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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Christian Biblical Courtship Movement: What is Good About It?

This post is part 2 of a series.
Part one is here.

Here’s what I like about the courtship movement:

Frederic Soulacroix, PD-OLD
We live in a society which is saturated with at least two predominant things: loose sex, and divorce.  The obscenely predominant promotion of non-marital sex is reaching a younger and younger demographic all the time.  We now have twelve year olds who think that they should be “dating”.  It is clearly absurd.

There was a time when young people were expected to graduate from high school, get married, and start families.  It was what life was about.  They were expected to abstain from sexual relationships until their wedding night.  After that, they were expected to stay married, through thick and thin, (and marriage always has “thin”).  It worked.  Nowadays, they are encouraged and expected to do exactly the opposite of each of these things.  It is not working.  Simple as that.

The courtship movement has helped to refocus Christian individuals and families on what works…and what matters.  This is a good thing.

The movement has given Christian kids a framework for how to think about marriage, and the steps leading up to it.  It has given them encouragement and guidelines for avoiding the pitfalls of living in a society that is going about it the wrong way.  It is protecting them, their physical health, their emotional well being, and in many cases, their futures.

1923FatherDaughter
By Relative of Infrogmation (Family photo inherited by Infrogmation
 (talk)) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)
 or GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
It has reinserted parents, and especially, fathers, into the process.  Girls, and young men for that matter, are blessed, supported, and protected, when a godly father is involved in healthy ways.  Parents have lived a bit.  They have wisdom that comes from experience to contribute to this momentous decision.

The movement has returned us to the benefits of a time when life transitions were, to at least some extent, communally guided and facilitated.  A healthy and caring Christian community has much to offer a young couple making this most momentous decision.  The community can also provide protection and boundaries as a couple navigates the choppy waters of an emotionally intimate premarital relationship and the temptations that come with it.

It has given young people the impetus to avoid a greater cultural framework that says that one is defined by ones “relationship status” and sexuality.  It has also, to some extent, reaffirmed and validated a woman’s role as wife, mother, and helpmeet, and invalidated a greater cultural mandate that a young woman reject this path.

You can bet that no young man will be entering our daughter’s life, even after her looming 18th birthday, without a discussion with, and approval from, her father.  If a young man is not fond of the concept of time spent around a close knit family, then he, by her own declaration, is not for her.  He will be respecting her chastity and accountable to her father for guarding it.  That’s the way we do things around here.  She has, heretofore avoided any “relationship” or even dating, because she considers these things preparatory for marriage, and she has not yet come across anyone that she has considered a candidate for that role.  Much of the courtship approach has been put into practice in, and is anticipated to characterize, our daughter’s transition into adulthood and marriage.  However, I do have some reservations about certain aspects of how the courtship movement has played out in at least some corners of the Christian community...

Next Post: What I concerns me about certain aspects of the courtship movement....


Linked with:

Handful of Heart MondaysWelcome Home Linkup @ Raising Arrows, Domestically Divine Tuesday @ Far Above Rubies, Teach me Tuesdays @ Growing Home, Encouraging One Another @ Deep Roots at Home, Homemaking Linkup @ Raising Homemakers, Women Living Well WednesdaysHomemaking Link-up @ A Wise Woman Builds her Home, Proverbs 31 Thursdays @ Raising Mighty Arrows, The Modest Mom

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5 comments:

  1. i look forward to following this series.

    i'm currently in the trenches with this one, my daughter is 17. dad and i are deep in prayer for God's will, not our will. we give thanks for His grace, His wisdom, and solid spiritual direction (for all parties) from a solid priest.

    pax Christi, lena

    p.s. here is a great resouce for courtship - http://www.thepersonalistproject.org/home

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi fellow Anglican mama,
    I'm coming to you, your neighbor from Winsome Wednesday. I so appreciate our tradition steeped in history...
    Thanks for your integrity and faithfulness!
    Summer

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  3. I am looking forward to the rest of this series. Our daughter is only 8, (our sons are 13, 12 and 10), but I would love to know what materials, books, etc., you have used to introduce and reiterate this with your children. I hope you had a blessed and happy Easter! God bless! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Michelle, what an interesting post. Very timeous for me too as my girls are 19 and 16 yrs old. Definitely a time when parents pray all the more. Thanks for linking it up to mine. God bless
    Tracy

    ReplyDelete

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Pax Christi!
~Michelle