In Family

15 Things I Want my Daughters To Know about Love and Marriage


In honor of Valentine’s Day, I wanted to write this little list out for my girls, and for all of those not yet married’s out there. Here are my 15 tips about love, marriage, and finding that perfect guy!

1. Don’t  follow your heart, follow Jesus. “Follow your heart” is common advice people give in terms of relationships and love. But your heart can be wrong, in fact, scripture says it usually is, so don’t follow your heart. Follow Jesus. Know his word, and what he says about Godly character, and go with that, not your heart!

Don't follow your heart, follow Jesus. Click To Tweet

2. Let him do the work, but be kind and responsive when he does. Let the guy be the one to ask you out, talk to your parents and plan the date, but don’t play games. If he is putting forth the effort, and you like him, then respond in a way that will encourage him. Don’t be the girl who just messes with a guy’s head, especially if he is really making the effort to do things well!

3. Nothing and no one is perfect. He might seem like the perfect prince charming, but I can assure you he isn’t. And you aren’t the perfect little princess either. Both of you are flawed. You will hurt each other, make mistakes and say silly things. That is okay. Know that in Christ, we are complete, so that as we grow more into his image, our relationships will be stronger, but they won’t be perfect!

4. Love will cost you something. It always does. It might cost you the city you live in. It will cost you time, some frustration, and some giving up of your independence. If it doesn’t require something of you and of him, then it isn’t really love.

5. The kind of man he is while he is dating you, is the kind of man he will be when he marries you. If he doesn’t call back, doesn’t make an effort, and plays video games all day while you are dating, don’t expect a brand new man once you are married. If he looks at other women, let’s you do all of the work, or doesn’t make you a priority while you are dating, then don’t expect Mr. Wonderful once you are married!

6. If he doesn’t make you want to be more like Jesus, then this isn’t the guy for you. He won’t be perfect, but, if the way he lives his life makes you want to know Jesus more, than this guy is a keeper. If he is constantly challenging your faith in a way that causes you to doubt, be discouraged or isn’t honoring to God, then he isn’t all about your sanctification, and isn’t worth marrying!

7. If he is worth your time, he won’t make you choose between him and your friends. Once you are married, he is your priority. However, a man worth keeping is one that knows you need other women in your life. While friendships and time together might look different, a man worth spending your time with, is one who will encourage you to have healthy female relationships, not someone who wants you to ditch your girls to hang out with him.

8. The guy you really want, is one that gently lets you know when you are being ridiculous, without making you feel guilt or shame. You need someone who can call you out sometimes, but you want a guy who does it in a way that actually makes you want to change. If you are constantly feeling shamed, or guilty, then this isn’t someone who is speaking life, and that won’t point you back to Christ. Can he be honest with you, without making you feel like a complete loser? If so, he’s a keeper!

9. If he doesn’t want to get to know your family, kick him to the curb! Since this is mostly for my daughters….this is an obvious one! Yes, you will leave your family and cleave to him, but, your family will always be part of your life. If he doesn’t want to be invested in them, then this will be a constant battle you will fight for the duration of your marriage!

10. He won’t complete you, make you happy all of the time, or be the answer to your loneliness. Only Christ can do and be these things. Pursue him. Allow him to make you new, not complete. Be conformed more into his image, and pray that God would do the same for your guy. He isn’t your answer, Christ is.

He won't complete you, make you happy all of the time, or be the answer to your loneliness. Click To Tweet

11. Pick someone you have fun with. At some point, the ooey-gooey-so-in-love stage will fade a little. Will you still like him after that? After 12 years with my husband I am still very much in love, but it looks a lot different then it did when we were 18! Pick a guy that you enjoy being with. Someone who you can really be friends with, talk to, or just “hang with”. If it is only physical, or all about the butterflies, what will you do 6 or 7 years down the road?

12. A guy worth loving will work hard to provide. He won’t be lazy. He won’t be playing video games all night. He will want to work to provide for his family. He will be willing to serve in the church. He will not be above helping out at home. He will be willing to serve, and not just expect you to serve. (Just a side note…if he is a complete mess on his own, at his house, just know, he will be that way when he lives with you too!)

13. Choose a guy who is willing to say he is sorry when he is wrong, and who makes you feel comfortable doing the same. This one is self explanatory. If he never says he is sorry, or makes it hard for you to say you are sorry, then this relationship is not going to go well.

14. It doesn’t matter if you are exactly the same, or complete opposites, just pick someone who is committed to being more like Christ.  I have seen relationships work with all kinds of people. On the flip side, relationships fail, with all kinds of people, as well. If you are both committed to Christ, and being more like him, you will work around your similarities and differences.

15. This man will be the leader of your home and family. Choose someone who is willing to lead, and someone you are willing to follow. Does he inspire you to live out your calling? Does he spend time in the word? Is he committed to prayer, the local body, and the kingdom of God? Does he love you well? This is the person to whom you are tethering your life to forever. Is he someone you trust with your finances? Your possessions? Your children? Find someone who you can answer yes to in all of these areas, and you’ve got yourself a winner.

Remember, no one is perfect. You are both going to grow, change, and life is going to happen. You will be both hurt and overjoyed by the person you choose to marry. You are both very much in process, and that is okay. Seek God in your relationships. Ask him to grow you into a woman after his own heart, and to prepare your husband to lead well, as he too, pursues Christ.

And always remember, if your momma don’t like him, get rid of him fast! ;)  (That’s just for my girls, of course!)


Are you the mom of teen girls?

Do you lead a small group of girls who need to read more posts like this one?

Working with teen girls can be a struggle at times, but I have truly learned to love it! They are so full of life and energy and yes…lots of emotions. But, they need us to lead them well down the road to womanhood.

Which is tiring ya’ll! Can I get an amen?

I am all about speaking the truth to my daughters. And, I want to help busy moms and youth workers do the same for their girls. So, I wrote an eBook called the Girl’s Handbook to Life. It is everything I want my girls to know about friendship, faith, love and whole lot more!

Because I love all of ya’ll so much, I want you to have it for free! Just promise me that you will pass it on to some young ladies who need to read it! K?

Sign up here to snag your FREE eBook!

cover of book

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  • Reply Christine Carter

    LOVE this Danielle! Such wise words and excellent advice on love and marriage…. I am saving this to read to my daughter!!!

    February 15, 2014 at 1:42 pm
    • Reply Danielle

      Thanks, I am glad it is something you can use!

      February 16, 2014 at 3:04 am
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