“I think she’s the one for me.”
We hear this phrase a lot when people start dating. Dating can end in one of two ways: (1) you get engaged and then married, or (2) you break up or are otherwise separated.
Looking for “the one” for you can be the most difficult part of dating. After all, how do you know? When you ask your parents, they usually say, “I just knew.” Which, I suppose, was helpful for them. But that answer doesn’t help you know if you “know” yet. So how can you find out if you’ve found “the one?”
Assumption #1: Is this God’s plan for my life?
To have a “one” assumes that we believe God has a plan for our lives and the lives of those around us. Every time one human interacts with another human, we invariably change their life, in a small or large way. Not every interaction is going to be life changing, but every interaction impacts those involved and those who witness it. So, to believe that there is a soul mate out there somewhere in the world that God has in mind for you requires a belief that he has a plan for your life.
Imagine how different the world would be if your parents hadn’t gotten married and raised you, and if your grandparents hadn’t gotten married and raised your parents, and if your great grandparents hadn’t been together and raised your grandparents, and back and back and back. You would not be the same person you are, the person God created you to be, if any one of those pairings was different.
Assumption #2: Is she the one God intended for me?
The second assumption inherent in the question “is she the one God intended for me?” is the assumption that God is involved in these details of our lives. If God is involved, then we can safely believe that he will answer our question with a yes or a no. Therefore, it’s important to take the time to pray and reflect and listen after asking God for guidance.
Some things to look for in a partner are:
Where do they find their identity and approval? From God, or from you?
Who do they encourage you to be? Someone growing closer to God, or closer to the world?
Can you be apart from each other and trust each other to be faithful?
Do you have aspects of your day to day lives that require you to be apart from each other, or are you tied up more in each other than in God’s direction for your life?
Are you both willing to put in the work to continue to make the relationship work, even when it’s hard? Or is one of you more likely to bail out?
And possibly most importantly, do you hold the same beliefs about God, or will you be in constant struggle with each other as you go on in life? To use the biblical term, are you equally yoked?
If you’d like to someone to help talk through some of these questions with you, please send us an email. We’d love to help you puzzle through this part of your life.