One of my friends called me up and said “You know Pete and I have been dating for 3 years. He says he’s happy but he won’t marry me. He’s a godly man but he keeps saying it’s not the right time yet. What do I do?”. From my observations, I already knew the answer but I had to figure out how to tell her in a way that she would accept.
Letting Go of a Godly Man
It’s never easy letting go of someone you’ve invested so much time and energy in. Letting go of someone who isn’t a complete jerk can be one of the hardest things you’ll have to do in your life, but it’s the right thing to do. The reason being is because if you keep holding on to someone who isn’t right for you then you’re really blocking God’s blessing for you.
Will God Tell Me to Break Up With My Boyfriend?
It can be difficult to know when to let go of a relationship. First and foremost God is in control of everything including our relationships. That means it’s time to let go when God tells you it’s time to move on. Here are some solid signs God is telling you to let go of your relationship.
1. He Won’t Marry You
As Christians, the ultimate goal of any romantic relationship should be marriage. I’m not a fan of strict timelines but more often than not after a year of dating, you both should know whether or not marriage is in your futures.
If you’ve been dating a guy more than a year or longer and he won’t marry you and is constantly making excuses then it’s a sign that he thinks he can do better and is holding out for another girl to come into his life.
Maybe he keeps telling you that he wants to wait for the right time? Or worse “it’s just a piece of paper. Why do we need a piece of paper to prove our love?”. If it’s just a piece of paper then why is he running from it? If it’s just a piece of paper then he should do it for no other reason than to make you (his partner) happy.
Obviously, there are exceptions if you both are still in school or you both have made the decision it’s not the right time just yet but more often than not it’s the guy who’s dragging his feet.
Just an observation: Almost all of the happy successful Christian marriages I’ve seen the couple got married in a year or less.
Big sign it’s time to move on
A huge, gargantuan, colossal sign it may be time to move on is if he calls you his wife from time to time (especially in business conversations) but he won’t actually marry you. That means he understands the social benefits of a being married but not the commitment behind it. Ladies, please don’t allow yourselves to be used in the way.
2. You Still Don’t Trust Them
It’s cliché because it’s true. Trust is the foundation of any relationship whether it be friends, family, or your partner if you don’t trust that person then the relationship will never work.
Provisional Trust vs. Complete Trust
There are two forms of trust: Provisional trust and Complete Trust. Provisional trust is the level of trust that we should give to most people we don’t know. This trust is the trust everyone should get for nothing more than being a child of God. It’s the blank slate to let them show how they are. Complete trust is earned through deeds and takes time. For some that trust takes months or years to earn, for others a few days or a few weeks.
If after a year or more you don’t completely trust him that’s probably a sign God wants you to go elsewhere. You know you completely trust him when you don’t feel the need to check his phone every now and then. If you can tell him your deepest secrets and not be worried he’ll use them against you in an argument or when it is convenient that means you completely trust him.
3. He Won’t Make Major Sacrifices For You
My wife and I met online and we talked for a year before we met in person (she was in The Philippines). When I told her I was coming to see her, her boss wouldn’t grant her leave request so she quit her job just to see me. That was with no guarantee that I would marry her. Once I realized how important it was for her to stay in her province to take care of her grandmother who raised her I gave up everything to move to her province just to be with her.
Those are the sort of sacrifices that you two should be willing to make for each other. The greatest pleasure in a relationship is not physical intimacy. The greatest pleasure in a relationship is derived from sacrificing yourself and your needs for the person you love. When you truly love someone their needs should come before yours. If you’re the one always doing the sacrificing and he just has clever excuses why he ‘can’t’ make a sacrifice for you then its time to let go.
4. He doesn’t respect you
Have you seen the movie Joy Luck Club? You really should. In of the stories Wavery Jong discovers her husband is cheating on her. She initially tries to save her marriage by being a doormat and asking him what he wants her to do to save the marriage. He just scoffs at her and moves on about his business. Finally, she tells him “this is my house. You need to get out of my house. You can leave but you won’t get my house”. He smiles and you can see the love return to his face.
The point? He didn’t respect her which is why he took her for granted. Once she asserted herself he respected her once again.
You should never, ever, marry someone, or even be with someone, who doesn’t respect you. He’ll treat you as a doormat and once he’s done wiping his feet replace you with another one.
How to Let Go of Someone You Love
The first step to letting go is to make sure that God is the one telling you to let go. That begins with prayer. Take some time in a quiet place and make a long prayer, 15 min +, asking Him what your next move should be.
FYI Just because he wants to spend time watching the game with his friends instead of shopping with you at the mall is not a sign from God to break it off. I’m going to give some possible signs but the real sign God is telling you to move on is with a cool head you’ve decided that staying in this relationship would make you unhappy more than happy.
Begin the process of letting go by remembering the reason you’re doing so. If you’re hesitant just remember the reasons you’ve decided it’s time to cut him loose. Whenever you think to yourself ‘well what if he changes’ just remember all the times he said he would change yet you’re right back to where you started.
Another suggestion is to write down the reasons you broke up with him in a journal. Then whenever you have a weak moment you’ll have that to reference.
Can God Restore a Relationship?
God is in the business of restoration. It also depends on what type of relationship you’re talking about. However, I have seen God restoring relationships in my life as well as hearing about it in other peoples lives. When you pray earnestly, know that you are praying to the God that created the heavens and the earth. Know that you cannot lie to the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit resides in you. Pray earnestly and honestly.
Pray first for God to restore your relationship with him if there are any parts that are broken, and then pray for God to soften the other person’s heart. When God gets a hold both of you, bringing both of you together in His will is not impossible. Seek first to be in good communion with the Holy Spirit that is in you. You can be praying and praying, but make sure you are not uttering empty phrases like the Pharisees. Make sure your heart is right with God. Surrender yourself to God.
Pray earnestly and honestly
A better question to ask yourself is if God should restore this relationship? If the relationship is more toxic than good then why would you want such a thing to be restored? Asking God to restore a toxic relationship is like asking God to re-inflict you with a chronic disease.
When it comes to Christian dating there is such a thing as dating too long. While there are no strict timelines dating someone for too long is not a good thing. Namely, because you’re more likely to succumb to the temptation to sin and the fact that couples that date for years and years. Just remember co-habitation increases the likelihood you’ll become a single mother by a factor of 10 (source).
- The goal of any Godly relationship should be marriage. If your relationship isn’t on the path then it isn’t the one God wants you in.
- Co-habitation increases the chances of self motherhood tenfold
- There are many signs it’s time to break up with your boyfriend. I’ve only included the most solid, universal relationships in this article
- Any decision to break up should be preceded by prayer
- 3 months after the breakup you’ll still feel that it was the right thing to do
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