I Need Advice

Hello, MarriageHeat! I’m Gloria, a 25-year-old single. Thank you for guiding us and helping us to keep ourselves for marriage.

I am a born again Christian who has kept Christian values all my life. I come from a very humble background and have worked very hard, managing to go to college and finish medical school.

Someone I have known from church since childhood started pursuing me at the end of 2019. We have been on course with a goal of getting married. I love him, and we want to honour God in a holy marriage. He is very focused about marrying me. However we are not engaged yet, though we talk about it a lot and plan.

My concern, however, is from my family. Since I have no job yet ( I am applying here and there to get one), my brothers and parents are against me getting married now and say that I should first get a stable job and help the family, since my parents still stay in a very small rented place in the ghetto.

I love my family even though they are not born again. I preach to them, and I want to help them so badly when I get a job. My brothers are against me getting married, and my parents, too. They say that I will suffer with the responsibilities that come with marriage, and also that I will not have a priority of helping them financially. That is not true, and I believe in God’s providence.

My boyfriend and I don’t know what to do, and we need advice from anyone out there who can talk to us. Please help me and tell me how I can go about this. I have always prayed to God about having a God-honouring marriage. But should I go against my family? I don’t know what to do! Please advise me and talk to me if you can. I’m writing this with ready eyes. Pray for me.

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13 replies
  1. Waiting Hardly says:

    Since you’re finished with medical school, is there a residency that you are going to complete? Those can be very stressful and you should take that time commitment into account before marriage.
    At this point in life, it’s not really up to the family, especially if they are not putting spiritual priorities first. Pray and seek God’s timing.

  2. Fearless Lunk says:

    Sounds complicated. Is your family wanting you to avoid marriage b/c they are being selfish? Or do they see a possible mismatch with the guy? Sometimes families can be insightful and sometimes they need to be ignored… regardless of their spiritual state. Does he have a job? Maybe you can get married quickly… and live modestly off his own wages while you look for a position. Being poor or not having a job is not a good enough excuse to not marry the man you are deeply in love with!

  3. ILoveMarriage says:

    Dear Gloria:

    "my brothers and parents are against me getting married now and say that I should first get a stable job and help the family, since my parents still stay in a very small rented place in the ghetto."

    "They say that I will suffer with the responsibilities that come with marriage, and also that I will not have a priority of helping them financially."

    These statements of yours make me want to shake both you and your boyfriend by the shoulders, and scream "NO!" because I am in a somewhat similar situation in my marriage.

    The Bible is very clear that husband/wife relationships come before parents. Current or future marriages. See Genesis 2:24. You SHALL leave your parents and cleave to a spouse. Jimmy Evans expounds on that in his sermon "Four Reasons Marriage Still Works".

    You are to honor your parents, but they are not your primary responsibility. Your brothers and parents are being selfish by asking you to forego or delay marriage for their financial well-being.

    Reading between the lines, I gather you many not live in the USA. I realize that there are countries where people simply cannot avoid poverty. On the other hand, you have managed to pull yourself up. Regardless, your parents don't sound like they are malnourished.

    Your marriage may be of benefit to your parents. Perhaps you could pool your money, buy or rent a larger house, with an apartment in the basement for your parents. (You do need separation. If you comingle your households, that is not Leaving.)

    I will say this to your boyfriend. Unless you commit to putting your marriage first, he should not marry you.

    You are an adult woman. Don't be afraid to stand up to your family. If they don't like it, tough s***. If you try to please them, you will never be able to do enough.

    If this is the man that God wants you to marry, do it!

    Praying for you and that God will give you peace in the midst of the storm that is to come.

  4. Mistah C says:

    It’s an unfortunate situation but it’s important to remember that everyone is responsible for their own lives. You were the one that made the decision to better yourself regardless of the hand you were dealt in life. If you think about what they are truly saying it’s disrespect disguised as advice. I don’t know your relationship but if you really love each other then you won’t “suffer” while being a wife. I hope your family has a change of heart I know it can be challenging trying to balance everything.

  5. LovingMan says:

    The previous two comments are excellent. I agree. My wife and I want to add that if your future husband knows you will be helping out your family financially, and he agrees with that plan, then there is no need to delay marriage. We assume he is working as well. If you end up with the higher income when you have kids he could be a stay at home dad if that is agreeable to you both. For us we both had to work to keep our financial heads above water and that was ok for us. We also want to add that a kind and hard working husband is a great blessing. There is great comfort in having a life partner and yes the marital intimacies can be a physical ecstasy, a spiritual high, and a great comfort in your shared life!
    We would think that your family should be happy for you if your
    boyfriend/ almost fiancé is kind, generous, & hard working.

  6. LovingMan says:

    We want to add that important Life decisions should be handled by gathering as much data as possible, making a tentative decision or perhaps a hypothesis like “If I marry him then we will be able to support ourselves and help out my family… we’ll get to share that glorious experience of God sanctioned marital intimacy… plus we’ll work through life’s challenges together and we’ll be very happy.”
    Then you take your hypothesis to the Lord and get His guidance.
    (We are retired scientists so you’ll have to pardon the science analogy.)

  7. LuvBug says:

    Family has a way of complicating things. Since I know little about your situation, take what I say with a grain of salt. I would advise that you get married when YOU are ready, not when your family is ready, for "it is better to marry than to burn with passion," (1 Cor. 7:9) and "a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh," (Gen. 2:24), which of course applies to women as well. Financial stability is important and in no way should marriage stop your efforts to get a job and continue your career. And while it is good to support your parents financially (if they need it), do not let that get in the way of following God's plan for your life. And above all, pray for wisdom to figure this out.

  8. TexasTimberBurns says:

    Hey Gloria!

    I know family drama can be hard. And I know that wanting to care for and help your family, even when they might be taking advantage of you, is a strong emotional and spiritual pull.

    First thoughts, obviously based exclusively on how you have portrayed it: I would say your family sees your motivation and success as a leg up for them in life. That's not true. And though your success may be a blessing to them in some way, it is NOT required of you to do that.

    Actually. The Bible seems pretty clear about "leaving father and mother and clinging to your spouse". God even said it in the beginning, before there even were fathers and mothers and children. So, it seems that this action of leaving your family and "cleaving" to your husband is pretty important.

    You guys, when y'all do get married, should biblically make that a priority.

    I dont want to come off too strong. But to me it seems pretty straight forward that their disapproval is based off their fear of losing their benefits by not having you as their helper/servant. Might not be how they're treating you, but sure seems like it from what you wrote.

    As you lean in and listen to the still small voice of your Good Good Father, try to let the expectations of the obligations that you seem to have simply accepted be surrendered to Him, first, because He may have a different set of values than the ones you're currently holding on your shoulders.

    His word is ALWAYS better than my own voice and my own weights that I put on my shoulders. His voice is always freeing, even if He instructs me to sacrifice for someone.

    So lean in. Not sure how you connect with God these days, but one way that REALLY helps me is to Sit, Surrender my all, Delight in the Joy of His Goodness for a bit, then take up a regular pen and write very simply from my heart to Him and my concerns about things in my heart. Then, I take up a Green or Blue pen and, in faith, tell Him that I will write whatever I sense Him saying. I ask for His covering and protection as I listen, like a child.

    Then… I write. And I let my hand keep writing till I feel my heart believing what He is saying.

    If I am not sure about some of the things I ended up writing, I ask Him to confirm it through a trusted friend, or, especially my wife's words.

    However you do it, I bless you.

    I feel Freedom and Hope for you. There may be some broken bridges, seemingly, when we follow the Lord. But He is the One who Restores all things. And it would be better to follow Him by faith, even at the distress and irritation of your family, and then also trust by faith that He will restore relationships and also draw them to Him. Because you, obviously, are mot their Savior.

    And He has used you to testify to them. But He may use someone else to lead them, water them, feed them and even baptize them.

    Don't let that weigh on your shoulders.

    Freedom, Life and Delight to you in Jesus' name, by the Grace of the Spirit, through the Mighty Love of the Father.

  9. Sarge says:

    If you’ve completed medical school, are you willing to relocate? Remember the Bible tells us to cleave unto no one but our spouses. Your faith and possible future husband must be your priorities. Follow what is in your heart when you pray, and stop to listen for the feeling in your heart and mind, the answers will come.
    Find out if the man your dating is serious about your relationship enough too move wherever you find work in the medical profession. If he’s honest, willing to marry you, and move, then move. You can assist your family from wherever the Lord sends you, but listen for God to tell you the right course.
    I'm grateful that you are both committed to remaining faithful to God's commandments, and if you’re on this site, you are still open to explore and learn your own body so you can guide your spouse in giving you pleasure. Both of you can pleasure yourselves to take away the edge of sexual desire, so you can remain committed to God and your beliefs.
    Bottom line. Stay true to God. Worry primarily about your marriage. Find a career wherever that may be. And keep asking for guidance from us, or anyone who really cares about your future.

  10. Amar says:

    Thank you everyone who spoke already. Great advice. I just want to add one thing. Look for help in your local church as well. Find some older couple, or maybe one of the leaders who are wise and full of the Spirit and who have a good reputation with all inside and outside the church. Ask your family in Christ for prayers and council. We here are a wonderful community. But we are far away. No matter what decisions you and you boyfriend make, you will need people close to you who can be present during the hard times.

    Other than that, I've never heard about any benefits of delaying marriage for the sake of financial stability save in the cases in which the couple are completely incapable of providing for themselves.

    "Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." Colossians 3:12-17

  11. Diligamus says:

    I think you are absolutley right, and should get married because you truly love each other unselfishly, as that is what God wants you to do. And you're right, God does provide for those who trust Him. Marriage isn't mainly about finaces-it's about unselfish Christian love. If you wait until the 'finances' are all right, you may never get married and you'll miss the opportunity to marry the person that really loves you and vice versa. When my wife was pregnant with our first child (we have 3 now) I didn't have a job lined up and didn't know what the future held, but I trusted God's Providence, came across the world to start a family, got a job, and everything turned out fine. Medicine is a noble profession to heal the sick, and God will bless you if you look at it that way and trust Him-don't worry about what other people think. God bless you, and I will pray for you, and please pray for me, as my wife and have a lot of problems now (to put it mildly).

  12. top_dog6672 says:

    I think we all have an obligation to take care of our parents in their older years, but not at the expense of sacrificing your whole life and happiness to do it. It is SELFISH of them to expect you to make that sacrifice. Most parents, no matter their financial or social status, want the best for their children and will do ANYTHING to make sure they are happy. It is grossly unfair for them to put you in this position. The answer for you is simple…marry the man you love, build a life together, and be happy…then help your parents if/when you can.

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