Posts tagged "being single"

5 Things to Keep In Mind When Choosing A Spouse

So what is on your checklist for qualities that you look for in a mate?  Yes, you should have a checklist...not one that goes on for eons and covers to the inch how tall they should be or exactly what profession they should be in BUT  it is important to know what you are looking for in a mate.  Some people have only one criteria...that the person is a member of the opposite gender.  Well, that's not so good either.  Let's take a look at the most important questions you should be asking when choosing a life long spouse.

#1 - Do they share similar doctrinal beliefs?

This is a biggie!  If I could stress one area that many couples have trouble with (especially if one partner is more solid in their faith than the other), it would be this area.  No, we don't need to be spiritual twins but we need to be equally yoked.  If the person you are considering is not committed to serving Yahweh as much as you are and/or they expect you to be the spiritual giant while they stay contentedly a spiritual midget...this is a BIG red flag!   Talking about your doctrinal beliefs and your goals as servants of Yahweh is so important.   When one spouse is carrying the full responsibility for being the spiritual enforcer and teacher in the home, this causes a huge strain on the marriage and confuses the children about spiritual priorities.  Save yourself the heartache and talk about this important issue first when getting to know a potential spouse. 

#2 - How do they handle money?

If you think this topic is not important, think again!  Statistics show that more couples break up over money management issues than anything else.  Why?  Actually, it's not so much the money itself but the priorities that people have for money that causes the friction.  If you are a frugal person and are doing your best to save money only so that your spouse can go and blow it on spur-of-the-moment shopping spree, this will be very hurtful to you.  If you are the husband and your wife is spending your hard earned-money on stupid stuff like kitchen gadgets that are overpriced and end up in your yearly garage sale after being used only three times, you will get discouraged.  If you are a wife who tries to save her husband money by looking for sales, using coupons,etc. and your hubby is bringing the latest techie gadgets home every week just so he can keep up with the 'guys', you will feel as though your efforts to save are not appreciated.  Are you starting to understand my meaning? Personally, I think every one should learn to use their money wisely and I think 95% of the North American populace lives with too many things that they don't need.  I am a frugal person to a certain extent and to marry someone who, in my humble opinion, wasted his money on things the latest video games would drive me crazy!  I would have to try so hard not to seem as though I was nagging about his spending habits.  The best solution is to talk about spending habits and PLEASE...don't fool yourself in to thinking that they will be more self controlled in their spending habits just because they married a frugal saver like you.  Marriage does not change life-long habits, discipline and the Ruach do.

#3 - How do they treat their parents?

I had a friend who married a seemingly nice guy.  He had one issue...he did not show respect for his mother.  He made all kinds of excuses for it by saying she wasn't a believer and she had done some awful things to him in the past.  Less than 2 years in to the marriage they separated because he was showing her much respect either...he took her for granted and dragged her all over the map because he wanted to pursue his dreams.  Sad but not surprising.  Any person who cannot CHOOSE to honour their parents, will have little regard for the rest of the commandments of Yahweh.  It is a choice, not a feeling.  If you think that you can behave disrespectfully towards your parents but respect your spouse, you are deceived.   When you are with a potential spouse, listen to the way they talk about their parents.  Do they say that they are thankful for them (flaws and all)?  If the parents are not Christian, do they say that they are praying and talking to their parents about Yashua?   Do they do small things that show respect (ie. opening doors, giving up their seat, offering to help with dishes, etc) for their parents?   Personal respect is earned but parental and spousal respect is not...it is mandated in scripture.  If you are having a hard time with this one, ask Yahweh to help you be more honouring towards your parents.  If the person you are interested in does not show respect for their parents, it is very likely you will be the one on the receiving end of their disrespect after marriage. 

#4 - What kind of friends do they have?

'Do not keep the companion of fools', Solomon warned us.  If the person we are interested in is consistently hanging around fools (if you want the many definitions of a fool, read the book of Proverbs), we can safely surmise that this will not stop once they are married.  Sometimes, as Messianics, it is not a good idea to hang out a lot with others who ridicule our beliefs about following Torah or those who accuse us of falling away from grace and being under the law again.   Yes, we do need to be a witness and so we can't completely withdraw but wrong friendships can subtlely pull us back into wrong habits.  I know some people who can't find a Messianic fellowship so they attend a mainstream Christian church.  After a while, they meet someone there and end up marrying them and never leave.  The road we walk on is a lonely road and requires sacrifices of many kinds.  The people you call your friends will tell me much more about you than merely by my talking to you.  If you claim to walk in truth but have close relationships with those who walk in darkness, I question your comittment to the truth.  The exception to this is, if you are already married to an unbeliever.  In that case, you should not seek to be separated but fervently pray for them.  Choose your friends wisely, they will influence and shape your decisions in ways you may not even be aware and will wither strengthen your resolve or weaken it.  When choosing a spouse, their friends will become your friends to a certain extent so be sure that you are on the same page. 

# 5 - What are their views on children?

This is another biggie.  Do you want lots of kids?  What are your views on birth control?  Do you want to homeschool?  How do you feel about spanking?  Who do you think should do the disciplining?  How do you feel about adoption?  These are just a few of the many questions that should be asked before becoming engaged.  To find out that you have very different views on these topics AFTER you marry is not a pleasant surprise.  If a woman who wants 3 kids, finds out that her husband expects her to have 15 after she marries him, she will be really upset!  I can't understand why people would not talk about this issue but it seems that once the rose coloured glasses go on, nothing much matters.  You should talk, talk, talk before committing to a serious relationship and be sure that you are in agreement on this topic.  

I guess you can tell from this article that I don't believe in beating around the bush.   I believe that communicating and practicality should come first and love and romance should come later.  All too often, couples get sidetracked with emotion and romance before they discuss the important issues of marriage.  This can lead to compromise (marrying someone even though they know they aren't right) or heartache (breaking up because they aren't right).  Dating for fun, should not even be an option for people who consider themselves Torah followers.  If you want to go out for fun, go out with friends not a boyfriend/girlfriend.   The world believes in compatibility based on sex and romance...followers of Yahweh however, should base compatibility on spirituality and life goals & priorities.  I challenge you to be a cut above and talk about the important things...once you know that you are on the same page in regards to Yahweh, Torah, children, money, friends, respect and Yashua, you are free to fall in love with that person....again and again!

Single Man - Fears & Frustrations

Shalom, Usually when I talk to singles they have some Fears & Frustrations. These are similar to the ones I used to have. I learned that sometimes it helps to talk about it. So this post is here so that you can have a place to vent that Fears & Frustrations. If you don't have any, good for you. Maybe you know of some other person's Fears & Frustrations? I listed some that I encountered. Maybe you have some that you can add to the list? Some of the most comon Fears & Frustrations:

  1. Don't want to be alone
  2. Fear the right person will never show up.
  3. Fear they will not meet or recognise the right person.
  4. Hard to find someone who agrees with their doctrine
  5. Hard to meet people who share their faith
  6. Too far & spread out
  7. Don’t want to spend too much money on a relationship only to be disappointed.
  8. Online Dating Stigma
  9. Fear they die before they have an offspring. 
  10. Fear they'll die, never having had intercourse. 
Men - Dos And Don'ts In Pursuit Of Women

 

When I first started seeking a relationship, I had very little skills. Little communication skills, and little to no social skills.

 

So I take it that most of my readers would have more experience now than what I had back then. 

Anyway, I learned those skills and if I can do it, maybe you can too, that is if you want to. 

If one man can learn it, why not another?

So anyway, the first post here is from a woman's perspective. My wife wrote the below. I hope you enjoy reading it.

 

Erin's Article:

Proverbs 18:22 says "He that finds a wife finds a good thing and receives favour from Yahweh".   It should go without saying that in order to find, we must seek.  If I don't look for something, chances are, I am not going to find it. I have heard some men deliberate whether or not it is the right thing to do to go to conferences and join online singles sites because to some, looking means that you are not trusting God to bring that person in to your life at the right time.  Nonsense!  Do you expect Yahweh to drop a girl on your front doorstep and have her say, "Well, you prayed for me, so here I am - let's get married!" - I somehow don't think this will happen very often.  Men, Yahweh made you hunters and explorers by nature.  This is evident from a young age - most young boys love a treasure hunt.  True, Yahweh did bring Eve to Adam and Ruth to Boaz but these were exceptions to the rule - most stories in the Bible were because the man was seeking a wife or someone was hunting on his behalf (as in the story of Isaac and Rebekah).  It is not showing a lack of faith in God to seek out godly young women, it shows that you are mature enough to get over your hang-ups and shyness (which can subtley be a form of unhealthy pride in some cases).  There are SO MANY godly women out there who are fighting the temptation to do what comes unaturally to us - chasing guys.  I don't mean to say that guys should pester and go after everything in skirts but at least be trying to meet women, get to know them in group settings and take a bold step in pursuing a relationship with a woman you are interested in.  If you men are to be leaders in the home, we want assurance of that leadership before we commit to marriage.  One way this can be demonstrated is by you taking the initiative and pursuing us.  

I know that there are women out there who play games and can't seem to make up their mind - they aren't godly women.  I won't say that the blame is entirely on the guys because women need to get their act together and say what they mean when they respond to a guy's interest.  However, risk is a normal part of the process for you men and you must be brave enough to handle rejection.  If you are not stable enough in your walk with Yahweh to handle rejection, this is something that you should pray and ask your heavenly Father to help you with.   Remember, you have not because you ask not (James 4:2).  I knew one guy who asked over 20 women out (over the space of several years) before he met one that said "yes".  They are happily married now and he is not upset now that the other women said "no" because he would not be with the fantastic girl he is with today if they had said yes.  Learn to see the "no" answer as Yahweh gently closing a door because He will open a better one elsewhere.  Waiting is hard and hearing "no thanks" is hard but it is so worth it when you find the right one!  

Also, please understand that when a godly woman says no, it is a great sign of disrespect to keep pressing the issue.  Several years ago, I had a guy  (from church) ask me out and I said no.  He called me a few weeks later to ask again and I told him no again.  He called a third time a few weeks later and I was feeling hounded and pressured.  I kept thinking, "He must not respect me very much if he believes that I would suddenly change my mind for no reason".  When he asked the 4th time, I was flabbergasted and had to be very firm (almost to the point of rudeness) with him and ask him to please not approach me again because I was certain that he was not the man for me.  At the time, our family had more of a dating approach than courtship - if he had of asked me now, my father would have been the one dealing with him.    The point of the story is, if you truly believe that the woman is godly, respect her "no" as being no and not a maybe.  If you do ask her again, it better be some time down the road and she had better exhibit a clear and unmistaken change of heart.  I am not saying that every "no" stays a no - just use wisdom and discretion and don't pressure or hound her into saying "yes".  Stalking her on FB and trying to get other people around her to speak to her to change her mind is just downright sneaky and we aren't looking for that kind of a husband.  (Ladies, if you are certain that he is not the one you want to marry, say "no" right away, don't get his hopes up with a "maybe")

Guys, I appreciate the fact that you are the ones with the risk in taking the first step.  If you want to avoid heartache, do your homework.  If you don't know the woman really well, ask around to find out what she is made of, if she has a history of dating a string of guys, what her personality is like,etc.  If your relationship is long distance, call her a couple of times and Google her.  Long distance relationships can be more difficult but being open and honest in communication is important.  If you have a lisp or are in a wheelchair, don't email her for 6 months and then suggest going out for coffee without letting her know what to expect!  That puts unfair pressure on a woman if she feels that she can't live with whatever your handicap is.   Have the guts to be honest - you will reap what you sow.  I think that having a disability does NOT make you unmarriageable but it is not honest to hide it from a potential girlfriend. 

Guys, don't give up!  There are thousands of women out there who are wondering if there are any godly guys left.  Just keep seeking and you will find.  Keep knocking and eventually the right door will open up to you.  Remember that Yeshua is seeking a pure bride also - it is nothing new for a man to seek out a bride!  When you find her, it will be worth the wait.  

 

I want to encourage you to keep seeking the will of Yah and He will guide your steps. 

Have a  question about courting or women in general - you can ask your questions in the "Q&A" section of our Blog

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