor concert venues having a picnic together, I asked what on earth this relationship was if it wasn't dating.

After some hemming and hawing and at long last some good honest talk about expectations and getting caught up in semantics, we finally came to the conclusion that dating wasn't necessarily the root of all evil, that it could be done in a God-honoring way — and, in fact, that we were pretty much doing that already.

There was a palpable sense of relief after that — at being able to call a spade a spade, at not being paralyzed by "Christian" fears and expectations, and being free to follow God's unique purposes for our relationship instead of a formula.

I know many of you will disagree with me, but I'm not so sure "kissing dating goodbye" is a good idea.

Yes, I know we need to be careful with others' hearts.

I understand it's difficult to remain pure in our sex-saturated society.

And I've witnessed much harm and hurt accomplished in the name of dating.