In his book, The Millionaire Mind, Thomas Stanley says, “Why are millionaires millionaires? Because they made the right decisions concerning several major issues in their life, and one of these is choice of spouse.”
I recently wrote on how a supportive spouse, among other benefits, can increase your financial success. The biblical book of Proverbs says,
He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the Lord.” Proverbs 18:22
We can safely extrapolate this to refer to finding a good spouse—wife or husband. To “find” implies a deliberate searching. That raises the question:
What Qualities Do You Look For In A Prospective Spouse?
Stanley’s research identified five qualities that came up more than anything else:
We shouldn’t be surprised to find honesty once again at the top of the list. Again, the basis for any relationship is trust. No honesty, no trust, no relationship.
These are key qualities you should look for in your consideration of someone as a possible lifelong partner. If these aren’t there, don’t pursue the relationship.
But realistically we know other things do attract us at first. Those surveyed by Stanley listed these things as initially attracting them to their future spouse more than anything else:
Notice what is missing? Physical attractiveness. That certainly doesn’t mean it isn’t important, but like one millionaire said, “Given the choice, I prefer to be physically attracted to a woman who is intelligent, honest, unselfish, well-adjusted…”!
When Gail and I first met, neither of us met the other’s criteria for the ideal guy/girl as far as physical attributes. Yet as our friendship deepened, we grew to appreciate other qualities in each other. And we amazingly got better looking to each other!
Physical good looks will change. You need to look for qualities that will last a lifetime.
Where Do You Find Such A Person?
Stanley suggested several options as good places. One suggestion was night classes at the local university—perhaps among classes that have a higher number of students of the opposite sex!
But—to my pleasant surprise—he spent a lot of time making a case for the best place to find such a person would be in church! In his words, “…one is likely to find better prospects in a church setting than in singles bars. Of course, there are no guarantees, but people with a religious orientation are more prone to respect the principles espoused in the Good Book. …I’ll pick the church environment over any singles bar.”
How about you? Do you think a person would have a better chance finding the kind of person who will make a good spouse, a good parent to your children, a person you can trust and rely upon in a bar looking to pick up someone or in church?
Some Advice For Singles Interested In Marriage
We’re talking about the importance of finding a GOOD spouse. So, here’s a few words of advice for singles desiring to be married some day:
- Beware of only physical attraction. It’s important but not without the other more important qualities discussed today. If a relationship is based mainly on physical attraction, your relationship will quickly lead to sexual involvement. Although sexual intimacy is an amazing benefit of marriage, sexual involvement before marriage will cloud your discernment and good decision-making.
Don’t date anyone you wouldn’t consider marrying. Just don’t waste your time! And my rule: Don’t date until you’re ready to get married! Until you’re ready, work on your personal growth and interpersonal skills.
Next to your personal relationship with God, the most important relationship you’ll ever have is with your marriage partner. It deserves the most deliberate and thoughtful consideration. The Message Bible emphasizes the point this way…
Find a good spouse, you find a good life—
and even more: the favor of God!” Proverbs 18:22
Question: What do you consider to be the most important quality to search for in a prospective spouse? Share your answer in the comments below.