What advice can you give two guys just starting a new relationship?
Rick Brentlinger Answers -
Here is the advice I wrote to a friend who was enjoying the wonderful beginnings of a new relationship. I hope something here rings true for you.
I am so thrilled to hear of your joyful new relationship. It makes me happy to know that you are happy. Isn't it incredible when such empathetic love blossoms? After all your years of struggle and longing to be loved, God has brought the right man into your life.
You're starting a wonderful relationship which we all hope will bless both of you for the rest of your lives so getting it started off right is important.
Through all the dark corridors of the past, when you ached and struggled and longed for peace in your heart and someone to love you for you, God was preparing you for a very special man.
This is an important time in your life. You have a lot of options, some good and some that could take you outside God’s will for your life. He has brought you through so much. Your present is overflowing with joy and your future is full of adventure and promise.
Walk with God and with each other one day at a time. Sometimes our emotions can run away with us and cause us to move too quickly. Be careful not to go on emotion alone because emotion cannot sustain your relationship.
Emotions can lead us astray and cause us to overlook things we would not overlook in more rational times. After emotions have subsided a bit and the nitty-gritty of daily life reasserts itself, your relationship will survive and prosper if you've grounded it on reality and shared spiritual values.
If you can enjoy, love and support one another when the stresses of daily life press you down and emotions are not running so high, that is a good indicator that your relationship is on the right track.
Build your friendship on reality so that friendship can grow into a lifelong relationship. Honesty and integrity and your shared spiritual values are the cornerstones of a solid relationship.
Take time alone with the Lord, to pray for the man God is giving you and ask God to show you what He is doing in his life and how you can be helpful in his spiritual growth. Be sensitive to God's guidance and allow Him to hold both of you to His pace. I know it is difficult but exert your will so as not to get ahead of God.
Taking it slow now will pay dividends for the rest of your life. Acting too quickly, in the emotion of the moment, could sabotage your hopes of this becoming a lifelong partnership.
I encourage you to ground your relationship on the word of God. If you are to have a relationship pleasing to God, it must be fueled by more than emotion. Slow down enough to factor in God's will. Sticking with God's timetable for you is important.
You mentioned to me that you enjoy reading out loud. I encourage you both to develop the sweet habit of quiet time together, where you read aloud to each other from the Bible and have prayer together.
This will strengthen both of you spiritually and develop a wonderful spiritual empathy between you. Perhaps verses from one of your favorite passages, like the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5-7 or the Gospel of John would be a good place to start.
I know your heart is hungry for God, to know Him, to follow Him, to obey Him. And I know you want to be loved whole-heartedly, for yourself and not for what you can do for someone. And I sincerely believe you deserve that kind of faithful, committed love.
If both of you are on the same page spiritually and you have shared spiritual goals, what a sweet, fulfilling relationship you will enjoy together.
I encourage you to begin recording in a journal, the things God shows you at this wonderful time in your life. As God speaks to you through scripture and everyday life, write down your thoughts and hopes and dreams and what God shows you about your relationships.
Perhaps in the last 1/4 of your journal, you should have a place to write down your prayer requests and God’s answers to your prayers. Every time you use your prayer list, you will be reminded of your need to depend on God and of His faithfulness in answering your prayers and meeting your needs.
Through all the events of your life, in all the ups and downs, God prepared you and protected you. Everything you’ve experienced, good and bad, has produced the delightful man you are today. You deserve an equally delightful man who will love you without any reservations and whom you can love the same way. I am so happy for you.
You are loved,
Your brother in Christ,
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