Jason Silver | Pastor & Author
There’s been a number of Christian social media posts lately about the importance of only dating a good man or woman. And we see lists of points and criteria for what the particular blogger feels are good qualities, and what are bad qualities that we should avoid at all costs.
While to a degree this can be a good thing, and as Christians we should look for good qualities in the person we may one day marry, the reality is if we were honest with ourselves, we all fall short in at least one or more of the points on these lists. Why? Because we all have a sinful nature in our flesh that we must daily put asunder, and choose to walk after the Spirit. There is nothing good in our flesh. None of us are perfect. Jesus even said, “No one is good but God alone.”
So what’s my point here? Well I am certainly not suggesting that you just pick any old Jane or Joe to marry. But that our criteria should be based more on finding someone who loves God and who is actively PURSUING godliness. But at the same time avoiding the false presumption that you can actually find the perfect perfected person. Let me say this clearly…THEY DO NOT EXIST. But those who love God, and really do desire to become more like Jesus; do exist.
I can also promise you this… that no matter who you marry YOU WILL BOTH STILL HAVE ISSUES. Why? Because those who choose to pursue God are not perfected at the point they begin the pursuit, no they are perfected in the process. God is always at work in us, and He uses the weaknesses of our spouse to test and mature our love, acceptance, and forgiveness. The Bible describes it as “Iron sharpening iron.” In fact God uses all our relationships to do this, but the marriage relationship is far more intense due to the commitment level, time spent together, and having become one in fleshly union. This false concept of finding “the right person” has caused more problems in marriages than we realize. I have counseled many couples who after only 2-3 years of marriage begin to doubt that they married the right person. Why? Because they are now beginning to see their spouses weaknesses clearer than ever before.
Just look at who God considered godly in the Bible; David. God called him a man after His own heart, yet David had baggage, lots of it, he blew it BIG TIME many times. But because he was PURSUING God, and was sorry for the things he did, God never stopped calling him a man after His own heart. Look at Gideon; God called him “a mighty man of valour” yet he was found hiding in a wine press, he doubted and questioned God numerous times.
The woman Rahab was a prostitute, Jacob was a deceitful man, Jonah was rebellious, Peter acted cowardly and denied Christ not once, but three times and later as an Apostle acted the hypocrite between the Jews and Gentiles… I mean the list goes on; yet these all continued to PURSUE God in spite of all their issues. Their pursuit of God is what made them godly even amidst their failings..
So all things considered; I don’t think the criteria for your Christian spouse need be met by checking off every point of a lengthy and fully unattainable blog list. We all have issues and baggage. So if your goal is to cross off every issue from your perfect mate list, you will eventually be left with no one. In fact if you were honest with yourself, you don’t even make your own list.
It essentially all comes down to this: Do they love God, are they pursuing Him, and does their life show a desire to become more like Him every day? And are you willing, in spite of their weaknesses, to love them and extend to them the same mercy and grace that Christ extended to you? This was how I chose my wife of 14 years now. And even to this day we are daily faced with one another’s weaknesses, yet it is the basis for which we made our choice that keeps us walking out our love for one another.
“He who finds a wife, finds what is good, and receives favour from the LORD.”
Copyright 2011-12 | Permission to copy, print, or use material is freely granted. Provided that the integrity of the material is not compromised in any manner.