Today is my 5th wedding anniversary! I’m so honored to be married to such a wonderful God fearing man. He truly is the only one who gets me, who understands me. He knows how to respond gently to me and he knows when he needs to be a little stronger against my already stubborn, strong personality. He encourages my positive qualities and challenges my destructive ones. Ya did good God. You picked a good one to balance me out. I can be a hot-head sometimes….
I didn’t always know what I wanted in a spouse. At one time, as long as my significant other was cute, popular, and nice…that was all I cared about. But eventually I grew up and realized that having a relationship took much, much more then that. It is more then choosing someone who is simply and general a “good person.” It is more then choosing someone who is simply a “nice guy.” It’s more then just choosing the first guy who is willing to date me.
When I started going to Bowling Green, I got involved in a Christian organization called H2O and eventually started attending CRU. There, I was exposed to many relationships while involved in both these groups. These relationships were structured in a way I had never seen before; they were deep, different, and Godly. I could tell these women didn’t settle for just any man who would love them, they waited for the right man with good character, who God intended them to be with.
Once I saw these relationships, I realized that is what i wanted. I remember reaching a point in college where I decided that I would rather be single for the rest of my life, then settle for an average guy. I wanted the one God wanted for me, nothing less — even if that meant remaining single. But once I felt the calling and the blessing of God to indeed start praying for a spouse, what I decided was that I wasn’t going to settle for less then the list I typed below (Scripture references for each standard are limited to the ones I have provided).
I got this list from a dear from who I met in BG. Her name is Jen P. She constructed this list and gave it to me and I eventually adapted it as my standards too.
For all you women who have asked me, “How did you know what to look for in a guy?” This is the list I went by. I refused to settle for anything less, even if that meant a life of single hood. I prayed over it and prayed over it. God answered my prayers, and his name is Brett. My prayer for you, ladies, is that you will never settle.
-Must love the Lord with every part of his heart, his mind and his body. (Duet 6:5)
-Must be discipled and teachable, and be willing to disciple others. Must have a servants heart. (Col 3:23-24; Eph 4:1-12))
-Must be able to see God at work in his life and must be able to see growth. (Jer 17:7-8)
-SHould be constantly checking himself against God’s standards and other peoples input. (Prov 15:22)
-Must have close male friends from whom he receives input and council. Must support me in my close female friendships. (Prov 15:22)
-Must display a high level of respect for the women in his life, both physically and emotionally. (1 Tim 5:2)
-Must respect his parents and strive to involve them in his life. (Eph 6:1-2)
-Must be willing to seek council specifically on our relationship from a married couple. (Prov 15:22; Prov 1:5)
-Must be willing and ready to pray about any steps to be taken involving our relationship and give me space to make my decision. (Song of Songs 3:5)
-Must, if not share, absolutely respect my physical standards/boundaries and not push the lines or pressure me to over step my boundaries. (1 Tim 5:2; Eph 5;3)
-I would prefer to be pursued and not just “let things happen.” I want to be desired for qualities that he sees in me rather then having an attitude of ”She’s kind of a cool girl, lets see where this can go.” I want to be sought after for my character. I don’t want to be “next on the list.” (Prov 31:10)
-Must feel let to pursue me and have prayed about it before asking me for any type of relationship. I want him to have the blessings of his Mentors to pursue me. (Phil 4:6)
-Must be a spiritual leader in my life and seek council on how to do that. (Heb 13:17)
-Must work to create appropriate Godly intimacy in a timely, but not premature, manner. I don’t need to know his deepest secret nor does he need to know mine during the early stages of our relationship. We need to connect emotionally at an appropriate pace. Godly intimacy does not equal physical intimacy. ((song of songs 3:5)
-Must be affectionate, but not overly so. He must acknowlege me and accept me. (song of songs 3:5: Eph 5:3)
-Must be socially adept and work well with people. (Rom 12:10)
-Must have a positive attitude towards life, generally. (1 Thes 5:16)
-Must strive to be my best friend and to maintain the friendship within the relationship. (1 Tim 5:2)
-Must be affirming and patient with my insecurities. (Prov 31:28; 1 cor 13:4-7)
-Must make our relationship a priority, but not the main one. He must keep God the first relationship and keep Him at the center. He must be able to keep his close friendship with men while in a relationship with me. Our relationship cannot consume our lives or push out other friendships. (Duet 6:5; Ex 20:3; Prov 11:14; Prov 24:5; Prov 27:17)
-Must consistently ask about my life and be interested in the responses. He must remember to ask about the little things. (Romans 12: 10)
-Must challenge me spiritually and in my life. (Prov 11:14; Prob 19:20)
And then in the book of Titus, Paul, the writer, lists the qualities the church Elders should possess. I have always held these same qualities for whoever I was going to date and eventually marry:
An elder must not be guilty of doing wrong, must have only one wife, and must have believing children. They must not be known as children who are wild and do not cooperate. As God’s managers, overseers must not be guilty of doing wrong, being selfish, or becoming angry quickly. They must not drink too much wine, like to fight, or try to get rich by cheating others. Overseers must be ready to welcome guests, love what is good, be wise, live right, and be holy and self-controlled. By holding on to the trustworthy word just as we teach it, overseers can help people by using true teaching, and they can show those who are against the true teaching that they are wrong.
Can I brag on my man a bit?
I’m very thankful for my loving husband. I’m thankful that the value he sees in me is Jesus. The other week I was having an insecure moment. Without getting to much in to why I was insecure, here is how he built me up in that moment.
Brett sat down with me, looked me in the eye and said, “Why do you care what people think of you? Your value does not lie in book smarts (in this case, my spelling abilities…or lack there of). I chose to marry you because of your love for Jesus, THAT is wisdom, THAT is knowledge. I’d rather you accept Christ and not know what 2+2 is then for you to have all the knowledge this world can offer. Your wisdom is eternal, not temporary.”
What a man. That’s why I chose him. Within moments I felt better. Brett is the type of husband who builds me up and helps me to see my true worth. I’m so thankful he sees the value in me that is not based on anything other then the knowledge of Jesus Christ. We base our marriage around Jesus, not on what this world suggests. It is Jesus and the qualities He possess that keep our marriage working.
Happy 5 years Boo Face.
OH! I almost forgot. Brett wrote a blog post on how he proposed to me. Take a read! Our Engagement