“How will I know when the right guy comes along? ” is a common question among single women. I am familiar with this dilemma because I was once single and waiting.
Besides “God will tell you”, I wanted practical tips, some meat to the bone.
Most married women will tell you that what you see before the wedding, is what you get after the wedding. While we can grow and hopefully become better spouses after the wedding, you cannot (or let me say, should not ) marry someone based on that hope.
When it comes to finding the right person for you, you have to go in knowing “If I cannot live with him the way he is right now, he might not be the guy for me”
So let’s look at what to look for in a guy. Because foundations are important. I can’t think of a better to answer the question than to share how I knew Tommy was the right one for me.
1. He loves God
You’ve heard the popular saying “Run hard after God and if he can keep up, say hi.” I’ll add, if he overtakes you, even better!
My biggest attraction to Tommy was his complete devotion and love for God. Not a Sunday-church love, but a devout zeal, coupled with brokenness and obedience.
In my book Blues to Bliss I talk about the unbelieving believer; the type of person who wants all the benefits of a relationship with God but not the sacrifice or obedience. If a man is not completely devoted to God, how can he be devoted to you?
When weighing if a man is right for you, think Sunday-through-Monday. Does his life line up with his mouth? Does he walk the talk? If he’s not walking the talk, don’t try to be his personal missionary. You are not God and cannot change his heart. Let God do his work.
2. He has a vision
At one point I thought I would never get married because God had given me this huge vision for my life. I told God “I cannot leave this vision for a man. I can’t get married because he might not allow me to follow this dream”
And God told me
Marry a man who dreams your dream. Then you will have no problem submitting and following because you’ll be dreaming the same dream and moving in the same direction”
Talk about a Hallelujah moment!
Are you planning to go somewhere, make something of yourself? Then make sure the man you are seeing has a vision. Remember this guy will be the priest and leader of your home. If you don’t like the direction he’s heading now (or maybe he’s not heading anywhere at all), then take two steps back and out of the door.
If God has wired you for something, He will bring the right man to complement and encourage and challenge. God is not the author of confusion. Doesn’t mean the guy will be perfect and rich and fully operating in the vision at that moment.
But he has to have a clear mental image of where he wants to go.
3. He has character
It’s not enough to have a vision, you need character to go with it! There are many rich successful people, even big visionaries, but not all have character.
I watched how Tommy treated others (he is kinder than I am!), how he talked about his mum and sisters, how he treated my sister and girlfriends. I listened as he talked about business and work and ministry. And my ears and heart were blessed because He was a man of integrity all round.
If you think money is everything, try sleeping with wand of cash next to your pillow. Cos that’s how your life after marriage will be if you chose a success/money over character. You’ll get a whole lot of dough and nothing but coldness in the place of love and moral uprightness.
4. His quirks
Tommy had peculiarities, which delighted me. His Queens English, the way he walked, laughed and ate, his deep rich voice, the vein on his forehead that popped when he was stressed or upset…
His normal was my exquisite.
You have to love your guy! Absolutely undoubtedly, in love.
Sometimes single women say they are in love but when they talk about the guy, the line is horizontal – no warmth, no mush, no sweetness, no giggles, not softness. Their heart is not taken.
If you are always asking yourself if you are really in love with the guy, then maybe you are not? I am going out on a limb here but I think that when you are genuinely truly besotted, you won’t be asking yourself too many questions because you’ll know!
Generally speaking, you should have more moments of “I love this guy” than “I am not sure”
If you can’t stand most of who he is, can’t fathom spending the rest of your life listening to his stories, looking at his face, watching the way he chews his food, then maybe you haven’t found the right one yet.
5. My pastors think he is
Anytime a single lady tells me they want to marry someone, I want to know if they’ve talked to someone about it. Specifically if they have talked to a pastor and mentor and what they think about it.
Tommy and I met each other in our local church and while it took two years to actually start a serious friendship, we made a bee line for our pastors the moment things started to feel serious.
We wanted to know what our pastors thought. I know this might be radical but had my pastor or his pastor said “I don’t think she/he is the right one”, we would have listened. Because we trusted them, they knew us individually more than we knew each other.
Don’t go into courtship (even that early friendship) alone. Trust me, there’s stuff you don’t know about committed relationships. You want allies, people who are looking out for you. Inviting others in will be hard on your ego, but the benefit is so worth it!
And don’t be the kind of person who merely informs the pastor, instead of involving them right from the beginning. Don’t go to them with “please rubber-stamp this for me, will ya” attitude. If you go to a pastor or mentor with a closed heart, you can’t be helped.
Remember, falling in love is the easy part, staying in love is harder! You need all the help you can get!
We’ll be looking at the next 4 tips on Thursday because the word count for this post has gone through the roof.. I have to split the post in two!) Update. Click here to read Part 2
It’s worth it
During my prayer time this morning, I started to weep as I looked back at my single days. I remembered how some people laughed and said I would never get married because I was such a church girl. How I turned down dates and ached and cried in the house because I still wanted to get married someday.
I remember the years of going hard after the Lord, throwing myself into ministry and having the Lord fill me to overflowing.
I wept because it now makes sense. I see what the Lord was doing. Hindsight is a blessed teacher. I could not fully appreciate the value of learning to say no to the flesh, of keeping Christ first, of loving and serving others, of being filled and being happy and satisfied as a single person.
I could not understand the value of everything back them because it was my daily existence and sometimes you just put one foot in-front of the other.
But the kind of marriage I have today is directly related to how I lived my life as single girl. I allowed the Lord to fill me and lead me even when I did not understand. He saw the future I could not see, He GPS-ed my life to now. No experience, pain, frustration or tear has been wasted. He has made all things work out for good.
Girlfriend, God knows what He is doing. Even when you don’t understand it or like it. It’s true that obedience hurts, holiness is not easy. But in the end, it’s so worth it. I am not saying God will reward you with a good man if you are a good girl (please read this post)
The benefit of living for God, its reward, is God Himself. Whether you get married or not, the joy of looking back and being able to say “My God, you are good” because you realize that God is enough is beyond anything we can imagine.
I pray that you are encouraged to wait well and to make choices that glorify God. Don’t go for instant gratification cos boy that feeling goes fast. And you wake up and you have to live with the consequences. Go for God. He will never fail you. Click here to read Part 2 of this series.
Question – What can you add? If you are married, what qualities drew you to your spouse? Let’s chat in Comments!
And if you think you’ve found “the one”, my book Blues to Bliss: Creating Your Happily Ever After In The Early Years can put you on the road to a great marriage! Buy it here Amazon Paperback I Kindle I Barnes & Noble I PDF I UK/Europe PDF . Or Click here to go to the book page.