Dating can be tough. You probably already know that if you’re single. It’s no small matter pursuing a relationship with someone who has the potential to be your spouse one day.
What is God saying to you about marriage?
I made a commitment in my early 20s to serve the Lord through singleness if that were His plan for me. On a Wednesday night about a year and a half later, I encountered God in a way unlike anything I’d experienced before or since.
I was attending church in another town, and a pastor I’d never met came up to me during the worship time and said, “I’ve got something to say to you from the Lord. God has your wife picked out for you. She will have a heart for the things of God.”
I wasn’t awed by that. In fact, I immediately dismissed his comments. Why would God say that to someone who had committed to serving Him through singlehood?
A few days later, I attended a friend’s wedding and saw Jean for the first time. And I knew that I was going to marry her.
God may not speak into your situation with the clarity that he did mine, but He does want to be a meaningful presence in your marriage. Are you seeking Him? Do you believe your heavenly Father is looking out for you and knows what is best for you?
If you’re still looking for “the one,” what characteristics should you look for?
Author and pastor Gary Thomas has excellent advice based on married couples he’s worked with in counseling. He says when you look at why most people get married, three things are usually present: infatuation, sexual chemistry, and compatibility.
The trouble is, none of those – or even all three together – are accurate predictors of future marital happiness. What is? Traits like kindness, patience, self-control, faithfulness, and joy.
Gary encourages singles to seek someone to marry:
- who knows how to handle conflict.
- who will be a spectacular parent.
- who knows how to pray.
- who’s humble.
- who’s a giver, not a taker.
- in whose life God is active.
On our Focus on the Family Broadcast “How to Find a Good and Godly Spouse,” we’re airing a talk by Gary Thomas recorded at one of our Focus on the Family staff chapels. He fully describes each of these characteristics and urges singles to believe that a wise marital choice is a gift that’ll keep on giving your entire life.
Also, get a copy of Gary’s book The Sacred Search for a gift of any amount. Give us a call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459). Or visit our website for more information. And if you can’t afford it, we’ll find a way to get it to you.
And check out Boundless, Focus on the Family’s community for singles. Boundless encourages and equips 20- and 30-something singles in their personal relationships and in their journeys with God through podcasts and a thriving online community.