Sir, have you prayed on behalf of your vocation in life? Have you abandoned your future to Christ’s designs for you? Are you willing to accept WHATEVER God pleases to give you for the sake of salvation? If you have not done as much, you need stop looking for a girl! How can you even think you are ready to give a woman any sentiment of happiness if you have not first sought to give your life over to Christ for His plans? Do you not know the source of all happiness is God? So how can it be that you think you have anything to offer to a woman if you aren’t grafted into God’s unlimited source of devotion? Well, let’s work on some things before you hit the road in search for the perfect woman.
As St. Paul said, “But if they do not contain themselves, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to be burnt.” 1 Cor. 7:9 – Did you catch the exhortation? Courtship is the course of discerning for marriage! If you have no intention of marrying a girl then make no plan to steal a girl’s heart. There is absolutely nothing wrong with friendship but to act out of character and carry on as married couples do is not only ridiculously inappropriate but a sin. For until you are married in the Catholic Church, you are not bound to any woman nor any woman bound to you. This is why when you are discerning a wife, you participate in courting her. We shall discuss the different elements concerning courtship and what you must consider throughout this path of joy.
Discerning Your Vocation
As I stated before, you should make no rash commitments without first consulting God as to what He wants for you. This, as I am sure you are aware, is not an over-night kind of thing. Think of growing a tree, there are things you need to do and an environment that needs to be just right in order to see growth. If even one element is missing, your tree will never grow. Therefore, consult the Good Doctor on your spiritual direction and health. This is where you must incorporate meditation or contemplative prayer. Meditation is important because it is the mental form of organizing your room. Can you imagine never organizing your room but instead live in it without tidying up at all? If you are like me, you would go nuts! There is no difference in meditation concerning your jumbled mind. Begin by meditating on basic truths of the Catholic faith, such as its Dogmas or Doctrines like the Incarnation of Our Lord or Assumption of Our Lady. The point here is to devote your mind to sublime truths so that graces may flow to you for the purpose of purging sin from your life. Mediation helps us also recognize our faults if we prayerfully ask for God to reveal that to us. All of this was to build upon meditating on God’s will for your life. “Lord, is it your will that I am to be married?” or “Lord, is it your will that I should become a Priest of your Church?” or “Lord, is it your will that I live apart from those Sacraments as penance for the conversion of sinners and of the Church?” Be open to the possibilities that God may place in your heart and fight the temptation to run from it. But after all this, if you still feel a calling to become a married man, then prayerfully thank God and ask for graces to serve Him in that vocation.
Discerning a Wife
Let me go ahead and say, do not automatically go toward the “model” type. Sure she is gorgeous and apparently blessed by God with a body that excites you but what is the condition of her heart? Do not be fooled by bells and whistles but instead be engaged by a woman of devotion. There is no such thing as the perfect woman but there are women out there that do actually work toward that perfection. That is, perfection that Christ made possible. As Jesus said, “Be perfect, as your Heavenly Father is perfect.” and don’t you think that this is possible? You might say, ‘it is impossible to be perfect!’ but this is contrary to Christ’s words. Otherwise, why would he say it? He never gives a command that cannot be followed! He already told us how to be perfect if you don’t recall, “Seek first the Kingdom of Heaven and its Justice…and everything else will be added to you.” So the first clue in discerning a wife is her relationship with Christ. Does she go to Mass every Sunday? Does she pray? Is she open about discussing her faith with you? Is she also concerned with her vocation? These questions are more conformed to a spiritual nature which, if this woman does not meet the affirmative to these questions, one need only pray for these things to be made manifest as well as leading her by example. Besides her affinity to holy religion, there are other questions to consider: Does she think to include your feelings in her words, actions, and thoughts? Does she believe in keeping her virginity until marriage (or if she does not have it, does she recognize the loss she suffered?)? Is she humble in her ways? Does she respect laws and people? Does she respect life and abhor the contraceptive life in all its diabolical forms? Is she a woman of dignity and dresses modestly? Does she respect your dignity? Is she lustful? You do see where I am going with this, don’t you? Is she a woman at least attempting to practice virtue? And while we are picking on ‘her’, are YOU at least attempting to practice virtue? Reverse, if you will, all the questions I asked of ‘her’ and direct them now at yourself. How did you do? If you honestly can’t say you did well, then go back to prayer. Because it may be that you have yet to be purged from a bad habit or sin that holds you captive. So until God sets your wife before you, pray for her…who ever she is that she may be protected and blessed to fully unite herself to you. Flesh of your flesh and bone of your bone, that you may become one, in Christ. Amen.