5 Key Areas that Will Prepare Christian Singles for Marriage

BY: - 5 May '17 | Single

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You’ve made the decision to trust God regarding your mate, which is wise. But the challenge is that you didn’t think that God would take this long.

Like most, you desire companionship, but not at the cost of your sanity, self-esteem or dignity. People would have you to settle, but you know that God has someone just for you.

During your time of waiting, God wants to prepare you for your mate. In the book of Esther 2:12-14, Esther went through a preparation process before going before the king. God wants to do the same for you in an effort to develop, strengthen and equip you for the Godly marriage He desires.

Here are five foundational areas that God will mature during your singleness, which will not only prepare you for marriage but will benefit you and your potential mate for a lifetime.

Healing Your Heart

Acts 13:22 states that David was a man after God’s own heart. Where is your heart? Is it wrapped up in God, or is it distorted by past relationships, or tormented by a desperate need for a mate?

Maya Angelou said, “A woman’s heart should be so hidden in God that a man has to seek Him just to find her.”

Although the quote states a woman, the same is true for men; a man’s heart should be so hidden in God that a woman has to seek God just to find him.

During this time of singleness give your heart fully to the Lord. Permit God to expose any issues, hurts, and pains that need His healing touch. Let God have your heart so that His desires will become your desires. You becoming whole, healed and free, is a blessing to yourself and a potential mate.

Developing an Intimate Relationship with God

Song of Solomon 6:3 states I am my beloved’s, And my beloved is mine. God wants you to experience his everlasting love. You are His child, and as such, He wants to shower His love upon you. He longs to develop an intimacy with you that surpasses any relationship you’ve encountered.

As you begin to cultivate this relationship, you will fine tune your ability to hear and recognize God’s voice. Hearing and knowing the voice of God is the best gift that you could give yourself or a significant other. The camaraderie, wisdom, insight and revelation that comes from this type of intimacy is life changing for you and those you encounter.

Loving Yourself

In Psalms 139:14, David states that he is fearfully and wonderfully made, and so are we. As such, embrace the beauty of your unique design. We are all perfectly imperfect. Instead of discounting your beauty or comparing yourself to others, spend this time loving who God made you to be, tall, short, skinny, fluffy, freckles, red hair, etc.

If you don’t love and appreciate you, how do you expect someone else to?

Spend time learning to appreciate and love your uniqueness. You are beautiful and perfectly created by God. Own it! As you do, the true radiance of your beauty will shine through for others to appreciate as well.

Understanding Real love

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 is the true definition of love. Are you ready to love someone in their imperfection?

Are you ready to forgive and still co-exist in the same space after an intense argument?

Are you ready to forgive an intentional wrong or offense?

Are you ready to trust a person again after trust has been broken?

Are you willing to be transparent and fully give your heart to someone and trust them not to take it for granted, but love you the best way they know how?

Are you ready to compromise and not have your way all the time? Are you ready to stay in the relationship for better or for worse?

Are you ready to love someone unconditionally?

Are you ready to love according to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8? If not, spend this time in your singleness letting God teach you how to love the way He loves.

Applying the Fruit of the Spirit

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience (long-suffering), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” -Galatians 5:16-26. In all of our relationships, intimate, platonic and casual we should be displaying the fruit of the spirit. During your singleness, allow the Holy Spirit to strengthen you in these areas.

Embracing and applying the Fruit of the Spirit to your life, now, will enable you to implement them in your intimate relationship a lot quicker. Trust me; all nine will be tested on a regular basis.

Read: Fruit of the Spirit: A Blueprint to a Happy Marriage

Relationships are a matter of the heart, so it’s no surprise, that the heart is the area where the Lord does His foundational work. As you begin to open yourself to His leading, you will become equipped to nurture the authentic relationship you desire.

About the author

Judi Mason wrote 61 articles on this blog.

Judi Mason is an Empowerment Strategist, whose mission is to empower You to become your best authentic self. As an accomplished author, Judi has garnered much success with her self-help books and workshops; including her popular Girl Talk: Relationship 101 events- which was birthed from her best-selling book, The Relationship Chronicles- Real Love, Straight Talk No Drama. As a sought after speaker, Judi uses multiple platforms from the marketplace to ministry; to enable individuals to pursue and fulfill their God ordained purpose with passion, in life, love and entrepreneurship.

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3 Times It’s OK to Let Your Guards Down and Be Vulnerable in a New Relationship

BY: - 11 May '17 | Relationships

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I get it: You’re suffering from PTLD (Post Traumatic Love Disorder). You opened your heart. You loved hard. You went all in. And then it happened: You were abandoned. Rejected. Hurt. Disrespected. Heartbroken.

You’re “over it” now, you’ve forgiven the other person and you’re moving on. But deep inside, you’re  still struggling to drop your guards when you meet someone new. You pull away when he gets too close. You have trust issues. You feel like it’s too good to be true. You’re afraid to be open and vulnerable because you don’t want to get hurt again.

What you don’t understand is that to survive your breakup without having a breakdown, you made a secret vow that you’d never love again.

But today is a new day.

I want to tell you it is possible to love like you’ve never been hurt because you’re a different woman. Wiser. Stronger. Better.

How can you learn to be vulnerable in a relationship after you’ve been hurt?

First, you must understand that vulnerability is not weakness. Instead, as Brené Brown describes it, vulnerability means “the courage to show up and be seen, to ask for what you need, to talk about how you’re feeling, [and] to have the hard conversations.” When you’re clear on what it looks like to drop your guards, then you can embrace the second point.

The key that unlocks your ability to be vulnerable in a new relationship is this: You must accurately choose safe people to trust and use your God-given instincts to to only open up to the right man. Everyone isn’t a safe place for your heart and so you must use discernment.

You must accurately choose safe people to trust and use your God-given instincts to to only open up to the right man.

Here are three times when it’s appropriate to let your guards down and be vulnerable in a new relationship.

Being Yourself On A First Date

If you send your representative to your first date and pretend to be someone you’re not, you’re not being vulnerable and you’re setting yourself up for a relationship that isn’t built upon the truth. For example, one of my clients said she was on a date with a man who told her that everyone who went to clubs was ratchet.

Even though she enjoyed going out dancing with her friends, she used to chuckle nervously and agree with a guy who thought every woman who went to club was less-than-wife material, because she wanted to prove she was worthy of being chosen. She’d end up in relationships that were boring because she wasn’t being authentic to who she was.

It takes courage to be yourself on a first date, but it’s worth it!

I told her that she never had to prove she was worthy of love and that she could be free to be herself. The right man would not only accept her, but he would adore those aspects of her personality she used to keep hidden. It takes courage to be yourself on a first date, but it’s worth it!

When He Does Something You Don’t Like

Let’s say you’ve been going out for a few weeks, and he’s been consistent with phone calls, planning dates, and following up with you. But then he does something that rubs you the wrong way. Maybe he looks at another woman while you’re out to eat. Or, he may get too sexual with you in his text messages. Perhaps he’s asking you very personal questions and you don’t feel comfortable talking about that part of your life yet.

READ: Are You Being Guarded or Are You Guarding Your Heart?

Vulnerability will help you set boundaries because you will need to be honest and let him know how you feel and what you need to feel happy and secure with him. He can’t read your mind and may not know how to meet your needs unless you tell him.

Defining the Relationship

It’s so important not only to be upfront about what your relationship goals are early on in a relationship, but also to discuss your needs, must haves and deal breakers when you’re asking the “what are we” question.

Be honest! If you’re developing feelings for him even though you both agreed to take it slow and see other people, take a risk and tell him. The feeling may or may not be mutual, but hiding your feelings is a sure-fire way to sabotage a relationship before it even gets off the ground. Likewise, if you want marriage and he doesn’t, you need to honest with him and not pretend that you can change his mind about marriage later on in the relationship.

Brené Brown says that “Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” Take the risk and open up.

BMWK, do you find it challenging to let down your guards in a new relationship? Tell your story below! 

About the author

Aesha Adams Roberts wrote 155 articles on this blog.

Dr. Aesha is a matchmaker, dating coach, speaker and author of the book, Can I Help A Sister Out: How To Meet & Marry The Man of Your Dreams. After years of making painful dating mistakes, she met & married her husband in 11 short months and has made it her mission to help women and men find and keep the love of their lives.

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