Choosing a spouse is a very important decision that should be approached prayerfully with practical judgment and Godly wisdom. Attraction alone is not sufficient ground on which to base your decision. There are fundamental qualities to look out for, some of which we are going to discuss in this article.
The first quality is the fear of God. You need a wife that has a reverent devotion to God and puts her hope in Him. Without mutual faith in God, fulfilling your destiny as a married couple will be a farfetched dream. Furthermore, it will be impossible to satisfy and delight a young lady who has high hopes outside of God.
Next to possessing the fear of God, your potential wife should be someone that honours her parents. Apart from the fact that the Holy Book specifically commands this, a woman that does not honour her dad and mum is not likely to honour you. Look out for someone who has or is committed to building a healthy relationship with her dad and mum.
Another important quality is the ability to give and receive forgiveness. Does she apologise when she is wrong? How does she respond when you fail her? These are important questions you should ask about your intended bride before committing to a marriage relationship. Marriage is a union of two imperfect people. And as such, you two should be aware that you cannot totally avoid hurting each other. However, you must be able to handle the hurts and disappointments with love and grace.
The priorities of your potential wife constitute another vital area of consideration. Is she really committed to building a family? Does she really want to be a wife and mother or is she simply interested in getting married while being more acutely concerned with building her career such that she makes it her primary pursuit? This is an important issue that you must address. While career advancement is a worthy goal, a wife’s first commitment should be to her husband and family.
One other key characteristic is modesty. Dennis Rainey, a prolific author on the subject of marriage and family life, observed that while a young man’s character is displayed in his choices around life– around the use of money and relationships, a woman’s character is displayed in how she handles the power of her femininity and sexuality. As a young man seeking to get married, look out for a woman whose character and inner values have been sufficiently formed to reflect on her outward disposition.
Finally, your potential wife should be willing to accept your role as the leader of the home. In other words, she should know how to follow while you take the lead. It is true that marriage is teamwork. However, someone has to determine the course of action when both of you cannot agree. When a couple have opposing ideas on how to address an issue, it is the husband’s responsibility to pay careful attention to his wife, listen to her and wisely consider her viewpoint. It is also his responsibility under God to make the final decision, in submission to the leading of the Holy Spirit. The wife is expected to submit to this same leading.
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