7 Checklists

"Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.  Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."
(Romans 12: 1-2)

Who Is the One for Me?

One of the biggest questions frequently asked by youth is “Who is the one for me?” And they often receive abstract answers for it, such as: “Listen to God’s voice...” The problem is, when love strikes, feelings are so raging that they start to sound like the voice of God. What these young people need is an objective guidance!

Soul-mates do come from God, but making good decisions is our responsibility to Him. Because of His grace, God has given us the freedom to choose. Therefore, let us be prepared to make good calls in life by, first of all, surrendering our bodies to God as a living sacrifice and having the right purpose in life. If our lives are in the right direction, our minds are more prepared to process any good amount of godly consideration before a great decision. Surely having the right knowledge of what God’s will is and being in the state of renewed/prepared mind would help us see clearly—even in the murkiest situation such as “falling in love!”

Here are 7 checklists from me to help you choose well and responsibly—and hopefully the question “Who is the one for me?” in your heart will soon be answered:

  1. Choose someone who is committed to grow personally in Christ.
    Faith in Christ is not “once-upon-a-time.” We must keep growing in Him. Watch out for those whose spiritual growth solely depends on you. They won’t make good life partners! The signs are clear: when a boy threatens to kiss God good-bye if you ever would leave him is not someone you should choose; neither should you marry a girl who is “Christian” only when you are around. Remember, though we need each other, faith is still a personal matter!

  2. Choose someone whose life vision pleases God.
    Find someone whose life vision is productive. In other words, a person who knows where he/she wants to go in life regardless of the profession. All relationships need a goal; and you don’t have to have everything to have a clear goal in life. All it takes is a little determination. And all it takes to know whether he/she is the one, on this note, is to ask about his/her plan in life. Discern!

  3. Choose an honest person.
    Honesty, hereby, simply means not “double-faced!” It carries the idea that a person is tranparent, not perfect—hiding nothing. Indeed, a character-trait you mustn’t overlook in choosing a life partner and it is absolutely fundamental. Test him/her in the little things whether there is integrity, for a liar will not make a good spouse. Without honesty, a relationship has no guarantee!

  4. Choose someone mature and responsible.
    Age doesn’t guarantee a person’s maturity. You can know someone better by their worldviews about life and other people. Maturity is shown best when under pressure—how a person places others’ interests and safety before himself/herself. Thus, responsibility takes time to measure and discover. Therefore, it is wise to remain friends for a while and give it some time for you to be sure whether this person you have your eyes on is truly worth marrying someday!

  5. Choose someone with a healthy self image.
    Humans are incapable of loving others if they don’t love themselves responsibly in the first place! A healthy self image always precedes a happy relationship. An overly jealous and possesive man is irrational—the perfect ingredients for future domestic violences. A suicidal girlfriend who likes to threaten you that she will not hesitate to take her life if you ever leave her would make a dangerous mother to your children someday. A girl like that should be helped, not married to! At least, not yet.

  6. Choose someone who has a positive attitude.
    A positive attitude is truly an asset in marriage. Just imagine if you have to live under one roof  with a spouse who is consistently grumpy—for the rest of your life! Complaining once in a while is very humane, but to have a fixed-attitude that is constantly bitter and negative is a choice. Choose someone to spend the rest of your life with, who can “laugh” with you about tomorrow!

  7. Choose someone you love.
    Love is what eventually ushers us into marriage. I “intentionally” put personal chemistry on the last of the 7 checklists, not because it is not important; rather, for you to be objective first in your considerations. After all, you don’t need my help to fall in love—but you would need my restraint more than you realize it. Nevertheless, without any love chemistry, do not step into marriage as if into slavery of prison. Of course love can increase later, but you’ve got to have at least a “little” feeling of romance to start with!

Remember that finding a life partner is one of the most important quests and tasks that God has entrusted us with. These 7 Checklists are not like the “Torah law,” rather, they are God’s grace and wisdom in guiding us. “Listen to God’s voice,” they say... well, you just have—without even leaving your right mind! So, choose well, beacuse a wedding song is waiting for you.

Irene’s husband,
Philip Mantofa

Remember that finding a life partner is one of the most important quests and tasks that God has entrusted us with.