The main factor in choosing your spouse


Q: A brother has been called to full time ministry. His fiancee is okay with it but somehow wary of how to maintain the family’s financial demands in the immediate future. Clearly, he can’t do much with the little time has he outside ministerial duties. Also, the relationship is financially malnourished. While waiting patiently on God for more blessings financially, how can he make his fiancee keep faith in him and what God has in stock?”

A: People approach money differently; some people cannot bear the thought of not having any so they will do whatever it takes to get it. In this case, the brother needs to clarify that his fiancée is not one of those who cannot look beyond material needs, if peradventure she cannot live without a steady income, then I’m afraid their relationship won’t work because the issue of money will always pose a challenge. I’m sorry to sound overly spiritual but not everyone has the “grace” to marry a pastor. They both need to have a serious conversation where he explains his financial situation to her in details and leave it up to her to decide whether she is willing to make the sacrifice or not. There should be no hard feelings from the brother if she decides to walk away from the relationship. On the other hand, though I do not know how fulltime pastoring works but I would advise the brother to engage in other businesses that would not necessarily need him to be there all the time so as to increase his streams of income.


Q: I’ve never been able to get him to go with me to events, conferences or seminars where I know I hear truths on how to improve key aspects of life. He only attends programs he chooses himself. This means we hardly go out together, which upsets me and I also see it as a gap because sooner we will no longer reason at the same level. What do I do?

A: You need to talk to him to find out his reasons for not going with you to events you like or prefer, until he states his reasons; I really don’t have anything to advise you on. However, attending seminars and conferences shouldn’t be the only places you go together  but you made a valid point by saying you both may not reason at the same level because that’s true. Like I said earlier, I cannot really advise until I get full details of your relationship. Take some time out and express your concerns to him and hear his response.


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Q: There is this guy I love, but his spirituality bothers me, he is just a regular Christian and a good person but more than that I want a man who has a relationship with God, who loves and fear God, what do I do? As I do not want to miss it in marriage.

A: Spirituality is a priority to you and it should be, having a good guy counts for something in a relationship I tell you but that is not all that is required for you to have a successful marriage. The reason some of us have been married for long and enjoying it is because we give expression to the fruits of the Spirit in us. Marriage on its own comes with enough challenges and someone who has Christ and allows Him work in his/her life will definitely get a better outcome from marriage than a regular person. So, my dear, you alone know the degree of spirituality that’s a pass mark for you, so let that be the basis for your decision.


Q: I’ve heard people advice that I watch for the handwriting on the wall before I say I do. But what if all goes well during courtship and them in marriage somethings start to show up, things I never saw prior signs cos I believe change is constant and is bound to happen.
b) in light of this, watching for signs and behavioral clues might not be entirely accurate in determining my choice. What’s that main or what are the main things (that will always be true) to guide me in my choice.

A: Let me start by saying that no matter how long you court for, you can never truly know your partner until you start living under the same roof. There are some things that just have to surprise you in marriage just as you will also surprise your spouse. Some of them would even surprise you because there’s just some beautiful magic about two people from different backgrounds and histories coming together as one. Now the answer to your (b) part, the one main thing to look out for during courtship, that determines whether to go ahead into marriage is PEACE. Sorry I had to put it in capital it’s because I’m shouting it aloud. During courtship, whenever you think about marriage with that person and you don’t have total peace, then you need to pause until whatever is bothering you gets sorted out and I mean whatever, even the minutest details, if it takes away your peace, you MUST hold on till the issue is resolved. However, if whenever you think of your fiancée or fiancé and you have unexplainable peace, then you are on the right path, just go ahead and enjoy the surprises that will pop up in your journey as a married couple.


Q: I grew up knowing my dad and other dad’s as the utility guys at home. I mean they fixed everything; changed bulbs, turned on the gen and some basic house stuff. I’ve met guys who don’t even know how to change a bulb, please do these things really matter cos I feel it’s important. If the bulb goes out at night, and we need one fixed immediately then what’s gonna happen.

A: Hahahaha…, this is in some way similar to my experience, I also grew with my Dad as the utility guy, the ensurer (please pardon my English) that all doors are locked at night and the go-to-bed after everyone has gone to bed guy. But for my husband, the reverse was the case, his Mom was the utility guy etc. so naturally, he expected the same in marriage and I also expected to see what I’d been used to, the summary of all our expectations was that the first few months in marriage, we slept with our doors unlocked and other things we were both expecting the other to do that didn’t get done……..hmmm! What a mouthful.

My dear, don’t sweat it, all of those are trivial issues and they are one of the many things that make marriage so interesting. The mistake most of us make is that, we enter into marriage silently expecting all our expectations to play out as we imagined them but the truth is, they never do……both parties come into marriage with 20-something years’ worth of experiences, don’t expect an overnight change. It is even our differences that makes the whole thing spicy, all you can do is express your desires to your spouse and hope that they do want you want, and if they don’t, get a handy man because that is too little of a matter to fuss over and deny yourself the other many joyous advantages of marriage.


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Ijeoma Ajibola

Ijeoma Ajibola is a Neuro Linguistic Programmer, speaker, author, certified Marriage Coach, and happy mother of three lovely children. Pursuing her passion for successful marriages, she obtained a certificate from the College of Marital Success in 2012 and has written two books: Common Mistakes Husbands Make and Common Mistakes Wives Make. She hosts monthly Breakfast Meetings for couples as well as an annual ‘Love Ball’. In addition to speaking at couples’ events, she runs an online personalized therapy for couples.

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