In this article we will touch on few matters, and recommendations that may help reducing some of the possible obstacles in the journey of choosing your mate.
As a Christian you are held to a certain standard in order to create and maintain a Godly family. There are also quite few areas that play roles in this process. Every family has its own culture, traditions, and habits that are different from others’. This can have a great affect on how the personality is developed and the kind of choices you makes. There are different types of pressure you may face if you are first, second or even third immigrant’s generation carrying elements of your origin background from your parents or by living there yourself. In addition, the influence of the current environment where you live on viewing life in general and the decisions you make. This can manifest itself in many ways such as whether or not you choose a partner from the same country of origin, same culture, and in some cases same religion.
Here are few matters and recommendations you may consider as you’re building your relationship:
(1) Give yourself a chance to know the other’s personality and the issues that may arise after first phase of the relationship (oceanic love) when your thoughts, feelings, actions are only revolved around enjoying the other person and making him/her happy. In some cases hidden character’s issues are masked in the beginning in order to maintain the relationship not realizing that all aspects of the personality will eventually be reveled.
(2) There are major issues many couples avoid addressing until they are forced to. These issues may include:
- Finances which are one of the least desirable subjects a couple would like to bring up. Statistics shows that arguments, separation and divorce due to financial issues are on the rise. It is highly recommended that you and your future partner discuss income, spending habits and budgeting, assets, how each person views the financial future and planning for it and be able create a system that may work for both of you.
- Religion or denomination, it is essential if the two are coming from different beliefs to discuss the matter very early in the relationship. There are three possibilities when the two are coming from different religion or denomination: 1-Both agree to have a civil marriage and each keep their faith. This results in several problems; most of all is the religion foundation in the marriage followed by which faith, traditions and place of worship...etc. will the children pursue. 2- One might convert only because he/she wants to marry this particular person and the result is similar to the civil marriage option. 3-The person who decides to convert is doing so based on honest belief.
(3) Observe how you and the other person communicate together. Communication is a key element in every relationship, particularly if you are going towards marriage direction. Healthy and effective communication skills can be learned if the couple is willing to.
(4) Expose the relationship to various situations and environments that include other people than the two of you such as family and friends. This will help you know how the other person is able to communicate, form and maintain different relationships.
(5) Try to avoid physical contact before marriage. Breaking the physical boundaries before marriage will lead to sexual stimulation. This can cause either frustration or gradual proceeding with full intimacy outside the marriage. "You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
(6) Follow the relationships guide (the Bible).
(7) Pray that the Lord open your eyes and heart to clearly see His guidance in the relationship.