Friday, February 26, 2021
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Dating and Engagement

Articles in Dating and Engagement provide clear Biblical teaching for navigating the challenges of building a strong foundation for dating, engagement and marriage. Discussions will include the roles of men and women, how to avoid temptation, intimacy before marriage, clarifying the needs of the other person and improving communication. We hope these personal stories and teaching will lead to a healthy, God-honoring relationship. We also want to help you get answers to questions like how to choose a spouse and how to be intentional about exploring expectations within marriage such as children, finances, families and sexual intimacy.

What Singles Can Learn From My Three Marriages

My husband and I had an argument last night. As usual, I was trying to prevent an explosion and instead caused one. It’s very disturbing when you try so hard to do the right thing and still fail. I guess that’s where grace comes in. I am a doer. When I see the light, I go for it and too …

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Opposites Attract. But Should You Run from Yours?

It’s cliché for a reason. At some point in our lives we’ve all experienced the inexplicable draw to someone who is so completely different from us that we begin to believe they actually “complete” the missing parts we see in ourselves. Yes, it’s wonderful to meet someone who has strengths different from our own, or interests that make us get out there and explore …

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Narcissism Part 10: Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a mental health diagnosis. Only qualified mental health professionals can or should diagnose NPD. There are thorough and effective assessment tools that a professional can administer, that, combined with other qualitative measures, can make an accurate diagnosis possible. I am not a mental health professional. I’m a pastor. In writing about narcissism, it’s important to me …

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Narcissism Part 9: I’m Not A You, I’m A Me

Differentiation and Individuation are terms used to describe a developmental process everyone needs to go through in their path toward maturity. My (probably oversimplified) understanding of these terms is that in differentiation, I learn that I’m not a you; in individuation, I learn that I am a me. So these are related processes and ideas. They happen together and each affects …

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Narcissism Part 8: Can A Narcissist Change?

I remember a particular phone call with a classic narcissist. His wife of many years had finally had enough and kicked him out of the house. He was about to lose everything. His marriage. His kids. His financial future. The very image he had worked to build was collapsing around him. He phoned me to rage and cry about what …

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Narcissism Part 7: The Narcissistic Parent

Narcissistic Parenting is especially toxic. A relationship by its very nature designed to be about the benefit of the child is used instead as a source of narcissistic supply by the parent. Let’s take a look at the various aspects of narcissism and how they affect the parent/child relationship. Identity The narcissist looks to others as a source of identity …

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Narcissism Part 6: Why Intimacy Is Impossible

There are four keys that are critical for the health of any relationship. Narcissism is so toxic and destructive because it is a failure in all four of these areas. Here are the four: 1. I’m not needy. This is self-management. It’s an orientation toward life that assumes personal responsibility for my own choices and their consequences, my actions, thoughts, …

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Narcissism Part 5: Why They Are Un-Confrontable

Who are you? Do you have value? Who gets to answer those questions? For a narcissist, other people are responsible to answer these questions. Narcissism is a commitment to gaining your sense of identity and worth from other people. But it’s not so much a conscious commitment; it’s your reality. It’s the way you assume life is. It’s what you see and …

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Narcissism Part 4: What Do I Do?

“I’m in a relationship with a Narcissist. What do I do?” This is the most common question I’ve received since I started writing on the subject. In this post, I want to give the beginning of an answer. Of course some direction regarding what to do involves direction regarding what not to do. 1. Don’t become narcissistic yourself. This is a …

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Narcissism Part 3: Understanding Human Development

Narcissism is essentially a distortion in the human development process. People are designed to move from dependence (I am not self-managing) to independence (I am self-managing) to interdependence (two self-managing people in relationship). The healthy development of independence appropriate to each season of life is what positions us to cultivate healthy relationships. One of the key aspects of our development …

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