What Kind of Man Should She Look for in a Future Husband?

What Kind of Man Should She Look for in a Future Husband?

“Hi Mrs. Alexander! I love the message you’re spreading! I’m a girl in college whose ultimate life goal is to become a godly wife, mother, and a keeper at home. What qualities do you suggest I look for in a husband to ensure a long and happy marriage? Thanks!”

I taught my daughters to look for a man who loved the Lord deeply and was a hard worker. I asked the women in the chat room how they would respond and here are some of their answers.

“Look for fruit. It is easy to say, ‘I love God,’ or ‘I work hard,’ but one mistake a lot of people make is they get swept up in the attraction and the nice words and fail to see the red flags of a fruitless person.

“Make sure he shows you his dedication to God, his hard work, his kindness and patience, his willingness to keep you pure for marriage, and his desire to live contrary to the world.”

“He needs to be a good provider that will hold down a good job, a good Christ man with a good heart that wants a wife like you and wants his wife to be home full time with the children. He should walk the walk and talk the talk!

“Avoid any man with obvious signs of abusive behaviors, either verbal, physical, obviously, and manipulative/gas lighting towards you. Those are big red flags and I say this from a place of love and past experiences; avoid men who show these tendencies.”

“It’s very important to assess potential husbands for good and godly character – not just what they say but what they believe and what they live every day. There are many aspects of good character but here are some of them: trustworthy and honest, chaste, joyful and content, diligent, principled (willing to stand up for what they believe and not give in to peer pressure or their own desires), patient, kind, and self-controlled.

“On the flip side, there are red flags to look for that indicate bad character. Here are some of those: angry or temperamental, easily swayed by the opinions of others or cultural trends, impatient, lazy, cruel or hateful, presenting a false appearance to cover up flaws, hypocritical, self-indulgent.”

“Definitely look at the fruit he bears and how long has he been following Christ. What kinds of jokes does he laugh at/tell, what kinds of movies does he watch and think are good/funny and why? What kind of music does he listen to? All of this will tell you a LOT about a person. Also, what does he spend his money and time on? Observe all of this without him knowing it. Then look for the fruits of the spirit: honesty, strength in godly character and a good work ethic.”

“I wish I had considered the importance of marrying someone who thought big families were admirable and that me staying home was a top priority, and that he would trust God with finances from the get-go while being willing to be the sole provider without help from me. I know men who know and understand that’s how it should be even when they are single and don’t have a family yet.”

“One thing I’ll add to the great input above – look for a man who is respected and admired by your family and the Christian community you are a part of. Many times, when women marry men they shouldn’t, it was due to them isolating themselves and staying with a man against their family’s or community’s advice and counsel. Others can see things that you can’t. (By no means is this the only characteristic you should base your judgment on, but the opinion of your Christian community is an important part of marriage. We are not meant to be individualistic and make such important decisions alone.)”

 I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.
1 John 2:14

17 thoughts on “What Kind of Man Should She Look for in a Future Husband?

    1. Absolutely right. As a woman you need to look for a man who you respect and who you believe will lead you in following Christ. Ultimately you need to be joyful in submission.

  1. One very important thing to consider: Have your parents lead, or at least guide, the process of finding an appropriate husband.

    The easiest person to trick if yourself. This goes for all of us. Wise and prudent parents will have great insight into which people are more suitable and which are bad news. They also will have much greater probability of finding diamonds in the rough that can be neglected or overlooked.

  2. These are wonderful qualities to look for! We need to teach young ladies (and young men!) how to carefully evaluate a potential spouse because marriage is a long time to be miserable.

    When my now-husband and I were courting I asked him so many questions and I was impressed that he constantly referred back to the Bible. I knew that because he was basing his life on God’s Word we would have a solid foundation to build our lives on.

    Single ladies – a godly Christian wife is precious – she is a rare ruby. Don’t give your love away to the first guy that comes along without testing his character and getting your father’s input and blessing!

  3. Good advice; I would also say, look for a man you would respect even if you weren’t interested in him romantically! Many times we allow lust to cloud our judgement or think that “love conquers all”, but love/lust will fade if you don’t deeply respect the person you are marrying! I love my husband a great deal and find him very attractive, but the thing that most contributes to the strength of our marriage is that I deeply RESPECT him.

  4. Talking with my wife, we don’t think that young women with limited life experience are qualified to determine who is a good lifelong partner. Fathers have twice the years of their daughters (at least) and are better qualified to judge and qualify the character of a man. Their experience should outweigh the “feelings” of a fallen world. Many fathers abdicate their responsibility to select a suitable mate for their children, resulting in tragedy or their having to raise their grandchildren. They spend a minimum of 18 years investing in their daughters only to let them gamble away that investment on romantic not Christian “love.” I thought the Bible was against games of chance? The Bible doesn’t have much to say about dating, because we aren’t supposed to date, we are supposed to marry and be “fruitful and multiply.” Probably preaching to the choir, but just wanted to offer my two cents.

  5. What a needed list. I agree with them all. My daughter has stated that she doesn’t care at all what her husband looks like so long as he has a cheery spirit. I’ve been thinking of this for awhile and while there are times of unavoidable sadness in life having someone who isn’t moody can be quite a blessing. I wouldn’t put it at the top of the list but in addition to the more important qualities listed by others I think it is good to consider. You wouldn’t want anyone with a victim mentality either who thinks everyone is out to get him and he just can’t get ahead because of someone/everyone else.

  6. I would say look for someone who talks about having a family and children and shows interest in helping with your younger siblings. Look for someone who has held down a job and has a 5, 10, 20 year plan for finances and supporting a family. This man should be kind, understanding, chaste, prudent, humble, hardworking, yet have the qualities of a leader: he can assess a situation and give a practical and Biblical based solution, he can confidently make decisions with research and counsel from you, and he has good people skills that draw others to him for advice.

    I really really like the suggestion of would you respect this man if you weren’t attracted to him?

    Finally, I agree parents should vet candidates and provide counsel to their daughters. However, I would say that fathers really need to understand their daughters must be attracted to any man he suggests. Respect is wonderful, but on the flip side, a young woman should ALSO be passionate about her future husband to make the command of being fruitful and multiplying something desirable and not simply a duty! I have seen fathers set their daughters up with wonderful men who they just aren’t smitten about — while the marriage can certainly be successful, these women never seem to be the ones who look on their husbands with adoration and have to learn to fake intimacy instead of it coming naturally. Not to say that attraction can’t develop in a courtship, but fathers and mothers pay attention and don’t let it progress too far if your daughter doesn’t seem smitten!

  7. This is all excellent advice on how to find a Godly man! I wish I had heard it years ago. I would add:
    1. Observe how he treats his female relatives (Mom, Grandma, Sisters). What does he say behind their backs? Is he kind and charitable? Is he mean and judgmental? How he treats them is how he will eventually treat you.
    2. Don’t ask “what about him needs to change” but ask what do I need to change about MYSELF in order to be a good helpmeet to him? And ask yourself if you are honestly willing to make those changes permanently. If he is a hunter are you willing to learn to prepare game? If he is a football fan are you willing to spend your Sunday afternoons watching TV? If he is not financially well-off are you willing to give up luxuries and even struggle for necessities? Remember it is your job to conform to him, not the other way around.

  8. This is such a great post and the comments are spot on! I would add one thing to this list. Observe (if you can) the relationship that his parents have. Does his father lead, or does his mother do the leading, with his father sitting quietly back and deferring to her? If so, that will be his “blue print” for his own marriage. It is hard to follow someone who does not lead. Does his mother still tell him what to do, or does he seek direction and counsel from his father and other men? Anyone of us can memorize and quote scriptures, but actions speak the loudest. Good luck to this young lady! She is wise to ask for counsel from an older woman.

  9. Amen to all of this! I would also suggest that you observe and spend time with your future spouse’s family. See how he interacts with his parents and his siblings… Really be a good listener as you discern his ability to lead you in the truth of God’s Word! It’s truly about his character! When you are spending the time to discern you will smell the bad fruit! Humility comes before honor Prov. 15:33

  10. Ask for his testimony. Does he SHOW that he loves the LORD with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength, and his neighbour as himself (Mark 12:30+31)? Ask to view his Bible. How often does he read his Bible? Pay attention to what verses are highlighted and/or underlined (and if his Bible isn’t marked, ask him why). Ask him why the verses that are marked in his Bible he saw fit to highlight. Who in the Bible, beside Jesus Christ, does he admire? Does he have a favorite book in the Bible and/or doctrine? See if he picks and chooses what to believe about the Bible. Ask what his doctrinal beliefs are. Does he believe in the Godhead? Does he take the accounts of Genesis seriously? Is he a flat-earther? Is he a Calvinist? What does he believe it takes to be saved? Does he believe in going to church? How often does he go to church? If he goes to a different church, visit unexpectedly. Ask those in his church what he is like, especially his pastor, but be cautious of tale bearers. What does he believe about baptism, tithing, wine, women wearing pants, biblical marital roles, women preachers, family planning, spanking, homeschooling, etc. Watch how he interacts with the children at church. Does he like or want children? What does he do to further the kingdom of God? Does he witness to people, and care to see others saved? What is his dream? Is he a leader? Does he submit to those that are his leaders (Jesus Christ, his pastor, boss)? Has he ever fornicated/watched porn? Has he ever used drugs? Does he get frustrated easily? Is he cowardly? How was he raised, and what would he do differently if he’d do anything differently? What is his relationship with his parents like? What is his relationship with his siblings, if he has any, like? Meet them if you can and ask them about what he is like, but be careful of bitter family members who would unjustly slander. Does he keep a steady job? Does he have any Christian in history or in his life that he admires? Is he humble or prideful? Ask him what was the hardest time in his life, and how did he deal with it? Does he cuss on accident every now and then? Ask him, “if you came with a warning label, what would it say and why”? (And be prepared to honestly answer this one yourself).

    And lastly, ask yourself, am I willing to serve this man for the rest of my life? Am I ready to trust and obey his leadership? Do I want him to be the father of my children, and the protector and provider of our family? Do I want to help this man, laugh with this man, cry with this man? Go through hard times with this man? Do I want to have this man step between me and Jesus Christ in the pecking order of life (1 Corinthians 11:3)? Do I want to have this man’s heart resting safely in me (Proverbs 31:11)? Am I sure that I want to do this man good for the rest of my life: in helping him in the ministry, taking care of his heart, giving him due benevolence, keeping his house, and training his children?

    If you strategically ask these questions gradually during your courtship, and not right off the bat, you will get to know of who he is in the Body of Christ, which I would say is the most important part of getting to know a potential spouse.

  11. I think one should observe how willing he is to forgive people. No matter how carefully we vet people, over the years of marriage we’re certain to discover unsavory things about ourselves and our spouses. Ability to forgive is essential, and I think is truly the indication of godliness in a man.

  12. Lots of good advice here. I didn’t heed any of it. When I met my husband I just knew, deep in my heart, he was the man I was going to marry. I knew nothing about him, but I knew he was the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. 17 years later, he’s still the man I want to spend the rest of my life with.

    I remember a while ago, I think it was Montesquieu who wrote a list of things to look for in a godly husband, in the comments on this blog. There was a lot of helpful stuff in it.

  13. I have a few suggestions of my own. Watch how he treats other people, particularly those who are in service positions. Does he treat waitstaff well in restaurants? How does he deal with a difficult situation? Does he treat children and animals well? Does he take good care of his body and live a healthful life? How does he get along with family members, especially his mother and father? Take him on a camping trip or rent a kayak or canoe and see what happens (bonus points if the rain or snow starts pouring down on you during this outdoor adventure). How does he deal with adversity when things don’t go well? Remember that a courting man is usually on his best behavior and will treat you like a queen. If he treats you like a queen but other people like servants, run! You will find yourself being the drudge in your marriage after the early rosy days of marriage rub off. Listen to your parents’ advice, too. They are old enough and wise enough to warn you of potential problems. Choose for the long term and not the short term if you want a loving, strong partner.

  14. I have told my daughter, “Don’t mistake Charm, for Character.” The qualities in my husband that have blessed our marriage are: hardworking, I can talk to him and we can compromise, we each care about the other’s happiness, he is family-oriented, not a push-over. An odd one but it has been helpful is that we have a similar distrust of big government/pharma/media. It puts us on the same page on a lot of issues.

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