Saturday, June 13, 2009

Courtship thoughts

Last night while we had a group of friends over we had a discussion on the topic of courtship, so I thought I would add to my previous post with some more thoughts on this subject.

My dad defines courtship as: the process by which a couple seeks to determine their readiness for marriage and seeks to discern God’s will for a covenant marriage that will be God honoring.

An important distinction in courtship from dating is that courtship is for those who are ready for marriage. It is not a romantic thrill-ride or for someone who simply desires a relationship, but for a man and a woman who desire to honor the Lord by exhibiting a godly relationship without emotional attachments before they make a lifelong commitment. In this way you experience the great blessing of saving all feelings and expressions of feelings until you are married.

There are also many different ways that families choose to court, and that must be determined by each family. I believe however, that the general vision is that instead of just getting married to be married that we actively prepare for marriage now and when God brings us the right person we commit to them permanently. Remember, the person you choose to marry is who you will live with the rest of your life, so you don’t want to make a wrong decision that could be avoided!

So what are the requirements of courtship? Mr. Bill Gothard explains that you must have:
• A life purpose bigger than marriage
• A “one-man, one-woman” commitment
• A restraint of affection
• A loyalty to parents
• An ability to deal with infatuations
• A readiness for marriage responsibilities

Girls, one thing you must understand is that you must marry a man who you can joyfully submit to and follow his vision. So what is your vision for life? What do you sense the Lord wants for your life? Begin to think and pray through these questions even now. In marriage you (as girls) are to complete your husband and help him further his vision in greater ways than he could do alone, ultimately bringing all glory to God.

As an end note, I must clarify that while I highly esteem courtship as the biblical process before you marry, I do not declare it to be a perfect process in any way. In our world of sin there is nothing perfect. You cannot trust that because you choose the process of courtship that you will have a great marriage or a wonderful spouse. But I believe courtship is the best decision because the parents are actively involved in determining whether the two of you are compatible in crucial areas so that your marriage can be to the glory of God alone!


Joshua said...

Great post Allison! Last night's conversation was very uplifting and it's good to see your thoughts and your perspective. Something similar is coming soon on my blog...*hint, hint* ;-)

Caleb said...

Excellent thoughts, Allison. Courtship is not only a way by which to find a spouse, but a way to do so in a pure and God-honoring way.

Maiden of Purity said...

Sounds like a great discussion to have with like-minded friends. We have discussed this before over email, and we have the same beliefs on this topic. Courtship is so much more beautiful and yet the way it is safely played, is what makes it so elegant! I'm glad that my parents have introduced courtship to my siblings and I as young children. I wish so many others would turn from the dating world, and do it God's way!


Michelle said...

Thanks for this post, Allison! Great thoughts! I agree....and also, having 3 sisters, I can definitely say each courtship is somewhat different in each case, but the main vision for a courtship is like your dad said: "the process by which a couple seeks to determine their readiness for marriage and seeks to discern God's will for a covenant marriage that will be God honoring."

I don't have time now to read your previous post you wrote on courtship, but I hope to soon.


Naomi said...

Hi! I just found your blog and was very refreshed by your post! I know so many people that have no problem defrauding others because they don't find courtship beautiful, or they see it as a conviction for some, and not a mandate for all (believers). It is awesome how every love story is unique, though! What a wonderful place to be, knowing that the Author has already written mine! Thanks again for your post!
In Christ Alone,
Naomi Christiana

P.S. Do you mind if I copy your Dad's definition of courtship to keep as a quote?

Allison said...

Thanks to each one of you for taking the time to comment on my blog. One of the biggest blessings to me is seeing YOUR thoughts, insights and comments and hearing how the Lord is working in you!

No, I don't mind at all! I thought about writing my "definition" of courtship, but his was much better! ;) Thanks for visiting my blog!

Naomi said...

Hey again,
I just wanted to tell you that your comment was so encouraging to me! It sounds like we have so much in common; I too have come to love to wear skirts pretty much all of the time, and I hadn't noticed that your Daddy was a pastor. That is SOOO neat!!! I love finding other Godly young women who share many of the convictions and visions that I, and my family do. You have truly been a blessing from the Lord to me in just the short time that I have "known" you ;)
I hope to hear from you more often!
In Christ Alone,

Kristen said...

I really enjoyed reading your thoughts and how you presented courtship in this post. I think you hit the nail on the head! =)