Wait for the Man Who Preaches the Gospel to You

Christian Dating: Wait For The Man Who Preaches You The Gospel

I wish I could go back to when I was dating and just scream. Scream at myself for not seeing how detrimental it was to be dating a man who wasn’t invested in the Lord, and his goal was not to lead or protect me, but to selfishly get what he came for, whatever that may have been, and then leave.

Ladies, I’m going to say this as bluntly as I can: if the man you are dating is not a Christian, he is not the man for you.

Trust me, I get it. I’ve made up these excuses numerous times to why I should keep dating guys who were not leading me in the right direction.

“He says He’s a Christian.”

“He has a favorite Bible verse.”

“He goes to church.”

I would compromise my beliefs in order to have a temporary comfort. My flesh was saying, “This guy is showing interest in you… What’s dating him going to hurt?” I got wrapped up in relationships and feelings when I knew the end of the road was near, and there was no commitment heading toward marriage. I may have thought I “loved” them, but the reality is, my heart was in the wrong place. You cannot know love without knowing Christ. So, ladies, let me say this: if he says he loves you, but he doesn’t know Christ, if Christ is not his first love, then he is deceiving you. It might be a worldly love, but it will never compare to Christ’s love, which is given to us through Him and only Him.

“But I’m so comfortable when I’m with him.”

“He makes me laugh, and we have a good time when we are together.”

“He makes me so happy.”

Those are all great things, and they definitely come along with loving someone. But I can guarantee you will find all of those things with about 1,000 other people in this world. That might be love on the world’s standards, but not on Christ’s standards. Because in a few weeks, months, and years after you’ve been married, there will be times when he doesn’t make you happy, when you don’t really want to be around him, and when your days are long and you just feel like giving up. What then? You have to choose to love him. Choose to choose him. Put his needs above your own, and ultimately preach each other the Gospel daily. Your ultimate love is Jesus, not your boyfriend or husband. They need to be there to constantly keep pointing you back to Jesus.

I remember sitting down with my now husband, Taylor, while we were dating and having to tell him all the sins of my past. I felt ashamed, guilty, and undeserving of Taylor’s love let alone God’s love. I remember tears streaming down my face as I asked for his forgiveness. I expected him to flee immediately–break up with me right then and there because he didn’t want to be with someone with so much baggage. I’ll never forget the way he reacted. He showed me grace. The grace I still don’t deserve–that I am a new creation in Christ, and God remembers my sins no more (2 Corinthians 5:17-21). He showed me I am indeed a wretched sinner, but because of Jesus I am free from bondage. It was that moment I knew I was going to marry Taylor.

Marriage represents Christ and His church. The unconditional love. The devotion. The adoration. The sacrifice. The joining together. It represents how much Jesus Christ loves us: His body, His church, His bride.

When two sinners come together, the Gospel is displayed. Being married myself, I continue to notice how marriage reveals your sins. My husband has to forgive me daily for sinning against him and ultimately being selfish. Marriage is hard enough with a believer who grasps the Gospel, but bring an unbeliever into that, and it gets messy.

When dating your possible future spouse, you need to be constantly asking yourself these intentional questions: does he actually love God more than you? Is God’s Word his absolute authority? Is he actively a part of a Bible-believing church? Is he merely respecting your purity, or is he protecting your purity? Is he leading you closer to God? If you say yes, how? Do you see him as the father to your future children? Is he going to lead, protect, and provide for you, spiritually and physically?

Being intentional in dating relationships will help with unwanted heartbreak. It will keep you out of situations that are only meant for your husband.

Please don’t settle. Wait for the man who preaches you the Gospel and loves you like Christ loves His church.

Grace & Peace,

Raegan Thornhill


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  1. What does this look like lived out? Is he merely respecting your purity, or is he protecting your purity?

    1. I would say respecting your purity is just the surface. He doesn’t necessarily agree with it, but he doesn’t pressure you. Protecting your purity would take it a step further–he shares your values and boundaries, not just compromises it for your sake.

  2. I teach the men and women in our congregation that a Christian man should protect the honor of a Christian woman, and if he is dating a non-believer, he should show her Christ’s love and protect her honor as well. If a man professes to be a Christian, and he wants you to shack up up with him and have sex with him before marriage, he is not who he claim to be!

    1. Completely agree! We have to use our discernment in those situations. It also helps when those around you keep you accountable in your relationship. Thank you for the input! God bless.

  3. I would like to add something if I may. There are men out there that are wolves in sheep’s clothing. Men who will do and and say anything…even try to convince that they are a Christian. In every interaction, pray that God guides you.

  4. I would also add that even if the person is saved, if you discover that he is not striving hard for Christ, walk away.

  5. Wow!! Wow!! Wow!! Exactly what I needed at the exact right time! Going to share with my kids. Thank you so much Reagan!! God richly bless you!

  6. Thank you for the encouragement, you are a very talented writer and it is clear that God has gifted you with such a voice.
    However, I also want to tell you that I am not waiting. I am not waiting for a man. God’s promises are vast, strong, and good, but God doesn’t promise us a husband. I no longer want to have a posture of waiting on the man God has for me. For all I know, a husband is not in his plan for me. Of course, if a husband is in His plan, He has a wonderful, Christ-centered man for me. I do not know that for sure, however, so I will not wait. I will only turn my eyes to the Lord. And yes, I understand this is not what you meant. But as a young woman, I know that using language like “true love waits” and “waiting on the one God has for you” can be harmful for young women.
    I am thankful for the truth you have spoken, as someone who has been hurt by bad dating relationships. God is sovereign through it all.

    1. Alyssa, something you said reminded me of what the Apostle Paul taught in the letters he wrote. He urged those that were single to not look for a mate unless they couldn’t contain their sexual desires. He wished that all people could be like him (single and single minded) but knew that wouldn’t happen. I am becoming more aware of the fact that singleness is a gift and should be taught as well as waiting for the right husband or wife.

    2. Alyssa, I couldn’t have said it better myself. “The one” is definitely something we need to be careful with considering not everyone is called to marriage. Some people will be gifted with singleness, and that too can be used for God’s glory. I pray we all will seek Him first and look to Him for satisfaction! Thank you for your input… God bless!

    3. Alyssa, I wholeheartedly agree with you. The way I picture marriage (or meeting “the one” is that I am walking my road with the Lord and he is walking his road with the Lord and at one point our roads will meet and we will keep walking TOGETHER on the road with the Lord. “Waiting for the one” always makes me think of someone in a bus stop waiting their ride. 🙂

  7. This is the very BEST article I have EVER read in my 59 years of life and 24 years of becoming a born-again Christian! Why we have to be so bull-headed about our will, I do not know if I will EVER understand! When life would be so wonderful and blessed if we’d only, from the very beginning, do God’s will in ALL things! I am forever thankful to our Lord God for His patience in watching us trip over our wills to learn that in DOING His will is the far better way and brings the life abundantly that Jesus promised us! Thank you, again, for bringing this to our remembrance through the Holy Spirit!!

  8. This was a great read. “Is he merely respecting your purity, or is he protecting your purity? ” you were so spot on with this statement.

  9. Thank you Reagan, this is so clear and strong. I would go even farther and say, that as a father of a 25 year old single woman, I’d be looking for the man who comes for my daughter to be living what he says he believes.

    Not until you see his character in operation under pressure do you know what you’ve got.

    This article is so inspiring, thanks!

  10. Thanks Raegan, I enjoyed it going through and I m blessd, I m not ashamed to say that I m waitng fr a man from God who protects and honours my purity and moreover leads me to Christ Love.. thank you se very much for writing it.. God bless u more..

  11. Amen. May us Christian men endeavor and achieve to be the good Godly men that can love our girlfriends and wives like Christ loved the church. And ladies, strive to be the women those men want. As a man I would tell the ladies, this, please date AT LEAST through the seasons of life (one year). See him in spring, summer, winter, and fall. Anyone can fool anyone for a period of time. A full year, with the changes it brings, should allow you to see the real person.

  12. I balled for a solid 45 minutes after reading this. It was exactly what I needed to hear in that exact moment. Thank you for this gospel truth

  13. I am curious: did your husband reciprocate your incredible giving when dating i.e. lay out his sins of the past and beg for forgiveness?

  14. This is a disgusting article. Young women do need a man to “lead and protect” them. “If he is not a Christian he is not the man for you”… way to discriminate against religions that don’t match your own. I’m horrified you’re sending this message to women.

  15. I have recently ended a very long and very serious unequally yolked relationship. It’s been a gut feeling (holy spirit) for some time. And now I’m gone, litterally moved 2500 miles away and living alone. My heart aches and is so bitter. Reading this encourages me that I did what’s right even though all I feel is broken and wanting to be back together.

    1. Wow, that is really hard. I’m sorry you are going through that! It definitely takes a lot of courage to break something off that you were invested in. What helps me is to cling to Christ–stay in His Word and cling to the promises he has for you! The Gospel is always enough. God bless you!

  16. This is the perfect blog for anyone who would like to find
    out about this topic. You know so much its almost tough to argue with you (not that I actually would want
    toHaHa). You definitely put a fresh spin on a subject that has been written about for a long time.
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  17. Good website! I really love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I’m wondering how I could be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS which must do the trick! Have a great day!

  18. Raegan, I wish you could talk to my daughter. She is engaged to a boy, who does not love Christ/God and being in love with Christ/God is not his top priority. I read your article and sobbed. This is exactly what my daughter says. Boy, I wish you could help her out.

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  20. Hi! I love your article and really needed it. My boyfriend and I are not very close to God right now and I’ve been working to grow closer to Him again and my boyfriend tells me he is too. However I feel like I need a leader like you talked about and I don’t think he’s in a place to do that. What do I do?

    1. Hey Danielle! Thanks for commenting. It’s hard for me to give advice when I don’t know your whole situation, but from experience the first step would be getting plugged into a Bible-believing church to keep you and your boyfriend accountable. Look at your relationship, and if there’s any open rebellious sin (premarital sex, etc.) then you need to address it ASAP and end it ASAP. Find a pastor you trust and get counseling. 🙂 Hope it all gets better! Much love, Raegan

  21. Wonderful needed and a so very true article. I am so very blessed to be married to a man for 53 years who dearly loved the Lord before he loved me. And I am and will always be his second love– the Lord is and has always been first in his life. We have had a great marriage and we both serve the Lord. He has been a minister for 55 years and I have been honored to stand beside him as the ministers wife. Our journey together has been blessed by the Lord in many many ways in both good times and bad times. I would like to have this article sent to my email address so I can share it with so many others who I want to hear your message. Thanks.

  22. Thank you for sharing! I truly believe this because now I am trying to cultivate a marriage focused on Jesus and some days I just want it(my marriage) to end, which is the enemy. I think what is most important, when looking back, is for women to really see what a man is filling himself up with. If you never see a bible laying around his dorm room, apartment, table, etc… then you need to leave the relationship because it means it’s an inactive walk with the Lord. A bible that is messy with highlights and ripped pages is what counts. I have a husband who fills up with jokes way more often then needed and I see sometimes my marriage as being a joke. I didn’t take Christianity serious enough, and was just an attendee when I met him, so women be in the word, because you will be a light to the men around you as well. It’s the best protection, and the hardest to submit to some days because women, we love attention!

  23. I don’t believe in marriage anymore. Tried it 3 times…all times the men were in church (2 of them still are). No pre-marital sex with the first one…he turned out to be gay. Second one ended with me in a domestic violence shelter. Third one snuck into my purse one night, took all of my bank cards, and drained all of my accounts. I was the only one employed and work was 50 miles away. He did this 1 week before payday. The police said it was a civil matter because we were married. Had we been “shacking up” it would have been a criminal matter.

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