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12 Great Dates

Monthly Instructions

January

Hey guys, Happy New Year! I can not believe it is 2024. This is our last date for this event. We also have our last Paul Tripp event. I am going to provide the link for this event for you to watch at home. I will have to figure out how we will all meet in February and where but I will work on that.  The January date is called Rocky, Paper, Scissors. In this date, you and your spouse will play rock paper scissors. Play the game and winner gets to decide first activity to do. After you finish the first activity together, play again and winner decides 2nd activity. Then when that activity is done you play one final time and the winner decides the last activity to do together. These Activities can be anything. Have fun with it. Be creative, and enjoy.  I will try to forward the Paul Tripp link that I received from Kyle.  Have a great time Kim. 

December

Hey guys, Oh my, please forgive me for being sooo late with this date. It has been a very busy time for me and I totally forgot to post this date for December. I am so sorry.  Well, It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. This can be a stressful time for some, a difficult time for some, and/or it can be a wonderful time for some. I hope we all Find JOY this Christmas season as we celebrate Christ’s birth. As the church body,  We are the bride of Christ. For this date, you and your spouse do something together that celebrates the wonders of this season. It can be anything that brings you both joy.  Have a wonderful date and a Merry Christmas  Kim

November

This month’s date we are calling “Friendsgiving”. It has become a popular event for the month of November over the past few years. We want you to get together with a few couples from GCT ( they don’t have to be doing 12 great dates necessarily but we do want it to be members/visitors of our congregation) either at your house, their house or even a restaurant and eat together and play games together. Enjoy each others company and fellowship together and let’s be thankful we have oneness in Christ. 

October

You and your spouse go do something together that is fall related or reminds you of the fall season. It could be apple picking (ok, Wilmington doesn’t have an apple orchard but if you want to go to the mountains for any reason, you can pick apples together), you could go to a corn maze, a football game, go pick out pumpkins from wherever you like to get pumpkins and either paint them together or carve them, make some kind of fall theme dinner together, walk through the woods and look at the beautiful leafs that may have changed color. It is up to you. Be creative. John and I are in ST Augustine this week and will do our date here most likely and it certainly is not screaming fall here as far as the weather but we have the whole week of just the two of us so we are doing 7 nights of dating. Lol. It does remind me of fall to be here since we came here every fall for many years.  Go enjoy each other and your creator who have is these wonderful seasons to enjoy.  Love is the willingness to have less free time, less sleep, and a busier schedule to be faithful to what God has called you to be and to do as a spouse, parent, neighbor, etc..

September

We are calling the September date – “In Harmony.”  You are going to find 5 song titles that remind you of and/or fit the 5 categories below. The songs can be from any genre and decade. The categories are: o   Your spouse on your wedding date o   Your 1st date o   Your spouse in the morning o   Your present home life o   Your 1st kiss ·      Talk about the songs and/or cue them up and play them Do Freedom through forgiveness sheets beforehand and talk about it.

August

Go on a date together and do a fun activity such as hiking, canoeing, kayaking, axe throwing, bowling, etc…. You guys choose. Spend time talking with each other and telling each other your needs and desires. Read 1 Samuel 1:19-20 and discuss it together.  Following is a RC Sproul devotion on marriage with scripture. Please read it as I know it is long.  This month’s date is focusing on Knowing Each Other Scripture calls for husbands and wives to be physically, emotionally, and spiritually intimate with one another. It is God’s will that husband and wife become one flesh (Gen. 2:24), and the two cannot become one without true intimacy. The Bible speaks of this call for intimacy in many ways. For instance, it is interesting that the Bible in many places, such as today’s passage, uses the verb “to know” when it speaks of the physical relationship between husband and wife. We must note that the Bible does not use this verb because it is ashamed of sexual intimacy. After all, entire portions of Scripture (for example, the Song of Solomon) are dedicated to this aspect of the marital relationship. Rather, the Bible uses this verb to indicate that the intimacy that glorifies God is more than just a physical act; it involves knowledge of one’s spouse in ways that go beyond the physical. For God-glorifying intimacy to exist, we must know our spouses on all levels. But in order for this knowledge to come, we must be willing to spend the time getting to know one another. We are willing to spend much time studying for a career or investigating certain topics that interest us. We cannot learn about such things merely by osmosis. And if we must work hard to know about such things, how much more must we work to know our spouses as we should? We all know this to be true when we are dating. We spend a lot of time and energy trying to get to know the person whom we are dating. Slowly we let down our guard in order that the other person will truly get to know us. Regrettably, too many people stop doing this once they are married. But this is not how things should be; spouses must continue learning about one another for the rest of their lives. This means that we must be willing to share our needs with our spouses. Of course, we must make sure that our needs are not inauthentic. Nevertheless, God has provided marriage as a way to meet many of our authentic needs and desires, and we must share them with our spouses and work to meet their needs, as far as we are able. Enjoy your date!!!

July

Hey guys!  Here is the date for this month. Hope you guys enjoy it!!  ·     Go on a date with the couple from April date and catch up – ·     Share together How are you growing in this process of dating your spouse ·     Share things you love about your spouse – number of things = number of years married.

June

This month we are Rolling the Dice. This month you will roll the die to decide your date. Their are 3 categories 1. Take out food 2. Location - where to go to eat your take out food 3. Activity to do together. Each if you will write down 3 choices for each category. Then you will number your choices 1-6. (3 for each of you). John was the odd number and I was the even numbers in our case but you can do it however you think best. Also, if you are like John and I, you may match up quite a bit on your choices for each category. I guess that’s what being married 37 years does. Lol. It’s ok to match, just number those choices and then Roll The dice to see where your date will take you two. We hope you enjoy your time together. I am attaching a worksheet to do beforehand. It is really something for you to do to understand truth. Also remember to look over these Love is Statements together. Love Is making a daily commitment to grow in love so that the love you offer is increasingly selfless, mature and patient. Love Is being unwilling to do what is wrong when you have been wronged but looking for concrete and specific ways to overcome evil with good.

May

This months date is called – “Dater’s Choice” The two of you have two options for deciding part of your date. ·      option 1 – each of you find a item in your home to take to the pawn shop and sell. Use that money for your date – the one that sold the item for the most money decides where to go and what to do ·      option 2 – go to goodwill and pick 3 items for your spouse to wear on the date We hope you have fun deciding which option to choose and then have fun on your date. I can’t wait to see the pictures. While on your date Read https://bible.faithlife.com/bible/eph%205.%2022%20%e2%80%93%2033 together and discuss the passage. Also remember to read these Love is statements together: * Love is being more committed to unity and understanding than to whining, accusing or being right. * Love is making a daily commitment to admit your sin, weakness and failure and to resist the temptation to offer an excuse or to shift blame. * Love is being willing, when confronted by another, to examine your heart rather than rising to your defense or shifting the focus.

April

This months date is called “Generational Dating”. I am excited! This month you will be joined with one or two other couples of which to go on a date which have 10 or more years difference in number of years married. We want you to get in touch with your group early in the month to plan when and where your date will be. This could be one of the couple’s house, a restaurant, park. It doesn’t matter. You all get to decide. We prayed over the assignments (a few of us) before putting the couples together. We are providing a list of questions (attached at bottom) for you to ask each other over your time together to aid you in getting to know each other better. Each of you please choose at least one question from the list to ask. This should give you at least 4 to 6 questions to discuss throughout the evening. Don’t forget to post those pictures. Have a great time together. 

March

This month‘s date, you are headed to Dollar tree. This will be fun. You each have 15 minutes to shop at dollar tree for 3 items that remind you of your spouse. One spouse will enter alone and shop and when they come out, the other goes in to shop. Then, you can pick wherever you want to go on your date and on the date present each other with the items and tell why you picked these items. Also, below is the link to the his and hers romance sheets. Print them out and fill out part one only of your sheet. (Part two is for another date night in the future). Give each other the sheets and discuss them. You may discover things that are romantic to your spouse that you didn’t even know. Or you may not be surprised at all. Here are the two Love is statements for month to ponder over as well. LOVE IS making a daily commitment to resist the needless moments of conflict that come from pointing out and responding to minor offenses. LOVE IS being lovingly honest and humbly approachable in times of misunderstanding. Enjoy each other and this special time together. Don’t forget to send those pictures of you two on your date.

February

“An Evening to Remember “ is February’s date. We want you to return to a significant place from your past. For John and I, it is returning to the very first restaurant we went to in Wilmington 24 years ago. It doesn’t matter where you go, the two of you choose somewhere special from your past and go there. It could be one of the islands you get to by boat, it could be the beach, a favorite restaurant, or any spot you two both like. Spend the evening together remembering the first time you saw each other. What were you thinking? Was it an immediate attraction or did it come later? When did you know this was the person you would marry? How did he propose? Relive all the excitement of your romance together and recall special times. Also, read Genesis 2:24 together and discuss the meaning of this verse in your marriage.  We are including 2 Love is statements each month for you to read together and think on. These statements are to help us all realize the kind of love Christ has for us and we should have for each other.  1- LOVE IS being willing to have your life complicated by the needs and struggles of others without impatience or anger.  2- LOVE IS actively fighting the temptation to be critical and judgmental toward another while looking for ways to encourage and praise.  Also, March 31 is our first of four group gatherings at the church. We will be doing “The marriage of your dreams” to enable you to dream bigger, love better and experience a deeper relationship with God and your spouse.  Don’t forget to share a picture of the two of you on your date.  You can post it on social media with hashtag #12greatdatesGCT and/or send the picture to mailto:12greatdates@gracetopsail.com. We look forward to seeing these great pictures together every month.  Each picture will be out in the drawing for the grand prize.  Enjoy yourselves on this first date.   Your Sister In Christ, Kim Zino

Introduction Video

Paul Tripp Marriage Conference