If you don’t want a relationship like the majority of relationships, then you shouldn’t date like the majority of daters. In this message, Andy Stanley gives five rules for dating because as you already know love, dating, and relationships can feel complicated! But, our hope is that this conversation will help us see that it doesn’t have to be!

If you are married, don’t count this conversation out! These principles, if applied, can enhance all of our relationships. If nothing else, they will remind us of the heart of the Father towards us. He loves and respects us!

As a reminder, these “rules” are from Andy’s experiences and ultimately are his opinion.

Start Talking

  • Tell us about your first date! Hopefully you get to hear some funny stories!.
  • If you could use one word to describe dating in today’s culture, what would it be?
  •  If you find dating to be complicated, why is that?

Think About It

  • Look over and discuss the five rules Andy gives in this message:

Rule #1. Guys: Ask girls on dates.
Ask someone to do something specific on a specific day at a specific time. Clarity is honoring.

Rule #2. Ladies: Agree to dates.
Don’t agree to just “hang out.” If he asks you to “hang out,” ask if he has a specific plan in mind.

Rule #3. Don’t ever mistreat anyone, even if they don’t seem to mind being mistreated.
Be truthful. Don’t mislead.

Rule #4. Don’t allow yourself to be mistreated.
If you saw a relative being treated the way you are being treated, would you be upset?

Rule #5. Don’t do anything that makes you a liar for life.
You are writing your story. Write one you aren’t afraid to be asked about.

Look It Up

Read 1 Corinthians 13:11

    • What stands out to you?
    • Talk about what it means to behave like a child relationally vs. behaving like a grown up
    • In what ways have you/are you practicing being a grownup relationally?
    • In what ways do you find yourself drifting towards childish behavior?
  • What “childish” notions or assumptions about love did you carry into adulthood?
  • What couples do you know that seem to have put most of their childish ways behind
    them? What do you admire about them?
  • For your current or future relationships, if you could work on one thing about yourself
    to transition from child to grownup, what would it be?
  • Which of these areas in your life need the most “exercise”, and how can you do that?
    • Courage
    • Self-Control
    • Honor
    • Intentionality

What Now?

It can be easy to blend, bend, and pretend in order to get in or stay in a relationship. But we need to ask ourselves: “Am I losing myself in order to do so”? If so, it may be worth considering taking a break from dating. And next time around, you’ll be more prepared to exercise your muscles of courage, self-control, honor, and intentionality.

Additional Resources

The New Rules of Love, Sex, and Dating by Andy Stanley (Book)
Single, Dating, Engaged, Married: Navigating Life and Love in the Modern Age by Ben Start (Book)
Chasing Vines: Finding Your Way to an Immensely Fruitful Life by Beth More (Study)
Loveology by John Mark Comer (Book)
Goodness of God by Bethel Music (Song)