Being Ready for Married Life from a Spiritual Point of View
When a person considers a profession or career, first of all he needs to study for a certain period of time in order to prepare himself, so that they will hire him in the field that he desires to work in. When it comes to marriage there is no preparatory course that you must take before getting married. It may be that in your congregation one of the brothers that are more mature in the faith holds classes with those who desire to get married, in order to prepare them for marriage, but yet this is not a training period of years, like for your studies.
Married life is one of the most important things in the life of a person, after faith in God, therefore it is very important to prepare yourself for it, if you desire to succeed in your marriage. There are cultures in which the man and/or one of the parents of the bride are required to prepare themselves from a financial point of view before the wedding, and it is expected that on the wedding day the married couple will be financially stable. I am not saying that as believers we are forbidden to consider and be concerned about the material aspect, but it is clear that financial stability is not all that there is in married life. The simplest example is that of rich parents that do not know how to educate or rear their children, because money cannot educate them.
It is very important to be prepared for marriage from a spiritual point of view, for various reasons:
1. A believer that is spiritually mature will value different things in a spouse than a believer that is not mature. For example, a young believer might not appreciate a young lady who dresses modestly, and might define her as old fashioned or too conservative. Instead, a spiritually mature believer will value the seriousness of her faith.
2. Gaining the ability to identify the spiritual level of another believer, whether they are immature or mature in their faith. When a young believing man and woman get to know each other, and examine one another, it is very important for them to have the ability to assess the spiritual level of the other person so that they will be able to make the right decision. Many decisions that are not good and that are unwise are the result of a lack of spiritual maturity.
3. A believer who is not mature spiritually, does not know the Bible, or does not live according to it will not be able to manage his family life according to the will of God. The simplest example is the role of the husband in the family. Every believer that knows the Bible knows that the role of the husband is to be the head of the family. However today in modern society it is commonly accepted to believe that both husband and wife lead the family together, and that the husband is not head over the wife. In order for a believing couple to manage a healthy family life according to the will of God, they must implement the principles of the word of God in their family.
4. Being mature spiritually involves putting to death your desires in the flesh and to give over the control to the Spirit of God. When you have two believers living in one house who are not allowing the Spirit of God to take control of their lives, this is the beginning of troubles, and perhaps the beginning of the end. Believers who do not know how to forgive and to love will not be able to maintain a normal and healthy married life, and many problems await them.
5. If you are spiritually mature you will know better with whom you want to make a bond for the rest of your life, since the partner with whom you will enter into a marriage covenant will have either a positive or a negative influence on your life overall, and especially on the way in which you will serve God. For example, a believing lady can be married to a man whose dream is to live in the middle of the desert in solitude, and the result will be that she will not be able to be a testimony to anyone, other than to the beasts and plants of the wilderness. A spiritually mature lady will think twice before deciding to enter into a bond of this kind.
6. A spiritually mature believer will be willing to receive the counsel of those who are more mature than himself or herself regarding marriage issues.
So, how can one be ready for marriage from a spiritual point of view?
1. Set aside time for the study of God’s word on a daily basis, by yourself. It is very important to know the Scriptures and even more important to live them out in your daily life. A believer that lives in accordance with the word of God before marriage, will want to continue to live according to it in his married life.
2. Set aside a fixed time for prayer every day, speak with God and allow Him to guide you into His will.
3. Be at the assembly gatherings in a regular manner, and participate actively in prayer, praise, and other activities of the congregation. A believer that serves in a particular function in his or her assembly learns more than those that only sit and listen.
4. Remove from your life all negative influences that are from the world, like for example: certain TV programs, certain newspapers or reading material, certain friends, and different habits that are not conducive to your spiritual growth.
I want to promise you that if before anything else you will set aside the time that is necessary for your growth in faith, you are not going to be sorry about the decision that you will make regarding your marriage. As you would like to marry someone who is spiritually ready for marriage, so you also need to prepare yourself.