I have heard many men and women complain about how hard it is to find a good spouse. Many of these people become impatient and settle for someone less than ideal for them, while others are so overly cautious, that they miss the very one that God has chosen for them. (Myself included)

What many people don’t realize is that the Bible gives us much wisdom—Not just on spiritual decisions, but on common sense decisions as well.

To know if a woman should be involved with a man, refer to 1 Timothy 3:1-13 where the apostle Paul writes about the qualifications of bishops and deacons in the Church.

So look for someone who is:

  • Sensible
  • Hospitable,
  • An apt teacher,
  • Not a drunkard,
  • Not violent or quarrelsome
  • Not a lover of money
  • Not conceited
  • Well thought of by others
  • Not double-tongued
  • Not addicted to drugs or alcohol
  • Faithful to God with a clear conscience

Now, no man is going to be perfect, but if he adheres to these character traits most of the time, then you know he is safe to be with. (And remember it also says to let them be tested!)

Men are also given advice about the women they should seek out in verse 11:

  • They must be respected
  • They must not slander others
  • They must exercise self-control
  • Be faithful in everything they do

You probably notice that there are more qualifications for men than for women. That’s because men are to be the leader. Therefore, more responsibility rests on him.

Many men have obsessed over finding a “Proverbs 31 Woman” as a wife. This hypothetical woman in Proverbs 31 is skillful in a lot of different things—And she’s skillful in all of them. News flash guys: SHE DOES NOT EXIST!

According to the chapter, she wakes up super early, has great biceps, buys property, is always dressed elegantly, keeps her home warm at night and keeps herself looking great all the time, and still has time to care for the poor!

Many women would read this passage and think, “Sheesh! How am I supposed to try and fit into this mold?”

What if she can’t sew or cook? What if she’s not a great housekeeper? Does that mean she’s not living up to her God-given potential as a female? Of course not!

Many Bible scholars believe that the “Proverbs 31 Woman” is not really a woman at all, but rather a personification of wisdom. If you read the whole book of Proverbs, you’ll realize that wisdom is consistently referred to as “she.” In the final chapter, I believe that the analogy of a woman here is used to depict a tangible example of wisdom in action.

Notice that the only instruction in the chapter that is given to men concerning a woman is in the last verse: “Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.”

In Jewish culture, men memorize this chapter as a song of praise to the women in their lives. But in Western culture, it is instead often used as a shopping list to be fulfilled in a future wife.

There’s a common Acronym that is written, K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Stupid) Men should focus more Proverbs 31 verses 1 through 10.

It first warns of the dangers of wasting time on loose women and drunkenness, encourages us to ensure justice for the poor and downtrodden. And then verse 10 tells us, “Who can find a virtuous and capable wife? She is more precious than rubies.”

So get rid of your “Wife Qualification List” and focus more on how you can better be qualified as a husband.

My Final thoughts

I don’t think God is as concerned about WHO we marry as much as he is concerned about how we treat the one we’re married to.

Wives, your primary goal is to help make your husband the very best he can be. Not by nagging or being demanding, but by trusting God to direct his steps. If your husband is a godly man who prays and listens to God, then all you have to do is pray and trust God. And even if you are married to an unbeliever, your goal is the same. Because your unbelieving husband might be saved because of you. (1 Corinthians 7:16)

Husbands, your primary goal is to help make your wife the very best she can be. Not by lording over her and demanding that she submit to your every whim, but by praising her for all the good she does for you and supporting her in all she does.

And most importantly, pray for each other.

To those who are still waiting for God to choose that special person for you, remember that Psalms 27:14 teaches us to, “Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart.”

Living in our “fast food society” we can sometimes feel that God has let us down because He does not provide an immediate answer to a prayer. But waiting for the Lord can transform us into a people of growing faith.

King David spent many years waiting to be crowned king and fleeing from Saul’s wrath. It was probably during that time that David wrote those encouraging words in Psalms 27.

So just keep waiting on the Lord and he SHALL strengthen your heart. Delight yourself in Him and He WILL give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37)

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