First dates can be exciting and scary. If you’ve been single for a while, you may be anxious. You also may be having a difficult time adapting to getting back into the dating world. Sometimes it’s hard to open up to someone because you don’t know them or trust them yet, which makes asking personal questions pretty difficult. It may also be hard to come up with the right questions to ask. In today’s dating landscape, it can especially difficult for Christians to find someone who aligns with their values and truly keeps God at the center of their life.

That’s why getting to know someone when you’re dating is so important. When we aren’t afraid to ask certain questions, we have the opportunity to learn so much about the person sitting in front of us. Don’t you want to know who you may be preparing to invest your time in? It’s important that you know if they are emotionally available and if they are truly ready to be involved with them. Here are eight things Christians should ask while dating. .

'What do you like to do?'

On the first date, learn what they like to do in their spare time, what they are passionate about and what they value. Is God at the top of their list? You should know what matters to them and they should also know what matters to you. Is their answer related to their job or their favorite hobby? Remember, whatever their answer is will become a frequent part of your life if you begin a relationship with them. If they have trouble answering this question, this could indicate that they haven’t channeled their passion yet or that they lack the motivation to. How we feel about the things we do matter.

'What are you looking for in a relationship?'

Are they looking for something casual and short-term, or are they looking for a long-term, committed relationship? It’s important that you immediately determine what they are looking for before you invest yourself emotionally. It’s also important that you’re clear about what you’re looking for also, so that you don’t mislead them or ignore your own needs. What’s the point in getting invested in someone if they aren’t looking for the same things you’re looking for in a relationship? Remember, not everyone in the dating world is looking for the same things you are so if you’re looking for love, make sure they are looking for the same thing. Christians should not waste their time dating people who aren’t looking for a serious, committed relationship. Don’t let society pressure you.

'How long ago was your last relationship?'

This question will open the door to a number of other imperative questions: Was their last break up a few years ago, a few months ago, or a few days ago? Are they currently dating other people? Are they open to dating right now? These answers may reveal if they are emotionally available yet. It will also reveal how serious they are about investing in a serious, committed relationship. The answer may also reveal that they have moved on and are willing to invest in the love again. If you know where their heart is, you can better predict the outcome.

'What happened with you and your ex?'

This is the second part to the previous question. It’s important that you understand their past before moving forward. This one question can reveal a lot about a person – what they’ve been through and where their heart is. People often do a good job at hiding their fears and insecurities on a first date until their past shows up. We often don’t bring it up on the first date because we don’t want to make the person uncomfortable but it’s something we want to know and will eventually come to know, whether they want you to or not. They may struggle with their response or the answer may come easy. This question will help you see this person in a different light. You may be surprised at how much you’re able to relate to their responses. .

'What’s something I should know about you?'

This question is particularly revealing because it gives you a glimpse of who they really are. When you first start dating, both parties are often more willing to be open as they get to know each other. Use this to your advantage. Ask them to reveal something that they may not reveal otherwise. Often times, they will give you hints at who they are with their body language and remarks they make during the date. This is a chance to find answers that will reveal the most about your chances of moving forward. It’s better that you know these answers early on.

'What qualities are you looking for in a partner?'

What are his or her ideal attributes? Are they looking for maturity, openness, honesty, integrity, respect, success or empathy? Are they looking for someone who is God-fearing, Bible-reading and prayerful? This question is important, not only because it reveals what they desire in someone, but because this will often mirror their own qualities. If trust is important to them in a partner, most likely they will be a trustworthy partner. Many of these qualities won’t be apparent to us when we first meet someone, but asking this question will help you get a better understanding of what they are looking for and if you match up.