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I have written many encouraging posts on marriage, but I was having a conversation with my mom yesterday about the “not so pretty things” that are in marriage and also about things that many don’t want to talk about. Getting married is wonderful, having a man to love and start a family with brings a great sense of joy, and having wedding photos are great as well, but the change God wants from us is something people do not talk about.
If you think you’ll get just married in a spiritual state that is messy, chaotic, and not well-watered, then you will not find the man that you dream of. Getting married can happen to anyone, but having a godly marriage is another subject that takes two people dedicated to God. Having a broken, back-burner type faith isn’t going to lead you into a lasting marriage that is grounded in Christ, but it will lead you away from God and into a marriage that is unequal.
Many women only dream about getting married, the man at the end of the aisle, and the dress, which I will not lie, I think of those things as well, but I also understand that I cannot have a godly marriage if my walk with Christ isn’t strong.
For the past year, I have decided to put the spotlight on myself, examine myself, and ask myself “Am I able to marry a man in my spiritual state” or “Would God think I am ready for that step?” When I would ask God these questions, He would convict me, teach me, and lay things on my heart; therefore, I have come up with five things that single women must come to terms with before getting married or else marriage will not be what she thought it was.
You must realize that you cannot commit to a husband if you cannot commit to Christ
Your first love is Christ, for He was the first one to pour out His love for you on the cross; therefore, if you cannot stay faithful to Him, how can you remain faithful to a man? If you keep falling away from Christ into sin, pleasures, and other things, then how do you expect to stay loyal to a husband? If you find other things more appealing than Christ, then what makes you think you will only keep your eyes on your husband.
Your walk with Christ tells a person all they need to know; how strong you are, how dedicated you are, how faithful you are, and how tender and nice you are. Though you may on speak a few words, you walk with Christ will speak more volumes than any words ever can, and if you are failing to keep your walk with Christ strong, then do not expect to make a marriage work.
If you go into a marriage with a broken relationship with Christ, you will not be satisfied in your marriage, you will seek outside sources for that satisfaction, you will find your marriage slipping, your husband getting frustrated, and you will spiral out of control.
“Commit your works to the Lord,
And your thoughts will be established.” Proverbs 16:3
With that being said, before you ever even consider marriage, you must make sure you can commit to Christ, and if you cannot commit to Him, then you should not seek a godly marriage just yet, for a godly man wants a woman who can dedicate her time and her life to Christ or else that marriage will not be built on codependency in God.
You must realize that a Proverbs 31 Woman didn’t “Wake Up that Like”
Many women think being a godly woman comes at ease, and it does not. If I could tell you how I was when I was a teenager, I could write an entire book on my flaws. Though I was on the path to godly womanhood, I wasn’t there yet for I had much to learn at the time. I had to go through change, conviction, and putting myself into the hot seat to be changed.
I had to work on my desperation, my impatience, and I also had to work on putting God first. I had to change, I had to realize that I had maturities that needed to be curved, I had to realize that being a Proverbs 31 woman required time to grow, dedication, and realizing that godliness doesn’t happen in one night, but it is a process.
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9
Before you ever think about marriage, you must realize that marriage will not make you some “godly wife that has all the answers” overnight, for if you are a selfish woman before marriage, then you will be a selfish married woman, and if you are a narcissistic woman, then you will become a narcissist married woman, so you must ask God for conviction, change, and accepting that you need to work on yourself before you ever thinking about married life, because marriage doesn’t have a “magic power that make you godly after the wedding night.”
You Must Realize That You Need More than Looks
Beauty trends change every single day, and when I was a teenage girl, I had very low self-esteem, which hurt me in many ways, I was a shy girl, I was insecure, and I kept failing to realize that my worth is in Christ. Looking back from my high school days, I realize how trivial dating was, and I wish I never dated in high school.
Though God made attraction, you need more than that. You need more than what meets the eye, for it will fade away very quickly, and once your outside beauty fades away, what will you be left with? You need to have passions, ambitions, goals, and your character should reflect godliness and Christ.
“Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:30
Many women fail to examine their hearts due to being too busy on the outside appearance, which causes their character to deplete. A beautiful woman is beautiful from the heart, she is godly in all things, she is joyful, she is slow to anger, she curves her speech, she seeks God and not the things of this world, and she finds her worth in Christ and not in temporary things.
Though it is okay to want to look lovely, you should not let that consume you or go to your head, because once you become consumed with your looks, your walk with Christ will deplete, you will become artificial, and you will have no genuine substance.
Marriage based on looks with crumble, for lust is not love. Love goes deeper than the surface, and love is about falling in love with the heart. If everyone saw your heart instead of your looks, would you be ashamed or confident in Christ? If you would be ashamed, then before committing yourself to a man, you need to work on yourself before ever allowing someone into your heart.
You Must Realize God’s Design for You as a Woman
If you mention “woman” and “role” in the same sentence, then you will cause an outbreak to happen, for feminists hate the role that God created. Yes, men and women do have different unique roles, but that does not make God a “hater of women.” Instead, God loves women and His plan for women is beautiful and well thought out.
I have, sadly, met many Christian women who hates the idea of submitting to a man due to not fully or correctly understanding what godly submission actually is. Submitting to a husband does not mean your husband treats you like a doormat, because your husband has a role of loving you like Christ loves the church.
“For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones.” Ephesians 5:23-30
If you look deeper at marriage, then you will notice how marriage is a representation of Christ’s love for the church, so tyranny is nowhere in that equation. A woman must realize and understand what godly marriage is before getting married or else she can become confused or find herself being filled with lies that are not true.
A woman is to submit to her husband because she trusts him, and because her husband goes before Christ as the representative of his family. A man has the duty to lead his family on the narrow path and in godliness and virtue. A woman has the duty of standing by her husband’s side, being a helpmeet, and trusting her husband in all situations. A woman was made at Adam’s side; therefore, she is to stand at the side of her husband for a marriage is about codependency in Christ.
A woman must be willing to deny the false view of marriage that society has projected and understand that submission does not mean “dictatorship,” but it means respect, trust, and knowing that God gave husbands the duty of protecting their wives and loving their wives in truth.
You must Realize that It’s Not About You Anymore
The single life means that you are on your own, bur when you get married, it isn’t about you anymore. You then have to put your husband over yourself, you have to put your wants last, and you must be a helper to the man you married.
“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others” Philippians 2:3-4
Selfishness and marriage makes a horrible combination for a disaster to happen, for marriage is about compromise, giving things up, and sacrifice. If you are unwilling to sacrifice, then you will feel as if your husband is far away from you and you will feel as if you are on another island. Marriage is not about receiving, but it about giving. It is about giving your all for the other person, it is about making sure the other person is being heard, it is about making sure the other person is not stumbling in Christ, and it about glorifying God before yourself.
“You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.” 2 Peter 3:17-18
In the end, single women have a lot of things to realize before jumping on the “bride-to-be” train, and as a single woman myself, I ask God daily to teach me new things that I need to learn, because even I have areas that I need to work on. Single women are focusing too much on the outcome rather than what they must do to get to that end result, and marriage isn’t an easy walk in the park, for it comes with various trials that will come around from time to time.When you are married, you will be a wife who will have expectations to meet, so as a single woman, focus on God, focus on building your walk with Christ, focus on your heart, and focus on selflessness, and when you do that, then you can think about marriage and a future husband.
Put your priorities in order, for in order to get to the end of the aisle you have to let God shape you and mold you, but it will be well worth in the end.