Eat my vegetables.
Take care of my skin.
Stay away from the boys.
Get my college degree.
These among many other lifesaving advice about life, my mother drilled into me. But when it came to the "rules of engagement" ... let's just say I had to go to the word of God for redirection and reprogramming!
So, here are some of the sacred cows God had to smash!
1) "Wait until you are older to get married, live life first". Proverbs 5:18 says "…rejoice with the wife of your youth”. I believe the bible said youth for a reason. Not to be confused, the term youth in this context refers to physical age; not spiritual or mental maturity. With that being said, I dare say, you could be open and ready for marriage as soon as your early 20’s. Seek and be open to your heavenly Father’s your timing. Your husband/wife is your partner through life - not a hindrance to it.
2) "Establish your career, so he is walking into your world”. You don't need to have it ALL together! There is this notion that, especially as women, we need to have it all together and he needs to come in on what we have already built. WRONG! One of the joys I get from marriage is building a life together with my husband. "A life"; one life together. Not separate or opposing lives. It is true that we each have our own unique strengths but we use them to work and build together. Especially as a woman, you should have an understanding of God's gifts in you. What moves you? What do you excel in with joy? That will give you a sense of where the Lord is directing you long term. You should be able to express these core components and values that make up YOU. Have an honest conversation about if and how the two of you would complement each other and NOT how you would compete!
3) "Make sure he is making at least six figures, can cook, is at least 5'10 (you don't want short children), is within our culture/race, has graduated from ...etc.” None of these things are bad and inherently assumes husbandly character traits (provider, focused, driven). But don’t put God or him in a box! When I met my husband, he was not my “type” (and I wasn’t his). However, as we began to know each other as friends and allowed the Lord to speak into our friendship, we began to realize we were the “right type” for each other and still are 15 years later! The criteria that he must meet are the biblical ones, everything else will be God led.
4) "Don't chase a man, let him chase you”. I am a firm believer in Proverbs 18:22 “He who finds a good wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord". Notwithstanding, there is a natural "art" to being found that the Lord had to teach me! He positioned my attitude, my appearance, my personality, my sexuality (amongst other things) to be caught. The list reads so intimidating now. However, as I look back, these things naturally shifted the closer I drew near Him. God also used several "Ruth's" to instruct, inspire, and glean the natural things to gain my "Boaz's" favor as Naomi did. Trust Him.
Love you and praying for you,
P.S. I'd love to hear from you! What "advice" have you been given about finding him/her?
God inspired my husband to write a great book titled “From Likable to Loveable: Your Path to Finding True Love”. It will challenge you but it will change your love life! You can pick up a copy here.
If you live in the New York Tri State area, I invite you to enjoy service with us at Life Church! Service is on Sundays at 3pm at 1387 East 96th Street, Brooklyn NY. I can’t wait to meet you!