What Christian Guys Think of Flirting

If you’re like me, you want to “crack the code.” What do guys—particularly Christian guys—think of flirting? I asked some godly guys I know, and here’s what they had to say. (Something I learned from their input: it doesn’t take much to get their attention!)

Interest in flirts is fleeting. Attention for girls who don’t flirt starts slow but lasts. Even flirting guys respect girls who don’t.

Love and pursue Jesus as your number one priority, and guys who want a godly wife will notice. But that’s not really a good reason to pursue Jesus . . . it’s just a side benefit. —Ben

Don’t be afraid to be friendly to a guy you may be interested in. Nothing wrong with making conversation and being cordial. Don’t get carried away, and don’t over-think everything. —Mat

Interest in flirts is fleeting. Attention for girls who don’t flirt starts slow but lasts. Even flirting guys respect girls who don’t. —Sudhir

When is flirting helpful?

Flirting is usually helpful within the context of an already-established relationship. However, I don’t mean that flirting is all the relationship is made of. When I see a “relationship” that consists of nothing but bantering back and forth, trading sarcastic comments, pretending to overreact to something the other person said, and alternating between clinging to each other and pretending to be mad, I know it is not a good relationship. You need a foundation of honesty to build a good relationship on, and flirting is almost all pretending. —Andrew

How is flirting harmful?

If I am flirting and then not pursuing her, I am playing with her heart. Shame on me. Unfortunately, I do this sometimes without meaning to. —Matt

    • It can make you act differently than your real personality, until you don’t know how to be real anymore.
    • It will attract guys to someone who isn’t real.
    • It can be a waste of time.
    • It makes you look shallow/desperate.
    • It is self-focused, rather then Christ or others-focused.
    • You don’t really learn to communicate.

—Andrew

What do you think of a girl when you see her flirting with another guy?

Ugh! It’s fine to have fun with guys, but don’t lead them on. Don’t use guys to get a need in your heart satisfied. Be satisfied in Christ fully, and then have a great time with the guys. —Matt

What do you think of a girl when you notice she’s flirting with you?

I am torn. I so love the attention, but I know it’s superficial. I know at the end of the day I am not really cared for; I am possibly being used to have her needs met. —Matt

Personally, I don’t always notice flirting unless it’s really obvious. At that point I would say it’s not very attractive. —Justin

    • First, I like it! A lot! God has created a desire for emotional closeness with others of the opposite gender, and it is fun! However, God has created us to enjoy the opposite gender within the context of marriage, and I want to be careful to not arouse those feelings too soon.
    • Second, it causes me to be wary. I don’t want a girl to get emotionally attached to me, and flirting is usually a sign that she is emotionally needy. I will almost always pull away more, because I want to be friends with girls that know to run to God and not guys.
    • Third, I want honest, meaningful, and fun conversation. Flirty conversation is rarely honest or meaningful, even though it can be fun. If a girl seems to only be able to relate to me in a flirty way, I don’t really see any point to it. It is certainly not going to keep me around her as much as a good conversation would.

—Andrew

Have you flirted with girls? Do you? If so, why?

Yes, I have. I try not to. It’s fun to stir up the emotions of a girl and fun to get my emotions stirred up . . . but in the end it doesn’t help anything. I like the attention, and she does, too. Where is the line between having fun and goofing off with someone of the opposite sex and flirting? I don’t know. I love to have fun, and I love to have fun in the company of girls. —Matt

Flirting has been a confusing thing to me . . . and something I tend to enjoy more than I would like to admit. —Micah

I struggle with flirting. Flirting is so easy to do, especially when you want someone you like to notice you. But at the same time it often has a self-seeking reward. I want her to notice me, so I flirt with her. We need to be careful that we are treating people in a respectful and God-honoring way. Flirting should not be the basis for love—it is a risky thing to place your hopes in. —Brad

I want honest, meaningful, and fun conversation. Flirty conversation is rarely honest or meaningful, even though it can be fun. If a girl seems to only be able to relate to me in a flirty way, I don’t really see any point to it.

What do you think girls should know about flirting?

First and foremost, a guy can’t meet your needs. Only Jesus can. Love Him with all of your heart. —Matt

That if she wants real, honest, mature friends, she needs to be a real, honest, and mature friend. I would tell her that flirting is not a good basis for a friendship, and certainly not a relationship, and even when it can be added, it should be added in small amounts. —Andrew

Don’t. Enjoy their company, but don’t seek to get your needs met through them. Let them pursue you. Respond to their attention, but don’t give your heart away. —Matt

What do you think of a girl when you see her flirting with another guy?

Usually it causes me to stay away from them. I want real relationships in my life, and it is hard to get past the pretending stage of a flirt. I also don’t want to be distracted; it is very alluring to have a girl focus on me, even if I know it isn’t real, and I like it. I don’t want to use her to satisfy my desire to get attention.

When your friendship consists of nothing but flirting, you end up in a relationship based on neediness. This is not solid ground for a friendship or a relationship. This is not a healthy way to relate to others. The purpose of a godly relationship is to glorify God and point others to Him! —Andrew

How do these guys’ thoughts change your outlook on flirting? Do you still feel like you need to flirt in order to get guys’ attention?

(If so, come back next week for “But If I Don’t Flirt, How Will He Ever Notice Me?”)

PS: Now that you’ve heard what Christian guys have to say about flirting, check out what God had to say to some real flirts in this post by edavis.

About Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula no longer tries to catch guys’ attention by swallowing live goldfish, arm wrestling, and jumping down flights of stairs. (She’s married to a wonderful man now!) She spends her days caring for her son, Iren, and writing for Revive Our Hearts. She’s the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom, and she and her family live in New York. You can catch all her writing on PaulaWrites.com.

HEY, GIRLS! We love hearing from you, but feel limited in the ways we can help. For one thing, we’re not trained counselors. If you’re seeking counsel, we encourage you to talk to your pastor or a godly woman in your life as they’ll know more details and can provide you with ongoing accountability and help. Also, the following comments do not necessarily reflect the views of Revive Our Hearts. We reserve the right to remove comments which might be unhelpful, unsuitable, or inappropriate. We may edit or remove your comment if it:

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  • Christy

    Ok! So like what to you do when you like a Christian guy but you want to ask him out and you can’t flirt? I had no idea that flirting was so bad! And also what if your intentions aren’t to just play with the guy’s heart and you want to have a relationship. Advice would be great! Thanks

    • phendricks

      Hey, Christy,

      This is gonna sound crazy in our instant gratification culture, but I’d encourage you to a) be a good friend to him, b) share your desires with God, c) pursue God wholeheartedly (not for what He might give you but just for who He is), and d) wait for God to give you the gift of a godly guy in His perfect time.

      The Bible doesn’t talk about dating (it didn’t exist back then), but God is the One who created marriage and sex as beautiful gifts that tell the story of His love for us, the Church. If you check out Ephesians 5:22-33, you’ll see that the husband is the head of the wife, and he’s to love his wife sacrificially the way Jesus loved the church by dying on the cross for her. If this is the model for marriage (the guy leading), it seems that this would also be the model for dating. That’s why I think it’s important for the guy to initiate your dating relationship.

      Make sense?

      Praying for you now,

      paula

    • Paul Lashomb

      While I don’t wish to “overwrite” Mrs. Marsteller’s comment as I think her perspective is just as important, I’d like to share my own perspective on it, as well, if I might, even if it goes in a different direction.

      As a single Christian male, in my own experiences, if a woman doesn’t flirt, I will have no idea that she is interested. She can be a good friend, share my desires with God, and pursue God wholeheartedly, to quote Mrs. Marsteller, but I will still have no idea that she’s interested. I think this advice assumes that, so long as women don’t flirt, then the men will eventually just come as long as the women are doing the “right” thing and not flirting. But, I think on the flip-side, this can be a problem because a lot of males are waiting for a sign that she’s interested before doing anything else. It simply addresses what women “should do”, but it still doesn’t explain how males are going to know. It’s just kind of assumed that it will work, when it doesn’t necessarily work that way. I think that’s often why there are a lot of women still in the church and men not approaching them. While I hate to admit it, a lot of men in the church are really nervous when it comes to approaching women first. There are other reason as well that they don’t, but there are a lot of males that don’t approach women unless they know they’ll be accepted and not rejected again. Something such as her approaching him first and becoming friends or even other things like flirting, perhaps when they’ve been friends for a while or even at first depending on the type of flirting, can be a good way to indicate to the males that they’re interested. The same goes for the men, as well. Just as there is nothing on dating in the bible, there is also nothing on flirting.

      And you also make a good point that you might just want to have a serious relationship and not play with his heart. This is a good thing to desire. Flirting is kind of like a tool where you can either use it to get a male’s attention because you want a relationship or you can use it to play with his heart. It’s up to you how you use it. Flirting can be used from bad things. But, just like most things, it can be used for either good or evil and I think a strong case can be made that it’s also good for relationships, as well. If the relationship is ONLY flirting, well, that might be a problem. Not because it’s “wrong”, but just because there’s no depth to the relationship.

      So, I guess my advice would be to flirt “responsibly”, if that makes sense. Maybe introduce yourself to someone, talk to them a little, get to know them some, maybe even flirt a little to let them know you’re interested, and if they seem interested, continue to grow through both your focus on God, sharing your desire for God, flirt a little, and enjoy getting to know each other more deeply.

    • Morgan

      Going to your parents about it (unless you’re an adult living on their own lol, although you could still go to them) would be best I think.

  • DeeAnna Scott

    How to know if you’re honoring a bro in Christ is simple: do you address him how you would address a sis or family member? Even Proverbs goes over body language like pursed lips, there can be more to our body language than meets theeye. Treat the bro like a friend, it guards both hearts. Even in the beginning stages of courstship, its more about learning deeper things about one another over focusing on looks which are fleeting.:-)

  • DeeAnna Scott

    Ask God your heart, you’ll be surprised what the HS will reveal. Go step by step with God about your actions, body language, and words/laughs. Allow God to direct your heart and show you its motive. Even if your heart is pure, we are called to count others as more important than ourselves. Do you notice any of the boys being flattered by your gestures? Could they see it as flirting? Though your heart may not be to tempt, we want to be sure we are not stumbling blocks for our fam. Though others temptations are not to be owned by you, bc we will all equally stand before Christ. So you can’t bear 100% of the burden, BUT act according to the ways God directs you.:-)

  • DeeAnna Scott

    I think we are called to be clear. Maybe ask him what his intentions are, if indeed he is flirting. Like one man said above, it’s not good to flirt without pursing her heart. I would ask a wise person you know if he is flirting, and seek their help in communicating with him. Courtship is designed to lead into marriage, if you can’t marry as of yet say bc of age maybe you two need to learn how to have a God honoring friendship.:-) be blessed.

  • DeeAnna Scott

    We are who Christ says we are. Scripture doesn’t say we are helpless, but to be praised for fearing The Lord. We are made in His Image, so we are to be lights of Christ. The list goes on, but we have the same equality in Christ as our Bros do. Sometimes are roles change, for obvious reasons like child birth.

  • Irina

    I’ve been told many times that I’m a flirt by my girlfriends. But I don’t really understand what I’m doing wrong when I’m around my brothers in Christ! I’m kind of a loud person in general, who loves to talk and laughs very easily, but for some reason whenever I’m around a few specific guys at church, my girlfriends think I like them or that I “act differently” in way of flirting. I can’t seem to understand since all I do is carry on a conversation that often includes teasing and joking around. Am I flirt? Can I just not tell the difference between flirting and having a conversation? I would really appreciate help figuring this out.

    • Taryn

      I totally relate to what you are going through. 2 years ago i was in gym and I was hanging out with my two friends Sid and Steve. Steve was really funny and i kept laughing. When he went to get a drink Sid told me that I liked him. When i denied it she laughed at me and was like ya you do. when he came back I didn’t laugh very much and was pretty much quiet the rest of the time. now i don’t know why i let the opinion of my “friend” get in the way of me laughing and having a good time.

    • Paula Hendricks

      Hey, Irina,

      Ultimately, it’s a matter of the heart, and only you and God will be able to discern what your true motives are. I encourage you to make Psalm 139:23 your prayer:

      “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”

      Also, check out 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 to ask yourself if your interactions with guys meet the “love test.” https://www.biblegateway.com/p

      Hope that helps a bit,

      paula

  • Taryn

    Thank you for writing this. I have been told many times by my friend Sid that i flirt to much. We aren’t friends anymore because shes abusive but when we were friends she always told me to stop hanging out with guys because I only flirt with them. i don’t think this is true because i am just laughing and talking with them so I ignored whatever she said that was related to me hanging out with my guy friends. Another weird thing is that I have noticed so many girls who think to be friends with guys means you have to date them. Like my sis who thinks that whenever she plays dolls or something and there is a boy and a girl it means they HAVE to date and flirt.

  • Erin

    Hi, I’m a christian girl but go to a non- christian school. I always try and set a good christian example and many people know i am a christian because of my distinctive characteristics that divide me from the non-Christians (eg. Swearing). Although, I am friends with a large variety of boys and girls in my school and they are all not christians. My best friend always tells me that i always flirt when i talk to boys. I try my hardest not to because she knows its a subconscious thing i do. But never the less, I still do it (according to her). I dot actually think i am flirting but it may be perceived as though i am because i am very girly and have a girly voice and large hand gesture…but i am like that with everyone. So im really stuck

    • Paula Hendricks

      Dear Erin,

      Ultimately, it’s a matter of the heart, and only you and God will be able to discern what your true motives are. I encourage you to make Psalm 139:23 your prayer:

      “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”

      Also, check out 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 to ask yourself if your interactions with guys meet the “love test.” https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+cor+13%3A4-7&version=ESV

      Hope that helps a bit,

      paula

  • Nicole

    Hi, I made a mistake telling this guy that I like him. He went to a leader whose in charge of a group we go to. Saying that he isn’t interested in dating anytime soon. So I am doing my best not to be friendly, which means I can’t talk much. It will be a red flag of I do. I can’t show any emotions and I can’t be self around others, which I think it’s a little overboard. So I have to keep my mind occupied by doing stuff on my iPod touch and I don’t say anything unless they ask me a question. I’m moving forward and focusing more on God, it’s been about 4 months already.

    What am I supposed to do. Many of the guys feel awkward about this, so they don’t talk to me as well. Should I just leave and not come back. So It won’t be hard on any of them. I just want everything to be how it used to be. We couldn’t play anymore games, one of the boys ask me if I want to play this video game so I said sure. We played and it was the last time we played video games.

    I don’t know what to do?

    • Paula Hendricks

      Dear Nicole,

      I’m so sorry. Let me assure you that it’s okay to talk, to be friendly, to be yourself, to show emotion! Don’t worry about what others will think; focus instead on loving others. If it would help, talk to your leader about how you feel.

      Praying for you!

      paula

    • Naiya Soetan

      Your leadership did not handle that well. There is nothing wrong with telling a guy you like him. If that guy were any sort of man, he would not have had to get the leadership involved to handle this situation. He should’ve just said he wasn’t interested. Live your life Nicole and don’t pay attention to what others think.

  • Be

    I’m glad there’s an article about this. I’ve been reading lots of articles because I had issues with flirting and things related to it. I’m aware of myself when it comes to my feelings and reactions to my surroundings. But I’m oblivious to some things that happen around me, especially when it comes to people’s intentions. Or I notice and dismiss them as a crazy/unimportant thoughts. On one side, I didn’t realize I acted like I was flirting, which is embarrassing when someone (my mom) points it out. It happened when I was a kid, and I don’t know if there were other times I did it. On the other side, I didn’t/don’t realize if someone was/is flirting with me (again, Mom told me.) I try my best not to look/act like I’m flirting with guys, and not to look attractive. And…it reaches a point when I have to ‘ignore’ a guy I like at church. I wrote ‘ignore’ because, even if I don’t look at him, I’m aware that he’s there. I try real hard not be close to him (not sitting with/joining a group of youth when he’s present) or stay talking to him for too long (the last thing happened a few times.) A few times, denied his help. It’s embarrassing to have a crush who goes to the same church as one does. For a second time. And fear that someone other than my family knows (I’m awful at hiding what I feel.) I really dislike going through this. Again…

    • phendricks

      Dear Be,

      Liking someone is not a sin, so why work so hard at hiding it? I’d encourage you instead to focus on heart issues, like if you’re loving him more than God, etc.

      Love,

      paula

      • Be

        I went through this before. The first time, I made a lot of mistakes: some girls noticed and told me, I went to that church (and a project they have) because of him, and I told this guy I used to like that I like him. (In my opinion, I think he didn’t feel the same way; he never said ‘yes’, and he acted like he did like me. Just that his actions made me uncomfortable.)

        I don’t think it’s love what I feel for him. Maybe it’s just a crush. Though it bothers me that it lasted for a year. And I still have it. I have to make sure I’m hiding it because I don’t want to make those same mistakes again. I fear I might be doing that: focusing more on this guy than God.

  • David Micah Shumate

    This was a very insightful article for me. Right now I am going to Colorado Christian University to get my Bachelor’s in Psych. I am a single guy just wanting to get closer to the Lord! I find myself in the midst of other Christians that are having issues with lust, and I myself have struggled with it for a long time, though I’ve been healed. I think I can give some good advice to the ladies on here. Christian guys love it when you are genuinely interested in who we are, much, much, much more so than when you try and start flirting with him (too soon that is, or in a sexual way). Right now I am in an uncomfortable situation with a fellow student at the school I go to. I met her in class a few weeks ago, and she is a very nice person to talk to. I don’t mind being friendly to her, and I want to honor her by drawing her closer to Jesus. The problem is, she is trying to draw me closer to herself, and that’s what makes me uncomfortable. She misinterpreted my kindness and love towards her as “I like you, we should get together.” That was not what I was communicating to her at all. She ended up flirting with me and slipping in the words that she liked to “cuddle up when its as cold as this outside.” When she said that to me, that made me feel really uncomfortable, as I could tell that she wanted something from me. I want to be kind to her, but I think I will have to let her know that I don’t like her in that way at some point. You will end up meeting your wife/husband in God’s good timing, and when you are ready. All you have to do really is remain faithful and DEVOTED to God. Pray for your furutre spouse! I am starting to do this myself and it gives me a lot of peace knowing that I will bump into a Godly woman someday who I will be able to share Jesus with. If you really like someone, you will draw them closer to Jesus, not yourself, in the relationship. Genuine love for others gives towards others WITHOUT asking for anything in return. In other words, we won’t be trying to draw people to ourselves. That is a selfish way of approaching any relationship. We will want to project the unselfish, unconditional, and agape love of Jesus to our Brothers and Sisters in Christ. I hope this encourages my sisters and brothers in Christ to allow God’s sacrificial love to pour out and flow through you out to others! Thanks for posting this article, very helpful.

  • Man Of Steal

    Flirting is wrong on so many levels unless you’re married. I hate women who flirt for fun, attention seeking whores.

  • SilverPhoenix

    I actually looked up a question about flirting because someone on a site messaged me and wanted to flirt with me. I said that I’m a Christian and don’t like that kind of attention and thankfully he left me alone after that. Anyway, I have always been a bit of a shy person and am trying to branch out and talk to guys because I remember a few years ago when a Christian guy tried to talk to me at school I couldn’t even make eye contact and felt incredibly uncomfortable. I am trying to make an effort to improve myself… I just hope I don’t come off in this way (flirty)! I would not consciously imply that kind of interest, but please pray for me that I can be myself and be confident around guys as well as girls.

    thanks for writing this article!

    • Dear Silver, It doesn’t sound like you need to worry about flirting! Way to go–keep focusing on thinking of and treating guys as fellow image-bearers of God. Nothing to be afraid of! Praying for you now.

  • John

    It makes me think they’re stupid, silly, immoral, and slutty. If I like you I’ll approach and get to know you. If you’re not interested, tell me and I’ll leave you alone. I know that’s too simple for those of you who love drama, but that’s the way I work.

    • Morgan

      I like that. Simplicity is always the better route.

  • _dis_bod_ee

    Worst mistake I’ve ever made in my life was falling for a girl who I didn’t really know was Christian. She had a pretty face and seemed perfect in every way, but in actuality she’s very annoying and her values are very very different than what God values. In all the time that I’ve known her, she’s dated a guy whilst heavily flirting with several others, and then a few months later, dated another guy who she left 4 months later. That guy has dated 3 girls in the span of a year, and is not a Christian. I know she likes me, but it’s probably only for my looks, just like how a TON of girls stare at me too. I liked her because I felt that God “planned” for us to be together, well… I’m losing faith in that. I know she goes to Church, but I don’t think she really follows God with her heart. I’ve given her the benefit of the doubt so many times that she’s changed, but I suppose people don’t really change just for you. She’s not a bad person, just somebody I would not want to be in a committed relationship with.

    I don’t flirt with anyone, and I’d like to think I interact with all girls, whether I find them attractive or not. I wish society would stop putting such an emphasis on attraction, because it’s only an image.

  • Paul Lashomb

    As a male Christian who’s looking for a potential spouse, this was actually pretty discouraging. I’ve never understood why there is such a huge stigma against flirting. To me, if a woman loves the Lord and can still flirt just fine, that, to me, is extremely attractive. This says that if a woman flirts, the conversation is “fake”, but, to me, if she has no interest in flirting because she thinks it’s “wrong” or something, it just feels like she’s putting up a “overly spiritual front” which feels fake, to me. It comes off as a sign that she’s disinterested and cold. However, if she accepts the flirt and has fun with it, that, to me, is an indication that she’s interested in deepening the personal connection we have. Flirting is the main sign that I look for to see if a woman is at all interested. If she doesn’t flirt, then I will assume that she just sees me as a friend and has no interest in me. She can become a very close friend and share really good conversations with me, but I will never have a clue that she’s interested until the moment she finally flirts. Flirting is like a language, allowing one to communicate one’s attraction to the other. You don’t have to develop the friendship simply through flirting, but you can at least indicate the interest through flirting. If you want to deepen it more, then you can still talk about other things, too. But, at least, if you flirt some, you let the other person know that you’re not just interested in being friends, but you see the potential for more than that, perhaps.

    It could, of course, simply be the definition of flirting that this article is using is different from my own. A definition and a few examples might be helpful to clarify the type of remarks or behavior that this article is in opposition to.

    • Andrew Clemons

      Hey, Paul! Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this discussion!
      Part 1 of this article defined flirting: http://www.liesyoungwomenbelieve.com/chivalrous-flirting-an-oxymoron/
      I got to answer some of the survey questions, and I used the second Merriam Webster dictionary definition to define flirting: :
      2: To behave amorously without serious intent: i.e. “He flirts with every attractive woman he meets.” Another definition that I looked up was, “Deliberately arousing sexual desire without intention of fulfilling that desire”.
      The way the culture uses the word may be different, but that is the meaning.
      Normal jokes, fun, teasing, and good interaction with and conversations with girls are great! I have lots of girls in my live that I interact with: some older and some younger. I rule my conduct with 1 Timothy 5:2: Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. As long as I can say that this is true before God in my life, then I am free to enjoy friendships with the women around me. Does any of that make sense? I definitely see what you are saying, and can agree with it.
      Andrew

    • Sarah Vaughn

      Amen, brother! 😀