I’ve always given this piece of advise to everyone who’s ever solicited me for relationship help: check the religious background of the person you’re getting serious about, before you do anything else. So many people today fancy themselves spiritual, but not associated with any religion. Often times, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Believe me when it comes to the big issues: life, death, relationships, child rearing and the list goes on and on, most people are shaped by the religious views they have grown up with.
Remember the episode of “Sex and the City” when Miranda gets her baby baptized? Neither she nor Steve (the father of the child) were church goers, but the mother of Steve, felt very strongly about the baby not being saved by God in case something horrible were to happen. Yes, this is a fictitious example, but one that rings true in many relationships, never the less. Even if someone grew up in what they feel is a totally secular household, where religion was no-where to be found, you can believe something was worshiped! People can make Gods out of a lot of things: work, money, a hedonistic lifestyle or recreation, hobbies, some people are even foolish enough to worship imperfect men and women! Just think about it, if you were not raised in a spiritual household, with a defined religion, what did your family hail as most important? What ruled in your house? Many in this scenario will clearly answer that “Cash was King” in their household. Worshiping money is nothing strange in this world, just ask the executives of AIG!
As for me, I’ve been a spiritual person ever since I was a child. I remember going to church many years ago at about seven or eight years old and not being afraid to walk to the front of the church and ask for forgiveness. What had I done, probably nothing, you’re talking about a straight A, straight laced girl here. But I’ve always been cognizant of the fact that we are all sinners and should always be asking for forgiveness. This humble attitude was shaped very much by the religion of my youth. Growing up it allowed me to maintain the mindset that we should not judge others, for many act the way they do because of things they’ve experienced. My maternal grandmother was a church going woman who lived by the Bible, to this day, I don’t know anyone who lives by Christian principles the way she has done for over 80 years!
As I grew older my firm foundation, rooted in a spiritual upbringing brought me great joy. I found I was happiest when I was helping someone or telling them how good God was and how he would help those who helped themselves. I thus wanted a mate who would understand and cherish the same spiritual guidelines that I lived by. I’ve met so many great guys over the years, many were handsome, funny, wealthy and kind. However unless they had a spiritual foundation that I could clearly see, I would not contemplate a serious relationship with them. Again a persons religion, no matter what they worship, will determine how they view life, from lying to cheating to stealing to name a few. It will determine if they feel that they have to answer to a higher power for the way they behave. It will be an underlying theme in the raising of any children you may have together. Choose wisely and don’t underestimate the factor religion plays in the life of your relationship.
In my marriage there have been times when I’ve been a bit more spiritually aware than my husband and vice versa. The blessing is that you have someone to lift you back up when you’re down. And where are they lifting you? To the spiritual plateau you both expressed as important during your talking and courtship stage. So ask, ask, ask about the views your mate when it comes to spirituality, while you’re still dating. This goes far beyond the political. Once you see that you’re on the same page spiritually, be it worshiping Almighty God or the almighty dollar, your relationship will start on a mutual foundation that you can build on. For me there is nothing better than three in a marriage: Man, Woman and Almighty God.