At the center of every great love story are two people who are right for each other, destined to be together. We’re usually able to spot ’em three or four scenes into a movie or a half-dozen chapters into a novel. Whether it’s 300 pages or 120 minutes later, they finally figure out what we knew all along, leaving us entertained and, in some cases, inspired by their story.

Then there’s “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette.” In the case of these two reality TV shows, we don’t know who’s right for whom until the end. We think we do. That’s what makes it so entertaining. But in the end, regardless of how many potential right candidates there are, one and only one is chosen. The right one.


I say “hopefully” because every hardcore B’ and B’ette fan scans the Internet for weeks following that final episode to see who was right after all. As of the writing of this book, it appears that five contestants chose well. The others? They moved on to the next right person.

We all know movies, reality TV and novels don’t reflect real life. I assume you don’t take your relationship cues from script writers and authors. But it’s possible you’ve embraced the underlying premise that holds these story lines and episodes together. That assumption being that there’s a right person for you, and once you find your right person, everything will be all right.

I call this “The Right Person Myth.”

The myth isn’t that there’s a right person for you out there somewhere; there may very well be. The myth is that once you find the right person, everything will be all right. My hunch is you’re smart enough to know why that’s a myth. The current divorce rate pretty much says it all. Every man and woman who have navigated the pain and complexity of divorce stood in front of a preacher, priest or justice of the peace and made vows to the “right” person. Every single one. But eventually they discovered something wrong with Mr. or Ms. Right. A good many divorced men and women had already located right person 2.0 while in the process of divorcing right person 1.0. And the whole thing begins again.

You may not believe there’s one right person for you, but you are looking for the right person. Aren’t you? Of course you are. What option do you have? Go looking for the wrong person? No person? How ’bout an arranged marriage?

There’s a thought. Who would your parents have arranged for you?

Looking for the right person is a great idea as long as you don’t assume that finding the right person ensures everything will be all right. Looking for the right person is essential; it’s just not enough. There’s more to a satisfying relationship than finding the right person. The problem is that we don’t hear much about the more side of the relational equation, and understandably so. It doesn’t make for great film or reality TV. However, it does make for great relationships. It’s this undervalued side of the equation that keeps romance romantic. On a personal note, it’s why I love going home at the end of the day. TMI.


This article was taken as an excerpt from Andy Stanley‘s new book, The New Rules for Love, Sex, and Dating. To purchase or learn more about the book, please click the link here.

Andy Stanley is the founder of North Point Ministries (NPM). Each Sunday, more than 33,000 people attend NPM’s five Atlanta-area churches. In addition, NPM has planted over 30 churches outside the Metro Atlanta area with a combined weekly attendance of more than 15,000. Over two million of Andy’s messages are accessed from North Point websites monthly, including both leadership and sermon content.

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