What Is 'Ring By Spring?'
Start writing a post

We Need To Throw Away The Toxic 'Ring By Spring' Culture

Give yourself time to get to know the person.

We Need To Throw Away The Toxic 'Ring By Spring' Culture

Here at Liberty University and at many other Christian colleges, there's a phrase we like to call "ring by spring." For those of you who don't know what it means, it refers to people who start dating during the fall semester and get engaged just a few short months later, in the spring. And although it's a slightly derogatory term, it's still very realistic in Christian culture. But as a Christian who has been in a relationship for a year now, I can say confidently that I don't like "ring by spring" at all.

I don't like that in this atmosphere, students are greatly pushed to have a significant other - and when they don't, they feel like outcasts. I don't like that when someone finds himself/herself single among multitudes of taken people, the first consolation to that person is "Don't worry, God has someone out there for you." (Hint: it's actually okay to be single - not everyone ends up getting married - some people don't marry until midlife or even later.) I find it sad that some students go to a Christian college just hoping that a relationship is ultimately what they'll get out of it. And I really, really feel uncomfortable by the pressure that's put on students to commit to marriage so quickly.

I've always heard it said that psychology declares it takes two years to get to know a person fully in a relationship. So why then does Liberty, and the young Christian culture as a whole, push its youth (specifically young women) to say yes to the dress before they even meet the parents? Paul did amazing things for the Lord, and he never married. In fact, he even said that sometimes it's better not to marry (!). Yet I still see so many girls and guys feeling incomplete in life if they don't have a partner. And for the people who are coupled up, it seems that marriage must be the only logical option - even if the couple has only been dating a few weeks.

A few days ago, my roommate said something that I really agreed with: God doesn't necessarily want us to go into relationships knowing 100% that our significant other is "the one" immediately. She said that if it's right, God will reveal it in time. In time. "Time" is the key word here. And while I'm not discrediting the stories of people who saw their partner and immediately knew that was the person God wanted them to be with forever (and then lived happily ever after), the reality is that it just isn't like that for the vast majority of us.

So to the Christians who are dating: don't rush it. Don't give in to the pressure of rushing it, either. I know it can be super stressful and hard to just chill out and enjoy the moment while the environment around you is constantly screaming at you to think about the future. But there's an old adage that goes, "The past is history, the future is a mystery, but the present is a gift." And that's true. None of us really know the future - only God does. So relax and let God do the worrying. Meanwhile, you can get to know your partner better.

And to the Christians who are not dating but who feel like outcasts because they aren't: you're not an outcast. You are fully known and fully loved by God. And while, yes, it can be frustrating to not have a boyfriend or girlfriend in a "ring by spring" culture/environment, know that God has a perfect plan for your life, one that is the best for you. Trust him on a deeper level, and you will see in the end that He will work out all things - whether that includes a ring or not.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less
a man and a woman sitting on the beach in front of the sunset

Whether you met your new love interest online, through mutual friends, or another way entirely, you'll definitely want to know what you're getting into. I mean, really, what's the point in entering a relationship with someone if you don't know whether or not you're compatible on a very basic level?

Consider these 21 questions to ask in the talking stage when getting to know that new guy or girl you just started talking to:

Keep Reading...Show less

Challah vs. Easter Bread: A Delicious Dilemma

Is there really such a difference in Challah bread or Easter Bread?

loaves of challah and easter bread stacked up aside each other, an abundance of food in baskets

Ever since I could remember, it was a treat to receive Easter Bread made by my grandmother. We would only have it once a year and the wait was excruciating. Now that my grandmother has gotten older, she has stopped baking a lot of her recipes that require a lot of hand usage--her traditional Italian baking means no machines. So for the past few years, I have missed enjoying my Easter Bread.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments