Some Christian singles find their expectations of love shredded by the fact that the other person doesn’t feel the same way. What to do when love is not returned, but you feel that God has put this person in your life for a reason? Dr. Jim explains what do to when you face a unrequited love.
“Unrequited Love”, when someone whom I think God has sent to be my mate doesn’t agree (or even know I exist): what am I to do?
This statement of unrequited love or one similar to it is often received in an email to me. Sometimes the person will describe how in a dream or vision God described their future mate to them. The person that they met fits this description perfectly. However, the other person isn’t attracted to them or maybe doesn’t that they exist! The added confusion comes in the fact that this single adult is so sure that this is the one that God destined for them and cannot understand why the other person does not see this, too.
The fact is that this person that came into their lives may, or may not be the one that God desires for their mate. Human relationships are very complex, at the very least.
There are many variables at play that could apply to unrequited love:
- The person could be the one destined for them, but they may not be listening to God or being obedient. I suspect that too often they are too filled with their own agenda that they are missing out on some treasures that God has in store for them.
- Each of us has our own will and God never forces His will on us. You can pray for this person but I would encourage you not to confront them. This approach is seldom the advisable one.
- The fact that the single adult may not be receiving clear signals either. Often our ‘needs’ outweigh our judgment and cloud the situation. I find that this often applies to those who do not date very much or do not have much experience in relationships. It is as if they walk around with their “Hope Chest” and desire to stuff the first person they see that ‘appears’ to fit their criteria into the chest.
“Human relationships are very complex, at the very least”
Our belief system that we create has a lot to say about how we can relate to this situation. If you are one who believes that God has selected only one person to be your mate, you will have a difficult time releasing this situation. If you are one who believes that God can work through life’s events and can bring a relationship out of any number of people, then you will still have a challenging time with your feelings but can in time move on.
What does one do? Here are some thoughts for your consideration on unrequited love:
- Check your ‘signals’ with God. Share with Him that this person ‘appears’ to fit the description of one that God has in store for you and ask Him to confirm this.
- I also suggest that this confirmation not be your feelings as you are already in that state of mind.
- Seek the advice of a mature Christian, pastor, or counselor. Share what is taking place and ask for their input. If it is from God, you can hear yourself articulate it to another person. If you find yourself stumbling in an attempt to describe what is happening, perhaps it is a figment of your imagination. God is one of order and does not call us to ambiguity.
- Ask God to open your eyes to anything you are not seeing or understanding.
Get to know the person on a ‘friendship’ basis, if that is possible. Enjoy getting to know them and allow them to get to know you. Do not ‘push’ the relationship but see what natural course it takes. If you are woman, read my article on how a woman can let a man know she is interested at: Should a Christian Woman Let a Man Know She’s Interested?
- Release the situation to God. If this is the mate for you then God is more than capable to bring the other person to this understanding. Step back from the situation and consider that unless this person comes to the point of desiring you, do you really want them to be your mate?
“Ask God to open your eyes to anything you’re not seeing or understanding.”
What is involved in this process?
There is much involved in this process that relates to how we see God and how we believe that He works in our lives. We can know that He is sovereign, He does want the best for us, He will not overpower anyone’s will, and He can always make the best of our lives no matter the circumstances.
Author of “Guide to Successful Online Christian Dating”