Lauren Chandler was just 17 years old when she met her future husband, Matt, who is older by six years. She was engaged at 18 and married at 19, when he was 25. Now they’ve been married for 17 years and have three kids, the oldest of whom just became a teenager. The dating worries and anxieties they’ve long since left behind in their own relationship have now hit home for them as parents.
While much has changed in their lives and in the dating scene for Christians in the last 20 years, much more about human relationships remains the same. Many who don’t want to be single are still single. Dating is usually confusing, potentially hurtful, and yet seemingly necessary. Marriage and childbirth may be delayed, but the nuclear family remains a goal for most young adults. How, then, can Christians walk this path with integrity, holiness, and discernment?
Matt and Lauren joined me on The Gospel Coalition Podcast to answer some tough questions on singleness and dating. We talked about various dating scenarios, about women who hold themselves back so as not to be intimidating, and about the emphasis often placed on compatibility, and what that relationship should look like from a gospel-shaped perspective.
The Chandlers will be leading a Mingling of Souls Dating Conference on November 11 at Central Baptist Church near Texas A&M University in College Station. You can join them in person or watch the simulcast on your own or with a group. Use the code TGC to receive a 10 percent discount when you register for the simulcast or event in person. Before then you can pick up Matt’s book, Mingling of Souls: God’s Plan for Love, Marriage, Sex, and Redemption. Matt is lead teaching pastor of The Village Church in Dallas. Lauren is the author of Steadfast Love: The Response of God to the Cries of Our Heart.
You can stream this episode of The Gospel Coalition podcast here.