Why Marriages Are Not Happening Between Same-Church Members


Have you noticed? Men are shying away from pursuing women in their own church and women in their church don’t seem to be open to them anyway. Marriages are happening alright…just not very often between members of the same church.

But yea….the prophesies are out. The word has “come forth”. You have claimed it by faith that very soon, you will find the one and get married. Soooo…whats happening? Why does it seem to happen everywhere except your church and even if it is happening, why is it not happening as often as it should?

By the way, this is not about marriages not taking place at a “church location”. This is specifically about why marriages are not happening between members of that church.

Ladies, you know how it is…that moment when you hear that brother in your church is getting married to someone outside your church and you’re like “TO WHO? WHO IS SHE?” (Admit it…) Almost like “what did someone see in him outside that I/we did not see here?” or “what did I miss about him?” Proceed to Google and Facebook to check her out almost hoping she is not all that so that you can think “Aww how nice… she saw the best in him”….otherwise (if she IS all that…especially spiritually) it’ll be “Oh snap…if she is that together and wants him, she must have seen something that I did not see right under my nose! Did I just let this one slip out of my hand too??”

Fellas…same thing. It’s the Singles meeting after church and that kinda-cute sister in your church (yea the one you’ve been admiring from a distance) …the one who is really nice but you didn’t know how to break through the brother-sister spiritual-friendzone barrier with. Yea…you’re in a trance as she introduces her fiance. Solid dude….fresh cut, spirit filled and looking together. You’re thinking “Another one bites the dust. Yea…OK, trespasser…you win”…and you just play it cool.

So right from jump, let’s knock off the typical and easiest reason out there: “The pool is not wide enough.”
This can be a legitimate reason…especially in smaller churches where are only a handful of singles or where there are more of one gender than the other. These are valid….but there are some deeper issues at play here.

It will not all be comfortable…but here we go:

1.Women who despise the beginning

Basically, over-familiarity. Marriages are not happening not because men in Church are not interested in women in that same church, but women in that church…especially the ones where people “grew up together” in that church, don’t seem to be interested in men whose history they are too familiar with. (Even if there is nothing wrong). ‘

It’s because women are often attracted to novelty. New things. New experiences. This is not a bad thing. In fact, if managed right, it can be a beautiful thing in a home. Unfortunately, many women are missing out on potential husbands because they are not giving a second thought to the men right in front of them…because these men have been in front of them (Get it?)

Even Jesus experienced this. Oh yea. Here is the gist of it:
So there was this huge multi-day Jewish festival happening. About halfway through, Jesus began to speak to the crowd and some of the things he was saying were pretty heart cutting. Some people were like Yoooo! This is guy is the real deal messiah! But some people said: “But we know where this man is from; when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”

In other words, many people did not believe Jesus was the one NOT because he wasn’t performing Jaw dropping Miracles…but simply because they knew too much of his history. They figured…”we have this person figured out. We know his mum…we know his dad who was a carpenter…we helped change his diaper, he couldn’t possibly be the one. (Full story in John Chapter 7)

This is the same thing women are doing in Church. They saw him grow up…saw him acne-covered through high school, the bad haircuts, the sagging pants phase, his “im going to be a famous rapper” phase, his first relationships and so on.

So when he comes “at” her, many women think “He can’t be my messiah…because I know where he is from. I know what he makes, his lifestyle, his mum is eehhh ok…his little brother is a little brat and blah blah.”

It’s interesting. Those people in Jerusalem should have been more amazed that the Messiah was right in front of them all along. The very thing that should have made the messiah cool is what apparently turned them off.

I am not saying that every single man in your church could be the one (Far from it). I am just saying you need to intentionally fight the urge to write them off simply because of how familiar you are with them

2.Men who are not reinventing themselves from Boys to Men

Now…a huge part of why the above is happening is that men are acting like boys. Let me be very plain. Men are not manning up and stepping up. Fellas, you need to reinvent yourself. I’m not talking about getting new clothes or looking grown. I am certainly NOT talking about finding new ways to step up her or finding new things to say to her.

I’m talking about growing up in God to the point where it shows that you can be someone’s husband…father. That you are in pursuit of God and are unashamed about that.

Men in Church are trying to step up by upgrading their closets and their swag. But that’s not what these women are looking for.
Men need to become the man that she can look up to… a big brother to her even if she is the same age. Someone she can see as the father of her children…as a good example for her children to follow.

THEN…. STEP UP.

After all that is said and done, step up. You know, I’ve seen a thing in the church that my fellow brothers need to be aware of:

Men in church tend to assume that church girls don’t like to be pursued, desired or approached. It is not true.

They still desire the sanctified flirtation. On one hand they don’t want brother “Hey-Ma” who just wants to holler at every skirt and see what sticks and on the other hand, they don’t want brother “Hello my name is X and the Lord said..” who is too sure too soon.

Women in church just want to know that you are not just thinking with your HEAD, your head, and your eyes but also with your mind and your spirit

3.The dreaded weird, funky, awkward and clumsy black hole that forms when men try but it didn’t work out

There is absolutely no help …no landing pad…its miserable for men who have good intentions but for some reason, it didn’t work out with the lady they approached in church. In every culture, there is a stigma that is placed on a man that tries but didn’t succeed in approaching a woman and getting her commitment. In church, there is an even worse, uncomfortable and unfair stigma.

You see, in the world, the stigma is “you didn’t have enough skills to get her”. In church, its “You didn’t hear from God, you didn’t pray enough….perhaps your relationship with God is not good enough”

We subconsciously tell men that the reason she said no is because there is something wrong with him. We tell these men they are on their own…that the only conversation we want to have with them is that “They have heard from God about sister X”.

In fact, you would be hard-pressed to find a counseling program or conversation for men in church that encourage them and helps young men deal with the pain of rejection from sisters in church, AND encouraging them that they are not a player for moving on.

Single men may try once in the church they attend…but if that does not work out, even good intentioned men are too terrified of the “player stigma” to try again with someone else in that same church…so they go elsewhere.

4.Christian women and moral superiority complex

It is a known fact that women are more expressive in their display of their faith than men. That’s not because women are holier than men. It’s because women are just simply more expressive than men….so it shows up in church.

Here is another contributor:
women are just naturally more collaborative and cooperative. They enjoy each other’s company and seek out opportunities to engage with each other.
So, there are more women in Church, women’s groups spring up faster than men’s groups and tend to have a lot more activities. Women’s testimonies seem to be more elaborate, expressive and longer than men’s, women display more emotions during worship and so on…

BUT NONE OF THAT MAKES WOMEN HOLIER THAN MEN

Unfortunately, many women have a moral superiority complex. A spiritual nose in the air if you will. Assuming that they are holier, better Christians than many men in the church. It’s a trap.

The danger when it comes to marriages?

a) Women who are very broken but know how to “play the role of church girl” will attract men who are not discerning enough to see through all that, and then her true character flaws start to show up at home.
b) It causes the wrong interpretation of the saying that “The man is the spiritual head” which then…
c) Makes women in Church look for men who look and sound like they know more than the woman spiritually….which then…
b) Makes many single men in church feel as though what women are saying is… “You have no spiritual value to offer me”…and that ultimately:
e)Reduces (at least in her eyes) the pool of good Christian men available to her in Church

This is self-sabotaging.You can’

You can’t on one hand, think that men as a gender are less holy than you, and then want a man who is holier than you to marry

5.Pastors that are fond of, and overprotective of the single women over the single men

Yup, I said it. Look closely and you will see both male and female pastors who typically take a personal interest in the well-being and emotional health of single women in the church.

You will hear and see behaviors that say: “These are my daughters whom the man must come through me to get” but rarely hear or see behaviors that say “These are my sons that I am protective of and who any woman must come through me to get”

You will attend relationship sessions that talk to women with a tone of hope and working with God to find the one with little mention of what they must do to change themselves to be acceptable to God and the men they say they want; while talking to men about “all the things they need to do to be able to be acceptable to God and to a woman”.

This not only causes the men to go outside their home church, but many Christian single men to unfortunately go outside the church entirely.

6.The Pastor-gatekeeper issue

These men feel that women are not willing to make any relationship decisions on their own …(even the most basic ones) without consulting the pastor (Men need to chill out about that though -that is not the problem) not because the pastor necessarily knows what to do all the time and not just to follow church protocol, but because many single women are operating in FEAR (THIS is the real problem).

They are terrified of making a mistake and I don’t blame them at all. That said, women need to step up and start taking some personal responsibility for their decisions. This is what puts many Pastors in a corner because they have been dragged in too deep and took too much responsibility for her relationship decisions, that they are now either blamed or always called on to solve every tiny marital problem.

Church protocol is great and I know its a fine line. I am not saying that women should stop talking to their Pastors. very far from that. I am simply saying that many women are looking for someone else to help them make some of the basic relationship decisions they need to be making in faith. In other words, a Pastor is there to work with you and help YOU to make the decisions that glorify God in your marriage. But they are not the drivers of this vehicle. You are.

look…

The man wants to feel (and trust me ladies…you WANT this) that YOU picked him…
not your pastor.

7.Men who are easily intimidated

The above point (6) said, this is not a “woman” problem alone. Single men in church also need to stop being intimidated by the Pastor or any “gatekeepers”. Why should you date a woman for 3 months and not want to talk to the Pastor? Why should you date for 3 months and not want to be seen with her?

A man that is serious about a woman should be ready to defend his desire for her in front of any jury of her parents, friends, pastors, angels and be ready to break the horns of any demon that stands in his way of getting this woman.

In Genesis 34, Shechem voluntarily signed up for circumcision (AS A GROWN MAN) because of his love for Dinah.
In Genesis 29, Jacob worked for 14 years for Rachel.

I am not suggesting anything specific to you as a man…because there are women out there who will not appreciate this AT ALL and disrespect your effort just because they are not interested. You don’t need that.
What I am saying is that if you are convinced about pursuing a woman, cowboy up and go get her.


SO…..WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Which one was the most interesting for you? Do you see yourself needing improvement in any of these areas?

LOVED THE ARTICLE? You’re going to absolutely love the free ebook on avoiding relationship frustration. Click image below or CLICK HERE

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedinmail
  • Deborah Reece

    Just because you go to a particular church doesn’t mean you will find the right husband there. You might meet him at the grocery store or somewhere else. If a guy doesn’t pursue you then it’s really nothing to lose sleep over.

    • I totally agree. In fact I encourage that. Be open. The connection can happen anywhere and you don’t have to waste any time worrying if it happened or not. Great point!

      • Deborah Reece

        Just pray about it and leave the time and place of meeting up to God! Honestly I have NEVER met any guys in any church that I was remotely interested in.

        • Joyce Bell

          I totally, totally agree. God is in control. We only need to be in an open partnership with God, listening, seeking, praying, speaking, asking, loving, learning, and being what He requires of us, and He will do the rest. Can I get an Amen.

  • Natu

    Basically, women should be less expressive with their spirituality. It intimidates men.
    Women should make big decisions in their relationships without necessarily consulting their elders. That is faith in action.
    Women should fight against ‘Pastors’ protecting them and ensuring they do not get in the wrong hands. Obviously, cus it makes the men feel unloved.
    Whenever a brother in church chases you, do not – I repeat DO NOT! ever turn him down. Not for any reason whatsoever. You don’t want him feeling less than a man and running after a sister in another church.

    Lol I hear you. Thanks.
    …………………

    I read your blog occasionally and I appreciate the content. But this one right here robbed me off the wrong way. I fail to see the point. You know, it wasn’t even a bother that that the article focused on everything the poor sister could be doing wrong but- EVERYTHING she possibly has little or no control over.

    I scrolled to the bottom, at least if we were not given cogent reasons, last last we will be enlightened on what we may do to change this or how this may not be a bad/good thing in the end. But nope.

    • Hello Natu,

      First of all, thank you for sharing your thoughts. As always, whether I agree or not, your thoughts are always valid and appreciated. Here are just a few thoughts and responses to your comments that may help you put this in better context: See my responses inline

      “Basically, women should be less expressive with their spirituality. It intimidates men.”
      ***Not at all and nowhere in the article was that insinuated or suggested. The points being made is not to mistake expression for connection. Not to assume that simply because others are not as expressive as you, they have less of God in them

      “Women should make big decisions in their relationships without necessarily consulting their elders. That is faith in action. Women should fight against ‘Pastors’ protecting them and ensuring they do not get in the wrong hands. Obviously, cus it makes the men feel unloved.”
      ****Natu, the article actually clarifies this. This is an excerpt directly from the article:
      “I am not saying that women should stop talking to their Pastors. very far from that. I am simply saying that many women are looking for someone else to help them make some of the basic relationship decisions they need to be making in faith. In other words, a Pastor is there to work with you and help YOU to make the decisions that glorify God in your marriage. But they are not the drivers of this vehicle. You are.”
      Nowhere does it discourage speaking to Pastors. At all.

      “Whenever a brother in church chases you, do not – I repeat DO NOT! ever turn him down. Not for any reason whatsoever. You don’t want him feeling less than a man and running after a sister in another church.”
      ****This is totally opposite to what the article talks about and nowhere did I suggest anything remotely close to that. This is another direct quote from the article:
      “I am not saying that every single man in your church could be the one (Far from it). I am just saying you need to intentionally fight the urge to write them off simply because of how familiar you are with them”

      So Natu, I hope this clears things up a bit for you. I know it is a sensitive issue and people experiences are different, their past pains are different and their reactions are different. I want you to know that I care about the emotional and spiritual wellbeing of BOTH men and women and that I can be of any help to you whatsoever, please feel free to reach out.

      I appreciate your passion on the matter.
      Your brother,
      Tobi

      • Deborah Reece

        OK PEOPLE! WOMEN AND MEN SHOULD BE LISTENING TO THE HOLY SPIRIT ABOUT DATING AND NOT GO TO THE PASTOR TO MAKE THEIR DECISIONS! THE HEAD OF ME IS JESUS NOT A PASTOR!

    • Nkediche

      Natu, you totally missed the point of this article. Please re-read, this time with a more open mind. I bet you’ll see that what he is saying is quite different from your conclusions.

      • Deborah Reece

        Okay, i thought you were saying women should suppress their spirituality but it looks like you are just being sarcastic?

    • Deborah Reece

      women should be less expressive of their spirituality? Sorry but that makes no sense!

      • Taiwo Durowade

        Again, that was not insinuated in the article. Please take time to fully read the article

  • Adun thank you so much for your honesty and openness to the article. No one is perfect and we all have work to do. Its great that you were able to see the points that were relevant to you and are at least have a couple of ideas on what you can focus on. God bless you!

    • Deborah Reece

      IF YOU AREN’T ATTRACTED TO SOMEONE AND NOT LED BY THE SPIRIT THEN DON’T DATE THEM! NO MATTER WHAT CHURCH THEY GO TO!

      IT’S NOT THAT COMPLICATED!

      • Joyce Bell

        Totally….

        • Deborah Reece

          I think a lot of women just want to get married and go on a wild search. I hear a minister say chase after God and stop chasing after men, and let God touch the right man’s heart for you so he will see your value. I couldn’t agree more! I have chased men in my younger years and it went nowhere, so now I’m asking God to do it!

    • Deborah Reece

      You really have to be led by the Holy Spirit to get involved with someone, and the leading has to be mutual. Trying to do it on your own will lead to disaster!

  • Hi Dorcas! Always a pleasure!

  • Nkediche

    Thank you Mr. Atte. This is poignant, with some very insightful points. It should go round and get to as many Christian singles as possible…seriously! There’s a lot to be learned here. At least even if it’s one point, it’s enough to create a paradigm shift and make a difference.

    • Nkediche…I am literally sending a 100 hugs your way with cake and joy as icing!

  • Ehikowoicho Idoko

    this is deep! I appreciate your sincerity and creativity

    • Thank God for inspiration Ehi! Thanks for reading!

  • Hey Tee, GREAT points. Yes Yes Yes!

  • Laura Ade-Browne

    This was very insightful! Refreshing because I always wondered why this issue keeps happening within the churches.

  • Taiwo Durowade

    Great article, great points. I think No 5 and No 7 are vital. He should be able to defend his desire to whomever, talking to her pastor should also be talking to his pastor. that’s why No 5 is so important for men too. If they also feel protected by the pastor/leadership, they won’t be afraid to approach said individuals about their choice for marriage.

    • KaaaaBOOOOMMMMMM!! You’re so on the money Taiwo!

      • Deborah Reece

        Tell me why is it the PASTOR’S BUSINESS who is dating who in the congregation?

  • Deborah Reece

    I seriously think you people should be worrying about what God says to you about potential partners in the church and quit worrying about what the pastor thinks! Okay I am Caucasian and I am not familiar with why anyone would talk to the pastor about a dating partner. I have been a member of some African-American churches but maybe this is something focused on in the African-American churches that I didn’t know about? I can’t imagine giving the pastor that much permission or control over my life! He has his own life to worry about please!

    • Tee

      I totally agree with your point. What God says is far more important. I find its getting quite common in african-american churches for men to first walk up to the pastor for permission. I honestly now think its just a way of them having an easy access (for lack of better term) to a sister. Knowing fully well, if a pastor speaks to the sister on their behalf, it makes their approach easier due to fear of rejection because they know people hold their pastors in high regards.

  • Temiloluwa Durojaiye

    My dear not by church gymnastics o. the guy is still a guy outside church. I have seen displays and i am like what I am seeing outside is not consistent with what i see in the church building, even with myself. We have to unlearn that

    • Deborah Reece

      True dat! I think men who are spiritually in tune with God and REALLY doing his will and into the Word are rare, which is why I’m still praying for someone! Better to be alone than compromise!