As a single person, one of the most important decisions in your life that you’ll ever make is who you’re going to marry. Marriage can be wonderful and glorious when two believers walk towards pleasing the Lord in their lives….or it could feel like you’re living a life long prison sentence being that God hates divorce. So choosing your mate is a big deal so you probably don’t want to make a mistake!
(And for those that are already married that are reading this….perhaps you feel that you didn’t make the wisest choice in your spouse. If that’s how you feel remember a few things about our great big God: It is His job to redeem, restore, and transform lives so don’t lose heart regarding your marriage!)
So back to my single friend (and any mama who’d like to share these truths with her kids)…
- What if you had someone in your life who knew exactly what to look for in your future spouse? Would you listen to that person?
- And what if that person also knew exactly what you needed in your future husband? Would you take their advice regarding their choice for you?
- And lastly, what if that person knew exactly where to find that person? Again, would you heed their counsel?
Perhaps you can call this Person a Matchmaker?
My sweet single sister, did you know that God has ALL those answers? After all, our God is all-knowing, He is all-powerful, He spoke the world into existence, and He created you and knows the number of hairs on your head. Not only can He do all things but He is the Perfect Matchmaker for you and your future husband.
As Believers, it is a common thing to hand over so many aspects of our lives to the Lord. For example, we pray for the Lord’s will for what job we should have, or where we should live, or what school we should go to, etc. But sometimes it seems like we stop short of asking for the Lord’s will (His choosing) for who our spouse should be. Instead, we make our 2nd most important life decision (the 1st being that we’ve given our heart to the Lord) based off of lust and emotions. Doesn’t that system sound absolutely ludicrous?
The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9
Well, I propose a brighter path for the choosing of a spouse and this one is based on God’s choice.
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose hope is the LORD. Jeremiah 17:7
Let’s take a look at the Lord’s wisdom regarding what not to settle for in your future spouse. My prayer for you is to let God qualify or I should say in this case, disqualify, a potential suitor.
1. He is not a follower of Jesus Christ. Don’t. Even. Go. There. My. Friend!
Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? 2 Cor. 6:14 (NKJV)
I like the New Living Translation on this verse as well:
Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers. How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? 2 Cor. 6:14
2. He is not passionate about the things of the Lord. You can tell this by what he talks about, what he spends his money on, and who he spends his time with.
And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. Mark 12:30
3. He lacks integrity. Is he a habitual liar, schemer, and deceiver.
Better is the poor who walks in his integrity than one who is perverse in his lips, and is a fool. Proverbs 19:1
4. He does not want to take a leadership role, yet, he is called to lead his wife. If he can’t lead you before marriage, don’t expect him to lead you when you’re married.
For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Ephesians 5:23
5. He is a passive man afraid to take the lead. Being that God has commanded the wife to submit to her husband’s leadership, if your future husband is passive, this will make your job all the more difficult!
He is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. James 1:8
6. He is spiritually immature. Who wants to marry some weak-minded Christian who will be tossed to and fro? (Remember, you have to follow him!)
We should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting. Ephesians 4:14
7. He has no desire to lead you spiritually even though he is commanded by God to do so.
For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. Eph. 5:25,26 (NLT)
8. You don’t respect him. If you don’t respect him before marriage you’ll have a big hurdle to climb over once you’re married!
And let the wife see that she respects her husband. Ephesians 5:33
9. You would be unwilling to submit to his headship when you’re married.
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. Ephesians 5:22
10. He rules over you, bosses you, and tries to control you. He does not lead you the way Jesus led. Jesus was a servant-leader. Read more about the husband being a Ruler, here
Use these scriptures as a guide and filter for when single men cross your path. Now keep in mind that your future man will not be perfect for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23. With that said, you should be looking at his overall character. Is he growing towards the Lord? Is he repentant when he falls short and sins? Or does he not care that he has grieved God based on his sinful words and actions? This will give you a good indication of his heart.
There’s a lot more than can be added to this list so my encouragement to you would be to read through the book of Proverbs to find out more regarding what makes a godly or ungodly (the bible refers to them as a fool) type of man.
Also, take the time to read the book of 1 Timothy, Chapter 3 and find out what the Word says about being an overseer or Elder/ Bishop, along with a deacon. Even though this chapter refers to these men as being married, you can still glean a lot from their god-fearing character.
Prior posts in the Smitten For Him Single Series:
4 Things You Need to do Before You Meet Prince Charming
To Date or Not to Date, That is the Question
Up next, The #1 Purpose for Marriage.
Live a poured out life for Christ,
I’m a married mom now but I wrote how I got from broken and single to happily married in my blog post: http://happyandblessedhome.blogspot.com/2012/05/equally-yoked.html
This is written for all the single friends in my life whom I love with all my heart. If this offers any new insight or wisdom I would be eternally grateful. I hope it will be a blessing.
I had a conversation on this topic (in reverse) with my 22 year old son. His girlfriend had given him an ultimatum of sorts. Could he marry someone who didn’t believe in God? We discussed many of those points you mentioned. But, I also told him he had to think of his children. Didn’t he want to give his children the same HOPE of knowing Jesus he had, the hope of a satisfying earthly life and a glorious eternal one?
Jolene, so glad to see you mention submission. It’s a tough topic. Thanks, and I’m saving the entire series for when my girls are a little older!
I am confused, what exactly do you consider “passive”? My husband is not aggressive, not a type-a personality and is extremely laid back. Just because he isn’t a “leader” type does NOT mean he isn’t capable of being a leader spiritually. In fact, he is a great leader in our home. He just does it in a quieter, less showy way than most men. He is a gentle person, and I love that about him. I think it is a great disservice to men to insist that they have to be ONE certain type of person in order to be acceptable for marriage. Nobody fits in one type of box, and God made my husband perfect for my marriage, even if he is a bit on the passive side.
God calls the husbands to be the head of the wife so it does not matter what ones personality is; whether he is laid back or type A personality. A god-fearing husband takes the lead and he is not afraid to assume responsibility for his family. It sounds like your husband does just that.
A passive man (not meaning in personality) is one who would shirk this responsibility. I hope that makes sense!
Good post! Being sure of God’s leadership in this area is so important! As far as personality types, God made us all different, just because a guy may not be a take charge kind of person doesn’t mean he won’t make a wonderful husband.
You mentioned sharing tips, well here are some things I was either told or have learned along the way:
Is he consistent in his spiritual life, work habits, disposition, etc. What is his attitude toward women in general & his mom/sister specifically ? You want a man who will cherish & love you unconditionally. Don’t base your relationship off what you have read in romance books/fairy tales- the “happily ever after” part takes commitment & effort on both sides, but it is definitely worth it!
Relax!! God has everything in control! Seek His will in your life. Put God first. Don’t depend on a guy to make you happy (he is human after all & we all make mistakes).
Thank you for posting this. You said: 8. You don’t respect him. and
10. He rules over you, bosses you, and tries to control you. This is true, and if he does not treat you with dignity and respect before marriage, why would you expect him to act differently after you get married? Usually people are on their best behavior before marriage, while they’re still trying to impress the other person, and after they get married, things slacken off. Not the way it should be, but it does happen. If you notice behavior that sets off any internal alarms before you wed, take a good, hard look at that person’s personality and issues. Do you really want to live with that? ~Susan
Jolene, thank you SO MUCH for this! I have been struggling with several of my girlfriends about this very thing. One of them desires so much to find a man exactly like the Godly one you described, and she is getting discouraged that none of the men who are interested in her are that kind of men, so she’s not dating anyone right now Another of my friends has gotten into a bad habit of dating any guy who seems interested in her, and all of them have been complete losers! It’s so frustrating for me to see them, and others, struggling in these and various ways, and I don’t know how to help. This post is exactly what I’ve been needing. I’ve already shared it generally on facebook and I’m planning on sending it privately to the two friends I mentioned. Please pray for Sara and Valerie! 🙂
Thank you so much for this.
I was so thrilled when I found this site today! I immediately sent a link to my best friend that is engaged!
In reading this article, I did have a question and I would love to hear what you think. My boyfriend says he is a Christian and has grown up in the Church, but he is struggling with the nature of Christ and Him being the Son of God. It has been a struggle for the last year (so prior to starting to date in May of 2012). What are your thoughts on that?
I have been swamped with comments and it’s taken me at least 10 minutes to scroll through to find yours again! The blog has just been bombarded with comments in the last few days, so sorry it’s taken me a while to respond to your question.
It concerns me greatly to hear about your boyfriend’s biblical perspective regarding our Lord. If I were in your situation, honestly, I’d get out of it. If you’ve read my story regarding where I was before I came to Christ… marriage, abuse, divorce, past sexual sins, etc, as well as how God transformed my life and choose my Beloved, then you know I’m not messing around! I want the best for you and most certainly, God wants the best for you. Your man, at least not right now, is not God’s best for you. You want your future husband to love Jesus more than he loves you. And here’s why…marriage will become hard, then, kids come and marriage becomes even harder, trials will come and marriage will get even harder still. These circumstances wear on everyone. We’ll have a tendency to not be so loving and respectful to one another, HOWEVER, a Godly man will still seek to please the Lord by loving his wife like Christ loves the Church. That is his command. Right now your man is struggling with basic biblical truth of who Christ is. (I know a gal whose husband went through this exact experience but they were already married and with 4 kids. She’s miserable and following him to churches that are cults.) 🙁
Is your man living for the Lord now? If he’s not living for Christ today, while you’re dating, don’t expect him to do so when you get married.
If you’re going to follow God’s design for marriage, the Husband is to be the head of the home as well as the spiritual leader. And, yeah, God commands a Godly wife to submit and respect her husband. Your man can’t lead you spiritually right now because of his own struggles. I’d back off from the relationship until he figures out his beliefs.
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