What to look for in a guy.

On my twitter feed the other day a link popped up for a ‘Christian husband checklist’.  I knew that this list was likely to irritate me (or potentially make me wrathful), but I clicked the link anyway.

I’ve seen and heard a lot of lists like this.  I met a girl once who told me over our first cup of coffee that she would never marry a guy who wasn’t a virgin.  On the list I checked out the other day my personal highlight was the requirement for a guy who is ‘completely healed of all his baggage’.

I tried to think of what I would put on my list and I’m kind of at a loss.  Here’s my whole list: 1. MUST LOVE JESUS.

I guess I think that takes care of everything.

(this is not a list I love, obvi).

Must love Jesus means that he must love Jesus.  I don’t want someone who says he’s a Christian.  I don’t want someone who says Jesus is the most important part of his life.  I want someone who believes that Jesus IS his life.  I want someone who loves Jesus more than he loves me.

I think a man who loves Jesus will have a couple of symptoms in his life.  First, he’ll be repentant.  A man who loves Jesus isn’t a man who doesn’t sin; he’s a man who repents.

I also think we will need to share a common view of Jesus.  I think there is  room in a relationship to disagree about some elements of theology.  But there are certain foundations of my faith that I need us to share.   When the rubber hits the road in my life, I want to be standing by people who share my beliefs of the inerrancy of Scripture, the nature of the Gospel and the sovereignty of God.

I’m not sure what else I would really put on my list.

Look, do I want a man who is completely healed of all his baggage? Sure.  Do I want to marry a guy who is pure?  Do I want to marry a man who is never deceived by a love of power or approval or comfort or control?  I guess that would be good.  But honestly – I only know one guy who fits that description.  His name is Jesus.

I think if someone shares my view of the gospel, then they probably won’t have ‘completely healed of all her baggage‘ on their list.  I don’t know how you can look at the glory of the Cross and walk away convinced that you deserve to marry someone who has outgrown sin and folly.

This morning I read a great article:

Some people in our culture want too much out of a marriage partner. They do not see marriage as two flawed people coming together to create a space of stability, love and consolation…Rather, they are looking for someone who will accept them as they are, complement their abilities and fulfill their sexual and emotional desires. This will indeed require a woman who is “a novelist/astronaut with a background in fashion modeling,” and the equivalent in a man. A marriage based not on self-denial but on self-fulfillment will require a low- or no-maintenance partner who meets your needs while making almost no claims on you. Simply put—today people are asking far too much in the marriage partner.  – Tim Keller

Maybe I’m missing things on my list.  Maybe I’m naive, but I really think if someone loves Jesus – really loves Jesus, that kind of takes care of everything.

That may mean that they’ve mastered financial stewardship, but they still struggle with porn.  That may mean they’ve conquered lust, but battle with pride.  The evidence of a man who loves Jesus is not found in conquering a specific sin struggle, but rather in his endurance in the fight.

Don’t look for the perfectly healed champion.  He’s already waiting for you in Heaven.

Look for they guy who is covered with scars from the fight.  Look for the guy who is bloody and bleeding with this huge grin on his face because he’s confident that the war is already won.  Don’t stare at each other too long.  Link arms or get back-to-back so you can make each other stronger before the next attack.

Then fight your way home to your true Hero.

41 thoughts on “What to look for in a guy.

  1. I began reading this and thought oh she should read the article I just read. Then… you quoted it! 🙂 I am right along side you!! Thanks for preaching it!

  2. I love your viewpoint about what to look for in a mate. Too many single girls think they’re Cinderella looking for a Prince Charming. They will always be sadly disillusioned in marriage. You are right, there is only one Prince!

    The Scriptures speak about not having an unequal yoke, this goes way beyond just both being saved, that is only the beginning. I used what I believe in the Bible to help find a mate. I knew that if I was going to submit and follow, it had to be in a direction I wanted to go. I also looked for a man who didn’t just say they believed the Bible but lived it, could take rebuke and listened to older men.

    We’re approaching our 26th anniversary. We have never disagreed about anything spiritual, financial, parental or ministerial. Although, I’m embarrassed to say, he still annoys me when he leaves his dirty clothes on the floor and I still get cranky when I shouldn’t. 🙂

  3. Love it, mine list is slightly longer — 1. Loves Jesus and 2. Dealing with baggage…or willing to deal with it (ie, run to Jesus with it…)

    Every man I have ever dated has had baggage, as have I…but the ones where the relationships failed horribly was where he was refusing to address his baggage (whether it be hurts from the past or sin from the past….) I can handle a man who still struggles with pain from his parents divorce or exmarriage or own addictions, but I have a problem with someone who refuses to acknowledge and strive to deal with them….

    then again, that may come back full circle to what you were saying about having a common view of Jesus… a common view of Jesus includes striving to conquer sins and heal from the past (even if not completely there yet…or ever) So, I take it back, I agree 100 percent: I want a man who: 1. must love Jesus

    well said.

  4. OH MAN!!! THANK YOU!!! I was praying about this today! NEEDED to see this.

    There are many that may love Jesus more than me, and that doesn’t make me equally yoke or not with this person. BUT first on the list must be a LOVE for Jesus. I am probably not ready to marry myself as I’m still trying to get back to LOVING Christ. I expect nothing less of a man I intend to marry.

  5. As a single man, I thank God for women like you. Thank you for loving Jesus the way you do and not holding us to an impossible standard. That really frees us up from the pressure to perform and allows us to focus on pursuing our 2 most important relationships in life(with Jesus and with our wife). A man is blessed when he knows that his woman will stand behind him in the thick of the battle.

    1. What if I’m a black women without children who likes white men but none in my state are good they’re mostly racist.But I’m sweeter than sugar what do I do.

  6. This is beautifully written, and true. You verbalized what’s sloshing around in my heart–my choice of a man will be the scarred one with a grin.

  7. Love this. Couldn’t have said it better!


    p.s. come on over and take a peek at my CUSTOM BLOG DESIGN giveaway! 🙂 I think you’ll really like it!

    1. Oh no! I just saw this and I’m too late to enter. Pout! Definitely keep me posted on more opportunities like that!

  8. So thanks! This was exactly were I was praying about and what I needed to see.. in the last few weeks/months God is really changing my mind about this.. it’s so simple to look for a man who is the hero that will fits you perfectly.. but this is a way much better viewpoint.. and I really believe this is the point of view Jesus wants us to have about relationship.. so thanks for writing this article.. 🙂

  9. Even though it’s rarely heard of outside of a body of God-fearing believers, it’s what sets us a part from the statistics of divorce. You find a guy who God has slammed like Paul (so to speak), then you’re probably sitting on God’s 2nd most gracious gift to you. A single man and a single woman need to have their eyes open for a battle-buddy, not something else to worship. Like you said God is already our perfect King, Father, Husband, Savior…etc. We can only trust that by such a criteria as you so courageously admitted, God is all that He says He is and will grant us every good thing. Another blessing to read this morning 🙂

  10. Loved this article. I have two other things on my list- someone Whose leadership I can follow, and who will/ does love me. Thanks! Our generation of idealizing women NEED to hear this…

  11. I love this. Love the “link arms or get back to back” part. The battle is hard, single or married. Thank you!

  12. 🙂 real talk right there. these expectations the world has taught us to have are realy ridiculous and unattainble. we want saints while we do noting to make ourselves those saints we want. that the partner should understand. my list also includes ‘has to be a realy close friend’after ‘loves Jesus’ coz that makes it easy us to relate. thanx for sharing the wisdom.

  13. “A wife is to thank God her husband hath faults. A husband without faults is a dangerous observer.” George Savile

    This article is very well-said.

  14. Thank you very much for your words. The principle behind your words isn’t just true in a marriage situation, but for every relationship in your life. Look at others through the eyes of Jesus, the only eyes that will matter in the end.

  15. For a while I thought the same thing. If a guy truly loves Jesus then I am safe haveing him as a choice. All I need to make sure is that he loves Jesus and then I’m all set.

    First, let me say that when it comes to relationships, there is no ONE answer. It’s like the meaning of life. You’ll know the answer once you are dead. You will be perfected once you finish the race.

    So my opinion. I think that list is a shortcut. And like most shortcuts, it is likely to get you lost.

    God expects you to make a decision. He expects you to make judgements of every man who seeks you out and make up your mind on who will be a good HUSBAND. HUSBAND.

    Your list is good if you are looking for a CHRISTIAN. Are you looking for a good CHRISTIAN or are you looking for a good HUSBAND? It is your responsibility to get a man who is going to be a good HUSBAND and a good FATHER to your children.

    What I want to say is that it is not that simple. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that because someone loves Jesus truly, that that makes them good husband material.

    Loving Christ is definitely a prerequisite, but BE VIGILANT. BE PICKY. TEST HIM.

    Do you know why?

    Because when a man reads this article of yours, he sees that you expect the basic minimum from him. And that is precisely what he will offer. Loving Jesus is the basic minimum.

    If you have a business you are running, and you needed and engineer, what would be your requirements?

    1. He must love Jesus Christ.
    2. He must be good at engineering.

    Don’t be stupid. LOVING JESUS IS NOT ENOUGH.

    I assure you, for your business, you are better off with a great engineer who does not love God that much, than a sucky engineer who loves the Lord with all his heart.

    Same goes for marriage. LOVING JESUS is not enough. It is a basic requirement. But not nearly enough for a successful marriage.

    I hope I do not sound rude or condescending. I’ll be honest, I have learned this the hard way.

  16. Awesome!!! Love this. If he loves God then he will love you, because you rarely see a selfish arrogant man truly in LOVE with God.

  17. I just came accross your blog and this post now, but oh my, I LOVE this! You are so right and put this so well. Thank you so much. I have been searching for this kind of thing for a while.

    “Look for they guy who is covered with scars from the fight. Look for the guy who is bloody and bleeding with this huge grin on his face because he’s confident that the war is already won. Don’t stare at each other too long. Link arms or get back-to-back so you can make each other stronger before the next attack.”

    Absolutely beautiful!!! Forget those other lists — this is the guy I am looking for now. 🙂

  18. absolutely loved what you wrote. totally agree. and i might copy the last bit and add it to my personal favorite quotes 🙂

  19. Just found your blog through someone else’s blog.. you know how it goes. Anyways super excited about reading through your thoughts. Also I’ve visited Austin Stone a few times and it was great. Currently live in Dallas though. 🙂

  20. For a while now, I’ve thought I should write a list…”Top Ten Things I Can Offer a Man” vs just focusing on what I want. I’ve been begging God to transform my mind toward marriage and having a husband so that my goal will not be selfish but to serve my man and glorify my God.

  21. Thanks for this Fabs! So great! Love the last part especially- our true and perfect champion is in heaven waiting for us. Look for a man bloody from the fight and join him in fighting your way home to your true Hero. Jesus is our true and perfect groom. Marriage on earth is good but only a shadow of what’s to
    come. What an awesome wedding feast that will be!!

  22. No Matter where you come from in life you come as you are and whosoever Loves me and keeps my Commandments will have a life more abundantly .When you love Jesus You will always want to walk as he walks because it is pleasing in the sight Of God. Any persons can be healed by the love of Christ no matter your present condition.In other words to opposites can fall for each other when they seek out God and finds Him and he in turns Gives you all ability to love as he loves us. Because we love him we keep his Commandments thus we walk as he walked and you will get the results that come with this walk so spend more time on the details of this Holy Law of God so you can Trust your steps to Christ with a spouse who has the same honor for the Love of God as you Do . sure it would be easier if your spouse lived near by in your faith and it was exactly the same even than we are sinners and have the same obstacles to overcome.

  23. like how you emphasize the importance of a man being a work in process. I think there is nothing wrong with having certain standards, even somewhat specific ones, when considering a mate. However, having a list of 20 characteristics and refusing to give someone a chance if he doesn’t fit all of them perfectly might be going a bit too far! God has given us everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter). I’m a single man, but I’ve realized that the secret to training as a hero for my future wife is to realize that when I am weak, then I am strong. Without humbling ourselves before Christ, and subsequently our Christian brothers, we cannot live life as God created us to live it. Our own willpower, grit and determination will not suffice to make us think and act purely, treat the women in our lives chivalrously and considerately, and win our personal battles. Men were built to be heroes by God. It’s only through His strength, not our own, that we can live out that calling. I love the line you wrote, “Look for the guy who is bloody and bleeding with this huge grin on his face because he’s confident the war is already won.” Amen, sister. It’s always encouraging to read posts like this that affirm godly masculinity. It encourages me to keep living as God would have me live.

    P.S. Here is a tremendous sermon that lays out quite a lofty vision of Christian manhood. I hope it benefits you and your readers. 🙂 God bless.


  24. I’m only just graduating high school and over the course of almost 2 years I’ve met a guy who I am still talking to currently. We were casual friends just like any other students our age, and eventually we developed feelings and of course started investing more time and emotions into one another.

    I haven’t always been consistent with my faith and I have to admit I haven’t spent time with Jesus a whole lot lately. I don’t know how I came across this page, but I feel you are a blessing in my life. I first searched up your “6 Weapons to Kill Pride” and after thoroughly reading the article, it helped me. I was so encouraged when I read about how to kill my pride and how it relates with Jesus.

    While searching your website I came across this article and I have a new perspective for my relationship with this guy. I hope that when I do have the little changes in my life that he can see and follow and that things will work out. I have to say I’m guilty of expecting so much out of my partner, and I have been realizing that was the core of our issues over the past two months.

    My relationship may seem insignificant in your perspective but I wanted to express that this article is inspiring and that I’m in awe of how one or a group of people start up a website just to share their thoughts so that the ones out there, like myself, have a chance to learn more and receive advice linking in with Jesus’ words when we don’t always have access to these words.

    I want to thank you and really truly encourage you and your team if you do have a team, that what you do on here is inspiring and it’s changing lives little by little.
    God bless you, and thank you so so much.

  25. Fab, I just love this. (and you):

    Don’t look for the perfectly healed champion. He’s already waiting for you in Heaven.

    Look for they guy who is covered with scars from the fight. Look for the guy who is bloody and bleeding with this huge grin on his face because he’s confident that the war is already won. Don’t stare at each other too long. Link arms or get back-to-back so you can make each other stronger before the next attack.

    Then fight your way home to your true Hero.

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