When it comes to potential relationships, is there such a thing as too compatible? There is a girl I am interested in who shares almost every one of my major interests. It is like looking at a mirror — a female version of myself. We do the same activities, listen to the same music, have seemingly identical personalities, think the same way, share many of the same strengths ... and have many of the same weaknesses.
I am worried that this attraction I have to her is merely an egotistical love of self, and I am also concerned about the idea of having virtually the same blind spots. I understand that as I get to know her better, differences will emerge. But as far as major personality traits go, we seem to be virtually identical.
Is there such a thing as being too compatible? Too many similarities that make a relationship unwise or at least serve as warning signs? If marriage is supposed to be "iron sharpening iron," then at what point do similarities dilute that? If we both bring many of the same strengths to the table, are we really in a good position to serve each other?
I think in all the questions I’ve read through Boundless — and it must be in the hundreds by now — this is the first I’ve seen about concern over being too compatible.
The short answer is no; I don’t think you need to worry about being too compatible. Regardless of your other similarities, the fact that you are male and she is female will provide plenty of differences through which you’ll have to learn to navigate.
God has created you inherently different as male and female. No matter how many similarities you share in personality, tastes, styles or interests, your core gender design is different, and that difference is God-given and glorious, and will manifest itself in countless ways. Even if your weaknesses and blind spots are the same, you’ll be able to see them in the other and be made more aware of your own.
The only place where I might have concern, though, would be in the area of your unique masculinity and her unique femininity being nurtured and celebrated. Having similar personalities is great, but blurred gender lines are not good at all.
I know that’s a little tricky to understand, but I think it’s important enough for you to ask yourself: “Does she affirm me as a man and motivate me to pursue biblical manhood?” and for her to ask the same about your affirmation of her biblical womanhood.
We’ve written a good deal at Boundless about having a biblical view of the two genders, and I would encourage you to do a little reading on the subject and make sure you both are in agreement in what that looks like, and how to pursue it individually and together.
Please understand that I’m not talking about whether she’s a “tom boy” or whether you like to cook. I’m talking about your masculine heart and her feminine heart, and how they each reflect different aspects of God’s nature, and how they express the beauty of the love between Christ and His bride, the church.
While Christ and the church share the same heart and vision and passions, they are not one and the same. Each is unique and has diverse roles to play in the kingdom. Although we share the same heart, there is no confusion as to who is Who; Christ is the head, and we are the body.
So here is what I’m asking you to consider: Does your relationship have that feel to it? While sharing so many similarities, are there unique qualities of masculinity and femininity in each of you that you bring to it, or are those lines blurred?
That’s where I’d start if I were you. Gender confusion is at an all-time high, even among believers. What might appear on the surface as too much compatibility could be related to confusion about biblical manhood and womanhood.
If that turns out to be an area of concern for you, then take some time to pray, study, read, get counsel and pursue growth in those places. God will be faithful to direct your path as you seek wholeness and clarity on God’s design for the genders.
Once you get your footing in that department, I’d say enjoy the areas of compatibility! The more you agree on the better, in my opinion. And don’t worry, iron will always sharpen iron, no matter how similar the swords.
Copyright 2011 John Thomas. All rights reserved.