The First Love series takes a look at how different individuals in The Voice community keep Christ the first love of their lives. Meet: Bianca VanWindt and Jason Callahan, who are engaged.
Placing Jesus at the center of our relationship means these 2 things:
1) Putting Him first in everything we do. Keeping our walk with Him individually has been our FIRST priority the 3 1/2 years we’ve been together.
2) “But seek first the kingdom of God and live righteously and he will give you everything you need.” -Matt. 6:33
By placing God in the center of both of our lives as individuals and also in our relationship means that we have less to worry about. Remembering and knowing that He is always in control is a great reminder when life throws difficulties our way. It keeps peace in our relationship and always keeps us on the same page.
1) How did the chemistry come to be between the two of you?
Growing our friendship before we started dating was a HUGE advantage. Because we already knew our basic likes and dislikes, we didn’t have to waste the first few months of our relationship testing the waters to see if we really liked each other. In addition, when the “honeymoon phase” was over, we still liked each other as people and enjoyed spending time doing things we both liked.
Doing ministry together while being in the internship also really opened our eyes to how we handle stress and pressure. We really saw each other’s true colors, in a good way.
2) Describe engaging with family, friendships, and other relationships and how people respond to you being a couple who follows Christ?
We generally always have a positive reaction from people that know we’re Christian. We are aware that because of the ministry we are both apart of we are on a pedestal, and others do look up to us. We’ve always been conscious of that and tried our absolute best to model a Godly relationship for the students under us, and even for our friends!
3) What is your advice to anyone waiting, or waiting to pursue?
Make sure you are in a season of life that allows for the commitment a relationship takes. Dating requires emotional, financial, and spiritual commitment to bettering the other person. We both recommend dating with the intention of marriage, and not just dating around for fun. Often times when people date around for the sake of dating, they leave emotionally scarred, regretful of decisions they might have made physically, and empty, searching for more. We both openly said going into the relationship that we wouldn’t date if we didn’t see a potential spouse in each other, and it worked out 🙂 Also, make sure you are established in your own life, whether that be in your career, ministry, job etc. When you are totally engulfed in a relationship it can start to become a distraction and your dreams may suffer if you aren’t good at time management or balance. Aside from ministry, we both have our own “passion projects” we work on completely on or own. I (Bianca) lead a women’s ministry, and Jason launched a creative company for musicians a few weeks ago.
4) Does singleness equal loneliness?
Absolutely not. Jason had dated around for a few years before we got together and then engaged; but he was my first relationship. I (Bianca) was single for 19 years and perfectly happy and content doing my own thing! We both think independence is a GREAT quality to have in a romantic relationship, especially a marriage. We’re both VERY independent.
5) What are ways that you think the church should talk about young couples in a relationship or getting engaged? Do you think we do well or could do better?
It depends on the church, but The Voice does a great job of emphasizing all the things we mentioned above. We both grew up in The Voice since high school. We’re both 23, turning 24 this year, so we can confidently say we’ve applied all the principles stated above from years of seeing it not only preached, but lived out from the church staff. We both believe being open about every hurdle that Christians have to overcome in a dating relationship: sexual boundaries, commitment, independence etc, should be openly discussed in the church. If we, the church, don’t do that, young people will turn to the distorted, bias world-view thrown at us from the media. The church has to pave the way!