Ah, The List. I am constantly reformulating and rewriting and remaking this list of "requirements for a future mate." It's actually a pretty humorous cycle I go through. But I'll spare you the details - just know that it involves reevaluating my priorities multiple times before getting back to square one with a whole new set of unrealistic expectations. ;)
However, despite my constantly-changing moods, there are certain qualities that I seek that intrinsically have not changed for some time. Granted, they have developed and waxed and waned as I myself change.
But here they are, my Top Five.
First and foremost, he must be a Christian.
This might seem like an obvious one, but I put it here for a reason. I don't just want a guy who claims Christianity as a religion and goes to church on Sundays. His salvation and subsequently his Savior should mean more to him than I do. I want a guy who lives his faith every day - not just Sundays.
Second, he must be fully committed to serving God wherever He leads.
Probably another obvious one. But this one has some specific connotations. As someone who is committed to full-time foreign missions, it would be detrimental to both me and my husband if I married someone who did not share the same level of commitment. Any Christian should be committed to the spread of the gospel, but not everyone is called to the foreign field. It would be even more helpful if he was also interested in Bible translation. The same focus would unify us even more. But interest specifically in Bible translation is not an overt requirement. "All" I ask is that he be fully committed to serving God in a (potentially constantly changing and definitely dangerous) foreign field. Not too much, right? ;)
Third, he should open to me continuing in my field after children come.
This is kind of a weird one. If I should ever marry and have children, I want to be my husband and I to be the ones to raise our children. Raising children on the mission field can be tricky, and I don't want to neglect my children's souls. But if it all possible, I want to continue in my specific field for as long as possible - even if that means taking a couple years off or moving to part time work.
Fourth, he must be a leader (especially spiritually).
I will be the first to admit - I can be kind of overwhelming. One can't be as high energy as I am without being somewhat overwhelming. Despite my introversion, I can get pretty talkative if you get me going. I want a guy who in one sense can tame me and in another match me. And with this comes him being a strong spiritual leader in our home. As much as I enjoy being in charge (hehehe), I don't want to be the one calling the big shots in my marriage. Obviously, I don't want my husband to be a chauvinist type who makes decisions without consulting his wife. Decisions made should be mutual, but I want him to be the type to take initiative. I don't want to be calling my family to family devotional time, begging my husband to join us. I want him to be the kind of guy that already has his Bible open before I even remember to gather the family together. I want to learn about God together and grow stronger together in His hands.
Fifth, he must have a good sense of humor and be able to understand sarcasm.
Okay, slightly generic, I know. But I should take this a step further - I don't just want someone who likes laughing and funny things. I want someone with an intelligent humor, someone I can banter with and with whom I can swap witty insults. Sarcasm is my native language, so if he doesn't speak it we're gonna struggle a little a lot.
So, there you have it. My Top Five. They'll probably change in some way by the time the night is over. But the intrinsic aspect of each will never waver. And honestly, this is just scratching the surface for me. I am picky and happy to remain so.