Dating is complicated. We put ourselves out there without knowing if the relationship will work out or not. We hope for the best, but there is no guarantees. Breakups are hard! No matter the reason or who made the final decision, breakups strike us right in the center of ourselves. The bible says that “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (Proverbs 17:22). A breakup can make us feel alone, vulnerable, betrayed, weak, not valued, maybe some of our dreams got broken as well, and everything seems so blurry and confusing. But it is when we feel weak and fragile that we remember the most how small we are and how big God is (2 Corinthians 12:9). Even breakups don’t fall out of God’s divine control. Many times the pain and difficulties make us much more teachable and sensible to God, and He will work through these hard situations to reveal Himself to us. A breakup can be just what is needed, and here are 4 reasons it can be the best for you:
1- To Free You From a Bad Relationship
Romantic relationships are complicated and it deals with a very intimate part of ourselves. In the ideal world any type of unhealthy relationship would be easy to just leave and move on, but unfortunately that is not the reality. Many people are stuck in bad relationships for diverse reasons. Some might not even know that their relationship is bad just because they don’t have any other example or better reference to look up to. Even if you don’t have a Godly relationship around you, you can look to the Bible to learn what a good relationship is or is not.
A good relationship is not based on fear or threats. The bible says that perfect love casts out fear and whoever has fear has not been perfected in love (1 John 4:18). A good relationship does not manipulate or make the other feel less important or less valued. A good relationship does not make you feel down or unmotivated. A good relationship is not rude, selfish or holds on to bitterness (1 Corinthians 13:4-6).
A good relationship is also not based on physical intimacy before the emotional and spiritual intimacy, which ultimately belongs to marriage. It is a bad relationship when one party manipulates the other to be intimate before marriage. There are privileges in marriage that dating doesn’t have. The ‘one flesh’ concept in Gen. 2:18-25 is for marriage alone and because of that you should not live together and leave your family for cohabitation in dating (Gen. 1:24). Genesis also teaches us that there is shame in a relationship when intimacy comes before the covenant of marriage (Gen. 1:25). A good relationship does not demand what belongs to marriage, to ‘leave and cleave’ (Gen. 1:24; Eph. 5:22-33). Dating relationships that demand the marriage principles of ‘love and respect’ prior to the covenant are demanding a level of intimacy that is reserved for marriage after you ‘leave and cleave.’ That means you should limit the manipulative steps that force that concept too early (i.e. sharing bank accounts, financial dependence, emotional dependence, spiritual dependence, etc.). It is good to see a pattern of these things (i.e. he can provide for me, protect me, love me) so you know what you’re getting into, without enforcing the practical implications before the actual commitment of marriage.
The Bible says that our hearts are the source of life and because of that we should take good care of it. Giving your heart away for a person that does not understand what a good, healthy and godly relationship is does not please God.
Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.Proverbs 4:23
God cares about your heart and a break up can be just what you need to evaluate how well your heart is.
2- To Make You More Dependent On God
The Bible tells us that we are made stronger in God when we are weak and relying on His grace alone (2 Corinthians 12:9). We also know that apart from God we have nothing, God is our Father, our Lord and our everything. But even knowing these truths, our sinful nature and pride can speak loudly and give us the feeling everything we have was earned because of our own merit and work.
Sometimes a relationship can give us the false feeling of safety and make us rely on our own resources instead of in Christ alone. To bring us from this comfortable place, God will use a break up to mature us and turn us into better and stronger Christians.
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.James 1:2-4
When you can’t rely on the original plan you had in mind or on the future you thought was guaranteed, you can rely on God’s grace to bring everything together according to His own plans, not yours.
3- To Reveal Idols In Your Heart
In Matthew 22, the Pharisees gathered around Jesus to test Him and asked Him what was the great commandment in the Law. Jesus responds with the first commandment:
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment.Matthew 22:37-38
This verse shows us that only loving God is not enough, the command is to love God with all our hearts, soul and mind. The distractions of this world can make loving God a much harder task when we are not constantly feeding ourselves with the truth and spending time in prayer. A career that became a bigger priority than family can be an idol of the heart. The intense care and worry of one’s physical appearance can also be an idol of the heart. A relationship that became more important than your own personal relationship with Christ can definitely be an idol of the heart, and God will protect you from that by allowing a break up to happen.
In Matthew 10:37 Jesus says specifically that whoever loves his father or mother, son or daughter more than Him is not worthy of Him. Later in 1 John 5:21, John alerts us to “keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.” Sometimes you are so immersed in a relationship that you can’t really see the dangers of putting someone, or something in the place of God. A break up can reveal if your priorities were wrong and give you a chance to make things right.
4- To Put God In The Center Of Your Life
Although a breakup can be devastating, it can also be the perfect opportunity to bring us closer to God and to make Him king of our hearts again. When we put God in the center of our life we can live with the hopes and the promises of the Bible. My favorite verse of all time always reminds me of the sufficiency of God; it challenges me to remember nothing that exists on Earth can ever replace God in my life.
Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.Psalm 73:25-26
There is nothing better to know in a breakup moment than that God is the strength of your heart. When you feel your heart is broken into pieces, God remains your strength.
Finally, Psalm 34 gives us the assurance that God is close to us when our hearts are broken and when our spirits are crashed.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.Psalm 34:18-19
We can rely on Him to pick us up when we are most in need and deliver us from all of our afflictions. What a wonderful promise that is! Perhaps this is the moment to give your heart to God and trust His promises will come to pass and that this break up was really the best for you.
Ana Luiza Lupinetti is passionate about helping and serving people. As a pastor’s daughter and a pastor’s wife, she loves using her gifts and talents to help ministries succeed.