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In my opinion, you won't know when you find the "perfect" spouse because you won't find the perfect spouse for yourself; no person is "perfect." You can search for "perfect" when you go car shopping or house hunting. You want to make sure the car has plenty of leg room and corners well, that sort of thing. When buying a house you make sure you have plenty of closet space and the kitchen is large enough and all. And after all that scrutiny, after you close the deal, you'll discover something you wish was different. If you look for a husband or wife with a check list you'll come across as if you're trying to hire the perfect lawyer or contractor. And God help you if your marriage is like the deal you get with a lawyer or a contractor. The story of Jacob and Rachel in Genesis 29 might help you to see how true love can happen and happiness can still hide itself. Jacob wasn't looking for a wife when he left home to hide out for a while at his uncle's place, laying low until his brother's anger decreased, but he found the love of his life, Rachel, upon arrival. He was smitten. When you read the story you get the feeling that God is mixed up in this somewhere, when you remember the way God appeared to him at Bethel a few nights before his arrival in the east, and the things that God said to him. He told Jacob He would be with him wherever he went (Gen 28:15), and that he would have an enormous family of descendants. After being flimflammed by his uncle and mistakenly marrying Rachel's sister Leah, whom he didn't love, he agrees to an additional seven years of labor for his uncle, for Rachel's hand in marriage, a total of fourteen years. The Bible says the additional years seemed to him to be only a few days(vs 20). He's stricken! After marrying Rachel he learns that Rachel is barren (Gen 29:31). God kept his promise and gave Jacob twelve sons and a daughter but the particulars are less than supreme. Rachel only bore him two sons of the twelve, but she bore him Joseph, his favorite. He loved Rachel so he made it work, but his home life was not without defect, nobody's is or ever will be. There are plenty of animals at the zoo, but don't go there to find a good pet, the animals are wild. My suggestion is: marry the person you fall in love with, not someone who passes an evaluation. Marry someone you want to show your love for, not someone you want to be loved by.
Dear Anonymous, In the bible I can only find (until now) that, if we are Christian, we should find a Christian spouse, and how we as a Christian man or Christian woman, learn submission to our spouse. This idea that we need to somehow "find the perfect spouse", is in my observation a very dangerous position to take, actually another potential reason for a divorce. As fallen human beings, I accept that to imagine what perfect means or is, is also confined to a fallen imagination. To find this "soulmate", this perfect spouse, is a doctrine of the zeitgeist of today, not from scripture. The sooner one unshackles themselves from the idea that one has to somehow "obtain the perfect spouse", the better. The reason why I accept this doctrine of the perfect spouse to be so dangerous, is primarily because it influences us in an evil way. Once we have an idea on whom this perfect spouse should be, and hold fast to that as if it's some kind of gospel, we blind ourselves so easily. Instead of working towards building a relationship with one's spouse, one could be affected by this image of perfection and hold it against the imperfections of the spouse, and forget that the focus should be on God instead. Well, just to let you in on a secret, no one in the flesh is perfect except for Jesus Christ. I would recommend all to unshackle themselves from this idea of obtaining themselves a perfect spouse, shackle yourself under Christ instead. The imaginary perfect spouse within our heads will not compare to the one we married, and as such, there could develop yet another reason to commit to a divorce, instead of healing. Don't give satan a foothold. However, all is not lost. We can pray, we can pray to the Father to turn us into the spouse that our future spouse needs, to use the time that we are without a spouse, to build us up, to follow His ways, and grow through His Word. I would almost want to say; "You will not find the perfect (according to your imagination) spouse, however you can let God turn you into the perfect spouse, as Jesus is." Jesus died for us, even though we hated God. We as Christians singles, why not meet up with the next Christian single and enter into a marriage? If both of you are submitted to the Lord, then you're with the "perfect spouse". Ephesians 5 1 Peter 3 1 Corinthians 7 Colossians 3 Ecclesiastes 4:9-11 And I will add: James 4 Ephesians 4:32 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
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