Question:

My marriage is likely to be done the old fashioned way, with an arranged marriage where the parents find a suitable prospect, the guy and girl gets introduced, and then they decide between themselves if the marriage seems likely or not.

Well, even though I've been a Christian all my life, I should say, that I have been a Christian in name only, and mingled with the ways of the world to a large extent. But by God’s grace and mercies, He did not let me perish in my blood red sins and helped me step out into a lovely life with Him alone. I have had a lot of people turn against me during this phase. What I was into is not worth mentioning. Neverthless, God has helped me see a bright future with Him, and that’s all I'm trusting and hoping in. Not for a life of luxuries and cares of the world, but a life to live for His Glory. If possible, if God sees me worthy, then a life to spread His name and work for Him wherever possible.

I've become this close to God, mainly due to the influence of another person, who has strengthened me abundantly in Christ. Even though a marriage consideration took place with this person, it hasn’t worked out. I have accepted it, and taken it as God's will. Both of us have changed our perspectives toward each other, for the glory of God.

I don’t know if I'm trying to use this person as a benchmark with regard to a future partner because the way he sees life and God is beyond what I have ever seen in anyone so far. But I keep praying about it, and I don’t personally feel I'm doing so, since I know if I'm doing so, then I'm judging a person, or dwelling in unwanted thoughts which may be a sin. Although spiritually, I wish my partner to have the spiritual strengths of this guy.

My question is this: When I am considering proposals for marriage, what can I stress as being importance? I believe that I need to stress importance in spirituality and prayer more than anything else. I really don’t care about other factors like job, career, luxuries, etc.

In the most recent proposal I did mention that this is the most important factor for me. I don’t wish to let go of that, come what may. I'm looking to live a life for God's glory in every aspect of life. The man seemed slightly concerned that I was a religious fanatic. 

My parents have also been criticizing me, saying that I shouldn’t mention too much about this at the beginning. And if a person fits in the basic requirement of God fearing (which in my opinion anyone can be a token Christian), then it's fine and I shouldn’t dwell on or discuss more about these matters.

As an individual, I don’t believe in a concept of too much or too little spirituality ever since I've known my God personally. I know that knowing Him and living for Him, means only one lifestyle, wherever you are. By stressing the importance of that, am I scaring people away? Does God expect this of me? For me my only aim is eternity with God, and I just wish to live a life with that aim.

I’m quite disturbed. I'm not a spiritual saint or a guru, and I'm just trying to float in this journey. All I want is a person who can strengthen me spiritually and walk this life keeping this as the main focus, inspite of anything else. I really don’t mind if I have any other luxuries of the world.

What do I do? How do I go about this process? I do believe that only God's purpose will take place in my life because that’s how I have been submitting it.  But at the same time, am I doing something wrong by being too explicit about my faith, and my only criteria with respect to a marriage.


Answer:

Your parent's response is merely due to the difficulty they perceive in finding you a husband. They don't understand your requirement. They don't see how they can measure it in advance. All they understand is that you want a "Christian" but those they find are not suitable to you.

The solution here is to give them some more objective measurements so they can know what to look for. Does he need to be a member of a certain group? Does the leadership there need to think this man is a faithful member? In other words, think of more objective, measurable traits that they can look for so that those they present might more likely meet your expectations. Wanting a strong, faithful husband is not wrong, but you need to define what that means to you.

This exercise will also help you. Right now you have some vague ideas about what you are looking for in a husband, but because they are vague, you keep going back to comparing to your memories of a man you weren't able to marry. You understand it isn't good to compare people in such cases, so you need to be more precise with yourself about the traits you are looking for in a husband.

Thank you for your kind response.