Hello brothers and sisters of Our Daily Devotionals,
I’m old enough now to look for a partner in life, plus my unbeliever family members are pushing me to find a boyfriend. But I don’t know what kind of partner I should look for in order to be happy. When it comes to looking for a spouse, my unbelieving friends all want to choose those who are “tall, rich and handsome” or “fair-skinned, rich and beautiful,” but I see there is no real affection between them, and instead they cause each other a lot of harm. I’d like to understand how, as a Christian, we should approach love and marriage.
Sister Bai Xue:
So many feelings came up for me when I saw your message. It can be said that the issue of love and marriage is one of the major things in our lives as well as a critical juncture. The partner we choose can influence whether this life is painful or joyful. Before I believed in God, I also pursued the trends of the world along with the friends and coworkers around me, aspiring to have a fancy wedding and setting “fair-skinned, rich and beautiful” or “tall, rich and handsome” as my criteria for choosing a mate. It wasn’t until after I came tothat I understood this principle of the truth; I gained a little understanding of love and marriage and then knew how to make choices in love and marriage.
What follows is what I underwent in my marriage after I gained the ideals of “tall, rich and handsome.” I hope this can provide some help and inspirations for you so that you can make the right choice for love and marriage, creating a beautiful start to your future and a happy life.
Once I got to marrying age I hoped to meet my own “charming prince on a white horse,” and with the matchmaking help of friends and family, I met a man who met my ideal of “tall, rich and handsome.” He was tall, good-looking, made good money, and came from a well-off family. The vanity within me was quite satisfied, and at the same time I also hoped we could grow old together, that we’d love each other for the rest of our days. But after less than five years of marriage, he started getting fed up with me and became hypercritical about everything. Everything I ate and wore had to be according to his own preferences, and because of the disparity between our family backgrounds, I was always seen as inferior when I was around his family. I was constantly observing their expressions, and when I did something he didn’t like, he’d pull a long face and refuse to acknowledge me, giving me the cold shoulder. I tolerated all of that, but he complained that my legs weren’t long enough, I wasn’t thin enough, and I didn’t have good skin. I didn’t figure out until later that he had betrayed me long before.
What was so hurtful and painful for me was that he was a classic atheist, and after I believed in God, he was oppressive and obstructive towards my faith. He followed me and wouldn’t allow me to go to gatherings, even raising a hand against me. We already lacked a common language in our life together. Our marriage existed in name only; we were strangers sharing a bed, and I was awash in tears. That marriage ended amidst that kind of suffering….
God has blessed me. By reading God’s words, I have understood this part of the truth and found the root of my pain. I saw these words of God, “One after another, all these trends carry an evil influence that continually degenerates man, causing them to continually lose conscience, humanity and reason, and that lowers their morals and their quality of character more and more, to the extent that we can even say the majority of people now have no integrity, no humanity, neither do they have any conscience, much less any reason. So what are these trends? You cannot see these trends with the naked eye. When the wind of a trend blows through, perhaps only a small number of people will become the trendsetters. They start off doing this kind of thing, accepting this kind of idea or this kind of perspective. The majority of people, however, in the midst of their unawareness, will still be continually infected, assimilated and attracted by this kind of trend, until they all unknowingly and involuntarily accept it, and are all submerged in and controlled by it. For man who is not of sound body and mind, who never knows what is truth, who cannot tell the difference between positive and negative things, these kinds of trends one after another make them all willingly accept these trends, the life view and values that come from Satan. They accept what Satan tells them on how to approach life and the way to live that Satan ‘bestows’ on them. They have not the strength, neither do they have the ability, much less the awareness to resist.”
I realized from God’s words that current evil trends all focus on seeking money, power, and status, and drive many people to set their standards for a partner as “fair-skinned, rich and beautiful” or “tall, rich and handsome.” On top of that, every single one of the idol dramas and youth dramas played on TV particularly reveals this kind of thinking, drawing people in to care about external appearance and status and pursue money. So-called “love” and “marriage” are permeated with the stench of greed and are replete with transactions and benefit. Those marriages are essentially rotten from early on. The hasty end to my marriage came about because I had taken the evil trends of “tall, rich and handsome” as my goals to pursue in marriage, becoming intoxicated with wealth and personal benefit. Even though I gratified my short-term vanity, after getting married, since our values were different, and our habits, preferences, and pursuits were all wildly different, getting along together was really exhausting. And, since I wasn’t up to the standard my husband held on to of being “fair-skinned, rich and beautiful,” he really looked down on me. This meant our post-marriage life wasn’t just happy, but was incredibly painful. Satan really does utilize these evil trends to corrupt and harm people, turning what should have been a happy marriage into a transaction with all sorts of additional conditions, and as soon as the other person can’t meet their desires, their relationship utterly collapses and the days of their marriage are numbered. This is the outcome of Satan’s corruption of mankind.
Because of this setback and failure, I no longer relied upon my satanic perspective on marriage or followed the trends of the world of taking “fair-skinned, rich and beautiful” or “tall, rich and handsome” as my measure when finding a partner. Instead, I considered it and approached it according to the principles of the truth.
Afterward, I saw The Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life say, “Tell me, what is the most crucial consideration when looking for a partner? The most crucial consideration is what path they walk, and what type of person they are. If you are walking a different path from them, then you will spend the rest of your lives sleeping in the same bed but dreaming different dreams. Would there then be any happiness to speak of? If you don’t share a common language, then you won’t be happy. Say there is a sister who pursues the truth, and her husband pursues wealth. Can someone who pursues the truth live their life together with someone who pursues wealth? Do they share a common language? When the husband comes home, he says: ‘I’ve seen a way to get rich again today.’ And the sister says: ‘I’ve understood a little more truth today.’ You see? The moment they say these words, their minds diverge, because they are not walking the same path. Therefore, when it comes to choosing a partner, what should you choose first? It is imperative to choose someone who shares your ideals and beliefs. So on this foundation of sharing ideals and beliefs, what else must you choose? Choose someone who has a similar humanity to you. If you have a good humanity and you choose someone whose humanity is poor, then you will surely have many arguments and differences in the future; if you have a humanity that isn’t so good and you choose someone whose humanity is good, then they will benefit you and can be understanding with you—this is key, and you must consider all these aspects. As to whether someone is ultimately suitable for you or not, you must pray to God. Pray for a while, and if you see that there are no obstructions and that you feel very peaceful, and that from praying and seeking, everything goes smoothly and without difficulty, then this shows that the marriage is a good enough match. Afterward, ask your brothers and sisters to verify the marriage, and if everyone says ‘You are really suited to each other,’ and they all feel that the marriage is a suitable one, then it will be verified. … See, God has given us peace, acknowledgement, and a smooth path in the spirit. This is incredible, and it can determine the fate of a life….”
I saw from this fellowship that when looking for a partner, only looking for a like-minded one who shares our faith is in line with God’s will. This is because the two people have a shared language and pursue the same goals. When they are weak and negative, they can help and support each other; when they encounter difficulties and dilemmas, they can encourage and comfort each other, leaning on God together to stand witness for Him. That kind of companion is beneficial for the entry into life of those of us who are believers. This is just like one of my church friends—she and her husband are both believers, they share a common language, and they are both proactively working and expending themselves for God, spreading the gospel and bearing witness to God. When they encounter a truth they don’t understand they can have fellowship with each other and bolster the other’s weaknesses; when they encounter a difficulty they can encourage, help, and support each other. In their domestic interactions they also express mutual help and love as well as tolerance and forbearance. In their lives, they take the Lord’s words as their principles of practice; they live in domestic bliss. Thinking back to Job’s wife, when he encountered trials and was in great pain, not only did his wife not encourage him to lean on God, but she instead taunted him, saying “Do you still retain your integrity? curse God, and die” (Job 2:9). My own failed marriage was also a huge lesson for me. It is clear that finding a like-minded partner for marriage is absolutely critical. Just assays, “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amo 3:3). One aspect of finding a companion is having shared faith and being like-minded. Another is to pray to God and seek on this a lot; pray to God about this for a period of time to see if there’s any verification from the Holy Spirit. If you feel at peace in your heart, that is verification. If your brothers and sisters all feel it’s a good match, this comes from God’s arrangements. Only that kind of marriage is blessed by God and can bring happy days.
I hope that the above fellowship will be of help to you. God’s words are the light that shows us the way, the road sign to happiness. Only by practicing according to the principles of His words can His blessings be gained. May God bless you in finding another half that brings happiness.
Xinling of Our Daily Devotionals
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