Matt Brooks shares some insights about how young adults should prepare themselves emotionally and spiritually before embarking on their search for Mr/Mrs Right
As a young(ish) Christian, I’ve noticed that some of the most popular topics that the majority of my friends and colleagues talk (and even tweet) about are: ‘Finding The One’, ‘Love’ and, of course, the ‘M’ word: ‘Marriage’. In this article, I share some thoughts that may be beneficial in finding the answer to the question: ‘Ready For Love?’
Have You Unpacked?
A lot of people go into relationships with a truckload of baggage. Before moving on, it’s always a good idea to release the pains and hurts of past relationships because, if you don’t, they will surely unpack themselves in your new relationship.
It’s also important to unpack your expectations. It is really easy to have expectations for someone new to do things for you that a previous partner did, without taking into account that this new person is exactly that: a new person.
Are You Ready?
One of the things I always ask myself is, “Matt, what are you bringing to the table?” Before you even look for love, it’s important to be ready and prepared for love.
As a Christian man, one of the most important things for me is to be a leader submitted to God, and a covering over my household, leading my wife and children into a life that is pleasing to the Lord. That is a great responsibility, and one that makes me take the process of finding a wife VERY seriously.
Are you ready to be that man who, if put in the ‘Adam and Eve situation’, wouldn’t have eaten the fruit, and would have covered your wife, bringing her back to right thinking and repentance to God?
Are you a Ruth? Making the sacrifice to serve out of love, wanting nothing in return (which, inevitably, led to her meeting Boaz)?
Men, are you ready to submit? Women are often bombarded with the topic of submission, while the men often seem to get away with it. I recently heard submission spoken of in a different way. ‘Sub’ means ‘beneath’ and ‘below’, so we can see that submission could be viewed as being under a mission. So, what is this mission? What is God’s mission for our lives (as single people and in marriage, too)?
I am a strong believer in purpose and destiny, and I think they are intertwined with mission and submission. I take the view that, when choosing a spouse, you MUST think about the purpose God has placed on your life, and where He is taking you, and seek God about whether this person fits in with those plans.
I’m also a strong believer that marriage (especially between Christians) is about far more than just love and romance. God believes in being fruitful and multiplying, and not only in the sense of having children. What will the fruit/purpose of your relationship be?
Does the person you think is beautiful/handsome, with an amazing personality and, of course, is a ‘mighty man/woman of God’ have husband/wife credentials? From an early age, I’ve had the mindset that, if a woman doesn’t have what I’m looking for in my wife and mother of my children, then I won’t waste my time or, more importantly, hers. The next time you see that person you think is ‘The One’, check your motives and think about it seriously. Does that person possess the necessary qualities – both spiritually and naturally – to be your spouse and parent to your children?
We are bombarded with information on sexual purity as single Christians, but what is amazing to me is the lack of teaching there is on emotional purity. After all, in a lot of cases, the reason that sexual impurity occurs is because of emotional imbalance or emotional impurity. Do you seek attention so badly that you’ll take it from whoever wants to give it to you? Do you find yourself getting involved with people you have no intention of marrying just to ‘fill the gap’ and have someone to go on dates with? Do you have issues with jealousy? Are you insecure? Do you fall in love with every person who smiles at you or shows him/herself to be friendly? Are you desperate? Yes? Maybe it’s time to look within and deal with these things, rather than looking for a relationship.
There is so much more to relationships than what I’ve mentioned in this article, but when I think about relationships, and the reason for my being single, these are a few of the things that come to mind. Rather than daydreaming about the perfect wedding day or the trophy wife, I’d love to encourage my friends, colleagues and any single person reading this to look within and prepare for what God has in store for them and, before jumping into a relationship, ask themselves the question: “Am I ready for love?”
Matt Brooks is a lover of God, family, music, media and Manchester United. Find him at www.facebook.com/MattJABrooks, or follow him on Twitter @mattjabrooks