How Not to Find a Wife

Josh stepped into the room filled with people his own age. The party was loud and happening!  Scanning the room for familiar faces, his eyes caught a few gorgeous looking women he didn’t know. As he worked his way through the crowd, he honed in on a young woman at the portable bar. His eyes scanned her more than once. “This one is hot!”, he thought to himself. Reaching for a drink, he intentionally bumped her. “Excuse me, let me get that for you.” Josh offered. She consented. “I’m Josh. You are?”  “Natalie.”  They found a spot and chatted for quite some time. Before the party was over, Josh had her number and planned to contact her the next day.


One date led to another, and another. By now, Josh was pressing Natalie for some bed-time. “We have chemistry!” he reasoned. “Don’t you want to see that we are compatible?”  Unfortunately, Natalie agreed. Josh wasn’t her first guy, having lost her virginity quite some time ago in high school. Her endless pursuit of a man who would love her drove her into an enticing lifestyle.  As for Josh, ever since middle school days, he had this secret affair with porn. At first, it was curiosity, but that quickly led to his own virginity-loss by the time he was a freshman. What neither Josh nor Natalie told each other were their church upbringings.  It seemed talking about Jesus would put a damper on their romantic forrays. 


The two eventually married. They were that “cute couple”. Natalie’s girlfriends all thought she snagged a hot one!  Josh’s buddies couldn’t get over Natalie. “It’s going to be an awesome honeymoon!” they all ribbed him!  Problem was, they didn’t save anything for the honeymoon. Nothing. In fact, behind the facades were some serious issues brewing in their relationship. Josh was getting tired of her incessant fixation on binge-shopping and controlling what their new apartment was going to look like. She, on the other hand, was tired of him drinking with the guys and constantly flirting with other women.  Josh and Natalie had become a couple alright, but there was no friendship. Definitely no spiritual depth to their relationship at all.


Within two years, they were separated. Josh had an affair with one of Natalie’s girlfriends. After a long weekend where he disappeared with “her”, Josh came back to an empty apartment. His stuff was in the dumpster in the parking lot.  The divorce papers we signed a few months later.  

Who’s to Blame?

You can blame their marriage demise on incompatibility, but the truth is, since his first looks at porn in middle school, Josh never learned how to actually befriend a woman. All women were to him were objects of lust. Trophies to win. Competition to see who could date and have sex with a girl first. All the while Josh learned to hide this while playing the part of the “good Josh” during church youth group and around his family. He knew all the right church words to say, even had some essential scriptures memorized, and helped out at camp, but deep inside he was all messed up because he didn’t make the connection between an authentic relationship with Christ and how that could positively help him relate with women.

Natalie grew up the daughter of a church deacon. Always in church, but never experiencing a healthy father-daughter relationship, she sought the attention of boys who would flirt with her. It was all a game. Yet, she desperately ached inside for someone to truly love her. She figured Josh was the guy. After all, a guy that handsome surely sees beyond her cute smile. Josh obviously didn’t.

There is NOTHING wrong with being attractive and good-looking

No one ever said you have to look rag-tag, trashing yourself. God created us beautiful beyond our looks. True beauty, whether in women or men is to be first rooted in the soul. My wife is gorgeous to look at! But, her real beauty comes from a deeply passionate heart that beats for Christ. That is what turned me on to her in the first place!  Living in two different countries (the USA and Canada), we wrote to each other for almost six months before we ever laid eyes on each other. When I saw her face to face, I already saw the beauty of her heart!

Let’s Cut to the Chase

Here’s my point, if you are in the mix of looking for a wife, don’t discount beauty, but do not be drawn only to that person because of beauty. Learn to build a friendship, first. Learn to bring Christ into the relationship early on. Jesus is not an afterthought. “But, I’m not that into Jesus right now. So what if we don’t make him a top priority? I had enough Jesus growing up. Can’t that be enough?”  With all due respect, you are jeopardizing the relationship. When hard times hit, whether while dating or after the wedding, the two of you will have a difficult time remaining committed to each other, without Jesus. Why? You never made friendship a top priority. And, despite your “love for Jesus”, you didn’t bring him into the relationship.

It’s Not All Doom and Gloom-There is Hope!

You can change now. If you are in a dating relationship that is void of a Jesus-centered friendship, then both of you need to pause and have a serious conversation if having Jesus in your relationship is ever going to happen. If either of you decides No, then as compassionately as I can say this, you need to pause the relationship. Either, you two decide that building a relationship on friendship and including Jesus is in the cards, or you both need to break up and spend some time seeking Jesus on your own.

If, however, you decide that being authentically vulnerable with each other through a Christ-centered relationship is in the cards, then slow things down until the friendship side of things can catch up. Truth is, as handsome as you are right now, fast-forward 20-30 years and you will not be as dashing and slender.  Neither will she. You will both be beautiful but that beauty changes as time moves on. 

Three Ways to Build a Friendship with a Woman

  1. Look for a person who has the capacity to know you better than you know yourself. 
  2. When you look at her life, can you see what God is doing in her, and get excited to be a part of her becoming all God has for her?
  3. Is there a common passion/mission the two of you can share together that folds Jesus into your relationship? 

From the onset, Sandy and I had a common passion to help youth to find a healthier walk with Jesus. Some thirty years later, our marriage still finds us coming alongside young adults and couples through mentoring and pre-marital counseling.  It brings joy to our marriage to have a common bond that includes Jesus.

Looking for a wife?  She’s out there!  Practice friendship first and you will be amazed at who God brings your way.

Warrior On!

David Riffel is the Founder and Executive Director of Having gone through his warrior years (18-30) essentially without a mentor, God has placed in him a heart for warriors, to come alongside them in various ways as they figure out life. David’s newly released book, Mentoring Warriors: Coming Alongside Young Men 18-30, outlines principles for mentoring and gives advice for warriors in six key areas of life: self-management, life skills, education/career, relationships, faith, and identity.

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