Forty-two year old virgin Tushar, from Watford in Herts, tells Celibrate why he is holding out for his future wife:
I remember making a conscious decision in my late teens that I’d be single. I like my own company and had no desire to meet anyone and “settle down”. This desire was fuelled even further by my fear of getting hurt. I used to read my mum’s magazines, in particular the problem pages at the back (looking back it was based on my natural interest in psychology, which I still have). I was so sad at what I read, and the hurts that people go through, I thought to myself “I’m not going to let that happen to me!” and so having a relationship was not in my thinking. However, God overrode my request. And I’m glad He did. As a Christian, God has a perfect plan for your life. This is, for me, probably one of the most important aspects of having a relationship with God. A life plan that’s tailor made to the individual…to me! How exciting! What I didn’t realise was that being married was part of God’s perfect plan for me. And looking back I can see God’s hand on my life, preparing me for my future partner. And for that I am grateful.
I remember going to church on 31st Dec 1989, I had just turned 23. I was worshipping the Lord in the service, and “minding my own business”, when one of the elders came up to me and told me that God had a message for me (it’s called Prophecy, and is one of the ways God speaks to His people). He opened the Bible and pointed to Genesis 2:18 “It is not good for man to be alone but I will make a helper fit for him”. My leader told me that God had a wife for me. I couldn’t believe it. Having a relationship had never even entered my head, let alone marriage! I remember sitting down in astonishment and mouthing to God “Why? Why?!” And so, after the initial shock, I got a couple of books on relationships. One in particular was “God is a Matchmaker” by Derek Prince. Fantastic book! By the time I’d finished it, I was excited about marriage. Having fear in your life is sin, especially if it stops you doing the will of God. I once asked my cell group, “what if your wife cheats on you?” And I’ll never forget the answer from one of my married friends. “You forgive her”. Amazing. Such a simple truth. And the fear of marriage was gone…..
So 1990 was to be an exciting year, especially as the leader said I was going to meet my future wife that year! Every day I’d be in anticipation that I’d meet my wife. I would hold my breath if I was at a friend’s house and heard a group of Christian girls coming up the stairs to join the party, about to appear at the door….but alas, I didn’t meet her in 1990. I was very disappointed, especially as I was geared up almost everyday to meeting her.
So 1990 came and went. 1991 came and went. By 31st Dec 1991, I had to re-evaluate my position. I couldn’t carry on living like this, waiting with baited breath every day for my wife to appear. It uses up a lot of energy! So I made a decision…I decided to pray for my wife. I prayed, “wherever you are, whatever you are doing, may God bless you and protect you, prepare our hearts for each other, and set ourselves apart, as we go through God’s tailor-made training program”. I don’t need to know who she is or where she is, I just pray to God and He will do the rest. After all He knows where she is! So I added my wife to my intercession list, and prayed for her everyday, starting on 1st Jan 1992.
Six weeks later, God spoke to me about her! This was truly amazing. I was just learning to “hear the voice of God” and found it both a frustrating and rewarding experience. But it was SO CLEAR!! In fact my wife was one of the first topics God spoke to me about. He told me that she was in a small category of people, so that it would be easier for me to identify her. I was reeling from my experience of God speaking to me, and was bursting to share what was said, but I knew it was not right to do so. And so I quietly pondered it in my heart, and kept it to myself.
I carried on praying, and then a few weeks later, God told me her nationality! I carried on praying, and then a few months later, God told me when I was going to meet her. He told me the date….but not the year...can you imagine how frustrating that is?! Every single year since 1992 the date has come…and gone… Sometimes I’d be disappointed, sometimes I’d heave a sigh of relief.
And I’m still waiting….
How do you know it’s God I hear you say? Learning to hear the voice of God takes time, but is very rewarding. I’ve had several confirmations from a third party, including the date from a friend of mine, and also my family had the same dream on the same night a couple of years later…and confirmed what God had said to me! And up to that point I had never breathed a word of what God had said to me to anyone.
I hear of so many instances where people have “heard God” especially with dates and places, and it hasn’t come to pass. I would always warn anyone to err on the side of caution before putting their faith in dates and places, unless they are 100% sure.
“Supposing you’re wrong?” Well I haven’t met anyone I’ve wanted to marry anyway, but I do have a healthy balance of male and female friends. I believe at any given time, there’s half a dozen people one could marry, but there’s one person who’s God’s best for you…and that’s whom I’m waiting for.
One of my Muslim friends has promised to become a Christian if what I predict comes to pass. So many people want to come to my wedding, and I haven’t even met my wife yet! One of my Christian friends challenged me to put my faith on the line. In response I’ve written down what God has told me on 2 separate pieces of paper and sealed them in envelopes. I’ve put one in a safe in my bank, and he’s put one in his bank. You need both envelopes to decipher the information. And they’ll be untouched until after I meet her; the bank records will clearly show that the safes have not been accessed. And then we can confirm to all who would believe, that God’s promises are Yes and Amen!
I’ve set myself apart for her. No sex before marriage. No kissing until I meet her, and even then only when we’re engaged. I’ve purposely avoided dating. How would my wife feel if I had intimacy with another woman knowing that my wife was coming? I want to give her my best. And I’d expect her to do the same. They’ll be no jealousy of previous lovers, no distractions from the past, no unnecessary time and expense pursuing relationships that will never lead to marriage…just a strong and focussed commitment to each other, even before we have met. I want my marriage to have strong foundations, and there’s no time to start like the present.