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Mini Man-sode 38: Why You Should NOT Pray for Your Future Spouse


JJ Tomlin

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In today’s episode JJ is unpacking if praying for your future spouse even matters and if you should or shouldn’t do it. 


Hey guysss welcome back to another men’s minisode Friday! We just finished up a season on red flags and we’re jumping back into it today with a little mini season. Today we’re diving into praying for your future spouse. Should you pray for them? Should you not? Let’s dive in! 

For JJ, he didn’t like praying for his future spouse, he did not practice the habit of it, and it was never a priority for him. He didn’t pray for his spouse for a couple of reasons, but the top reason was probably because of his heart posture toward prayer. He was so cynical about prayer because he had such an unhopeful idea of prayer. He had this mentality that God’s will and way is inevitable whether or not he prayed. In reality he was excusing himself from the responsibility of praying for specific things. If he had to be honest, he was being lazy, he didn’t want to go through all the time and effort. Secondly, he was scared. At the root of it he was scared that if God didn’t actually show up in this situation then he would be disappointed, or maybe his prayer wasn’t good enough, spiritually he wasn’t in a place where he could command authority enough for God to actually surface, or that he would embarrass himself, especially if it was a prayer with other people and for other people. So he would justify it in his mind with statements like, “God you know who I’m going to marry, take care of them, you got this. I’m not going to bother praying about this because you're in control and you got it.” 

The greatest trap we can fall into with the enemy is believing a shred of truth and then justifying it as the way we want to believe it. Because honestly, there is an essence of truth in everything JJ was saying before. God’s will is sovereign and He is in control. We release that control to Him. However, he would justify and bend that truth to be something he wanted, which was, to remain in fear, to not walk in faith, and to be lazy with his prayer life. 

The question of if I should pray for my future spouse should probably start with, should I, biblically? Does it matter? What happens when I pray for my future spouse?

When we talk about prayer, if you’ve never done conducive and elaborate study on prayer, do it! Until prayer became a priority in JJ’s life, he was MISSING OUT. It has completely transformed JJ’s life. Studying and learning about God’s word and then practicing all aspects of prayer transforms your life. It has radically REDEEMED and revived JJ’s spiritual life. 

If you won’t take it from us, take it from these guys…

"The whole reason why we pray is to be united into the vision and contemplation of God to whom we pray." - Julian of Norwich

"Prayer, then, is a matter of our participating in the life of Jesus Christ." - Michael Casey

"Prayer is the inner bath of love which into the soul plunges itself." - St. John Vianney

"Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God's thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him." - St. Augustine

"Work as if everything depends on you. Pray as if everything depends on God." - St. Ignatius Loyola

"True prayer is neither a mere mental exercise nor a vocal performance. It is far deeper than that. It is a spiritual transaction with the creator of Heaven and Earth." - Charles Spurgeon

"Prayer should be the key of the day and the lock of the night."- George Herbert


Now if any of these stuck out to you, stop, pause,wonder and ask yourself why. How does this new understanding of prayer and what stuck out to you contrast about your current prayer life? Is your prayer life one-way? Two-way? Always conversational in nature? Is it distracted? 

John Mark Comer at Vintage Church in LA has a wonderful booklet on prayer with 4 weeks of exercises, but they explore the four stages of prayer in his sermons.

  • Talking to God 
  • Talking with God
  • Listening to God
  • Being with God

Focusing on Praying for Your Spouse

This is a prayer that would most likely fall under a prayer talking to God or a prayer called a petition or intercession. Petition is asking God to do something on OUR behalf. Intercession is when we ask God to do something on SOMEONE ELSE’S behalf. When talking about praying for your future spouse it’s a combination of these. You’re petitioning God to do something on YOUR behalf, while also interceding and asking God to do something on SOMEONE ELSE’S behalf. Your motivation for that prayer is extremely important. Your heart behind your prayer for your future spouse is maybe the most important thing about praying for your future spouse. 

All of Jesus’ teaching on prayer can be summarized by one work - ASKING.

Asking should be the essence of prayer because prayer brings us to the END of OUR power and to the beginning of GOD’S power. Prayer is the acknowledgement that I am at the end of my string, and I’m waving the white flag, I don’t have the power, knowledge, or understanding. 

How to pray and why it’s important

"We are not merely passive set pieces in a prearranged cosmic drama, but we are active participants with God in the writing, directing, design, and action that unfolds. Prayer, therefore, is much more than asking God for this or that outcome. It is drawing into communion with him and there taking up our privileged role as his people. In prayer, we are invited to join him in directing the course of his world.” - Dallas Willard

God is always forming. Often the ways our prayers get answered is YOU getting changed. If there is a fulcrum point of prayer, it is how you open your innermost soul to the grace that comes in transforms, heals, installs and builds in your life.

This Changes Everything

Why do you want to pray for your future spouse? Who is this prayer for?
Is it out of longing? Fantasy about your future wife? What can they do for you?

The Bible has no clear scripture anywhere on specifically praying for your spouse. JJ personally, still doesn’t enjoy the notion of praying for your spouse if those questions are not being answered honestly. If god’s only role in your dating life is to deliver “the oone” then he is not your God, you are.

Now we’re not condemning you but if this is the role of Jesus in your life then you do not need to be dating right now. If Jesus is not the God of your life then marriage should be the last thing you desire. That is the counterfeit God you are looking for to satisfy A God desire.

Now if your prayer for the one is a struggle, a wrestle, then yes, we’re with you.

Here is why praying for your spouse if your soul is in the right place is a great thing…

First, not only is it a petition for your spouse, but it also cements your vision for your marriage and what you want. You want a spouse who loves Jesus dearly, who walks in His ways. You want a partner who is praying for everything and depending on God the way you are literally practicing! If you want somebody who is incredibly fit not just for me to admire, but as I practice my fitness I am defining by practice what I am desiring. I know without a doubt when I encounter someone who is serious because I am practicing. 

Second, praying for your spouse is simultaneously releasing control, desire and building contentment. My prayer for my spouse is a release that God has got this, you are in control of their life and mine, you got this… NOT ME. Your contentment is a natural byproduct of experiencing Jesus. He is the bread of life that satisfies. The intimacy and fellowship we thirsted for in marriage is filled. 

Third, prayer builds the foundation of your life now and your future marriage. It’s an investment that carries directly into your life today and your future marriage. If you are practicing praying for your spouse right now, what do you think you are going to do in marriage? Pray for and with your spouse. 

Example of a Prayer that intercedes, that surrenders and lays before God… is next week :)

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JJ Tomlin

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JJ Tomlin is a missionary kid born in Belgium, originally from Tennessee, and currently residing in the OC. He currently works in Gaming/E-Commerce, enjoys watching his Tennessee Titans on Sundays with his Goldendoodle Teddy and loves working with Christian men to raise the bar in singleness and dating.

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