We have all thought about our list of qualities for our future spouse (and maybe even religious community), but sometimes those can be pretty limiting on who God has planned for you. Instead, maybe think about the few things that are so important to you, that if a guy you were considering dating (or community you were entering) didn't have those things, you would have to move on. Why are those things important to you?
I don't know that I have specific things that are deal breakers. I used to have this list of qualities that I would want in a relationship, but I have since done away with that. Not because I am going to settle, but because I decided not to have restrictions on God's providence. I know that I would not be as Catholic as I am now if I hadn't gone to school at Franciscan University, and I recognize that not everyone has been blessed with that same opportunity. I've also come to realize more and more that they are good men out there, that maybe are only Catholic in name or are some other Christian denomination. And that is ok! I am open to being used by God to bring someone closer to His Church, even if that means dating someone who is not Catholic. I would probably draw the line at being an Atheist, but hey, if he is a good, loving person and open to learning about my faith and letting me be who I am, then I would be probably alright with that. Would I be on my knees every day praying for his conversion? Of course. But if God calls me to that kind of relationship, I am up for the challenge. I don't really think He is calling me to that, but I am ready and willing if He is. It is important though to always check myself and find the balance between settling and being too picky. And of course discern each situation as it comes. I am confident that I am strong enough in my love for the Lord and in my faith that He wouldn't lead me to a bad relationship that I get sucked down by. And even when I may feel weak or tempted to be led astray, He is strong and so merciful.
By what I said above, it may surprise you to know that I am actually very picky when it comes to men. But I am picky in a very petty, surface level way that I am trying to work on. There is nothing specific, but usually I can tell right away if I will be able to like someone or not. I always seem to find a list of things that annoy me, but maybe that is just my way of weeding out the people that aren't right for my personality. I guess I'll know I found the one when I don't start making those lists in my head! Or at least the pros will outweigh the cons ;)
Hope everyone has a great week! Can't wait to read what the rest of you have to say over at Jen's!