What if you meet the perfect ANR mate … except they’re not Christian?

Last weekend, we had a birthday party-cum-meet and greet at my new residence.

Within a minute of entering the birthday celebrant’s place, I noticed her, and we were introduced.

She was beautiful. With many features I find attractive in women. Cute facial features. Gracious, with a sense of humor. Tantalizing body, especially relevant parts.

She was very ANR-friendly, and then some. Just the right ethnic mix too, the type with which I’ve historically enjoyed the best chemistry.

When we got to chatting, I quickly noticed she wasn’t saved. Nothing particularly nefarious about her character, just every now and then, speech patterns that showed signs consistent with an unregenerate heart.

I could feel myself slipping into dangerous territory. Particularly troubling considering how I foolishly let a season of gross idolatry get the best of me recently.

My flesh is dying to get her perspective on Couples Nursing, but my spirit knows it’ll be out of line and wrong. This is all the more compounded by the fact that years ago, I blogged on this very topic. I singled this particular situation out as that which should cause us to “turn and run.” So what’s a believer to do?

Within minutes, God gave me peace on this matter on Tuesday.

He showed me two resolutions:

1. Pursue a gospel friendship with her, leaving the results to God.

Always keep in mind that her salvation is first for God’s glory and good pleasure, secondly to benefit her, and finally for her loved ones and sphere of influence. I’m not the chief beneficiary.

Missionary dating is to be thoroughly frowned upon. But in recent years as I’ve matured in Christ, I now realize that going on platonic dates with nonbelievers isn’t always wrong, depending on the people involved and circumstances. Yes, it can be highly dangerous, and caution is appropriate. But a mature, self-controlled and emotionally guarded Christian might be able to handle “controlled” missionary dating, with an unshakable understanding of the pecking order of salvation just discussed. In other words, don’t date to save. If you must date, date strictly as a friend in Christ. Iff God chooses to save, only then consider being more than friends.

2. If you must discuss anything close to CN, do it in such a way that your conversation points the nonbeliever more to Jesus than to ANR.

Discerning the nonsexual core ANR traits, i.e. that the person is soft, affectionate, tactile, nurturing, and that they place a premium on intimacy, can be done with a nonbeliever without sinning.

But the circumstances under which one should mention Couples Nursing by name to a non-Christian or a Christian one with whom they haven’t established mutual trust, and especially its erotic aspects, should be one entailing utmost caution, preferably in a counseling context, and must be Christ-saturated.

If you meet an “ideal” unbelieving potential spouse, keep your guard up as always, but there might be no harm in keeping them in mind, praying for them and maintaining a gospel-saturated, controlled friendship, where the direction of influence goes from you to them.

 

2 Corinthians 6:14 New King James Version (NKJV):

Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?

Mark 2 (NIV):

15 While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. 16 When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

17 On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

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