I was recently faced with the question, “When it comes to girls… what’s your type? What kind of girl do you see yourself marrying?” And that’s a question that I’m not too fond of. Why? Because I don’t know that, when it comes to looking for a future wife, I’m looking too hard for “my type”. And of course people could draw back and ask, “How could you not be looking for your type? What are you looking for then!”
The more I began to think about it, the more I realized that looking for “my type” might distract me from actually finding the one I’m really supposed to be with. First of all, I’m an extremely analytical guy anyway, and an idealist as well. So it would be too easy to dream up the perfect girl and then compare every subsequent girl I meet to this figment of my imagination and then stamp a big “pass” or “fail” on each of them in my mind. But you know what the problem is? If that’s what I were searching for, then I would never find her.
As much as everything in my nature wants to do that, I have to remind myself that there is no such thing as my ideal type. In fact, that’s a very selfish way to think. Because, in that case, am I really looking for a great girl, or just a girl that I’ve fashioned in my own image? It’s funny because the pictures of girls that I always paint in my mind look at lot like me in many different ways. Really, then, it’s an egotistical thing. I don’t want someone else… I want me.
It reminds me of the cases of idolatry in the Bible. They forsake the true God and fashion an image of God that matches what they think that God should look like. And what always happens to these images? They begin to look, act, and think a lot like the people who made them. I don’t want to create an idol of a girl, someone who reflects me. I want someone who reflects her own, unique beauty.
Another reason that I’m wary of looking for “my type” is that I don’t want to be so wrapped in looking for this girl who meets all my requirements that I miss the real thing. I don’t want to be blinded by my own unrealistic standards of a perfect girl that I pass by the perfect girl for me. I think about the Pharisees and other Jewish people of Jesus’ time. They were expecting a Messiah, and they were even looking for him! But, they were so caught in their own ideas of what this Messiah would look like. They had their own type in mind. He was going to provide military victory over Rome, he was going to vindicate the nation of Israel, he was going to usher in the age to come, etc. They had all these preconceived notions of what a Messiah would look like, but what happened? He came, stared them right in their faces, but they missed it.
He wasn’t their type. But he was the true Messiah that they had been waiting for all along. He looked them in the eye and said, “Here I am”, and they said, “No, we’re waiting for someone else.” And I’m not comparing Jesus to a girlfriend, but the point remains. I don’t want to miss the right girl. I don’t want to be caught up in my own idea of what she should be like that, if she were to look at me in the face, I would look right past her and keep searching for someone else. But, if I hold too tightly to “my type”, I’m afraid that is exactly what would happen.
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have standards or some expectations. I’m not saying we should date anyone and everyone in case they happen to be “the one”. I don’t believe there’s “the one”, but that’s a different subject. All I’m saying is that we don’t need to be chasing after something which can never be caught. We don’t need to be looking for something which can never be found. All we need to do is be aware. Be open. Be ready. Don’t let “your type” prohibit you from finding the person that you’ve been looking for all along. Be prepared for them to look you in the eye and say, “Here I am.” And hopefully, you’ll be able to look back at them and say, “I’ve been waiting.”
This is an excerpt from my book, “Church Kid: Restoring Your Faith After Being Raised in Church,” now available for purchase here.