“Do two walk together unless they have agreed to do so?” (Amos 3:3) What a great question to consider if you want to advance your relationship from dating to getting engaged! Do you have the type of relationship where, for the most part, you CAN agree on the important issues? It’s one thing to enjoy dating him or her, but it’s another to marry each other.
“Engagement is a serious state. Listen to these words: ‘Dating is one thing, but signing up for the rest of your life is liable to give anyone a few second thoughts. The challenge is deciding if you’re suffering from garden-variety cold feet or what I call, “frozen footsies” —a much rarer malady.” (H. Norm Wright, from Crosswalk.com article Should You Get Engaged?
Consider: are each of you ready for marriage? And are you good for each other where you can become good marriage partners for life?
“If you are dating someone seriously, how peaceful do you feel when you think about marrying that person? Committing your heart to someone is a huge decision. If you choose poorly, you could suffer years of heartache or wind up abused or divorced. However, if you select a marriage partner wisely, you could enjoy a lifetime together of intimate love and passion.” (Maria Taviano)
Maria makes a great point. This is such an important decision in which you really need to be wise when making it. To help you with this determination, we encourage you to read the following CBN.com article:
• QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU GET ENGAGED
Beyond what Maria wrote:
“Are you friends? That is foundational. Are you both committed to living for Christ? That is essential. Do you spur one another on in your faith and service to God? Are you together looking toward a God-honoring, fruitful marriage? These are questions to answer.” (Candice Watters)
And there is more. Do you marry if you have a great chemical reaction with each other? But is that the most important consideration to make before approaching engagement?
To prayerfully consider what Candice has written to someone wrestling with this problem, please read:
• HOW IMPORTANT IS GOOD CHEMISTRY?
Before Getting Engaged:
- Would You Marry You?
- Are You All Dated Out?
- Do You Make A Good Couple?
These are 3 important questions to settle in one’s heart and mind that author Dave Gudgel poses (among others) to those considering marriage.
• “Would You Marry You?
A dating or engagement relationship, or ultimately a marriage, is only as healthy as the individuals in it. Relational health is vitally connected to individual health. It begins with you. That’s why you need to first ask yourself ‘Would you marry you?’ before you ask ‘Will you marry me?'”
Dave goes on to explain more pertaining to this question (that we encourage you to read). And then he asks:
• “Are You All Dated Out?
If you get married before you’re done dating, you’ll be susceptible to past and future dating dangers. You can be burned by an old flame or fall into a new fling. Marriage is meant to be a one-man-one-woman “till death do us part” unconditional commitment —for life! Without this kind of lifelong commitment, you could find yourself with regrets.”
And living a life without regrets is important. That’s why Dave Gudgel poses this very important question (and gives additional reasonings related to that question) that you need to prayerfully consider. Here’s another:
• “Do You Make A Good Couple?
From the beginning of time, God said, ‘It’s not good for man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.’ (Genesis 2:18) God created a man and woman to complement each other —in body, soul and spirit. Together they can do more and be more than they would if they lived life alone. Their differences and similarities mold them each into better people.”
Please, please, please don’t just look at the obvious as you answer this question. It’s important to dig deeper. Having fun together, and enjoying each other’s company, isn’t enough reason to progress into your relationship into marriage. You need to make sure that you can work together as a good marital team for the rest of your lives.
If you’re having a difficult time resolving conflict in healthy ways, realize that this will only intensity after marriage. It’s important to be able to work things out to find ways where a compromise is made where BOTH of you are satisfied. This other person may be enjoyable to be with, but that doesn’t mean it would be good for you to marry.
Should you Be Getting Engaged?
To learn more about the above questions and more, please read this Boundless.org article:
Additional points and questions to consider before getting engaged, and certainly before marrying, are:
“If you’re thinking of committing your life to someone for the rest of your life, identify the non-negotiables. Don’t do this after the fact.
Consider these non-negotiables:
- If your partner hurts you physically, don’t proceed. It won’t get better.
- Emotional abuse is more difficult to identify. But it can involve lack of respect, controlling, etc.
- Does the other person put you before their parents’ wishes? Or are they controlled by their parents? The scriptural teaching of ‘leave their mother and father’ includes emotional as well as physical.
- Don’t plan on a marriage fixing your current problems. It compounds them. Work on fixing them now, but if you can’t repair them…
- If you feel inhibited in what you talk about and can’t bring up your needs and concerns now, it won’t improve. Try new approaches now.
- If you find yourself saying ‘I love him or her, but…’ why would you think of proceeding?”
You can read more from reading the Crosswalk.com article written by H. Norm Wright at: “Should You Get Engaged?“
There are a lot of questions to ask and then pray about before you would commit to getting engaged. Here’s a link to another set of questions you should individually ask yourself. And then you should ask the person that you are considering getting engaged to:
• FINDING A MATE: What Questions Should You Ask?
Marriage is a very sacred commitment to make. It goes beyond your current happiness and enjoyment in being together as you receive his or her love at this time in your life. Please proceed only after you have been very prayerful and careful, asking God for His wisdom and guidance and confirmation that He will bless your union.
As it pertains to marriage:
“If happiness is our primary goal, we’ll all get a divorce as soon as happiness seems to wane. If receiving love is our primary goal, we’ll dump our spouse as soon as they seem to be less attentive. But if we marry for the glory of God, to model His love and commitment to our children, and to reveal His witness to the world, divorce makes no sense” (Gary Thomas from the article. “God’s Design for Marriage”)
So choose wisely. Keep in mind that now is the time to consider this —not after the wedding. It’s especially relevant that God looks at marriage as a sacred commitment. And so should we.
Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this article.
More from Marriage Missions
Filed under: Single Yet Preparing
10 responses to “Questions You Should Consider Before Getting Engaged”
(UNITED STATES) I love this. This shows if you are going about it for the right reasons, or not. I always felt that divorce is not an option, but a marriage is nothing without God
(CANADA) I have been reading some of the articles on your sight. I find it judgmental and ignorant. People say that all Muslims are fanatics, even though it is a very small percent. Well how are you any different? For the record I am a baptised Roman Catholic.
(NEW ZEALAND) Sight should have been spelled “site”
(KENYA) I have read your article and I think it’s very informative. I am at a point in my life where I would like to know the kind of considerations that I should make in choosing a lifetime partner and I have learnt something. God bless you.
(ZIM) I have just joined this site. It’s awesome. Thank you so much. God bless.
(SOUTH AFRICA) I am engaged to get married next year. My fiancé is working in another town and he comes once a month. We phone one another daily. I am starting to feel insecure as when he is here he gets messages and calls from women. He denies having a relationship with them. Sometimes when I call him at night he does not answer and claims that he was sleeping or he left his phone in the car. Do I ask him about these women on his phone or just leave him? I am really confused and think that he is cheating on me. Please help.
Zoey, This is very, very serious. There are red flags flying everywhere warning you. If is true to you and if he truly loves you, there would be NO woman calling him. He would do all he could to protect your relationship and tell those women they have no right to call him. He is yours and you are his and he isn’t to entertain other women. Right now he is showing you a small glimpse into your life with him in the future. You will be suspicious and he will be denying (and probably lying) to you.
He does NOT seem to be ready to get married and commit himself solely to one woman for life. He appears to be a player and will play after you are married. Trust your instincts. I believe God is giving you a sneak peak into your priority in his life. If given ANY kind of opportunity, he will flirt and enjoy having women call him (and probably more), plus steal time from you and your relationship together. I’m sorry to write this. I’m sure this breaks your heart. But it’s better to have a heart that is broken at this time, rather than marry someone who could and probably would cheat on you and absolutely devastate and embitter your heart (and the hearts of your children, if you have any).
(USA) I think this could be an excellent article. I have been reading articles similar to this for about a year due to my ignorance of how important good relationships are in our lives and to nourish the good ones and to cast away the bad ones.
I married a women who I met in South America. I did not realize it at the time that we had less in common that in common. Our goals were different and we had different motivations in life. I had decided not to marry her… not because of important questions and critera that I was completely blinded of considering… but because of intition… something felt wrong.
She talked me into the marriage and I agreed out of feelings of guilt. Within 6 years she and her mother and brother had abused our relationship to achieve their own goals. I discovered my wife was having an affair for 4 our of 6 years of the marriage with a family friend who was married and had 3 children. We had a beautiful son. I discovered her with her lover 2 years later. I divorced her after attempting to reconcile and have lost my son to distance. She remarried another man a few months after the divorce. It has taken a long time to recuperate and I have spent a lot of time, money and energy trying to maintain a relationship with my son… it has been difficult.
In hindsight (20/20) all this could have been prevented had I paid attention to some early red flags, though she is quite a manipulator. Had I educated myself about reasons to get married and reasons not to get married… my life may have turned out much different. So it’s good to see articles like this so people can objectively assess what they’re getting into and make intelligent decisions before they get engaged or marry someone who will not make a good life partner.
I don’t think there were websites like this back in 1998, but I’m sure the information was there. Always, always ask yourself and the person you are dating questions, look for red flags and in the end if all else fails follow your gut feelings and do not let anyone talk you into somethng as serious as marriage. Marriage can bring both parties years of happiness or sorrow.
My fiancé and I got engaged last year after a year of dating. Everything was going well. We would have arguments, but we would always reach a compromise and we both took that as a growth part for our relationship. I am a worshipper of Christ, but my partner is not as staunch in his faith although he does pray, as well. I took a decision that I would not force him to become stronger in prayer as I believe that God has His time of bringing His children closer to Him when the time is right.
Recently, however, my partner and I had a misunderstanding, which led me into a rage and I acted aggressively towards him. He retaliated by slapping me across the face. Although a man acting physically against a woman should NEVER be condoned, I also take responsibility for my own actions. My fear now is that things have been fine this whole time and in the blink of an eye, things changed. The two of us have spoken and I’m really starting to question if I am really ready for a commitment as big as marriage. I understand that a wife has to submit to her husband, and equally a husband has to mould himself to the needs of his wife so that they become one. We’re both hot-tempered at times, and I am the type of person who tries to stay as calm as possible because anytime I go into a rage, I don’t like who I become because that is not me.
Should I go for some sort of deliverance? I have prayed to get rage out of my life. I hate what I am feeling at this very point in time. For the first time ever I am feeling like marriage is the wrong choice for me, but I also acknowledge that I need to change some tings about myself before I commit fully to another person. My partner and I are currently taking some time away from each other, and I know that this hurts him as much as it hurts me. I just need a way forward before things fall apart completely. Any advice, fellow people of God?
Great advice. Thank you.