sonofiver asked: There are pastors and Christians who say there is only ONE way to date, making up rules and regulations, about time spent together, and physical intimacy, and what not. If you had 5 minutes with one of these people, what would you say to him/her?
Unka Glen answered: Oh, they’d basically agree with me. You have to remember, that many of these fad Christian dating books were actually written a few years ago, and the authors have had a chance to see the fruit of their work. And it’s not pretty.
They’ve had plenty of feedback from ministry professionals who do regular marriage counseling, and those professionals have explained how these books have made a mess of things, to put it mildly.
It’s created people who are scared to death, just to go out on a date. Far from helping people have healthy and Godly relationships, in large numbers, it’s driven them to simply have no relationships at all. Fewer and fewer married couples know anything about how to be an actual couple.
Trust me when I tell you that the authors of these books have heard this feedback in numbers far too big for them to ignore. They agree with the results, simply because they can’t be denied any longer. So why isn’t the larger Christian culture aware of all this?
That’s where things get complicated.
Many of these authors have tried to, well, kinda sorta distance themselves from their own books. Others have suggested that their work was taken out of context (it wasn’t), and made into something ugly and legalistic (it was already legalistic), and that people have made a mess of it (it was already a mess).
To you, these might sound like lame excuses, and that’s in fact what they are. The real answer to your question is: money. You see, when an author writes a book and makes a deal with the publisher, the publisher OWNS that book.
An author can publicly denounce their book, but if they do something to prevent a publisher from making money on the book that was sold to them, then that publisher can sue that author.
That might still sound like a lame excuse for a generation of people who are not only stuck with all this toxic nonsense in their heads, but that these books are still available, and are still making money, and they’re making money off of the very people they’re messing up. It is lame, and it is wrong.
I know divorced people who would still be married today, if they’d never read any of these books. And it breaks my heart to see them suffer.
But in a way, what you and I are doing here is the solution to that whole mess. I’m not getting paid to tell you what I’m telling you, nobody owns or controls this conversation. You and I are free to compare notes, to share what we’re seeing out there, and to make sense of it all together.
This technology is allowing YOU to help shape the church of the future. And I think the future is in good hands.