Proactively Pursuing Marriage
Kurt Bruner, The Center for Strong Families
Most of us are called to marriage. It’s the natural design for fulfilling our drive for companionship. If you aren’t called to celibate service (1 Corinthians 7), then a significant priority for this season of your life is preparing for and moving toward a biblical marriage. So, how does a person who hopes to marry become intentional?
STEP 1: Seek direction within Christian community.
We live in a day of hyper individualism where people feel very little sense of obligation to others. However, God calls us to vibrant community within our families and within the body of Christ. That community is the source for much of our growth as Christians, and it’s one of the best means for meeting a potential spouse and receiving guidance and support toward marriage.
STEP 2: Move beyond recreational relationships.
One of the clearest messages for singles in the Bible is the call to sexual purity (1 Corinthians 6:13-18). Sexual purity is the primary means for intentionally moving toward marriage in a recreational relationship culture. Sexually pure couples not only honor God but also avoid much of the confusion that plagues many of today’s relationships.
STEP 3: Seek the right kind of mat.
Most young adults believe the person they marry should be their soul mate first and foremost. However, both Bible and marriage research show that the more important “soul” mate to seek out is someone who shares your spiritual commitment. Paul writes that a potential spouse “must belong to the Lord” (1 Corinthians 7:39). Christians seeking a mate who shares his or her biblical values know that “all have fallen short,” so there’s no sense in holding out for a perfect person. Instead of seeking someone to complete them, they are called to lay down their life for another, making for a more realistic path to finding a good fit for marriage.
STEP 4: Be Proactive.
Titus 2 encourages young men and women to learn from older men and women. You can ask mentors for candid feedback about how you can improve in a variety of areas to be more prepared for marriage. Some of your best opportunities to be proactive will grow out of faithful prayer. Pray for your role in finding a mate, for the help of parents and mentors, and for God’s glory in your path to the altar.
It’s important to note that men have a distinct responsibility in proactively finding a mate. Proverbs 18:22 says, “He who finds a wife, finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord.” God calls men to do their part in seeking out women of character and showing leadership in pursuing a woman for marriage. Men should be willing to take the risk of rejection. No one likes to hear “no,” but it’s a risk men of faith and leadership should be willing to face.
- Get Married: What Women Can Do to Help It Happen by Candice Watters
- A Guy’s Guide to Marrying Well (available as a free download at Boundless.org)
Prestonwood has a variety of Bible Fellowships for the spiritual development of every person. No matter your age and stage of life, there’s a Bible Fellowship for you. Visit prestonwood.org/connect for more information.
© 2008 Inkling Innovations