Our top 10 list: what to look for in a spouse.
"The one who seeks good finds delight."
We were sitting in Church a couple weeks ago when an elderly couple sat in front of us. We watched as they held hands and worshipped God together. It was one of those moments that tugs at your heart.
Josh and I always tend to recognize those moments at the same time and then we find ourselves embracing each other tighter and whispering to one another, "that is going to be us in 50 years."
If we are honest with ourselves, those sweet moments of seeing an elderly couple embracing one another and seeing how well they love each other after so many years sounds sweet and endearing, but those years of getting there in marriage can be long and trying in between the moments of ease and excitement.
So how do we get there?
This question can be scary and can leave us millennials holding out on the thought of marriage because the commitment of being with one person and all their flaws and baggage can be disabling. But it doesn't have to be.
While I do not have it all figured out, and I am not claiming that neither me nor my spouse are perfect, I spent some time wracking my brain and drilling my husband on the 10 traits to look for in a spouse when considering marriage. We actually both had a few similar responses, but I thought it would be fun to have a post that combines both a male and female perspective instead of one or the other.
I am mindful that we all seek different qualities in a spouse, however after 10 years of marriage, these are the qualities we feel are the most beneficial to a healthy marriage.
His top 5:
Proverbs 31:11 says "The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain." Trust is deeply rooted in our biological make up of becoming one with our spouse as scripture shows us. Trust is foundational for building a healthy marriage.
I chuckled a bit when he said this one, because honestly, I do not feel like I was the most respectful toward him in the beginning of our marriage, some things are learned over the years. Although, any book on marriage or list of what men want to find in a woman, you will see the resounding theme of respect. Let's talk more about this one next week.
3. Sense of humor
My guy is someone who feeds off the joy of making those close to him laugh. ;)
4. Honest and humble
"Pride goes before destruction. A haughty spirit before a fall." —Proverbs 16:18
Pride feeds off selfish desires to advance our own agenda and plan. When you humble yourself, you are laying down your pride to better your marriage in unity and truth. It is not easy and it definitely does not come natural.
5. Someone that makes you want to be a better person
The gift and joy of committing yourself to another person comes with knowing that you get to share the ups and downs and grow together for the better.
Her top 5:
1. Someone who can make you laugh
I am the task-oriented, mama bear. Josh is the fun one. He knows exactly how to get me to laugh and I am forever grateful.
2. Someone who is dependable and self-aware
You need to know you have someone you can count on no matter what the circumstance or situation. In order for someone to be dependable, they must also be aware of their short comings and be willing to work through those. Josh's caring spirit allows him to apologize and comfort in ways that are honest and genuine.
3. Someone who knows how to love others well
This is one trait I admire about my husband. If you can find someone who loves others well, then you will find a mate who can love you and your children well. Someone who loves others well will never make you feel less than worthy. God says in scripture that we are precious and worth more than Rubies and Gold and I believe that to be a truth we must believe ourselves and it is a truth that is valuable for a spouse to recognize in marriage.
4. Someone who can encourage you
Marriage is a journey together. Having someone who can recognize the times you need encouragement is invaluable.
5. Someone who has the same end goal in mind
Opposites may attract and help you grow along the way, but I truly believe it is wise to choose someone who has the same goals and dreams of what they want their life to look like in 50 years.
Here are possibly two of the most important characteristics to look for in a spouse. Josh and I both had:
- good morals and values
If you are a motivated person, find a spouse who is motivated as well so you can share in those dreams and encourage one another. Without a doubt, finding a spouse who knows God and is grounded in faith so that it pours out in all they do is of the upmost importance. Without truly knowing Christ, we would not know how to show each other grace, how to love each other well, how to forgive in a healthy way, or how to be mindful of each other's personal wants and needs in life. Knowing Christ is the glue that holds us together.
This list can definitely look different for everyone and we both have our flaws and shortcomings so the goal is not to strive for an unobtainable list. I would absolutely encourage to not to set your standard too low as well. If you are at the stage of life where you are thinking about marriage or finding someone special to be committed to, I would write out a list and not settle for less than what God has for you.
God desires for you to enjoy Him and this life not in a half hearted manner, but ABUNDANTLY and to the fullest!
I would love to hear things that you would throw on your list as well. All those married both newlywed and seasoned, comment below with the things that would make your list of traits to look for in a spouse.
I would argue that some of these traits become more of a learned trait over the years, and I will touch more on that in next week's post! Stay tuned to find out what I have learned after 10 years of marriage. I love hearing from those who are following us on our journey, and I hope to touch a little on the questions I have received. It is not too late either- if you have any questions or topics on marriage you want me to touch on, I would love to hear them! Comment below or drop me a line at email@example.com.