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Choosing the Best Marriage Partner

Choosing the best marriage partner is one of the greatest mysteries of life. Why is it that the one person we think would be perfect for us, shows no interest? You may have experienced being attracted to someone whom you thought would be a wonderful partner, yet they didn’t even acknowledge that you exist. So let’s talk about what usually draws couples together, although there are exceptions to the norm.

The Attraction for Personal Gain

He falls in love with her high-priced jewelry and high-end style of clothing. She falls in love with the symbol on the hood of his car. But for all she knows, a financial organization owns most of his classy ride. These kinds of relationships seldom last long. If they do make it to the altar, they usually end in an expensive divorce. So, the next time you’re standing by your car and you notice a young woman with stars in her eyes, beware that it may be your ride she’s falling in love with.

Attraction in First Impressions

The first attraction is most often physical. He immediately notices her body and her pretty face. She usually is drawn to his face, his eyes, and his smile, before she takes note of his frame. We are all familiar with the term, “love at first sight”. However, it would be more accurate to say, “lust at first sight”, or “infatuation at first sight.” Genuine love does not exist on the physical level. Our bodies are only the house we live in, and regardless of how much we invest in maintaining them, our bodies are going to age. So our attraction must go much deeper than physical appearance.

The next influence would be initial interactions which can be a powerful pull. If they seem to click, they will likely decide to connect again.  Within the first few conversations, the potential couple will chat about their likes and dislikes. They will share their specific interests in sports, the arts, and their choice of entertainment. They will discuss their education, their careers, and their future goals.

Through their early exchanges, they will get a feel as to whether they are on the same level in mental and emotional maturity and in the desired direction for their lives.

The Mental and Emotional Levels

Mental and Emotional Levels Connected PartnersIn choosing the best marriage partner we tend to choose a marriage partner who is equally as wounded or as healed as we are. Healthy, self-confident people are attracted to strong, independent partners. They recognize that while they become one as a couple, they are still individuals with their thoughts, attitudes, and goals. They allow each other to have their friends, interests, and social life.

Emotional scars affect our choice of a marriage partner. Wounded individuals are drawn to what feels familiar. People navigate toward what they have experienced in the environment where they were raised. The couple then responds to each other through what they have learned from their parent’s relationship or what they have seen acted out.

For a person to be attracted to another person on an emotional level, they both need to be on the same plain. People who need to be needed will be drawn to someone needy. In other words, if a person grew up in a dysfunctional family, they will be attracted to someone who was raised in a dysfunctional family. Brokenness attracts brokenness.

If a person was raised in a home where alcohol was excessive, they will subconsciously be attracted to someone with similar experiences. Adult children of alcoholic dependent parents usually marry children or grandchildren of alcoholic dependents. Dependency attracts co-dependency.

If one desires to marry a mentally and emotionally healthy partner he or she will need to get help to process and heal their ingrained characteristics of dysfunctional exposure. Those who don’t get help or make the time and effort to heal emotional wounds will carry their baggage into the marriage.  They hope their new partner will be the answer to their brokenness. They believe their marriage will complete them, but only God can complete a person.

We are on the same page.

Attraction through Personalities

Now their personalities come into play. These are primarily developed through the individuals’ temperament type, birth order, and childhood environment. There are four basic temperament types–the take control choleric, the life of the party sanguine, the perfect melancholy, and the relaxed phlegmatic.

Opposite temperaments have opposite strengths and weaknesses. Individuals are attracted to what will complement their character traits. Extroverts are usually attracted to introverts.  Two individuals with opposite temperament types will probably be drawn to each others’ strengths, subconsciously knowing this person will balance out their weaknesses. Several combinations of temperaments complement each other.

A powerful choleric leader is attracted to a shy, peaceful phlegmatic. The choleric wants someone who will submit to his leadership. The phlegmatic looks for someone who will speak on her behalf.  If she is a bubbly, popular sanguine, she will be drawn to the strengths of deep, perfect melancholy. She needs someone to keep her organized, while he needs someone who will help him loosen up a little. Personalities are a major component in choosing the right marriage partner.

Attraction by Birth Order

Now we move on to an area that possibly many people have never taken into consideration when choosing the best marriage partner, the birth order of the individual. Birth orders are categorized as- the only child, the firstborn, the middle child, and the baby of the family.

An only child is often self-focused, having been the center of attention in their early years. As a result, they are often attracted to a middle child who is most flexible. A first-born child or oldest of his or her gender will most often be attracted to the youngest child being accustomed to looking after younger siblings.

When it comes to birth order, marriage partners are best suited when marrying a different birth order. Marriage partners of the same birth order usually struggle with control or responsibility issues.

Spiritual Maturity When Choosing the Best Marriage Partner

The final remaining magnet is spiritual maturity. Individuals who are committed to their relationship with God will naturally place spiritual maturity as a top priority. They will have been praying for God to bring His chosen marriage partner into their lives. They will only be interested in dating someone who exemplifies what they believe and enjoys discussing their views. Praying together about their relationship will be of most importance.Spiritual Maturity

On the other hand, less committed Christians will likely place their faith preferences further down the list of attractions. They will be content to marry someone who says they are a Christian rather than waiting to see the fruit of their confession. However, next to deciding to follow Jesus, choosing the right marriage partner will be the most important decision of their lives.

We have covered attraction to financial security, brokenness to brokenness, mental maturity, emotional health, mutual likes and dislikes, life goals, temperament types, birth order, and spiritual maturity. As you can see, the chemistry in choosing the best marriage partner is multifaceted.

We tend to marry partners who are equally as healed or as wounded as we are. If you want to marry someone who is emotionally, mentally, and spiritually healthy, you will need to take the time and make the effort to heal your emotional scars so that the type of person you are looking for will be attracted to you. If you want to marry a strong Christian, you will need to grow in your faith and Christlike character so that a mature believer will be drawn to you.

Staying together until death separates you is a huge challenge in today’s high-pressure society, so it is best to place some boundaries in your relationship right from the start.

  • Build a friendship for several months in the safety of groups. You want to make sure you are the best of friends and enjoy each other’s company before you shift your relationship to the level of romantic interest.
  • What are the character traits you are looking for? Observe how this potential partner interacts with other people. Is he respectful? Does he interact well with children? Is he a good listener? Do his words and actions reflect Christian values? Is he a good spiritual leader? Is she loving and caring? Is she modest in the way she dresses? Do her words encourage others? Does she have a servant’s heart? Is she growing in her relationship with Jesus? Are there distinct indications of transparency, integrity, humility, and compassion?
  • Spend time in public settings getting to know each other. The more you agree on what is important to you, the more likely you will be compatible in making decisions together. Do you come from similar backgrounds? Do you both have good relationships with parents and siblings? Do you have similar mindsets about Spiritual beliefs, ministry, tithing, morals, purity, finances, extended family involvement, goals, careers, individual roles, sharing household chores, and raising children?
  • Be yourself. Don’t try to impress. Be transparent, vulnerable, open, and honest. Reveal who you are. The key does not lie in simply accepting who you truly are, but it lies in cherishing who you are as a unique child of God. Choose only potential partners who are kind and emotionally available, who nurture, affirm, and value you for who you are as a person.
  • Get familiar with each other’s families. Observe how your future partner interacts and respects parents and siblings. Is there friction in any of their interactions? Will you both fit well into the original family unit?
  • When choosing the best marriage partner watch for red flags. Never expect your partner to change for the better after the wedding. People are usually on their best behavior until they can relax. If at any time you feel you are being disrespected, controlled, or manipulated, address the situation promptly. Expect a sincere apology without excuses. Don’t allow this inappropriate behavior to become a pattern. Mutual respect and emotional security are of paramount importance. This is the one person you are to entrust your heart to, for the rest of your life, who is to loyally protect, and sacrifice selfish desires for you, and vice versa.
  • Before you commit to a long-term relationship, ask yourself, “When the fireworks wear off, what is there in our relationship to keep us together? If I wasn’t dating this person would he or she be one of my best friends? Do I really enjoy our time together?” If the answer is no, set each other free to choose the right marriage partner.
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Choosing the Best Marriage Partner