By: Jon Meerdink
Continuing our Inception-esque theme here at Cardboard, I present to you a post based on the issue contained in a response to a post responding to an article posted on a different website. Follow that? Good. Your prize is an imaginary golden statue of Christopher Nolan.
I don’t like to talk about relationships much. I’ve never been good at romantic relationships, and I struggle to give advice on an area in which I’ve never really achieved success on any appreciable level.
That said, I do think I have something to add to the conversation, and it’s on the idea of lists, particularly about lists about what we might want or need in a potential future mate.
You see, I don’t necessarily believe in lists. I’ve never understood the concept of listing what you want God to give you, especially in a relationship. I’ve heard time and time again that we need to trust God to fulfill our needs and that he knows what’s best for us, which to me seems to conflict with the idea of making a list right off the bat. Yeah, God, I trust that you know me more intimately than I know myself, and I know that you ultimately know what’s best for me, but here’s a list of what I think I need in a future mate.
Like Natalie rightly observes in her piece, the ultimate thing on our relationship list, whether we have one or not, should be that our future mates are committed followers of Jesus. After that, everything else is gravy, right? Shouldn’t our focus, then, be on making sure we’re up to date on what it means to be a follower of Jesus, as opposed to finding all the other things we might be looking for in a relationship?
Odd as it may seem, Matthew 6:31-33 comes to mind when thinking about this issue:
“So do not worry, saying ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
To me, it seems pretty reasonable to substitute a couple other words in there. College folks, for those of you thinking about getting married some day, maybe don’t worry about whether she’s hot or whether he likes the music you do or whether they’re super into the things you are. Instead, focus on getting yourself as closely aligned to God’s will as possible, and I have a feeling the rest will fall in line pretty quickly.
And while I’ll admit there are things that I certainly would like in my future wife (if she exists), I’m trying my best to make it a priority to get myself in line with what God wants for me first. God’s list for me should always come before my lists for him, and I’m okay with that.