Well I’m only referring to this criterion as no 3 to be orderly/methodical, as over the course of the week I have written a drastic reworking to my first criterion, which would in a way make the subject of this post the 2nd criterion rather than the third.
So for number 3 in my list of essential criteria for my marriage, again, in a way, we have a criterion that is not necessarily about the guy’s characteristics, but rather about how we relate to one another.
That is simply that we have to be able to communicate with one another. Ideally, my dream for my marriage would ultimately be that we are able to communicate with openness, honesty and frankness, even where it comes to challenging one another’s behaviour.
However, I appreciate that it will take some time to get to that point, and we will have to work very hard to establish trust, vulnerability, and lots and lots of mutual prayer.
One issue that I touched on in my post about the previous criterion (friendship) is that sometimes it is hard to maintain friendship during the “checking-out stages”, ie, when you are evaluating someone for marriage potential. For me, this is usually because of awkwardness issues. As it is with friendship, so it can often be with communication. Whenever it starts looking as if someone possibly….maybe…what if…? Then it just becomes so awkward for me to relate with them. Things that I would previously have done totally unself-consciously suddenly become very self-conscious indeed. These are things like joking, laughing, being just a little bit cheeky…all of these suddenly become next to impossible for me, and you SO want to behave normally, but every gesture seems stilted and awkward.
However, I started writing this blog post earlier today, and I have now resumed writing it a number of hours later. In the intervening period I have been thinking a little about this subject. Part of the reason that I feel awkward is because I am still busy evaluating his character, and carefully watching everything he does and weighing everything he says. I am totally going to dispense with this and instead simply refuse to look at anyone until I have known them for a sufficient length of time. Hopefully if there are no “interesting” thoughts in my mind then I will find it easier to relate with someone -assuming that this is not a naive way of thinking. Then at the end of X time I should know whether I can trust someone or whether they might be appropriate. Then, hopefully it will just be a matter of praying for God to take control and to do His thing, until the next step presents itself! 😉
Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.