Marriage is the legal union between a man and a woman. God is the author of marriage. Genesis 2 vs. 18. The purposes of marriage are as follows;
- To reflect the relationship between Christ and the church (Ephesians 5 25, 2 Corinthians 11 2).
- For companionship (Genesis 2 18).
- For the legal expression of intimate desires (1 Corinthians 7 9).
- For procreation (Malachi 2 15). Mary was espoused to Joseph, and thus Jesus was born into a home. From the above, we have a brief background about marriage and its purpose. The choice of a marriage partner is the most important decision Christians will ever make in their lives, outside the decision to follow Christ. The reason being you can change a career, you can change town/relocate, you can change your place of work anytime, but you can’t just wake up and change your spouse as a believer.
The general preparations of for marriage as is required by both parties, i.e. male and female are as follows:
- Prayerfully prayer: Take out time to pray and also fast and tell the Lord that you are ready for marriage, that He should please lead you and guide you in your choice of marriage partner (Philippians 4 6).
- Have an idea about the kind of person you want as a partner. However, do not be rigid but be flexible if need be. It’s not just about physical features but character and other important specification. In having a preference, you must also remember that your choice must be a believer; this is not negotiable (Amos 3 3).
- Keep yourself occupied while you are preparing for marriage (Luke 19 13). If you are working, stay focused. If you are an entrepreneur, keep it up. Continue your service in the house of the Lord. Simply put, occupy.
Special Preparation for the Men
The success of any marriage to a large extent rest upon/depends on the man. In the Garden of Eden, the Lord called out the man first when things got awry (Genesis 3 vs. 9). Why? The Garden of Eden was man’s responsibility and everything in it including the woman (Genesis 2 vs. 15). In preparing for marriage, the man must do the following:
- Develop the character trait of responsibility: Marriage is for men not boys, and women not girls. In other words, marriage is for the matured. Responsibility is defined as a state of being in charge of someone or being accountable for someone or something. It is a wide word that encompasses a lot (Ephesians 5 23). Start practicing from your immediate family the art of taking responsibility by watching out for your younger ones and taking charge of your nieces and nephews when the opportunity presents itself. There are many other ways to put the art of taking responsibility to practice.
- You must learn to love genuinely and also express love: Ephesian 5 28-29. The ability to genuinely love your partner selflessly is what keeps a marriage going. 1 Corinthians 13 1-8 teaches us on the true qualities of selfless love.
- Source of Income: You must have a regular source of income to be able to run the expenses in your home (1 Timothy 5 8).
- Own Space: You must have your space no matter how small. Husband and wife relationship thrives under an atmosphere of privacy. Song of Solomon 1 4b, Song of Solomon 2 10
Special Preparation for the Women
Women preparing for marriage must do the following:
- Intimacy with God: Develop a very close walk with the Lord. You need to take counsel from the one who holds the manual for the institution you are about to enter (Jeremiah 33 3).
- Learn about keeping a home: Especially learn how to cook because invariably you will be doing a lot of cooking. Proverbs 31 15
- Learn to be financially prudent: Learn to save. Do not spend, spend and spend some more. Start practicing operating on a budget if you have a challenge with overspending (Proverbs 19 14).
- Imbibe ladylike virtues: Everyman wants a queen to take home to his parents. I once read a book in which there was this admonition, “… children of the King should use the language of the court.” 1 Peter 2 9
- Read Books on Marriage: Read as many Christian books as possible on preparing for marriage and the marital relationship that gives glory to the Lord. This gives you an idea of what to expect when you finally get married (Proverbs 10 14).
This article isn’t exhaustive of the steps to take while preparing for marriage but rather serves as an eye opener on how to go about your preparation for Holy Matrimony. God bless you