3 Ways to Pray About Finding a Spouse that Actually Work

James 4:2-3

We can’t manipulate God. If he doesn’t want to give you something, he won’t give it to you (1 John 5:14-15).

However, so often God does want to give us a specific gift we crave, but we are asking him for this blessing in the wrong way. This is often the case when it comes to Christian singles praying for a spouse.

Therefore, here are 3 biblical ways to pray for a spouse that actually work.

1. Don’t Just Pray for a Spouse. Pray for Wisdom on How to Find Your Spouse

When you just pray for something you want instead of for the wisdom to get what you want, you often get neither. But when you ask God for the wisdom to get what you want, you often get both.

Notice what happened to Solomon. God said to him, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you” (1 Kings 3:5, NIV). Instead of asking for wealth, revenge on enemies, or a long life, Solomon asked for wisdom so he could govern God’s people well (1 Kings 3:6-9). This pleased God, and in 1 Kings 3:12-13 (NIV) the Lord said to Solomon:

I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings.”

This does not mean it is wrong to ask for earthly blessing. God tells us to ask for what we want throughout the Bible (Matthew 7:7-11). But before we ask to get something, it is better to ask for the wisdom we need to get it and to manage this gift once we get it. This principle can be seen in James 1:5-8 as well:

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

Don’t just ask God for a spouse. Ask God for the wisdom you need to take the steps God wants you to take to meet, date, and marry the person he has for you. And pray for the wisdom to love this person well once you do find them.

2. Pray with the Right Motives for a Spouse

God blesses us when we are ready to honor him with the blessing. As James 4:2-3 teaches us, “You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.”

We have to ask for what we want, but it’s not enough to just ask. We have to ask with the right motives. What is the right motive when asking for a spouse? That this relationship would bring glory to God.

God isn’t going to bless you with a worldly relationship that is just there to make you happy through carnal pleasures (James 4:4). If God is planning to bless you with a spouse, he will do it for his glory (James 4:10).

(Related Article: 4 Ways God Will Get You Ready for a Glorifying Relationship)

3. Repent of Sin and Live Righteously Before You Pray for a Spouse 

We can never earn answered prayer through obedience. But God often does wait for our obedience because he knows when we are in sin, we cannot honor him with the blessings he wants to give us, like a spouse. As James 5:15-18 states:

And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.”

Hidden sin will hinder you from having your prayers answered. God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5). If we want to go where God is, we must come into the light through Jesus, repent of sin, and seek his righteousness (1 John 1:6-10).

So if you want a spouse from God, first confess your sins in prayer, ask other mature believers to help you and pray for you, and seek to be a righteous person; for “the prayer of a righteous person has great power . . .”

If you need help putting your prayer for a spouse into words, here is a prayer you can follow along with: A Prayer to Be Married.

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