How to Influence an Unbeliever Without Falling in Love

You met Phillip a month ago when you joined the gym.  A few times, you exercised side by side with him which led to several conversations.  One discussion led to your views about God and Phillip says that he is not sure that God even exists. Like any sincere follower of Jesus, you want Philip to experience God’s love and forgiveness through Jesus Christ.

How can you influence an unbeliever (a man) for Christ while protecting your heart?

Your heart is in the right place.  However, you need to be very careful in the way you go about influencing him for Christ.  I have seen too many Christian women fall in love with unbelieving men.  


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The results can resemble the following: 
  • She ends up marrying him. Read “Should you consider marrying an unbeliever?”
  • Her heart and mind are tormented because there is a conflict between loving the unbeliever and obeying God. 
  • Her attachment to him makes it difficult for her to emotionally attach to another man. She becomes emotionally unavailable.
  • The unbeliever has a hard time letting go.

Influencing an unbeliever (man) usually starts as a friendship, then romantic feelings develop leading to a I-can’t’-do-without-you relationship.  

“ A good intention, with a bad approach, often leads to a poor result.” Thomas A. Edison.

If your intention is that he comes to know Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior, then there is a better way.

7 tips to influence an unbeliever without falling in love with him:

1) Share the gospel with him.

It is certainly fine to share the gospel with an unbelieving man.  We are called to preach the gospel to every creature and men are no exceptions. Therefore, trying to influence an unbeliever for Christ is noble task.

2) Allow a Christian man to disciple him.

Men do a better job at discipling other men, and not women.  Although God can certainly use a woman to help him to grow spiritually, another man (or men) will hold the key to helping him fulfill his unique purpose as a man

Benefits of man-to-man discipleship:
  • Teach him how to lead.
  • Challenge him to do what is uncomfortable, but necessary.
  • Teach him to be a warrior.
  • Model to him the role that men should play in the church.
  • Correct him when he is wrong.  
  • Show him how to pursue a woman.
  • Demonstrate how to be an honorable husband.
  • Wrestle with God’s principles man to man.
  • Show him how to be a father, biological and spiritual.

As soon as possible, connect your friend to a faithful male follower of Jesus who will take it seriously.   Pray that God surrounds him with godly male influence.  If he has issues with other men, then pray for his healing and deliverance.  For the most part, men, who are determined to have only you to mentor him spiritually, have ulterior motives.  Don’t let him tie up your head!

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17

“Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice.“ Proverbs 27:9

3) Limit your interactions.

Have you heard of the “proximity effect”?  The more you interact with him, the more you will notice the things you have in common and the qualities that you like about him.  At the same time, you will begin to ignore the things that you don’t like. Before long, you might be questioning yourself, “does it really matter if he’s not a Christian?”  

Therefore, if you want to protect your heart, limit the amount of time you communicate with him.  Triggers for love and attraction can be his smell, height, smile, voice, and even shared experiences. Falling in love is easy! When you’re in love, you will become immune to his faults.  Psychologists term this the “love effect”.

4) Be careful what you share.

I have attended countless retreats.  At those retreats ranging from two to five days, total strangers become close friends in a relatively short span of time. Why? The reason is that we have had time to share deeply with each other.  When you share your life, your struggles, your pain points, your victories with another person, a bond develops. Therefore, if you don’t want to fall in love with an unbelieving man, do not share deeply.  Leave that type of sharing for your close Christian friends and the man that you will one day marry.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23

5) Know what you find attractive.

You need to know what will make you fall for one man and not another.  You also need to know your own vulnerabilities. Not all unbelieving men you will find attractive.  But some would have qualities that will make you weak!😉

Attributes that make you think “what manner of man is this?”😂:
  • Intelligence 
  • Courage
  • Articulate 
  • Well-read
  • Risk-taker
  • Deep voice
  • Smells good
  • He reminds you of your father (in a good way)
  • Confidence 
  • Tall
  • Masculine 
  • Physically strong 
  • Chivalrous 
  • Popular 
  • Fitness enthusiast
  • Wealth 
  • Opinionated
  • Skillful lyricist

Also, be aware of your own vulnerabilities.  For me, the nights are so romantic. Therefore, it is a vulnerable time for me.  If you’re like me, talking to an unbeliever late at nights will be a no-no. For some women, you are more emotionally vulnerable close to your menstrual cycle.  Know yourself!

6) Pray for him.

You are not his savior.  God might certainly use your life to point him to Jesus.  However, only God has the power to save.  If you are really serious about your friend coming into a relationship with God, then make it a matter of consistent prayer between you and God.  Only God is able to save.

7) Consider his feelings.

Women are born with a maternal desire to nurture others. When it comes to adult men, this desire to nurture and even rescue men can cause problems.  Although you have it clear in your head that he is not the one for you and your only intention is that he comes to Christ, you also need to be mindful that he has a heart.  He can fall in love with you if you don’t erect boundaries to protect his heart as well.  For instance, cooking or baking for him is not a good idea. There is some truth to the saying, “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.”

Related Articles:

How to be good friends with Christian men

What to do When You Like a Guy

Should You Consider Marrying an Unbeliever?


Your desire to influence an unbeliever, who is a man, is a good one. God has allowed you to meet him for a reason.  However, you need to consider how you will influence him for Christ.  You’re a woman and he’s a man and developing an attraction is easier than we would like to admit. Therefore, keep your focus on loving and obeying God.  Let that motive guide your interactions with your friend. 

I once fell in love with an unbelieving man.  I told myself that God can use me to bring him to Christ. God didn’t need my help! Have you ever tried to influence an unbeliever and ended up falling for him? What lessons did you learn? What would you do differently? Comment below and let me know.  Thanks for stopping by!


With love & laughter,

Kimberly Garth

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Ever feel like you don’t know what a godly man is looking for in a wife? Our Irresistible Godly Woman Checklist will give you clear insights so you can stop guessing and start preparing … while reaching your full potential as a single Christian woman.