You want a husband, right? But if there’s one thing worse than remaining single, it’s getting married to the wrong person. And that’s not a small thing. Next to your decision to follow Jesus, choosing who to marry is the most important decision you will ever make. And staying away from these men who Christian women should NOT marry will save you much heartache. (Last time we talked about women Christian men shouldn’t marry.)
Too many women get married expecting their man to change for the better after the wedding. Or expecting that they can change him. Or expecting him to magically make their lives full of romance and ease. Don’t fall for that! The time to discern the truth about your intended is before you say “I do.”
Your emotions can easily get hooked, and that makes discerning the truth more difficult. So learn to pray, “Jesus, I lay my own emotions aside as much as I can, so I can hear You. Let me see the truth about this person, and hear Your voice in this.”
It’s possible to set an impossible standard for your potential spouse. In the pool of potential marriage partners there are only sinners available. (And remember, you’re one of those too.) And choosing the right spouse is only step one; building your marriage will be require an ongoing investment.
But if the man you can’t stop thinking about is one of these listed here, pause. In fact, run! Being connected to one of these men will only bring pain and heartache in the years to come.
One who Doesn’t Follow Jesus.
The most important destination you’re heading toward, as a Christian, is toward eternity with God, ruling in His kingdom, fellowshipping with other members of the body of Christ forever. Your marriage partner here on earth needs to be heading in the same direction.
When Paul said, “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers” (2 Corinthians 6:14) it was in order to prevent pain. You may feel your relationship with God is strong enough to withstand the trouble marrying a non-believer would bring, or that you can “win him over” once you’re married. Don’t believe that lie. Marrying a man who is not following Jesus will either seriously disrupt your own relationship with God, bring untold heartache and pain, or both.
One who Only Wants Your Body
Sexual attraction is a powerful aspect of a healthy marriage relationship. But if your marriage is based on physical attraction only, your joy will be very short-lived. Your marriage will not cure your boyfriend’s porn use, or lustful looking at other women, or other sexual acting out. If you have to give yourself sexually to get him, you’re selling yourself far too cheap.
Your body will change over the years, and so will his. You need and deserve a man who will look beyond your body and desire and fight for your heart. Make sure your intended spouse has dealt with his sexual drives before God first, before connecting your life with his for the future.
One who Cannot Make You Priority
Jesus quoted Genesis when He said, “’Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’” (Matthew 19:5). The leaving is important. If a man does not demonstrate his ability to leave his family of origin – both physically and emotionally – he’s not ready to get married. Some parents make this easier than others, but your intended must have done his own work to grow up in this way.
Even if you love and enjoy his parents, your husband must make you first in his life and heart. If he is still tied to the apron strings, you will only experience pain. At some point he will have to choose between you and his family of origin in some way; make sure he’s ready to choose you.
One who is Lazy and Irresponsible
This has nothing to do with how much money he has, but it does have to do with his sense of initiative, his work ethic, his ownership of the need to take care of the family you will build together. If he’s partying, drinking, irresponsible with money, expecting someone else to take care of things, can’t keep a job, your life will only be chaos.
Spontaneous, generous, and balanced is good; floundering, making excuses, or being lazy is another. Does he have some sense of where he is going in life? Is that a destination you are happy to join him in? If you have to supply the energy now, you’ll always have to do it. Make sure he comes “batteries included.”
One who is Controlling or Abusive
How many toxic marriages have been destroyed by this kind of man! Please don’t overlook any red flags here. If he tries to control you now, that will only increase if you get married. What does he do when he gets angry? Does he feel entitled? Does he accept your opinion when it’s different from his? Can he rejoice when you shine? The answers are telling.
How was anger handled in your potential husband’s family of origin? He’s likely to deal with his anger similarly until and unless he’s done some hard personal work there. Alcohol or other substances are no excuse. If he is verbally, sexually, or physically abusive or controlling, run! Your life – literally or figuratively – may depend on it.
Are There any Good Men Left?
Yes, there are. Finding one is a worthy pursuit. Seeking a good spouse takes growing up yourself, and seeking God’s input.
May your heart be guided by God in your pursuit of a godly husband.
Your Turn: Have you found yourself in relationships with these unhealthy kinds of men? What in your own heart makes you vulnerable to that? Will you decide to do your own growing up? Leave a comment below.
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Living the single life as a Christian is challenging. We want to help! Periodically (about once a month) we release a new article or similar resource specifically for you as a single Christian. We’ll talk about relationships, heart issues, and sometimes the possibility of marriage.
If you’d like to join us each month with these resources, let us know.