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I Kissed Dating Goodbye: A New Attitude Toward Relationships and Romance Paperback – April 1, 1997
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While most Christians agree to seek purity and save sex for marriage, few have been given a blueprint for how that should affect their view of dating and love. In I Kissed Dating Goodbye, Joshua Harris exposes the "Seven Habits of Highly Defective Dating" and offers a realistic outline of how to have a biblical vision of marriage. Harris contends that one must begin with a new attitude, viewing love, purity, and singleness from God's perspective rather than thinking that love and romance are to be enjoyed "solely for recreation." In such well-named chapters as "Guarding Your Heart" and "What Matters at Fifty," Harris encourages the reader to look at one's character rather than reveling in infatuation, to regard love as a truly selfless, biblical act rather than a feeling. He refutes the concept that we are victims of "falling in love" (that it is beyond our control), saying that "God wants us to seek guidance from scriptural truth, not feeling. Smart love looks beyond personal desires and the gratification of the moment. It looks at the big picture: serving others and glorifying God." Before you roll your eyes, moaning that this sounds terribly unromantic, know that Harris does a superb job of couching his convictions in the sincere belief that if we are purposeful in our singleness and date with integrity, a fulfilled marriage awaits us--in God's timing. --Jill Heatherly
About the Author
Joshua Harris lives outside Washington, D.C., in Gaithersburg, Maryland, where he's a pastor at Covenant Life Church. His greatest passion is preaching the gospel and calling his generation to wholehearted devotion to God. Each January he leads a national conference for singles called New Attitude.
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Background of me: I read it as a 16-year-old and it skewed my view for years as to how to find a spouse. (I'm 29 now and happily married, though at age 24 had a relationship end horribly, with unneeded and drawn out pain afterward, in part I attribute to the teachings of this book that were the foundations of that relationship. Also a bad book for teens: "When God Writes Your Love Story" by Eric and Leslie Ludy).
I am all for Christian purity. I am a youth pastor as I said. When this book emphasizes "be pure and holy", I couldn't agree more! BUT, when this book teaches that to every person you date you give a portion of your heart, I whole-heartedly disagree! (pardon the pun!) They essentially teach that if you date someone and don't marry them, you've given them half your heart, and you only have 50% of a heart for your spouse. Thus, the natural conclusion is for any thinking teen "I must only date one person! Thus, I must marry my first boyfriend/girlfriend!" You know what that leads to? EITHER never allowing yourself to date someone until you know you can marry them (which is the real point of dating, isn't it?), OR not allowing yourself to break-up with someone you should break-up with but marrying them instead! Both awful!
When someone has a child, they love them 100%. When they have a second child, do they love them each 50%? No! They love them both 100%. Love is exponential. You can love a girlfriend/boyfriend 100%, and have it not lead to marriage, and then still love your future spouse 100%. The fundamental basis for this book is flawed.
My entire generation of Christians have been scared to date and thus struggling to find spouses because of books like this one and "When God Writes Your Love Story."
As a youth pastor (and grad of The Master's Seminary), I fully recommend NOT buying this book for your teens.
And although his message is good, he makes a few bad jumps from the fundamentals that he's trying to cover and makes some rash conclusions about topics that are too specific for his subject matter.
The message is good, it's just a shame no one else (to my knowledge) has done what he's done, only better.
The guy wrote the book as a young adult after having his view's on the subject of dating changed, and he wanted to help others out as well. He's driven by a message he wants to deliver and not really a talented writer or logician. And he's young, and it's obvious.
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I could connect with the author so easily.Read more