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Fierce, Faith-Filled Dating to Prepare for Fierce Marriage


Ryan & Selena Frederick

Today Kait invites Ryan and Selena Frederick onto the podcast… and they are the marriage #dreamteam! Together they have an incredible platform called Fierce Marriage which is a place to truly process the trials of marriage and celebrate its JOYS all rooted in Christ centeredness.

Under Fierce Marriage they have a blog, an amazing instagram, a podcast, and TONS Of resources for couples. One thing we love about them so much is that they are so DEEPLY in love with Jesus… and they just bring the truth!!!

Today, Ryan and Selena talk about all things FAITH in relationship and WHY it is so important! Yall ask me questions like “what if the person I like’s walk is not as far as mine?” or “can we pray together?” “how can I incorporate spiritual intimacy?” Today, Ryan and Selena lay it ALL down today in this rich and practical episode that is FILLED with nuggets.

What do you think are the elements of FIERCE DATING?

  • First and foremost Christ Centered-ness is at the CORE
  • Even within dating it is an opportunity to talk about the BIG important things in life… aka Jesus.
  • You have to be individually focused on Christ, but also within your dating relationship.
  • Don’t have the view to just “date, play, and do whatever”.
  • But ALSO, don’t be overly serious from date 1 (come on people), but if you could potentially be interested in more seriously dating that person, how can you actually show true intentionality in that area?
  • Part of #FIERCE Dating is to look at your MOTIVES. Be real if they are fulfilling a role that really God should be willing.
  • Thirdly, COMMUNITY. Do not date on an island!
  • Fourth, have a PLAN for integrity. Figure out where you stand morally where you stand with God’s word.

WHY is Faith so important in dating? And eventually why is it SO important in marriage?

  • If you are finding ourself questioning WHY faith is so important, or wanting to reduce your standards to date a non christian, Selena challenges you with a question, “How could it be more ENCOMPASSING in your life? How can He truly become more of the enter of your life?”
  • The tendency is that Faith can be compartmentalized… so we have to start thinking how faith can be MORE encompassing overall.
  • We love how Ryan says, "Think about it, we ask “how does faith bear weight on our dating life?” ,but the better question to ask is “How DOESN’T it?!””
  • Selena says "Knowing that HE pursues us transforms everything."
  • "He Loves me, He Pursues me and out of that my HEART responds, my LIFE responds, my CHOICES respond.”
  • Don’t forget our goal is to leave people BETTER than when we found them.

Do you have any thoughts about how we can go about testing if someone is truly a follower of Jesus Christ, surrendered mind, body, soul to HIS ways, and not just someone who claims to be a “believer”?

  • First thing: a disciple of Christ and a believer are TWO different things. It is easy to use the word “christian
  • FAITH IN ACTION — “faith without works is dead” is meant to say that if you have a real relationship with Jesus, there will be FRUIT produced in your life.
  • Ryan says that "Sometimes we just want the FRUIT without the roots. We want to staple the fruit to the branches, but over time the fruit WILL start to rot.”
  • Look at the FRUIT and the type of life the person is living. There are deep ways and there are shallow ways to tell if someone has true deeply rooted, healthy fruit.
  • IE in Conflict- What is underneath the surface of response? Pay attention to how does the person respond? Are they patience, do they listen, are they slow to anger?
  • Make sure to see how the person responds over a period of TIME. Test the fruit over time!
  • When you squeeze the fruit, what is really going to come out? Sometimes in dating you don’t see the full squeeze.

What does a spiritual leader truly look like and how should we be teaching for that and seek to find that in dating?

  • This doesn’t look exactly the same for everyone but the way Selena saw it in Ryan was through his desire to stand up for his convictions and shed light on the correct perspectives. He was able to have hard conversations with people.
  • Ryan said is also about who they are AND who they are becoming.
  • In the dating relationship you can identity pretty quickly if someone is a bit glossed over and not truly engaged with embracing the HS work in someone.

What is spiritual intimacy?

  • Think about if you are headed in the same mission and vision together.
  • There is a deeper spiritual intimacy that awakens AFTER marriage
  • Spiritual intimacy is just like drinking and celebrating the good things of God together.
  • Tangibly what this looks like: reading God’s word, praying, being IN community.
  • It would be a great idea to talk about God’s word and sermons.
  • Always examine your motives with spiritual intimacy. Sometimes spiritual intimacy can increase other forms of intimacy like physical and emotional, and need to be approached with a guardedness.
  • Be especially on guard IF you are headed towards marriage.

What about praying together?

  • Selena and Ryan recommend praying outwardly, because you are not ONE yet.
  • Pray for each other individually instead of praying for the relationship and for things like “God we pray for our connection to be deeper”.
  • We loved when Ryan said "If you don’t live together, don’t live together spiritually"
  • There are some prayers that can be done on your own separately from the relationship.

What spiritual disciplines can you incorporate in your life NOW?

  • "Being a single person you are NOT half a person"
  • We love how Selena says it, "We so just want things to be BLESSED by god for ease and comfort, but in many ways blessing can actually ADD work because you are being sanctified through that blessing. So both marriage and singleness are a blessing. There are different burdens, but the blessing is still the same."
  • Spiritual Disciplines- cultivating a passion for studying God’s Word.
  • Ryan offers 4 ways we can do this practically:
  • Memorize Scripture- get it locked into your heart
  • Read for Volume- Get the narrative into your gut
  • Study Passages- Line by line what do certain things MEAN?
  • Prayer- Have a very disciplined prayer life.
  • Fasting- this is a reminder to stir your affections for Jesus even more.

What is your final nugget of dating advice?

  • Ryan says, "Cultivate an awesome friendship. Learn how to have fun together, learn how to laugh together, learn how to get through hard things and cry together. BE FRIENDS.

Other Resources

Podcast: Fierce Marriage

Fierce Marriage InstagramFierce Marriage Website

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