There are a lot of guys in the world – 3.4 billion to be exact. That’s a lot of guys to wade through, which doesn’t help when you’re dating. Thankfully, those options narrows down quite a bit because any potential date has to be a believer. But dating can still be a challenge. Sometimes it’s hard to know who you should give a chance or who you should commit to after several dates. As Christian women, we know a guy we’re dating or possibly marrying has to be a Christ-follower… but how else are you supposed to know if he’s for you?
How do you know if he’s a keeper?
1. He’s A Servant
When wondering if you should keep dating a guy – look at how he spends his time: does he serve his church? Is he the kind of guy that helps his neighbors or friends when they have a need? A keeper is a hard worker, not only in his job, but everywhere else. He serves others as an act of worship to the Lord (Rom.12:11;Gal.5:13; 1 Pet. 4:10).
2. He’s Always Honest….Even When It May Hurt
A guy that’s a keeper is one that will kindly tell you the truth, ALL the time. If you ask him if those pants make your butt look big, he will tell you the truth. It may not always be what you want to hear every time but it’s for the best. Not only is his truthfulness obedience to the Lord (Prov. 12:17;14:25; 2 Cor. 6:7; Eph. 4:15,25) but it’s for your benefit too. When a guy is honest then you always know what to expect from him…the truth. If he says he’s working late then he’s really working late. He’ll always be someone you can count on for loving honesty.
3. He Takes the Lead
One of the hardest things about dating is wondering about the future. Are you both on the same page about where things are going? Will he be okay with the physical boundaries I’ve committed to?
No, he doesn’t boss you around, or try to control your every move, but a keeper does take initiative in the relationship. You won’t have to bring up the DTR after a month or two of dating, because he’s already done it (Eph. 5; 1 Pet. 3:7). You don’t have to talk with him about physical boundaries, because he’s already set them (Acts. 15:20,29; Rom. 13:13). He communicates with you, respects you, and let’s you know exactly what’s going on in the relationship so you’re not constantly wondering. He’s the leader.
4. He Only Has Eyes For You
One of the things that helped me know that I had a keeper when I was dating my husband was that he didn’t check girls out. He even did everything he could to avoid situations that might tempt him. He cared and respected me enough to keeps his eyes from wandering, but more importantly he knew that God had asked him to abstain from it (Prov.6:25; Matt.5:28). His fear of the Lord and desire to live a life above reproach kept his eyes only for me. That’s the kind of guy you want to keep around!
5. He’s Got A Plan For His Life
Exceptional guys (which is the type you want to be with) have goals. They have ambition, they are seeking God’s guidance for their life and are doing what it takes to get where the Lord is leading them. And if they don’t know God’s exact plan for them yet, keepers are actively learning. They’re seeking the Lord to direct their future paths and then they’re taking the steps in walking that way (Prov. 3:5-6).
6. He Knows When He’s Wrong
A guy who is a keeper is teachable. That means he let’s the Lord mold him into a godly man and is able to let others teach him (Ps. 25:4-5; Prov. 1:7; 9:9; 13:1;15:33;19:20). He’s humble enough to know when he’s wrong and admits it. A keeper says “I’m sorry,” learns from his mistakes and changes to become more like Christ.
7. His Life Goals Match Well With Yours
When thinking about who to date, or continue dating, you need to figure out if you both have the same future goals. If he’s led to be a missionary in South Asia and you feel strongly about being a lawyer in Boston, well then that probably isn’t a match made in heaven. If your number one goal to serve the Lord anywhere he asks, and your date’s top priority is being with family, you are going to hit some rough patches. It doesn’t mean that God’s can change his priorities, or call you to the mission field with him, but it does need to be prayerfully considered.
When Alex and I were dating, I knew I was going to be in women’s ministry and had a heart for missions, while Alex was called to be a full-time missionary. After some time of dating, the Lord confirmed that I was going to minister to women and be a missionary. The life goals the Lord had given Alex matched well with mine and I knew I should keep him around for a bit longer! 🙂
Being equally yoked doesn’t just mean that you share the same beliefs; it also means that you’re both heading in the same life direction (2 Cor. 6:13-15). A keeper’s goals lead you closer to where the Lord is leading you, not further away.
8. He Protects Your Heart
A keeper looks out for the best interests of the girl he’s dating. He’ll do everything he can to make sure that he’s not leading her on (this is where #2 and #3 come in) or that things are going at the appropriate level emotionally (Phil.4:7). He’s wise enough and cares enough to keeps things slow and helps to protect your heart (Prov.4:23), emotionally and spiritually, so that it remains reserved and focused on Christ above all else.
9. He Protects Your Reputation/Witness
He’s also careful to not lead her into circumstances that might put her reputation and Christian witness in jeopardy (Phil.2:3-5). He’ll avoid situations that might make people think less of her or are not above reproach (Eph. 5:3; Rom. 13:13). He’s her brother in Christ and he acts like it by putting his selfish desires aside to protect the heart and reputation of his sister in Christ. Because his primary goal is that God be glorified through their time together.
10. He Loves God More Than You
Wait, aren’t we always told that a guy needs to love you more than anything?! That’s what I used to think, too. But a guy that loves God more than you is a guy that will treat you far better than if he loved you above all else.
If a guy loves God first, then he’ll reflect Christ and desire godliness. A keeper loves God, follows God’s commands, and is continually desiring to please God. He’s going to be put your needs above his own because God, the one he loves above all else, has asked him too (Phil. 2:3-5). So that means, if you become his wife, that you’ll end up getting treated really well because God has commanded your guy to love you, serve you, and give himself up for you (Eph. 5:25-33).
There’s a lot more to choosing a guy than his height, job, or hobbies but godliness should be the #1 criteria.If he’s not seeking God then he’s not for you. And that’s not you being judgmental; it’s you being wise and discerning like God wants (Prov. 13:20; Rom. 12:2).
God has set a high standard of holiness for the guys you date for a reason; it’s for your best and it brings Him glory through your dating life (1 Cor.10:31). God desires for you to have a healthy dating life that glorifies the Gospel but that can only happen when you choose guys that are in line with God’s standards.
God has called His sons to certain standards but He’s done the same for His daughters. For a dating relationship to glorify Christ, it takes a godly guy and a godly girl. So before you begin going down the next dating path consider this: Am I the female counterpart of this list? Am I a woman that reflects Christ in my life and loves Him more than my desires for a guy’s love?
Remember, to get a keeper, you’ve got to be a keeper. 🙂