Have you ever dated Prince Charming? You know, the one who made you float to the heavens with his adoration and made you feel like you were the best thing since sliced bread. He constantly doted on you. He pined for you. He practically tripped over himself to be near you. He praised you with the Christian description of being a Proverbs 31 woman. He could barely breathe as he told you that you were all he ever wanted in a wife. He was completely taken, smitten, and head over heels for you. In his eyes you could do no wrong. You were perfect.
You basked in every self-serving second of it. And as long as he kept reminding you of how perfect and godly you were, he was your perfect Prince Charming in all of his doting glory. He was what you thought you wanted in a relationship: a man who was a believer and who thought you were the closest person to Jesus himself.
“THE REALITY OF PRINCE CHARMING”
The story of the two of you starts off well. During your early get to know you stage and even early dating stage your Prince Charming put his best foot forward as he lavished you with gushing compliments and gave you unfading attention. He spoke all the “right” spiritual words. He loved what you loved. He showed you how much of a Godly gentleman he could be. But then just like the fairy tale, something strange happens a little further down the road. The clock strikes midnight, the dancing stops and you find yourself deep in a relationship with a toad, not Prince Charming. All the gliding around the ballroom ends with the image of your Prince Charming crashing to the ground.
The Prince Charming label tends to break down when one of two things happen. One, Prince Charming himself can put an end to the love story when he completely stops showering you with praise and adulation as you get deeper into a relationship. It is at this point you realize he is not who is says he is. The second scenario is that you grow a little bit and see that Prince Charming was really just a smoke screen for who he really is. This is evident when you get in a community that spurs your spiritual growth, but he has not joined in that growth. Either way you are left holding a toad and not a hand in marriage (if that was your hope).
I have been here. This has been my story, and I have learned a lot from it. I have talked to many young women advising them to be wary of the Prince Charming idea. Now, to be clear, dating Prince Charming is not simply his fault. He became Prince Charming when you viewed him that way and allowed his words to give you life as a woman over the security and truth of God’s Word. It is so important that a woman has an accurate and biblical view of self and of men so we can close the book on Prince Charming.
5 SUGGESTIONS TO AVOID THE IDEA OF PRINCE CHARMING
Here are a few ways to make sure that the person you would like to date is not just a fairy tale but the real deal.
- Know your own value and worth—When we spend our time in the arms of Christ allowing him to whisper the truths of His Word in our hearts, we become keenly aware of our glorious value and worth as a woman. As we grow with Christ, diligently seeking him, we become aware that we are becoming transformed more into his glory. This has attractive results that show both inside and out. Therefore, when a young man compliments you on what you know to be God working on you, it does not hit your ears as the Hallelujah chorus and wedding bells. His is simply verifying what you already know, and he does not look any more perfect for telling you that.
- Be aware of your own weaknesses—On the other side of knowing your value and worth is the reality that the more we grow in Christ the more we see our deficiencies as humans. Don’t be afraid of this. Just know that these are areas that God wants to change in you. Therefore, you can’t possibly be perfect. Any man that is willing to tell you only the good things about you and not challenge the weaknesses is on his way to being your Prince Charming. Because deep inside we all like to be affirmed and have our ego stroked. But if he is unwilling to lovingly challenge you then you may end up with someone who will not encourage your dependence upon Christ. You will think you have arrived in the eyes of Prince Charming. Both of you will end up doing a disservice to our Savior as he is the standard and the one who demands our sole focus.
- Don’t be impressed with the basics—Please don’t throw a party just because the man goes to church and says he is a believer. That is such a basic requirement it needs only a head nod. This may sound harsh, but unless your standard is set beyond the basics you could very well be bamboozled by a Prince Charming who fizzles later in the relationship.
- Character counts and it must be verified—This is the most important one when determining the quality of a man. A man’s character MUST be seen and verified by MULTIPLE sources. Preferably by older men in his life. You cannot be the sole defender of who he is. A man who has upright character will be consistent with you and his work place and with his peers and with his family and as he serves others and on and on. The Prince Charming label gets shattered when the man is just not putting his best foot forward, but when he is putting his true character forward.
- Keep your eyes open—Observe, observe, observe. Early in the get to know you stage watch him as he interacts with others, especially female peers. Determine if the attention he is giving you is specific to you or general to all women. Determine if his life choices are consistent with the standard of holiness as described in Scripture. Do not fly by the red flags that might pop up as you do. Wait, watch, and do not rush to judgment.
Hopefully, after all of this we will learn that Prince Charming is not one who tickles our ears with sweet words, but challenges our heart as we pursue Christ. He is not perfect, but his desperately following the One who is. He does not trust his ability to put his best foot forward, but trusts in the Lord to make his shortcomings out for His glory. Then and only then will Prince Charming not be a fairy tale, but a real picture of our King.