Over the last couple of weeks we have explored ways that singles can begin preparing themselves spiritually and financial before saying “I do.” In our third and final part of this series we will highlight the need for singles to prepare themselves relationally.
In Judges 14-15 we see what can happen when people move on without having real closure to their previous relationship. If you don’t tie up your loose ends, you are going to mess up a blessing. Many people jump to the next relationship too fast. They are still emotionally tied to the person they were dating. In some cases one person thinks the relationship is over, while the other person is thinking of a future together. Perhaps someone is holding out hope that he will get back with ex. However he still wants to keep his options open. So he dates although he is really emotionally unavailable. Remember: a double-minded person is unstable (James 1:8).
Perhaps you and your ex have decided, “Let’s just be friends.” The reality, however, is that you can’t go from having been emotionally tied to someone and in love one week and then the next week you are just friends. Typically, somebody is going to try to be more than just friends. And even if you all can be friends, that isn’t going to sit too well with any new people with whom you seek to have a relationship.
In addition to tying up your loose ends, seek to improve your relationship skills. Work on your communication skills, including your listening skills. Work on expressing your feelings, thoughts and emotions in healthy and productive ways. Avoid shutting down. Learn from those who have been successful in their relationships, and learn from your own mistakes. Take a look back on your relationships and evaluate them to see what mistakes you should avoid and what things you should continue to do. Be honest enough with yourself to know what role you played in the failure of the relationship. Are you possessive, jealous, or looking in the wrong place for a potential mate? Are your expectations realistic or naively idealistic? Do you have a history of getting sexually involved with the people you date? If so, how realistic is it to expect God to bless a relationship when we fail to obey His commands for that relationship? These are just some of the areas in which singles should examine readiness for a relationship. What areas would you add? Where are your opportunities for growth?
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