Harris refers back to the unexpected success of his first book when he was single, and sums it up like this: "I wanted to challenge other singles to reconsider the way they pursued romance in the light of God's Word. The author makes it clear that this is not a method based approach but rather a reliance on God. Harris refers to Scripture throughout and the over riding impression that is left with the reader is that God must be at the centre of anything and everything to do with any relationship. I'm surprised to be writing that I can highly recommend this book and hope it will continue to change attitudes towards casual dating in Christian circles.
Rules are necessary and good, but only when they flow out of a heart that desires to honor God. So many have caricatured Josh Harris in the years since his first two books came out that it's refreshing to actually read his words and not depend on what others think they know about his views. Having real-life stories introduce and/or conclude a section or chapter was more helpful than excess explanation from Harris. Here's some highlights: Chapter Two is really important as it introduces us to the concept that courtship (as opposed to dating) is all about being purposeful in a guy-girl relationship. Harris is also careful to point out that he's not stuck on the term "courtship." Call it what you will, but his desire is for purposeful, pure relationships. Harris does not ignore the women and gives them several helpful pointers from a guy's point of view.
That being said, I struggle with the idea that a 25-year-old who is 2 years into marriage has "figured out" how romantic relationship-building should look with a few carefully-selected verses and a plethora of fairy-tale-esque relationship stories. (side note: I'm tired of seeing Song of Solomon 8:4 used to create any sort of defense of how modern relationships should look. Is it important that intentions be correct in a romantic relationship?
A few years ago I read his book I Kissed Dating Goodbye, which was really helpful for my new outlook on relationships. However, after reading both of these books (as well as my Bible), and sitting under sound biblical teaching on this matter it turns out that the very ideals that I thought were right, and held to as a child, were right. Or I guess what I should say is that they match up with what the Bible has to say about relationships, and it's just been nice to read these two books and have those thoughts confirmed. This particular edition of the book also has some ideas/guidelines as to basic conversations to hold with each other as well as some pretty fun "date" ideas that accompany the actual conversations. But one of the things that I loved about reading this book was how relaxing it was. On Christmas Day I was allowed time to just sit read, which was sooo relaxing.
It says, if you follow a specific law of how to date (first rule, don't call it date, call it courting), and don't stray from this list of rules in any way, then you will have favor from God and he will give you an amazing sex life when you get married. No. This book wreaks of legalism and completely bypasses the grace of God. It says, "hey God, I'm going to follow these rules, and they you'll be impressed and uphold your end of the deal and give me the marriage I want." I appreciate Harris' stance on purity and honoring God in your dating life.
We live for Him. And as for our love stories, Mr. Harris quoted, 'Real love is always fated...... And fate, of course, is simply a secular term for the will of God, and.
I read I Kissed Dating Goodbye when I was in middle school and it scared me to death. I am not reviewing I Kissed Dating Goodbye, but this was the foundation on which I read Boy Meets Girl. Sure, I also don't think you should date someone you would never DREAM of marrying, but there's a middle ground between scoffing at the idea of marriage and then "courting." You get sixteen-year old kids who want to be pure and follow Josh Harris' lead, but also don't want to casually date, so they try to not-quite-date someone because they really, really like them.
This is much of what Joshua Harris wrote in his first book: I Kissed Dating Goodbye. Harris has written Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello to Courtship to follow up with the way that Christians should view and go about dating/courting relationships. The book is written in an engaging style with many stories of dating relationships/courtships that succeeded or failed with much to learn and to take into account from each of them. 76) Courtship, as described in Boy Meets Girl is "romance with purpose". There are many helpful guidelines and ideas of what a healthy dating/courting relationship looks like. A great point made in chapter 5 is this: "Guarding the fruit of true biblical fellowship means increasing your love and passion for God, not your emotional dependence on each other. Overall, Boy Meets Girl is a great book that I would recommend for anyone who is planning on getting into a serious relationship or getting married at some point.
I suppose more than anything the main themes are: prayer, respect, self-control, biblical love (not just based on emotions), and trust in God's timing/perfect plan :) PS: If you're not anywhere near marriage, I was advised not to read section 3.
it seems that a lot of people are grumpy at Josh Harris for being legalistic; this is the first book I've read by him, but his approach seemed to be humble and God-centered, or that was the goal.