Can God Show Us Our Future Mates Through the Internet?

 by Chuck Snyder
 co-chaplain for the Seattle Mariners


Dear Chuck
I have just met the most amazing man online. He truly is a man seeking God in his life. He is everything I have ever prayed for. I am curious if you feel that God reveals future mates over the Internet. If I believe I am going to marry this man, is that wrong? We have only been speaking a few days to each other and have had a phone call as well. He said that he and I should pray about this and wait for God to reveal it to our hearts.

The other thing is, he was married for a year and half and has been divorced for a year and a half. His wife left him, and he said he wanted to remain faithful to his vows but that she was not willing to work on the marriage and so she left him. Is he free from his marriage covenant to marry again? He desires a Christian woman to spend the rest of his life with, and he said it could be me.

I am just in awe, excited and worried all at the same time. Please let me know what you think.

Chuck's Response

Thanks for the note concerning your Internet romance. I have a hard message for you, but I hope you'll visualize it as wrapped with compassion and love. I would not do you any service soft-soaping the issue. First of all, there would be no reason for God to tell you in advance whom you are going to marry. You could hope, or wish, or pray for that to happen, but I think the Bible is pretty clear that we are to leave the future to God, and just take the next step He gives us.

I firmly and passionately believe that God speaks to our spirit loud and clear, and gives us definite directions about some of the things He wants us to do. I'm just saying that I don't believe God always gives us the final destination. I guess I go back to Proverbs where it says that "men and women make their plans but God directs the path." This implies to me, at least, that decision-making is a process. We make our plans even believe we know who we are going to marry, or where we are going to move, but GOD decides the final outcome. He speaks to our heart and gives us light for the next step. I am told that archeologists have found in the desert, where the Israelites spent 40 years, candleholders that clipped on the ankle. When someone wanted to go out at night, they would light the candles, clip one on each ankle, and had light for their next step. They had perfect direction for their next step, but when they looked up, it was black and they had no idea where they were going.

If you want to sell a house, you need to get a good agent, do some advertising, fix the roof, and leave the result to God. If you want to find a job you talk to headhunters or employment agencies, read the classifieds, go for interviews, network, and leave the results to God. If you want to find the person God wants you to spend your life with, then circulate and have lots of friends, go on dates to get to know people better, and leave the result to God. I can't think of one reason why God would want us to know the final destination in advance. That would cancel the need for faith. We would just do this in our own strength based on a vision or "word" from the Lord.

The second consideration is who divorced whom, as far as your friend is concerned. That would color my thoughts on whether you and he could marry. Also, because I think that 95 percent of marriage problems are caused by men, I always recommend that a woman who has never been married not marry a divorced man with all the baggage he would bring to the marriage. The reason I say this is that you women bring into marriage everything needed to have a wonderful relationship. We men bring in nothing. This is not man-bashing. I'm not a traitor to my own sex. I am simply stating a fact. Women are into connecting men are into independence. Women are into people and relationships men are into things. Women are into details men are into the big picture. Women are into serving men are into being in charge, the Big Kahuna, leader, decision maker, up front.

Most churches are zeros in teaching men what women need. Our pastors didn't know because they were men. Our dads and grandfathers never said anything. Therefore we men are totally ignorant as to the ways of a woman and we offend them terribly without meaning to. Again, some women have issues, and maybe his wife was one, but if so, she is a rare exception.

As for an Internet romance, that is tricky at best and probably dangerous to your happiness. It's so easy to put words on the screen and come off as Mr. or Ms. Wonderful. It's too early to think about this until you decide whether you agree with my first two thoughts. No problem either way, but I wanted you to consider your options. If you want my answer on the divorce thing, let me know who divorced whom and why, and I'll give you my thoughts. Thanks for reaching out.

Chuck Snyder



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Updated 05/24/2005