By Mary Abrahamson
Much has been written within (and without) our Confessional Lutheran circles on the topic of dating and finding a Christian spouse.
So, let me cut to the chase. There is no Mr Right.
That said, here are the words of wisdom on the topic that I try to implant into my daughters as they approach the age to begin thinking of marriage.
- Do you and your guy share the same life foundation (aka RELIGION!)? Yes, we can all point to wonderfully strong Lutheran couples who did not start out sharing the same Lutheran vision. But we can also point to couples who did not start out sharing the same religion, and whose life was filled with fall-out on account of that difference. And even those couples we might know who stayed strong in spite of a continuing different view of God and sin and grace, even such couples would likely say there were challenges, often large, on account of that foundational difference.
- Will your guy be able to be a leader in your home? Does he have the skills? Does he stand for the kind of worldview you want to follow?
- A corollary to the above, will you be able to humbly follow this man? To submit to him and allow him to lead you and any children God will give? And further, in those areas in which his skills and experience are lacking, will you be able to help and support him in leading anyway? And this is an important distinction, will you be able to help and support him without taking the leadership role from him?
- What kind of father and husband will your guy make? Consider things like discipline, family time, showing of affection, games, music, hobbies, habits, silliness, and other aspects of personality and interpersonal tradition. None of these are necessarily of eternal significance, but yet the way your spouse carries out or participates in these things may or may not be important to you in a husband and father.
- Can your guy support and provide for you and a family?
- If not, can he set an example of support in dealing with the financially hard times? Or whatever hard times come? Hard times of a great variety come to all marriages. So to put this question another way, how is your guy under pressure. Marriage and family life offers the potential for much intense pressure.
Of course you cannot know all of these things about your guy ahead of time. You cannot even know your own self on many of these things. Until your feet are put to the proverbial fire, you won’t for sure know any of this.
Which leads us back to number one, Do you and your guy share the same life foundation (aka RELIGION!)?
If so, you and your guy can work out any of the above within the Biblical truths of sin and grace, Law and Gospel, repentance and forgiveness of sins. When you and your guy share the foundation of faith in the Almighty God above all, the Father, Creator, Provider, Sustainer; the Almighty God above all, the Son, the Redeemer, the Savior; and the Almighty God above all, the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, the Caller, Gatherer, Enlightener and Sanctifier; with this shared foundation, you can get through the challenges life has to offer.
Mr Right or not, a marriage built upon such a foundation can survive. And through it God can bless you and your guy. He can give you joy beyond your imagination.
God can use you and your family to show love for God above all things. Through your vocations as husband and wife, father and mother, and family, God can bless all those with whom you come in contact.