Every time I write an article or speak about dating, my husband laughs a little and says, “but you only got it right once!” This is true . . . but dating isn’t something you want to get good at practicing. Dating is one of those things you really only want or need to be good at once–with one man. You only need to be good at dating if you’re dating for attention. As I’ve said before, you’re either dating for attention or you’re dating with intention. If you’re dating with the intention of following God’s plan for your life–if you’re dating because you desire to be a wife, meet your husband and be married–then you don’t need to practice dating. Instead, you need to think about yourself as a future wife! Think to yourself, What would I do and how would I handle this if I want to be a wife some day? More importantly, How would God have me approach dating if my purpose was truly to live for him and follow his plan for my life?
If you are thinking of “getting back out there” or if you’ve been “out there” and are ready to approach dating differently, I pray that you are in daily prayer and daily conversation with God about it. When you choose to approach your dating life prayerfully, you ask God in and allow him to lead the show. His plans are ALWAYS better than our own, ladies! Here are six prayers I prayed on a consistent basis when I was dating with intention:
1. Confess your desires: Dear Father in Heaven, I am lonely! I have such a deep, tender desire for a husband, for lifelong companionship and love. You know my heart, my dreams and my desires. God, if your plan for my life includes me being a wife, a wonderful husband and a healthy marriage, then please do not delay. If this is not your plan for me, then please please take this desire from me!
2. Ask for protection: Dear Lord, I am a sinner and because I am lonely–because I have this deep, tender desire–I am likely to make decisions based on needing to fill that desire through attention from men. Please, Lord, let me come to you daily to fill that need so that I am whole in Christ as I go out into this world. Please fill me up today so that I can be fully myself in Christ, filled with your joy and light, so that I might be a witness to others for you. Please fill me up so that I will not need to look elsewhere to fulfill my needs. Protect my heart and guide my thoughts and actions to be in your will today.
3. Request readiness: Oh King of Kings, I know that I am your daughter, a daughter of the One True King! Please let me act like your daughter. Lord, create in me a clean heart and mind and get me ready for the future you have planned for me. God, refine me and show me where you want to clean out the junk from my heart and mind and body. Please give me strength to uphold healthy boundaries in my life. When the time comes, please give me the conviction to make healthy choices with my body, choices that are pleasing to you. Show me where you want me to make changes and help me become the woman you’ve created me to be. Lord, you know I desire to be a wife one day, and you already know who my husband will be! Please help me to be ready, to be the woman you created me to be and the woman who will attract the husband you have planned for me.
4. Declare your trust: Lord, I trust you with my dating life. I trust you with my future marriage. I trust that you have the best for me! I confess that when I don’t trust that you have the best planned for me, I try to take things into my own hands and end up making poor decisions. I compromise when I don’t trust you. Lord, increase my faith! I declare that I trust you and, even if you ask me to walk away from something good, I trust it is because you have something even better.
5. Ask for blessings on your future husband: Lord, thank you that you already know who my husband will be and when I will find him. Thank you that you have a beautiful plan that you will unfold in your time! God, if you have a husband planned for me, then please make him ready. Please grow his faith and leadership abilities. Please prepare his heart, mind, and body so that he is ready to meet me when the time is right. Lord, please give him a desire and love for you, that he would put his relationship with you before his desire for a woman’s attention. Please bless him in his efforts, Lord. Please esteem him and let him feel respected by those around him. Please show him your love today.
6. Pray for wisdom and discernment: God, if this man is the best you have for me and if I am the best you have for him–if he is my future–then please show us the way and remove any roadblocks. If this is not the best you have for us and this is not your plan, then please shut the door quickly. God, if this is not the man you have planned for me, let me walk away with confidence and trust in you!
I will be praying that 2015 is the year when many of the our King’s sweet daughters will stop dating for attention and start dating with intention. May God bless your New Year!
Thank you for writing this. It’s so spot on and needed – for me, too.