Finding a Life Mate: The Character Traits Worth Looking For #6

25 04 2011

This is the sixth in a series of what traits to look for in a life mate.  While the following sets a high standard, one that perhaps few will initially reach, each area identified is an important character trait to look for and inquire about as you consider a lifelong marriage partner.

6. Does this person walk in freedom and pursue greater freedom in all areas of their life?  Or, spoken another way, is he/she pursuing freedom from: substance abuse, religious spirits, soul attachments from prior relationships, anger issues, a need to be in control, stress or excessive anxiety, pornography or sexual addictions, dependent or co-dependent relationships?  Healing is a life-long process; is this person pursuing healing in his/her spirit, soul and body? (Galatians 5:1)

Rarely do we hang out all of our dirty laundry for all to see, especially with the one we just might want to marry.  While “putting our best foot forward,” we are, at the same time, looking for genuine vulnerability as we practice humility.  There is truth about being completely honest in the estimation of ourselves.  If this person did not enjoy a healthy upbringing, are they seeking counsel and reading books on healing or are they blaming others and remaining stagnant in their emotional and spiritual health?  It would seem preferrable to be engaged with the one who knows they need healing and are pursuing that healing, verses the one who is in denial of their history and remains stunted in their personal growth.  My wife, Mary, married an incomplete person for sure, but I was a person on a mission with my God to be whole.  If I wasn’t individually pursuing wholeness, our marriage would not be whole, for two were on the path of becoming one.  And after many years of providing marriage counseling, I have discovered that marriage problems are individual problems first.

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Finding a Life Mate: The Character Traits Worth Looking For #5

19 04 2011

This is the fifth in a series of what traits to look for in a life mate.  While the following sets a high standard, one that perhaps few will initially reach, each area identified is an important character trait to look for and inquire about as you consider a lifelong marriage partner.

5. Does this person challenge you to grow spiritually, emotionally and intellectually?  Does this person hold standards that you desire to reach?  Does he/she help you to recognize and pursue your potential?  Does he/she encourage you to strive for higher levels of knowledge and experience and to be a well-rounded individual?  Does this person inspire you to be a better person and follower of Christ?  (Colossians 1:28)  Do you receive the sense that this person is more interested in your well-being than their own? (Philippians 2:1-7)

Recently, I was reading a friend’s birthday card which said, “I’ve talked about myself enough…”  When you opened the card it then read, “How about you talk about me now.”  Selfishly funny wasn’t it?  Do you get anything close to that kind of feeling around this person?  Loving to talk about themselves, they listen to you only until they can find a place of interruption with something like, “That reminds me of when I…”  I don’t know about you, but I enjoy being around those who take a personal interest, those who really do want to hear how I am doing and those who are not looking at their watch when I am in the middle of sharing an important feeling or spiritual challenge.  I desire others who care enough to challenge me to raise it up a notch.  It says that they see a capacity for a greater potential in me.  This person loves me enough to care about my personal growth.  If we are not being challenged and consequently changed to become a better person by our closest relationships, then our relationships are most likely changing us for the negative.





Finding a Life Mate: The Character Traits Worth Looking For #4

11 04 2011

This is the fourth in a series of what traits to look for in a life mate.  While the following sets a high standard, one that perhaps few will initially reach, each area identified is an important character trait to look for and inquire about as you consider a lifelong marriage partner.

4. What is this person’s life call or mission?  God has called each of us to specific life mission and He gives gifts to help complete this mission.  While this call can change and evolve, does this person understand his/her own personal mission?  We are each born with purpose, but when we are born again, I believe we find our passion.  What is this person’s passion in life and how does it match with your passion?  If God is calling two to become one, then He is recognizing similar life calls that will complement one another.

What do I mean?  I live in a farming community in Pennsylvania.  If a young man is desiring to be a farmer, then a young wife needs to not only understand that call, believe in that call as a business and ministry, but be willing to come alongside her husband and be a farmer as well.  She needs to be willing to embrace the smell and the flies in her kitchen.  If a young lady has a passion and is called to oversees missions, then a young man who she is desiring to become one with will need to share in that call.  It does not mean we lose our individuality, but are we agreeing to the mission and can that  mission become a co-mission?  Are the two compatible or similar enough to merge into one?  Adam and Eve were given a co-mission, to tend the garden.  (Genesis 2:8, 15, 18)  The Father will do the same for you.  Too many marriages today haven’t a clue as to why they are together.  Could it be that they have not discovered their mission together?





Finding a Life Mate: The Character Traits Worth Looking For #3

6 04 2011

This is the third entry in a series of what traits to look for in a life mate.  While the following sets a high standard, one that perhaps few will initially reach, each area identified is an important character trait to look for and inquire about as you consider a lifelong marriage partner.

3. Where is this person at with loving and accepting themselves?  Jesus told us that the greatest commandment was to love God and the second was to love our neighbor as we love ourselves.  How does this person you are interested in love themself?  What do they reflect about how they see themself?  Does this person constantly compare himself or herself to others?  Does he or she perceive themselves as better or less than others?   We love ourselves by pursuing a relationship with our Creator, by caring for our spirit, soul and body, by pursuing wholeness in all areas of life and by pursuing maturity.  A sign of maturity is being able to identify the needs of others and then how to help meet those needs.  Is this person more concerned about their needs or your needs?

Do you get the idea  this person is trying to receive their esteem through you or another or through  their education or their job?  Romans 15:7 reminds us to accept one another just as God has accepted us.  You cannot complete another’s identity.  You cannot be their esteem or meet all their needs.  Listen to the words they use about themself.  Are they positive words or are they self-deprecating?  As we learn to accept ourselves, as God has accepted us,  we can become comfortable within our own skin and then stop trying to change others.  (John 8:12-14; Romans 12:3; II Corinthians 10:12,13)








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