I am twenty-three years old and my girlfriend is a few months younger. We started going out almost nine months ago, thinking that it was the will of God and that it would end in marriage. I wasn’t very attracted to her physically, but I thought that it was only a matter of time until that problem would be resolved….

However, I have never been able to tell my girlfriend with all my heart, “I love you,” nor have I been able to share the same enthusiasm that other guys show theirs. So we talked about it and discovered that each of us feels the same way…. How can I know if this is only a test that I have to overcome, or if it is a sign from God that we should break up?

Dear Friend,

We are glad to hear that you are questioning whether or not you and your girlfriend should get married. What we don’t understand is why you began a relationship believing that it would end in marriage.

In most Western cultures, young women and young men usually get to know one another through the dating process. Even though they may have been casually acquainted before beginning to date, going out together gives them the opportunity to find out more about one another. During this time each of them can see past the initial impressions of physical appearance and personality, and begin to know the other’s character traits, values, beliefs, and even faults. Until all of these are known, it is never advisable to even consider the possibility of a serious relationship, and certainly not marriage.

Beginning a relationship with the expectation of marriage is completely backwards. It is no wonder that things haven’t worked out well between you and your girlfriend. You don’t need a sign from God to know that you should break up; your own common sense is telling you that everything is not as it should be. Thank you for listening! By breaking up you will avoid much emotional pain and suffering, and a possible broken marriage.

You obviously desire the will of God more than anything else, and that means you have discovered that God does want the best for you and that you can trust Him with your life. However, you have gotten confused and have thought that God wants you to marry this girl even though you don’t really love her. Why would God do that? He is the one who created men, women, love, and romance. Why then would He doom you to an unhappy marriage?

There are many wonderful, loving, caring women in the world, but each one of them is different. You need to find one who makes you feel like you can’t live a day without her. Keep searching until you find that one. Pray and ask God to guide you along the way and to help you avoid women who don’t share your values and beliefs. And ask Him to speak to your conscience and to help you choose wisely. But don’t ask Him to show you signs, and don’t search for signs elsewhere. God doesn’t usually work that way.

We wish you the best,