Season 8, episode 16 of "Friends," "The One Where Joey Tells Rachel," poses an excellent question: Do soulmates exist?
Monica meets Don, a man Phoebe believes is Monica's soulmate because they share common interests and beliefs. Unsurprisingly, the two immediately connect over their restaurant preferences.
In response to Chandler's jealousy, Monica reaffirms her commitment to their relationship and explains, "I think that we fell in love and we work hard at our relationship."
I couldn't have said that better myself.
Five years ago, if you had asked me if I believed in soulmates I would have said yes. I used to think God created one person and then another to complement them. In Adam and Eve's case, this was true, but I was missing the bigger picture.
Now, I understand that my initial belief was a selfish one. God doesn't design counterparts for us. He breathed life into us so that we may believe in Him, choose Him, and reflect His actions daily by sharing the Gospel. Our purpose extends far greater than finding another whom we can love. God should be our first love.
So does God know who we'll marry? Who we'll love?
I believe so. After all, He is omniscient. There's nothing that gets past Him!
Reflecting on Monica's words, once two people have fallen in love, it's effort that allows a relationship to succeed, not a magical "soulmate" thing. I think love is often a choice. Many relationships fail either because God isn't at the center of it or because the couple doesn't put forth the work needed to show the other that they are wholly committed.
Consider the nature of your friendships. Did you actively seek out this friend? Did God's timing bring you together? If this is a close friend, you probably put in work to maintain your friendship. Maybe you send them letters, FaceTime them, or invite them over for a game night. Perhaps they call you on your birthday, tag you in Facebook memes, or hug you after you've been apart for years. Your friendship exists because both you and your friend value your relationship with each other and choose to preserve it.
Soulmates do not exist. I think there are plenty of people we could be compatible with, but in the end, we settle down with just one to love with all our heart without a thought of anyone else.
You might think this article makes me a pessimist or a non-romantic person. Instead, I choose to ground my identity in my faith; I am a believer (with everyday hopeless romantic thoughts 🙂).