Now we come to I Kissed Dating Goodbye, The Dating Trap, and Passion and Purity; even after my careful scouring, I have few problems with I Kissed Dating Goodbye. Joshua Harris is sound and honest and practical; most of what he says can be applied to everyday life. Plus, unlike other authors, he doesn’t cram his ideas down the reader’s throat and say that you must follow them or else die! :-) Ditto to The Dating Trap by Martha Rupert. I heartily recommend these two books to every person over fourteen.
Passion and Purity is a sweet story of Jim and Elizabeth Elliott’s romance; basically good with great suggestions. I have but one criticism and it is an important one. Jim tells Elizabeth that he loves her, yet, does not propose; he merely states that he is not sure if he is supposed to marry. “Well why did you say anything?!?” My mind shouts at him as I read. :-) Elizabeth writes that her own father told his sons never to say, “I love you” without following with “Will you marry me?” I probably would have been neatly blunt with him; some people need a firecracker lit under them. Jim, from what I can tell, was kind and nice but rather intense and seems to think over things too deeply. Later in the narrative, Elizabeth recalls speaking with Jim’s mother. “I helped Jim’s mother with the laundry one morning, and as she was hauling the sheets out of the machine she suddenly said, ‘I know these Elliott men. They can never make up their minds. If I were you I’d tell Jim it’s now or never.’ I knew very well what Jim’s answer would be: never. I would just as soon leave myself room for hoping. I felt annoyed at her advice. She was putting Jim in the same box with the rest of them, his father and two brothers. I was trying hard to believe that he had a better reason than merely being unable to make up his mind. His mother shook my confidence.”6 Well, golly, I wonder why? Could it be, that his mother was telling you what you knew all along, but refused to realize? I would think that as his mother, she knows a lot about him and a guy really cannot be that different from his father and brothers. Here’s what I think: if you’ve found the person you love and want to marry; get married as soon as possible. If you’ve found them, that would mean that God brought you together; don’t wait for Him to spell it in fireworks because He already has! Let it be and quit over-analyzing! You never know what might happen; Jim and Elizabeth were married for exactly two years and three months before he was killed by the Acua Indians. It was five years from the time Jim told Elizabeth he loved her until they finally got married. Looking back, I’m sure Elizabeth wished that Jim would have made up his mind faster. Here’s a conversation from the movie Rear Window, between L.B. Jeffries, (Jimmy Stewart) and his nurse Stella, (Thelma Ritter). “Stella: Look, Mr. Jeffries, I'm not an educated woman, but I can tell you one thing. When a man and woman see each other and like each other, they oughta come together—wham!—like a couple of taxis on Broadway, and not sit around analyzing each other like two specimens in a bottle. Jeff: There's an intelligent way to approach marriage. Stella: Intelligence! Nothing has caused the human race so much trouble as intelligence! Jeff: Now, we've progressed emotionally. Stella: Baloney! Once, it was see somebody, get excited, get married. Now, it's read a lot of books, fence with a lot of four-syllable words, psychoanalyze each other until you can't tell the difference between a petting party and a civil service exam. Jeff: People have different emotional levels. Stella: When I married Miles, we were both a couple of maladjusted misfits. We are still maladjusted misfits, and we have loved every minute of it. Jeff: Well, that's fine, Stella. Now would you fix me a sandwich please?”7 Everyone ought to watch Rear Window; they might learn a thing or two. :-)