When we’re young we think we’re going to find the ‘perfect’ person to fall in love with – and eventually (hopefully) they will love us back – and then want to get married.
This is on a woman’s mind from very early on.
Love is the great ‘romantic’ idea. She wants someone who will adore and love her – move heaven and earth to be with her – and be her ‘hero’.
Men have something very different on their minds when they start thinking about the opposite sex. It is not usually about ‘love’ or romantic thoughts – and they can compartmentalize feelings (or lack of them) in lieu of physical attraction and sex.
When love finally hits a man – goes straight to his heart and he cannot get that girl out of his head – then he knows he is in trouble. For good. And he tries to be everything he can be – to say and do what he must for ‘win’ her.
She is looking for someone to save her – complete her and love her.
He is looking for someone to love him – respect and adore him.
There’s nothing wrong with this – it’s normal and natural. But what I’ve learned through life is this: Finding the right person is not nearly as important as being the right person.
We can enter into a love relationship expecting someone to make up for our lack. To ‘fill in’ where we are not strong. To be able to save us from our past. No one can. There is no perfect person – at least I’ve never met one yet. And if you enter in to love or marriage thinking this – you will be very disappointed.
I’ve even heard of women (and men) saying, “when they marry me – I’ll be able to change them”. You can’t.
Change in behavior can seem to be happening when the relationship is new and exciting – but long-lasting change is impossible. No one changes anyone else – permanently.
Oh we see it on TV and in the movies – some of the best literature has it in there too – the ‘wild – untamed’ man – who falls helplessly in love with a woman and is willing to change for her. And while I put great faith in love and the power of it – ultimately you are setting yourself up for a fall if that’s what you believe.
Develop a friendship with your partner. Friendship is an easy give and take. Ask yourself, “would I still be their friend if I wasn’t involved with them – didn’t love them – wasn’t married to them? – Do they make me laugh? Do I want to know them deeper and spend more time with them? – Am I the kind of person that they would want as a friend?”
Be the right person. Fix things that are going on inside of yourself – insecurities, bad habits and negative patterns. Expecting someone else to swoop in and ‘fix’ your troubled mind and heart is not realistic. And you cannot ‘fix’ theirs either. The longer that you are married – the more you realize this truth – and accept it.
There are people in whom we have chemistry with and are very compatible. There’s no denying this fact. Those that have a better chance of making it in love and marriage are those from a similar background with many things in common. But this does not guarantee – it just makes it easier. Choose someone who is easy to be with – and that you can picture yourself growing old with. Someone who doesn’t require so much work.
Say to yourself, “Can I be happy with this person for many years to come? Can I accept them – flaws and all? Without them changing? Is there anything I cannot live with?”
These are important questions. They are simple – yet revealing. If we take the emphasis off of them – and any expectations we may feel – then we can concentrate on the really important thing: ourselves.
Imagine what a great world this would be – and what healthy growing marriages there would be if everyone accepted this fact – and stepped up – saying, “I’m going to take personal responsibility for me”. And leave it there.
I challenge you today: God is the only one who can change hearts. He is in the business of deep healing – from the inside out. Allow Him to do His job with you and others. Don’t depend on others (even your spouse) to complete you and fill you up. That’s God’s job. And His alone. He will not fail or disappoint you. He is the one who will help you to be all you can be in a relationship – and to be the right person. You can count on it.
I am praying for you