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Will God Force Me To Marry Someone?

Discussion in 'Marriage and Relationships' started by tjcolt, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. Some background for this question: So, once upon a time, after waiting my whole life, I finally found someone who could truly see me and understand me. We were the only ones who understood each other. It was instant attraction, quickly growing love. We find the deepest kinship with each other. We could talk for hours. We could share our souls with each other. It was the deepest, most beautiful thing ever. I felt we were soul mates. Unfortunately, this person was not a Christian, and I had to break it off. Hardest thing I've ever done, and even though I pray, God still has not saved this person.

    Fast forward to now, I've been trying to move on. My "friend" has moved on because he is not religious and knows we won't work out. So now I'm stuck. What do I do now that I found something so deep and intimate with someone? I know that I will never find a relationship like that again. But I can't go back to anything else. I can't be satisfied with anything but the most intimate friendship. I am upset because I know nothing like this will happen again. And there is a person in my life I feel God is pushing me towards but I know we cannot have this deep friendship that I want. We could have a friendship, but it wouldn't have the kind of intimacy I had with my other friend. What do I do? I do not want to be in a relationship that is anything less than what I had before, but I'm afraid God will never provide such a thing for me again. I am afraid God will force me to marry someone I don't want to be with, or tell me I won't ever be in a relationship at all. After all, there is no guarantee that I will ever find a deeper soul mate again. I am afraid God will force me to settle.

    Are there any thoughts on this?
     
  2. I'm curious about a few things here. How or why would God force you to marry against your will? I'm not grasping how that is possible. The other question I have is why do you think that you will never be able to have any deep friendships with another? No, it won't be the same, but the friendship that you have with another believer should have MORE potential for deep intimacy than one with a non-believer.

    My relationship with my wife is the deepest and most intimate friendship I could have ever imagined knowing. It isn't at all like any of the types of relationships that I've had in the past, and that's exactly what makes it special.
     
    Terri A. Constant and BusyDarling say Amen and like this.
  3. Your 20 years old? Not quite an old maid yet. Maybe God has something BETTER for you if you do it on His time clock and quit pining over what is lost to you?

    If something is rubbing the wrong way-turn the cat around.
     
    Terri A. Constant likes this.
  4. Yeah, maybe, but there's no guarantees. Some people find intimate relationships easily. I do not. It may seem silly for someone my age to be thinking this, I understand, but my track record with relationships is bad. I know what I want and I will not settle for anything less. I guess I should rephrase my question: will God make you be with a person because that person is best for you, even if you don't want it? I ask this question because I have encountered many Christian (women) who have said they only married their husbands because they knew God "wanted" them to. One woman told me she "didn't want" her husband. Hearing these things worries me. Does God really do that? Force us into relationships we don't want?

    I apologize for sounding immature and asking silly questions. I am a new Christian.
     
  5. I agree with that….. ie. what we expect….

    Although what we expect may not change, but I think, our standards do or may change..

    Standards used when we were younger may not be the same as we grew older...
     
  6. That is a twisted and horrible reason to go into marriage. Don't fall into the same category as those women. You don't have to do anything that you don't want to. God is by your side, and knows what your heart longs and yearns for. You still have a lot of time to grow deeper into the person you were created to be. To realize who you are, and what type of person you need in your life.

    When God created Adam, he was good, he was whole. When God created Adam and Eve, together they were good and whole. To ever Eve there is an Adam and every Adam an Eve. There is one out there for you, don't lose hope! Look up the way that God has provided for His people in the bible. Notice how God gave people what they want, even if He knew it would harm them. But He gave it to them because it is what they wanted. God is love, and so everything that He will do will be from a place of love. But we must analyze with prayer and a humble mind what is right for us, lest we become deceived.
     
  7. Some people have been telling you some odd things. I wonder how they "knew God wanted them to" while they didn't want to. Has God ever forced you to do anything? Why did they think God would want something for them that is so contrary to what they desired? It sounds like they are using God as an excuse to avoid the responsibility for their own bad decisions.
     
    BusyDarling likes this.
  8. Anything that comes from God will not make you worried or fearful. Worry and fear are things that you overcome through God. So if what they said really made you feel this way, i would be very weary of when they speak to you again.

    And don't worry TjColt for asking questions. There is only one way to grow. And that is by being curious, and by having an open heart. By being humble. Keep asking away!
     
  9. #9 Roads, Oct 31, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2013
    Hey TJ, I think you might find it helpful to take a look at 1 Cor 7. In it, Paul discusses various elements of marriage including advice for unmarried Christians. 1 Cor 7:25-35 reads (NASB):

    So I think there are a few things here you may find relevant to your situation.

    First, though, note that Paul isn't trying to issue a command, but give his advice.

    What Paul seems to be pointing out here is that ideally, Christians who are unmarried won't seek marriage. This is because if you're not married, you're free to make doing God's work the only priority in your life. If you're married, your interests are divided, because your spouse is a major priority in your life.

    In verse 7-9, Paul writes:
    And in verse 39-40:
    I have no idea what couples mean when they say that God brought them together, or chose their spouse for them, or things along those lines. I wouldn't declare those claims to false, necessarily, it's just that I don't know what they mean. It wasn't my experience that I felt like God brought my wife and I together, and I can't find anything anywhere in the Bible that would suggest that God chooses couples to be together. When my wife and I decided to get married, we didn't feel as though God had destined us to be together or anything. We felt like we were free to choose to get married if we wanted to, and we did.

    Yes, I would be able to prioritise God's work more if I wasn't married. But I married a mature Christian woman who understands the importance and urgency of doing God's work, and we look for ways to prioritise God's work together, so I think that's pretty good.

    I think a fair summary of Paul's advice is that if we can live our lives without being married, that's ideal. But if we feel that we want to be married, we're free to choose marriage, and there's no sin in doing so. I think you'll find nothing in this advice about God forcing us to be married to any particular person, and quite a lot about our freedom to choose either singleness or marriage, and not sinning either way. Most importantly though, this advice emphasizes the importance and urgency of "undistracted devotion to the Lord."
     
  10. Thank you for your thoughts, everyone. What do you think of this? I am used to the principle that God does not provide us with what we ask for. "Starving yourself" for the greater good, I suppose. I do not know how to hope when there is no guarantee God will ever answer my prayers. This why I'm afraid I will have to settle. Because I could be waiting for something that never comes. I'm afraid I'll miss out on the only chance for a relationship if I refuse everyone in my life because I do not want them. I have resigned to the idea of being single forever. I honestly thought I would be until I found my "friend." I thought he was an answer to my prayer but now he is gone. I don't know how to tell what God wants for me. If I marry the wrong person, I will be extremely unhappy. The idea of marriage makes me anxious and sick unless there's extreme love and friendship involved.

    There's probably not an answer to what I'm asking. But it's good to ask these questions to people who are more experienced, I think.
     
  11. I believe we get what we ask for when we're led by His Spirit to do His will. And that's accomplished through denial of self. I don't think I'd call it "starving" though.
     
  12. #12 Roads, Nov 1, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2013
    Not that this is necessarily an "answer" for you, but here are a few things you may find helpful to think about.

    Firstly, my advice is, don't "settle." You said "If I marry the wrong person, I will be extremely unhappy," I say if you marry someone you're just "settling" for, they will be extremely unhappy. I don't think it's fair to another person to be someone who is "settled for" in a marriage. Pursuing growth and intimacy in a relationship is going to be a lot of hard work, it's not a matter of being fortunate in picking the right or wrong person, although a person unwilling to work hard to pursue and maintain intimacy is the wrong person. Intimacy isn't something that just happens because you've found an ideal match -- at least, not forever, even if it feels that way at the beginning. At some point(s), it takes a lot of work. Sometimes is easier, sometimes it's more difficult, a lot happens to people in life.

    When I was about 20, someone gave me some very good advice that really stuck with me: in any relationship, you need to be willing to put in 60% of the work, and be satisfied with the other person doing 40%. If you think that your relationship should be 50/50 in terms of effort, you'll probably always feel like you're the one putting in the most effort. If both people in a relationship accept that they are responsible for 60% of the effort, and the other person only needs to put in 40% you're both going to be a lot happier. I'm passing on that advice for this reason: if any relationship you have is going to work, you need to think about it mostly in terms of what you're adding to it, and less in terms of what you're getting out of it. Finding "the right person who is going to make you happy" is a myth. Growth toward more intimacy (and sometimes even just maintaining intimacy) takes dedication, perseverance, patience, and a willingness to give more than you receive. If you can't do this for another person, you're setting them up for a life of unhappiness. That doesn't mean you can't look for someone with qualities you like, it just means that you should only marry someone with whom you're willing to work hard to pursue intimacy. That's just my advice though, I've only been married for 5 years; others with more experience may be able to tell you better what you should expect from marriage.

    Let's also talk about your statement "I don't know how to tell what God wants for me." I know you meant this in terms of relationships, but let's think about it in a more general sense in how we should live our lives as Christians. Ultimately, I'd suggest, what God wants for you is to have an intimate relationship with Him. This is why I think Paul emphasizes "undistracted devotion to the Lord" instead of any particular need to be married. If you choose to prioritize pursuing intimacy with God, I don't think you need to be worried that you'll feel like you've missed out on anything. That may seem, I realise, somewhat hypocritical coming from someone who's married :) But it was good for me to learn to prioritise intimacy with God over seeking a partner before I was married, and that journey set an important groundwork for me to bring into my marriage.

    For your consideration, Matthew 6:25-34:

    "For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body,as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? “And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? “And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. “But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ “For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

    Although that passage doesn't specifically mention marriage, I think the principle applies to your situation: But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Not that I think that means that "marriage" specifically will be guaranteed to be "added to you," but that we should prioritize to "seek first His kingdom and His righteousness" and not be so concerned with what exactly will happen in the future for us. Even Christians in happy marriages have to live by this principle. You can't depend on another person for your contentment in life. So instead of asking the community here "will God force me to marry someone," I think you would get a lot more value in questions more like, "how can I pursue intimacy in my relationship with God," or "what does it mean to seek first His kingdom and his righteousness?"
     
  13. Intimate relationships are never easy-they require work...
     
  14. #14 aha, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
    Love and friendship means you want the best for yourself and the other: and what is the best for the other?

    I can only think of best in terms of spiritual growth……

    You seem to be accepting of his current unbelieving situation…. is that good for him?

    One solution I can propose to “hopelessly romantic” sense of loss of a friend is to pray the best for him….

    Sorry for the term “ hopelessly romantic” : )

    I’ve been that when I was younger and it helped me a lot to pray for the best for her….

    Now, I have this “equation” to “kill” your “hopelessly romantic” feelings : )
    But I rather let you enjoy it for the meantime, your young : )

    On the second thought, young people have this sort of defence mechanism that let their “feelings” rule over “reason” so I will continue : )

    IMO: Love is not a feeling, it is an action.

    Love your enemy says our teacher, Jesus….
    If love is a feeling, it quite difficult if not impossible task….
    If love is an action, then it is possible….

    Love is a feeling precisely why there are those “lost in love”, “fell in love” “happily in love” that after a few years they got married: they divorce….

    If love is an action: regardless of feelings; action is taken…. This kind of love is more steadfast, faithful…

    One of the elders here did not agree or seems to question the "equation" above when I posted it long time ago, anyway, it is just a thought.

    This is a forum anyway : )
     
  15. When I was 20, I was practically unable to have deep and meaningful relationships at all. (The 'joys' of a rough childhood).
    I am now 27 and able to have these amazing relationships, and apparently old enough to know I will still grow and things can only get better.

    God will not force you to do anything.

    And He's not a vending machine either, but God does answer prayers (Fair enough, NO can be an answer too, and I've found most often my answer was 'wait'... sometimes despite the wait being unbearable in some sense, and sometimes you need to listen carefully because 'NO' was 'not now'.)

    Don't settle for less, please, but don't give up on the possibility of this happening again. Allow the heartbreak to heal, give yourself time to grow and see where life brings you. Pray for him, pray for you. Learn to understand how God is speaking to you.

    (I think he DOES find it funny when you're startled when you hear Him speak)
     
    tjcolt likes this.
  16. TJ, you will never find a satisfying and intimate relation with the opposite sex, until you find the intimate and satisfying relationship with Jesus and He becomes your all in all!
     
  17. #17 tjcolt, Nov 11, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2013
    Thank you, everyone. I think though that there is not an easy answer for what I am asking or thinking. I am happy for everyone's eagerness to help and everyone has said valuable things.

    I must say something though. A relationship with God is great and the comfort of His Spirit is all I will ever need. I have experienced deep love for other people, and yes, I do understand what love is. I am accustomed to loving deeply for others and not receiving anything in return. Love is not a feeling, it is an action and a choice, and I have made the choice many times to love those who have not batted an eye at my departure from their lives. Love means making the choice to see the light inside someone and choosing not to focus on the darkness. It means truly understanding someone's soul who is battered and bruised and seeing them as beautiful, even when they lash out and hurt you. I request that you do not judge my experience with this by my age. I have undergone many hardships and losses and it has matured me to what I believe is beyond my years.

    Because I have experienced this intense love for others who cannot love me in return, I do not think I can open myself to marry another who will hurt me and betray me (because all relationships involve pain and betrayal. No one is perfect.) For this reason I think I will not find someone to share life with like I am hoping. Most people assume I am being dramatic by saying this. This is, unfortunately, because they do not understand what has brought me to this conclusion. I love deeply, and from what I have seen, most people do not require deep love and understanding within their relationships to be happy, at least not at the level I need. Everyone loves differently and has different needs. My life experiences up until this point have shown me that the love I give to others and the love I receive will always be incongruent. I have become content with this. God has given me a personality that compulsively loves those who no one loves, to see beauty in people who most people call "ugly." These people I love can never love me in return, or provide me with anything close to the love I show them because they are so much in need of it. I believe this is my cross to bear in life.

    For this reason I know that the love and companionship I seek can only be found in Christ. Only Christ can know me intimately and see my soul, and only Christ will love me on all of my horrible days and even love the parts of me that are covered in filth. Unfortunately, I do not see myself as accepting anything less from a human. Humans are incapable of the love I seek, and so I do not think it is in my future to marry one. If I do, I imagine myself as being very dissatisfied and lonely. God is the only one who can love me in the intimate way that I seek. I see no reason to engage in anything less than what I could have in Christ.

    Marriage is not for everyone. Because no human exists that I would be satisfied with, and because most people agree God will not force me to marry anyone, I am convinced it is not for me. This actually provides me with a sense of relief. I realize now I am not missing anything by staying single. This is probably the path God designed me for.

    Thank you everyone for helping me work through this,
    TJ
     
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  18. There's only One person who knows our future and it isn't us! TJ, you and I are in the same boat and I'm of the belief that there are no"Boaz's" left, so why bother looking! We have to keep looking up and all of our needs will be met!
    :love:
     
    tjcolt likes this.
  19. I don't mean to judge you by your age, but your age is young enough to allow you a lifetime of learning and growing still and don't forget that. That's more what I was going at.
    I'd lived 40 years when I was 20, but in some senses still was 10. At 27 I am 54 in some sense.... but I hope the part of me that's still only 10-11 never grows up. And I've learned that I'm never too old to learn, never too grown to grow. And I hope I'm not demented by the time I'm 54 and in some sense 108 if this trend keeps on going.
     
    Terri A. Constant likes this.
  20. #20 aha, Nov 13, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013
    Sorry for some terms used, your post shows how more matured you are when I was at your age : )

    But, same here: no judgment on age, okay to be too exacting: there is but judgment is based on natural law : )

    What I mean is: To be objective: we use the same person
    This same person when he is 10 years old is way smarter than 0 years old.
    He will be more matured when he is 20 than when he was 10.
    30 when he was 20
    40 when he was 30
    50 when he was 40…
    60 when he was 50
    70 when he was 60 and so on…..
     
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