A few weeks ago I came across a blog post titled 10 Women Christian Men Should Not Marry. It advised against marrying women who are not followers of Christ, as well as women who love to gossip or slander. As for the rest of the list, I cannot agree with much of it–mostly because his “types” are only bad stereotypes, which isn’t very helpful.However, I was surprised and then a little bit tickled when I discovered this type of women at #3: “The Older Woman.” Under this category, the author explained that marrying an older woman is not a sin, but it’s also not “God’s ideal.” He goes on to reason that it “requires an extra measure of grace to lead a woman who’s older than you.”As his scriptural justification he cited Adam and Eve: “God intentionally (with good reason! Scripture informs us that God created man first chronologically for the sake of authority!After all, what matters is not so much age, as maturity.That’s why I hope all my single people will hold these lists with a very open hand.
Then on Monday we celebrated my husband’s 30th birthday, which got me to thinking about him, the man he was when we married, and the man he is becoming.Some of his maturity comes from his particular life experience, but a lot of it comes from anchoring his identity in Christ.He isn’t the guy who has to “prove” how strong or smart or manly he is.Instead, I hope you will do this work of discernment in community, with the direction of Scripture and the leading of the Holy Spirit.God created unique image bearers, not categories, which is why I am SO grateful for the community counsel and the Holy Spirit vision that allowed me to see my husband not as a “younger man,” but as the man of God that he is.He is not the same man that he was when we met, and neither am I. That’s why I both sympathize with yet reject the advice not to marry an older woman.On the one hand, the difference between a 20 year-old man and a 25 year-old woman can be significant.I have a cousin who is the same age as me, and she recently married a man 4 years younger.Another one of my friends is in an amazing relationship with a man 3 years younger.If you act like a man, women will treat you like one.I would also encourage you to consider older women for the same reason that women like older men: there can be a real difference in maturity.