A dear friend has asked about the above subject. It has intrigued me for a while. Her situation is very different than mine however; her family is all boys and mine is all girls.
In looking at the online world for information, there are courtship stories out there for marrying age singles but I have found precious little regarding teens. (which my friend and I both have)
I have asked several sources for information but nothing has come through as yet.
I have looked at books in the library with little success.
I have prayed about this subject as well. I know that the dating scene as I knew it was not godly. In fact, God was never mentioned at all.
If we are raising Christian children to live godly lives, we should consult the authority; God. What does His Word say about this subject? Song of Solomon is about the pursuit of and response to lovers. It is not without respect for each other. If you look at the epistles to the churches, there are instructions for the husbands and wives, parents and children, young and old. Nothing specifically regarding choosing a mate other than being not unequally yoked.
From what I can understand, God wants order. God wants us to love Him. God wants us to love each other like He loves us. We will account for our conduct someday. Not so hard, right?
Wrong. Not everyone understands God's order. Not everyone loves us like He does. Some people think "Oh, they will never know."
Our children need to understand God's Word and the fact that the "world" doesn't align with it.
Let's look at what God wants.
Order. The man is in charge. I know, not a popular stance but it's true. It puts him in charge of the pursuit. The woman is to respectfully respond to that pursuit.
Once the woman has agreed to be pursued, the man and the woman need to seek God regarding the other person. Friendship and mutual interests should ensue. If it does not, the pursuit should end.
If the friendship and mutual interests are strong enough, then more God seeking needs to happen regarding lifelong pursuit. God's pursuit of us is lifelong.
During this time, no matter how it ends, have you done anything to cause someone else to stumble? Have you grieved the heart of God?
How does this effect teens today?
It is a very different view of how dating is presented by the world. Talking whenever you want (ie, cell phone, email, text), unsupervised time alone and no accountability. Without being indelicate, you know where this might lead. You also see how advertising plays sexuality in the media. We don't need to go there either.
You can see that these scenarios are vastly different. How do we make sure our children are acting in accordance with the principles of the Bible? We pray and set up guidelines for them that line up with God's Word. We enforce some unpopular things.
I am still formulating my plan for my girls. It is something my husband and I will have to discuss at length.
I think that we will be having lots of group dates, parent chauffeuring, and talking (until we are both sick of it).
Another homeschooling mom has a book for her very young daughter about her first kiss and how precious it is. In the end it purity that wins her first kiss. I hope that this sinks in for my girls.
I know that it would have made my life a lot simpler.
Let me know what you think.