By Priskila Dewi Setyawan, Indonesia
The book I Kissed Dating Goodbye discusses biblical perspectives on relationships that honor the Lord. If we adopt a wrong attitude toward relationships, God will not be pleased. Engaging in frivolous and one-off relationships with random people can seem adventurous and maybe even fun to some, but the Bible clearly states the folly of sex before marriage. “For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a person is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God” (Ephesians 5:5 NIV).
The price we have to pay if we engage in open relationships is: to be denied any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
Joshua Harris uses lessons taught in the Word of God to encourage us to commit to having a relationship that builds on mutual trust and understanding, as well as to keep our hearts, emotions, lips, and bodies pure in order to please Christ.
Joshua Harris divides his book into 4 parts:
The first part talks about how we can avoid defective dating and reinforces the idea of commitment in a relationship.
The second section teaches us about the true definition of love and how we can strive to achieve purity in our relationships. He states that in order for healthy relationships to take place, we need to practice purity, patience and commitment, coupled with Christ’s mercy. We should not pursue members of the opposite sex just for fun. Instead, we should have pure intentions when building friendships with them.
Next, he expounds on how we can build a new lifestyle and get back on track with God’s plans for our life.
Lastly, the fourth and final part teaches us how to look ahead in our relationships towards the end goal of marriage and what qualities we should look for in a life partner.
From this book, I was reminded that our Lord is the most significant one in our life. Even when we have a boyfriend or girlfriend, he or she cannot, and should not take the place of God in our hearts. He possesses 100 percent of our heart, mind, and body and they are to be used for His Kingdom’s cause.
I have learned that true love is more beautiful and precious than short-term infatuation and that we should not date carelessly if we are not ready to get married. It is important to guard our hearts against impurity and from disobeying the Lord’s will so as to keep others and ourselves from being hurt.
“Having a girlfriend was no longer my greatest need. Knowing and obeying Him was. I wanted to please Him in my relationships even if it meant looking radical and foolish to other people—even if it meant kissing dating goodbye.” —Joshua Harris
I Kissed Dating Goodbye is useful for anyone who seeks to understand more about glorifying God and on how to love others.