Published by Wordedge Digital Media
Copyright 2015 Tunde Awoyele
Shakespir Edition, License Notes
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All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the New King James Version of the Bible (NKJV).
PART I: UNDERSTANDING COURTSHIP
PART II: WHAT TO DO IN COURTSHIP
PART III: GETTING SET FOR MARRIAGE AND THE FUTURE
This book is dedicated to my maker, my shepherd, my light, my shield, my all, my God. Thank you Lord for bringing something out of my nothing. I am forever grateful.
I must first acknowledge the Almighty God, who loves me enough to give me a glorious future and to keep me in the path of destiny. I’m most grateful Lord!
I also want to appreciate my parents, Mr Thomas (Late) and Mrs Esther Awoyele; thanks for your love, prayers and support. You are the best!
A big “thank you” to the fathers in my life and those who have impacted me greatly and positively: Rev. Olusola Areogun, Rev. Femi Ogundare, Bishop David Oyedepo, Pst David Johnson, Pst Peter Ayodeji, Pst Mike Ojuola, Rev. Sam Adeyemi, Pst Segun Obadje, Pst Segun Aivoji, Pst Kingsley Okonkwo, Pst Araba Akoni, Pst Bimbo Odukoya (late), Pst Bayo Olaiya, Pst Sam Neye, Pst Philip Agboola, Deacon Sunday Agbeyi and Mr Lanre Sanni. Thank you all for your teachings, encouragement and impact on my life and relationship.
To Rev. and Pst (Mrs) Ezekiel Olanipekun, thanks for building a solid spiritual foundation for me and for helping me grow in the knowledge of God.
To Pastor and Pastor (Mrs) Dayo Babatunde, thanks for your teachings, prayers, support and encouragement. You are highly treasured sir and ma!
To Pastor and Pastor (Mrs) Demola Awoyele, thanks for inspiring and challenging me all the way. I value you sir and ma!
To Rev. and Mrs Benson Agbragu, thanks for your prayers, support and encouragement. I love you sir and ma.
To Pastor Dunamis and Pastor (Mrs) Sophia Okunowo, thanks for your insightful teachings, especially your daily devotionals on relationship and marriage. I am also grateful to Pastor Dunamis for finding time to write the foreword.
To Rev. and Rev. (Mrs) Sam Aboyeji, thanks for your powerful teachings on faith, stewardship, wisdom and mercy. They transformed my life. I am grateful sir.
To my great friend, Chibuzor Nwankwo, you are more than a friend. I value you.
I would also like to celebrate my best friend – my fiancée, Rebecca Tega Agbragu, you have been a faithful assistant and a great encouragement to me in the pursuit of God’s purpose for my life. Without you, this book would have been mere theoretical information, lacking practical touch. Thank you for giving me the privilege to experience, practise and model the truths in this book. You are the best. I love you.
Big thanks to my editor, Philip Amiola, and my book designer, Samuel Jesulowo. I really treasure your sacrifices, contribution and commitment towards this book. You’ve done an excellent job.
I must appreciate my siblings: Mr Bidemi, Mr Seyi, Mr Tosin, Mr Bayo and Pastor Demola. Thank you all for being there through all times. I appreciate your support over the years. You are wonderful.
Finally I want to appreciate my friends who also work with me as team: Ronke Adelagun, Julius Ebor, Grace Ike, Chibuzor Nwankwo, Opeyemi Femi-Oke, Zacheaus Kamoru and Tega Agbragu. Thank you for your support and commitment. I value you all.
We go to school and study different courses over the years after which we eventually graduate! In the school of marriage, you get the certificate first and then learning begins in a pragmatic form.
However, you can do some of the learning and fortify yourself for this great institution called marriage before and during courtship. The scriptures aptly say that a man of knowledge increases strength.
In Courtship 101, Tunde Awoyele has done a quintessential job in presenting eternal truths in simple ways that anybody can understand.
If I have my way, I would make this a compulsory course for all who intend to go into courtship and then marriage.
This book will enlighten you. Get one for yourself, one for your loved one and yet another for anybody whose life you want to touch. It is a worthy investment that will pay all through life. In three parts and nineteen chapters, Tunde Awoyele takes you on a journey of discovery that is intellectually profound and spiritually rewarding. Beyond the cognitive, the book is a spiritual adventure with balanced truths presented in a consistent and magnetic pace.
Having worked with singles and young people for over seventeen years, I am glad that a book like this is coming out at such times as now. The book addresses the most common questions that young minds have in this generation and succinctly provides balanced answers.
From the very first page, you will be glued as you discover wondrous truths. Be blessed as you read!
Kisses and Huggs Club
One of the things that give us an edge in life is knowledge. Knowledge is power, knowledge is life. We are responsible for what we know or don’t know, because whether we like it or not, we bear the consequences of our ignorance and enjoy the dividends of our knowledge.
We are in the days when marriages and homes are breaking. Breakups and divorces are becoming the order of the day because of lack of knowledge or illusion of knowledge. The Bible says “my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” (Hosea 4:6).
Many singles are having marital delay because they lack knowledge and many more are scared of making marital commitment because of the fear of a broken home.
The good news, however, is that an end has come to the oppression of the devil against our homes. God is set to intervene and raise for Himself godly homes that will demonstrate the love that exists between Christ and the Church. He is raising and equipping singles who will establish the standards and pave the way for the revolution that will happen in our home.
I believe the hour has come for relationships, marriages and homes to change for the better. God has always had it in mind because He is the founder of marriage. He is set to expound to you some life changing truths that will impact your life, relationship and marriage in a great way.
This book is not just information, it is impartation. It is a tool in the hand of the Almighty God to prepare youths for marital success. So sit back and relax as you go through this book. I believe the lessons therein will transform your relationship and marriage as they have transformed mine. Your life will never remain the same.
Welcome aboard. It’s time to GET IT RIGHT and DO IT RIGHT!
Several authors and speakers have written and said a lot on relationship, courtship and the likes. Several persons have given different definitions of relationship which ranges from worldly and scriptural view. You need to know that Christian relationship is quite different from any other relationship. What the word of God teaches is courtship before marriage.
Christian courtship starts when a matured single man, after a clear conviction from God that a single lady is meant to be his wife, decides to propose his intention of marriage to the lady and the matured single lady also decides to accept his proposal after a clear conviction from God that the man is meant to be her husband. The period during which they relate together, knowing themselves more and planning their future together before marriage, is what is known as courtship.
From the definition of courtship above, it is important that we expound on some key words which include: (i) Conviction (ii) Intention of marriage
Conviction means a knowing, a firm belief that is accompanied by an inner witness and inner peace that a person is your right partner (which must be as a result of your fellowship with God through prayers and constant study of His word).
Adam said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” (See Genesis 2:23). This is simply conviction.
The Bible says further in Genesis 2:24 that “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” The adverb ‘therefore’ in verse 24 makes it clear that the reason marriage will take place is because of the conviction of the man in verse 23.
Many people start courtship and some even get married on the basis of mere feelings and other reasons without any conviction, only to find out that the relationship or marriage does not last. Any relationship or marriage that is not based on conviction may not last. It is conviction that sustains relationship and marriage. Other things (feelings, attraction etc.) may fail but conviction will keep the relationship and marriage going.
It is very important to seek God’s will in marriage. Deciding who to marry is one of the important decisions to make in life! Let your primary reason for marriage be based on the CONVICTION that a particular person is GOD’s WILL for you.
Marriage is not just a status or an event; it is a continuation of God’s plan for your life. Your marriage is linked to your destiny; both of them are intricately connected. So when making this marital decision, you must ensure you consult God in prayer and have a clear conviction so that you don’t make a mistake. You need to be sensitive and always be in tune with God so that He can direct you and show you HIS WILL.
For you to know the will of God for you, you need to first know God intimately. God wants you to know Him before you know the right man or woman for you. So take time to get closer to God. Intimacy with Him is ALL you need. Adam had a close relationship with God before God brought Eve to him. Jesus said, “SEEK FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS.” Let your priority be to seek after God; first establish your relationship with God and let Him give you direction for your life, let Him form you and make you. Your intimacy with God is very important. Don’t wait until you’re ready to get married before you start seeking the face of God to know His will for you; you need to keep a close relationship with God even now.
The closer you are to God, the more you know the mind of God for you. You don’t choose who to marry by sight, you choose by divine revelation. Your sight is limited, the human senses can only see the present; they can’t see what the future holds. So you don’t depend on your sight.
The Bible says “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:9-10)
Therefore you need God to reveal your life partner to you. Many only depend on what they can see and what people say before they choose their life partner but you need to depend on what God says. I pray that you will not make a mistake in your marital life in Jesus name.
The second keyword in the definition of courtship above is the intention of marriage. Any romantic relationship that does not have marriage as its end is a mere waste of time and resources. If you are not yet sure that the relationship will lead to marriage, then you have not started courtship. So before you start a relationship with anyone, be sure of the goal of the relationship. You need to know if he wants to marry you or if she has agreed to marry you. Many singles go into relationship to try their luck. They are not certain of what will become of the relationship. That is why conviction is very important. Conviction makes your heart to be at peace by virtue of the knowledge that the person is your right partner. So you are not trying your luck to know if it will lead to marriage. You already know that marriage is the goal and your coming together (courtship) is to know yourselves better and plan your future together.
Several persons have said that courtship and dating are the same while some others have refuted this, maintaining that the two are not the same. Consequently, I believe I need to shed light on these different types of relationship.
Dating is a type of relationship that starts when a guy feels he needs more than friendship from a lady and expresses his love or feelings to the lady. Most times, it is a guesswork to see if it could lead to marriage. Sometimes, it could even be without intention of marriage.
I have said before that courtship starts when a matured man, after strong conviction from God that a lady is meant to be his wife, decides to propose his intention of marriage to the lady and the lady also decides to accept his proposal after a strong conviction from God that the man is meant to be her husband. And it’s a period they relate together, knowing each other more and planning their future together before marriage.
“Being engaged” means you have agreed to marry someone. For a Christian, you are “engaged” once you start a courtship with someone.
Dating is not courtship. We can describe dating as a process of getting to know each other to determine suitability, adaptability and complementarity. Usually there is no revelation knowledge or conviction involved and there is no clear commitment to get married. Courtship, on the other hand, is a relationship that starts after the man and the lady have agreed to get married. It is a commitment based on mutual conviction of each one’s suitability for the other.
I believe that courtship is the Biblical model. We get some insight into this in Matthew 1:18 where the Bible talks about Mary being “espoused” to Joseph. The word “espoused” in this context suggests courtship.
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.” (Matthew 1:18)
The difference between dating and courtship is that NO INTENTION OF MARRIAGE is stated in dating though they can later make their intention known after some years of ‘checking’ each other out. But you make your INTENTION OF MARRIAGE known in courtship.
Dating is a guesswork and it’s usually using one’s understanding to find the right partner. And the Bible says in Proverbs 3:5 that “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
Courtship for Christians has to do with DEPENDING SOLELY ON GOD to show you your right partner and proposing your INTENTION OF MARRIAGE to the person after you must have prayed and had a STRONG CONVICTION about the person.
If you are a Christian, I will advise that you don’t do a guess work with your marital life. There is a right person for you to marry. Don’t use your brain to try to select a man or woman. Allow God to show you the person He has created to be your right man or woman. You don’t need to keep dating every guy or lady in order to find the right one; all you need to do is seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness and all other things will be added to you, including the right person for you.
The word compatibility is often used by people in relationship; so also is the word suitability from the root word “suitable” from the scripture Genesis 2:18 where God said He would make a help meet (suitable) for Adam.
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Courtship 101 is a straightforward guide for navigating that crucial phase of life that starts at the point of entering a committed relationship with your intended. Packed with sound counsel and distilled wisdom from God's Word, this book will show you, among other things: 1. What courtship means and how it differs from dating 2. How to sow the right seeds during courtship 3. Things you can do to spice up your courtship and strengthen your relationship 4. The place of parents and mentors in your relationship In his practical and easy-to-read style, Tunde Awoyele answers pertinent questions and shares powerful insights which engaged couples can apply to have a pure courtship and a fulfilling marriage. Courtship 101 is not only a worthy addition to your library but also a treasure trove of principles that will make you a principal in marital affairs.