Should I pray for a marriage partner? What traits should I look for?
Suggested Daily Reading: Genesis 24:1-27
Yes, you should pray for God’s guidance in all aspects of your life, and especially for such important decisions as a marriage partner. While God calls some to serve Him through life as a single, such as the Apostle Paul, His general plan is that we marry (Gen 2:21-25). Marriage is the most intimate, influential and important of all human friendships, therefore who we marry is one of the most important decisions we make in life.
When praying and looking for a future spouse, pray and look for a person that you believe, if a relationship developed, that you would be able to positively answer the following key questions. These questions are also very insightful to think about as a relationship matures and you are contemplating marriage.
Religious convictions – Do you both love God? Share the same religious convictions? Agree on establishing the Bible as your guide for life? View devotions in a similar way? Do you talk about spiritual matters? Pray together? Agree on basic principles of how to raise children? In short, are you agreed to base your decision-making on a common set of biblical beliefs and practices?
Love and esteem – Do you cherish each other? Are both of you willing to sacrifice for the other? Do you value the thoughts and respect the feelings of each other? Do both of you love and trust each other? Would this be the person that I would want to be the father or mother of my future children?
Communication – Do you both enjoy talking about things together? Are you comfortable to talk about deep feelings? Share spiritual needs? Do you freely discuss a wide range of subjects and practical issues together? Do you agree on most items you discuss? Do you really listen and try to understand each other, especially when you disagree on something?
Biblical traits – Key traits for a future marriage partner include:
A husband – One who deeply loves (Gen. 2:24), spends time with (Deut. 24:5), is content and happy with (Prov. 5:18), kindly affectionate toward (1 Cor. 7:3), treasures and honors (1 Pet. 3:7), lovingly leads as head of (Eph. 5:23), self-sacrifices for (Eph. 5:25), provides for (1 Tim. 5:8) and prays for (1 Pet. 3:7) his wife.
A wife – One who deeply loves and helps (Gen. 2:18), is virtuous toward (Prov. 12:4); non-contentious with (Prov. 19:13), a trustworthy confidante of (Prov.31:11-12), shows wisdom and kindness toward (Prov. 31:26), displays inward beautiful traits with (1 Pet. 3:3-4), self-sacrifices for (1 Cor. 7:4), and lovingly submits to the leadership of (Eph. 5:22-23) her husband.
How does the recommended Scripture reading (Gen. 24) illustrate the importance of praying and searching for a fitting marriage partner? Why is it important to know the biblical traits of a desirable marriage partner, before I enter into a dating relationship? Why must the principles of God’s Word guide our thoughts and feelings in this important matter?