Courtship: the Twofold Meaning of the Word

For a while now, I have been meditating on the word “courtship” and I found that it is actually two words combined. Court and ship. We all know that a court is a place where rulings and judgement are made regarding a case and that supporting evidence is presented (yes, I have watched far too many episodes of Judge Judy). And a ship, well a ship is a vehicle that transports goods or people on the sea from one place to another. That is how most of us know the word ship. If you combined those two words you would have court on a ship. That’s actually quite funny, let me explain that some more.

Making Important Decisions
When you decide that you and your partner want to get married, you will need to get to know each other better. That is, each other’s ins and outs. During the course of your courtship, the both of will present evidence to support your case. You will not only present before each other, but also before your parents and God, for He is the Ultimate Judge. You should pray and seek God fervently because choosing your future spouse is too big of a decision to make a mistake about. God will confirm whether that man is the real deal, or for the sake of our theme, let’s just say He will make His ruling. In this setting, you can even see your parents as the jury. This all might sound funny but it truly does make sense when you think about it.

Now don’t forget that as the two of you are bringing forth your evidence, you are also getting to know each other. Not just on the surface as when you were friends before, but on a much deeper level. You will discover each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Questions such as ‘what does he like’ and ‘what makes him angry’ will start running through your mind. Some of the things you will uncover might bring forth some doubts about the relationship. If so, then ask yourself: could I be with a person like this forever? If the answer is a hard no, then you should both go your separate ways. But if you are still willing to continue the courtship, be careful with the way you process the things you have uncovered. Ladies, let’s not become like the woman described in Proverbs 25:24 for it says “It is better to live in a corner of the housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife.” This Scripture speaks about a woman who lets things get the better of her and cannot compose herself. It’s a shame but there are many women like this, and you know what? Men tend to stay far away from them.

No one can be established through wickedness, but the righteous cannot be uprooted. A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown, but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones.

Proverbs 12:3-4

Reaching Your Destination Together
All the things you find out about each other during your court-ship will give you insight in one another’s character. Can you handle your partner when he is angry, sad or discouraged? It is like both of you being on a ship. Sometimes the ship will go through quiet seas and sometimes through heavy storms. Can you handle it? Can you go through the storms together? When done right, courtship will truly prepare you for marriage. A lot of things can happen during your marriage, but what will you do and how will you handle it? When the inevitable storms come, be like the wise woman who builds her house and does not help to tear it down (Proverbs 14:1). This is the kind of woman that will help and support her husband so that through the storms, you will be able to reach your destination.

Lest I forget ladies, on a ship, there is one captain. Do you trust your husband enough to let him take the reins over the ship? There can never be two captains on one ship. Never forget that the man is the head of the household and you are his support system. So during your courtship, you will know whether you can be such a woman that stands behind her man and knows how to be of help rather than destruction.

Remember in all things, bring your case before Almighty God.

God bless,
Claudia Baah
Guest Writer

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