Reposted from Ezine: I Kissed Dating Goodbye
As I looked at its cover, I was dumbfounded. I felt something special that lured me to discover what it has to say. It seemed as if I have felt the similar urge to read its pages, as I have felt with the cover of Rose Madder. Back then, I remembered I was as well cold-stricken with the view of a lady looking afar. The lady was gazing towards a horizon, where an old tree stood at the heart of the picture. I saw hope and I felt pain, and these were the few feelings that I recall drove me to look into its covers.
I Kissed Dating Goodbye caught my attention in a similar gravity but of different perspective. I found myself enticed with the picture of a man physically composed yet emotionally reserved. The title suggested something about dating but it kept me wondering about the ironic feeling of reservation it suggested through its cover picture – a squatting man, looking down, face covered with a hat and sleeves uncovered. At the back cover, I had a different impression. The book shared a feeling of awe, a feeling that has given me the slightest clue of what it has to say. Then on, I grabbed a copy and tossed it to the basket for purchase.
At the preface, I read an initial attest of a guy namedSam Torode. I do not know him and I have not heard his name among the league of writers; but I read on and gave him a chance to involve me more. Surprisingly, it did.
So I gave Joshua Harris a chance and started the first chapter of the book. From then, I was more amazed to have found my fingers flipping from one page to another; until I earnestly discovered what it had to say. It was not just about dating but kissing dating goodbye. The word goodbye seemed to have just been another oxymoron to us but Joshua’s goodbyewas far-fetched to mean as God be with ye, as gotten from the old much-preferred contraction of the word. Then again, I was more astonished. His words expressed the simplest idea that a Christian could ever conceive, but he revealed choices that are far-opted by most people. Perhaps this is the reason whyJoshua has been tagged as an extremist. However, he took the wind out of my sails. It must have taken him more than a sack of brevity and more than a week of prayers to point out to the world that –
“True love isn’t just expressed in passionately whispered words or an intimate kiss or an embrace before two people are married, love is expressed in self-control, patience, even words left unsaid.”
That in our world where passion is a battleground, as Elizabeth Elliot would put it; our hearts tend to find selfish fulfillment and satisfaction everywhere with unruly affections. In the end, we just find it nowhere without God.
Joshua decided based on what is pure and blameless. He refined his love not just by posting a sticker of I am worth waiting for on the cover of his bible or by following his little relationship principle of The joy of intimacy is the reward of commitment; but with strengthening his passion after Christ’s heart. (Matthew 16:24) That through Christ he knew, every meaning of love has been said and done. There is no greater love than this. It sacrifices, it gives and it dies to its own needs. (John 15:13)
As I closed the book to its very end, a noble perspective begins to work loose. It was not just about the thought of dating during my first impression; but the reservation and awe when one engages into a relationship in His sublime keeping and guidance. That though kissing dating goodbye is to counterculture romance, it proposes pure love with romance done on a clean slate.
1) New International Version (NIV) Bible
2) “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” by Joshua Harris, Multnoma Publishers, 2003.
3) “Passion and Purity” by Elizabeth Elliot, Published by Fleming H. Revell, 1984.
4) “The Maven’s Word of the Day” by Randomhouse, http://www.randomhouse.com, retrieved: January 28, 2010.