Long-Distance Love: Not for the Faint-Hearted

Long-Distance Love: Not for the Faint-Hearted -  Lisa U Maki

I never thought I would end up with a long-distance love. This was the last thing I had in mind. I didn't even know then how to chat, let alone what YM was. I remember rebuking some girls in our Bible study after I found out that they were chatting online with men from other countries. I reminded them to be busy seeking God instead of seeking men. Well, a few months later, I was chatting online too.
I got into online chatting after I met my promised man. I was in the Philippines and he was here in Washington. We met in the Philippines and it was one brief meeting. What started as an exchange of emails became a long-distance relationship. It was no joke! We were on and off because of the great difficulties of sustaining long-distance love. So unless you are sure that this man you are building a long-distance relationship with is from the Lord, don't waste your time. Let this be my first guideline for you. Again, for my first guideline...
1. Unless you are sure that the man you are building a long-distance relationship with is from the Lord, don't waste your time.
What I want you to understand is that the long-distance relationship is more than just waiting for your man to go to your state or country and see you personally. I am sure that your ultimate objective here is marriage. So, if you are from another country, know that it is a tedious and long process. I had to wait almost a year from the time my husband filed for a fiancé visa to the time I got to this country. It takes longer for a spousal visa to be processed.
2. Be ready to sacrifice your time.
If you are in a long-distance relationship with a man from another country, chances are you are in different time zones. His morning may be your evening and vice-versa. If both of you are working full-time, then your chance to talk to him may not be a time available for him. You have to find time to talk to each other regularly, if you want to build on the relationship.
3. Find ways to compensate for the lack of physical contact.
Nothing beats looking at the man you love straight into his eyes and holding his hands, more so if both of you are going through something. I remember, in one of his desperate moments, when my man told me one day, "I just need someone I can walk with while holding her hand and eating ice cream together". It pricked my heart so bad. I felt so helpless. In fact, at that moment, I was ready to let go of him, just for him to find someone closer to home.
Due to the absence of any physical contact, my man and I talked a lot on the phone, computer, and was on webcam most of the time. We tried our best to make up for not being together in the physical. In a lot of ways, we were so thankful for that season. Though the waiting time became unbearable, it surely kept us away from fornicating (sex outside of marriage).
4. Don't isolate yourself.
Having a long-distance relationship can put you in a bubble. Since you are basically operating on a different time zone than the people around you, it can really separate you from them. They may invite you for dinner, at a time that you talk to your man, and you choose to stay home than be with them. While you have to invest time in your long-distance relationship, you also have to maintain your friendships.
5. Make the most of your time with your family.
If your long-distance love leads to marriage, you will eventually be leaving your family to be with your husband. You will surely miss them... big time! Of course it's a different story if your husband is the one moving to your country.
I miss my family so much. However, I have peace knowing that I have made the most of my time with them during my waiting time.
6. You can't be too emotional.
Long-distance relationship is already difficult in itself. Add fights, jealousy, and doubt to this and it can surely drive you crazy. It is not easy expressing your emotions when you can't even be physically near the person. So what's the point of even attempting to explain yourself and how you feel?
The good thing about this is that it teaches you to control and manage your emotions. It teaches you to be patient, to hold your tongue, and to be wiser.
7. Keep it Jesus.
This is the ultimate guideline and the one that will make you follow all the other guidelines. As I've said on the first guideline, if you're not sure if this person you are building a long-distance relationship with is from the Lord, then don't even think about it. It has to be God's will, and therefore you should keep it in God's will.
The only way you can be in God's perfect will in this relationship is to keep it Jesus. And if your man doesn't want to keep it Jesus, then don't waste your time on him. Keeping it Jesus means you use your time with him to pray, study the Word, and fellowship. Everything you talk about should revolve around Jesus and His plans for the two of you. You are there to encourage one another in the Lord.
Keeping it Jesus also means that when you are getting emotional, frustrated, scared, doubtful, or simply exhausted, you run to God in prayer. This is actually one of the best opportunities to become more intimate with God.
My long-distance relationship was one of the toughest battles I've faced in my walk in Christ. I used to say that if I had a video of all my "cries" before God, I would have won an Oscar's for it. It was a very dramatic season in my life.
Will I recommend it to anyone? No way!!!... unless it is God's will.
I will say it again... Long-Distance Relationship is NOT for the Faint-Hearted.
Lisa Maki is the founder of God'z Gurlz, a Bible-based online magazine for women whose mission is to is to provide a place where women can learn to manage their emotions, experience healing, receive love and acceptance, be free to be who God made them to be, and be the best they can be in their homes, schools, professions, relationships, and calling, through sharing of insights and experiences, counseling, prayer, and devotionals, thereby learning from and supporting each other.  For more of Lisa's articles, visit http://godzgurlz.com/ Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Lisa_U_Maki  Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6676247