Last time, I shared my concerns about list making and what it can do to your thinking. One point I’d like to make very clear before I go any further: I think making a list of qualities is an excellent exercise and you should definitely consider doing it. It’s how you let it shape your focus, thoughts, and view of others that becomes the issue.
That being said, please do allow me to continue with my list-making narrative 🙂
As I began the process of rewriting and rethinking my list, many questions came to mind: What should go on the list? Should it be long or short? What should I expect of him? What should I be looking for in my future husband?
To answer these questions, I decided to turn it around a bit and make it personal. What does God want in me?
Ah, now I have something to go by! Whatever I put on my list for my husband, I need to apply in my own life. After much prayer and Scripture study, this is what I came up with:
- Is he saved by the grace of God? What does he think salvation means/is? Rom. 3:23, 6:23, 5:8; John 1:12; Ephesians 2:8-9; Heb. 13:5b; 2 Cor. 5:17; 1 Corinthians 6:14-15
- Is he drawing near to God through Bible study, and prayer? Are these disciplined habits in his life? Is church attendance a top priority to him? James 4:8; Ex. 20:8; Hebrews 10:24-25; Eph. 6:13-19
- Is he developing the Fruits of the Spirit? Can I see love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control developing/being displayed in his day to day life? In what areas does he need work? Galatians 5:22-23; 1 Cor.13
- With what does he choose to fill his mind? Phil 4:8; 2 Cor.5:17
- Is he humble, able to admit when he is wrong, and willing to forgive those who have wronged him? Matt. 7:12; Eph. 4:32
- Is he actively fulfilling the Great Commission? Matt. 28:19-20; Matt. 5:13-16
- Does he honor his parents? Ex. 20:12; Eph. 6:1
It may sound like a lot to ask of somebody, but if my husband isn’t actively growing by applying these things, he won’t truly be ready for marriage. Christ needs to be first and foremost in his life. Will he be perfect? Not till he reaches Heaven! Will there be times when he fails me? Yup. And I’ll fail him. Because we’re both human. But a man and a woman who recognize that they aren’t perfect, who determine to individually follow God’s commands, strive to love God more today than yesterday, and allow God to lead, will make a God-honoring marriage.
Just as he needs to be preparing and growing by applying the things on this list in his life, so must I in my own life.