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    Ask Aysha: Is It Okay to Be Friends With a Nonbeliever Who Likes Me?

    I was very close to dating a guy when I found out that he is agnostic. I decided not to date him, but is it okay to stay friends with him even though he still likes me?

    It’s a very wise choice to refrain from dating someone who doesn’t share your love of Jesus. God does command us to love everyone, so we should always be kind to other believers and nonbelievers alike. However, when romantic feelings are involved, the situation should be approached very carefully. Here are a couple of tips that might help:

    • Continue to demonstrate the love of Jesus. We know that Jesus commands us to love everyone and that includes people who don’t share our love of Him yet. It’s up to us to be the example of Jesus on Earth so that nonbelievers will eventually begin to love Jesus too. Continue to speak the Word of God to your friend and demonstrate your love as a Christian whenever you’re in his presence. You never know, you may be the one assigned to lead him to Christ!
    • Set clear boundaries. While it’s okay to be kind to your friend, remember that you’re ONLY friends. Avoid spending excessive time with him, especially if it involves a lot (or even a little bit) of flirting. Keep in mind that if you were attracted to him before, then you’re probably still attracted to him in many ways. Don’t put yourself in a position where your feelings continue to grow by spending too much time with him.

    Likewise, since he still has feelings for you, it wouldn’t be fair to spend too much time with him because in the back of his mind, he might still want to be in a romantic relationship with you. Limit the amount of time you spend with him in person, on the phone, through text messages and emails, etc., until the romantic feelings have completely gone away–on BOTH sides.

    Also, make sure that he is very aware that it’s JUST a friendship. By setting clear boundaries, you’ll avoid being tempted to engage in a relationship with him. If you struggle in this area, ask God to help you withstand temptation. 1 Corinthians 10:13 says this:

    The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure.

    • Stay firm in your decision. It’s important to God that His people marry other believers. Since dating/courting is supposed to be the process of finding the right spouse, it’s not a good idea to date someone who doesn’t share your love for Jesus. STAY FIRM with your decision to only date other believers. This may be hard, especially since you were so close to dating this guy, but never forget that our first priority is always to please God. If this is hard for you, be sure to ask The Holy Spirit for strength.
    • Pray. Pray that your friend might have an experience with God that’ll be so powerful that he too will want to form a relationship with our Almighty God. And of course, continue to pray for strength and guidance for yourself!

    I really hope this helps. I know how tempting dating can be and I hope this will encourage you and help you navigate the dating/courting/friendship world! Girls, do you have any other tips to add?

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    Aysha Ives
    Aysha Ives loves God with her whole heart and has a desire to help hurting people. With a Masters Degree in Psychology, she combines her education and experience with her love for God to help people live whole and fulfilled lives. Aysha is an Author, Mental Health Provider, Youth Church Teacher, and the mother of one gifted little boy whom she absolutely adores. Aysha is honored to be able to share her love of God with Project Inspired readers. Aysha is also the author of God Cares About Your Stuff: How To Believe For Tomorrow When Things Look Utterly, Completely, And Totally Impossible Today, released February 2013- Available at Amazon.

    19 COMMENTS

    1. nicole and all the staff on here there is a serious issue if you go on random thoughts and questions on girl taslk a ton of girls are leaving and there is alot of drama on here please make it stop! oh iand i am one of those people at times i might be all the time i’m not sure sorry if i was.

    2. Oh wow this is amazing. i have never even liked any guy before until just recently. he likes me too, and says he is a christian, but he doesnt really live for God like he should. I have made it clear that we are only friends, and i am having a hard time just getting through this. I dont want to hurt him too bad, i just cant be in a relationship with him. This really encouraged me and helped me feel stronger knowing im not completely alone in this situation! Thank you so much!! and i almost didnt get on the internet tonight…:)

    3. I’ve been reading articles on here for a little while and decided to finally sign up to comment here and say this is a beautifully written article! When I found myself in a similar situation a year ago, I definitely did the wrong thing at the time and could have used this advice! It is so important to be fair to the other person as well as yourself 🙂

    4. I don’t want to totally go against what this article’s saying or anything, since all the advice it gives is good. However…I entered into a relationship with a guy knowing that he was not religious. I prayed about it a lot, and though I’d been taught differently, I truly believed it was the right thing to do. Yes, being in a relationship with a nonbeliever caused me grief that was nearly impossible to bear! I loved him so much and was terrified of him dying and being separated from God and from me forever. I prayed and prayed for him, and now, he believes in God and comes to church with me. I guess you could call this “missionary dating.” In my case, it’s worked. He and I have never fought to this day and we’ve promised each other than we’ll get married one day.

    5. I am going through the same thing right now…I like this guy but I just found out he is Atheist…I know I shouldn’t/cant be with him but I cant make my feelings go away 🙁

    6. Thank you so much for this article. I recently met a guy and we really hit it off. Our interests are almost all the same, and he is a really great guy, but he is a muslim. This article really helped me see how truly important it is to not lead him on, after all, how can God’s love shine through me if I would break his heart.

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