Story: 2 Christian Weddings Alter My Partner Selection Criteria

A picture of a couple in a wedding
A picture of a couple in a wedding (photo:
By Chen YichengFebruary 9th, 2024

After God healed my waywardness through my "mild depression," I started to diligently study the Bible and read diverse marriage books in 2022. During this period, I attended two weddings that renewed my understanding of marriage.

I first met Kemeng in 2019, during the final stage of the life of my elder brother, who received chemotherapy at the Zhejiang Cancer Hospital in Hangzhou City. Kemeng and other Christian men in the fellowship visited my brother at the hospital when I hadn't fully embraced the faith.

Due to the limited hospital beds, my parents and I squeezed into a small corner of the hospital room on wire beds. These male believers specially rented a hotel room for my parents to rest, taking turns to accompany my brother at night. The next morning, when I arrived at the hospital, I found their eyes were red and swollen from a sleepless night.

At that moment, I saw the love of Christ. On the day of my brother's cremation, they rushed from Ningbo and stayed until his burial.

Later, I went to work in Ningbo and met Kemeng, who was our group leader. Every week, he led us in Bible study, and afterward, we would go to a roadside stall for supper.

Later, during a dinner, he shared his real struggles with me. As a full-time worker, he had little savings, with his parents unable to provide much support. It was difficult for him to get married; it seemed difficult even after he found a suitable partner. At one point, he even fell and broke a tooth, unable to afford dental care.

But at his wedding, I encountered Kemeng again, who shared his testimony and revealed that the broken tooth led him to true love. A Christian lady in the church lent him money when she learned he couldn't pay for his dental care. To express gratitude, he helped her understand challenging biblical concepts. Over time, they became acquainted and eventually married.

During the wedding, his father, dressed modestly, sang "Hallelujah" with a robust Henan accent. Kemeng choked up as he spoke to his in-laws, saying, "I don't have much money now, and even I won't in the future. I may not be able to satisfy you now or in the future, but please believe in my sincerity."

In 2022, I attended another Christian Aaron's wedding. He invited me to be his groomsman, surprising me as we had only exchanged nods in church and I had left Ningbo for nearly three years.

I asked Aaron what had happened in these years, and he shared his story. After I left the church in Ningbo, Aaron changed jobs and attended another church. One day, he saw a sister in Christ whom he liked. It was her first time attending that church, and she had just completed her medical postgraduate studies in Northeast China. After the prayer for seeking God’s will, she moved to Ningbo for work. As they got to know each other, Aaron bravely confessed his feelings. However, his appearance, height, profession, and income became hurdles in the lady's mind.

Then she sought advice from her Christian mother, but after praying together, her mother was at peace. However, her father had reservations about Aaron's height. She invited her father to kneel together to seek guidance through prayer. After seven days of prayer, the father's attitude made a 180-degree turn. During prayer, he faintly saw the Chinese character 喜 (meaning "double happiness") on the window, which brought him inner peace.

At the wedding, Aaron's mother-in-law said something that resonated with me. "Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but my son-in-law, without anything, trusts in the name of the Lord our God."

After the wedding, I asked Aaron how to find a life partner in line with God's will. Suddenly, he asked me if I had prayed about marriage, saying he had prayed about marriage for a year. While people see the outward appearance, God looks at the heart. It dawned on me that I had been seeking my own desires rather than God's.

I began earnestly seeking God and enrolled in a Christian dating course. Unexpectedly, I found my life partner during the course.

(To be continued...)

- Translated by Abigail Wu

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