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Summary: This message offers practical, biblical guidelines that apply to people of all ages who are in the dating process.

Choosing a Mate

The Five Most Important Decisions of Life:

1) Your relationship with God.

2) Vocational choice.

3) Where you go to school.

4) Where you will live.

5) Who you will marry.

Decision #1 is the most important decision by far. The other four decisions may vary in their order depending on the individual and their circumstances.

I believe those five decisions will affect your happiness in life more than any other decisions you will ever make. Today, I want to talk to you about choosing a mate.

I hope that this message will be a tool for parents whose children are still unmarried. But this isn’t a message just for parents and it is not just for singles.

I hope it is a message that all of us can use, as God gives us opportunity, to be able to positively influence not only our children, but our grandchildren, our friends, and others who are single as they make the important choice of a lifelong marriage partner.

What I want to share with you today are general principles. There are exceptions to everything and I’m sure you will think of exceptions to some of the things I will say. But I hope you will try to focus on the principle, not on the exception.

When it comes to the question of how to choose a mate, I tell everyone that will be fine if they choose a mate just like my wife, Laurie. Marrying her was a great choice.

As I look back, there are three yeses that have dramatically affected my life.

1) Saying yes to Jesus Christ as my personal Savior.

2) Saying yes to God’s call into the ministry.

3) Saying yes to Laurie when she asked me to marry her.

Those three yeses have changed my life forever!

Today we are going to talk about entering the most basic relationship we have on planet earth; the relationship between a husband and wife.

I am sure there will be some who will feel like you did not choose well in the past. Please understand that this morning’s message is not meant to brow-beat anyone or cause you to feel inferior or embarrassed in any way. I’m certainly not here to criticize or condemn anyone for past decisions. Hopefully you will see that this message is forward thinking and it is about decisions that will be made in the future.

First, I want to speak a word to 1. Parents: Parents have specific responsibilities when it comes to your child’s choice of a mate.

In Genesis 24, we see how Abraham, a parent, took specific responsibility for the choice of a wife for his son, Isaac. He asks his servant to go and find a wife for his son.

Genesis 24:1-4 (NLT)

1 Abraham was now a very old man, and the LORD had blessed him in every way.

2 One day Abraham said to the man in charge of his household, who was his oldest servant,

3 "Swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and earth, that you will not let my son marry one of these local Canaanite women.

4 Go instead to my homeland, to my relatives, and find a wife there for my son Isaac."

Abraham wanted Isaac to marry within the family. This was a common and acceptable practice at this point in history. There was the added advantage of avoiding intermarriage with some of Abraham’s pagan neighbors.

I have to be honest, I never wanted my parents to select a wife for me.

But now that I have three children, who are all still single, and as I am getting older and wiser, I think that the parent choosing their child’s mate is very likely the biblical, godly process. So, this morning, I just want to encourage us to get back to the Bible. We need to start picking mates for our children. KIDDING!

Let’s take a little poll. How many parents would like to pick the mate for your children? How many would like your parents NOT to pick your mate?

Parents, even though you can’t choose a mate for your child, you do have several specific responsibilities when it comes to guiding the process of choosing a mate. Four areas of responsibility for parents:

a. Example

When a young couple becomes husband and wife, this new couple has learned all about life from their family of origin. Their tendency will be to interact, problem solve, parent, handle money, etc., like they have seen modeled in their own home growing up.

The first thing we need to do for our kids is model what we want them to experience in a healthy Christian marriage. Be a worthy example for your children to follow. I’m convinced that they learn more about marriage from our example than they do from our words.

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