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How to approach this dating - advice / perspective

Discussion in 'Other Discussions' started by Jamie.B, Apr 18, 2021.

  1. Jamie.B

    Jamie.B New Member

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    Hi,

    This is James, writing you from Europe. I noticed this young lady in action in mission work here in Europe, and the way she presented herself hit a personal chord and instantly made me want to know more about her. So, keeping a distance I sought to find out first as much as possible about her personal life. For me, the essence of what a portrait for partner means is summed up in a good heart for Christ. Therefore, what I have observed in her is a similar preoccupation with certain spiritual sensibilities. Compatibility described in modern terms essentially means a desire not to "change me". There are many things about this young woman that challenge me in a good way and such a narrative is extremely appealing to me. So, compatibility is deeper than the simple term of being Christians.

    What I am attracted about her is a common sense about a change in the world through personal contribution, as well as certain appreciations of various embodiments of Christianity. She is also a mature, hard-working young woman, well settled in life, who shows a special naturalness. However, these characteristics did not represent the same weight in weighing this young woman. After a period of standing before God on this, I believe I have the freedom of conscience to act towards her. These days I was able to notice a few things better about her that I have not noticed so far, a special interiority in front of which the other aspects fade even more.

    Thus, I have peace and quiet in my soul regarding the freedom to invest in a relationship with her. It just takes a lot of work, sacrifice and putting the other person's well-being above what I'm looking for. The problem I am asking your perspective on is about how should I approach her. You see, the thing is we live in different cities, on the west and the east coast of the country, so it would be difficult to me to establish connection through church community, friends and so on. Time is not a good factor for me also so I can't think of spending a period there as I have life to do. And I am not willing to approach this on social media.

    That is out of discussion. There are two main reasons for this. First, it's not personal, relational, it's virtual and it builds on the acquisitive gaze. Second, social media is predisposed to manipulation, distortion and it can easily become an instrument of abuse, emotional, psychological and son on. I could approach one of her best friends, but this is delicate as I could cause unease within their relationship, and I don't want that. Plus, even if it would succeed there is the risk that she may not like the fact that I went through one of her closest friends rather than going straight at her. Of course, I may be wrong so any correction on that it is more than welcome.

    I can go visit her church sometimes, it's a small one, but that would be tricky as I wouldn't know if she's there at that time. I was thinking of approaching a friend of her and ask and then ask him to introduce me to her and from there to maybe visit her church when she's there. Then, maybe talk over the phone / email and beyond that seeing her in person at church. On the one hand I have standards I am not willing to let go; on the other hand, I have to do with natural circumstances so neither of them is easy for me. The thing is I don't have any ideas so I would appreciate any suggestion as to how would it be best to proceed further in order to get to know her.

    Kind regards,
    James
     
  2. Aaron

    Aaron Member
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    'Perfect love casteth out fear.'

    Be a man, walk up to her and ask her if she'd like to meet you for coffee. If she does, great. If not, then at least you'll know, and you can move on.
     
  3. RighteousnessTemperance&

    RighteousnessTemperance& Well-Known Member

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    Are you a missionary in a foreign country? Is she a missionary in a foreign country? If so in either case, what are the policies of whomever you and she are answerable to?
     
  4. Jamie.B

    Jamie.B New Member

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    No, we're not missionaries and there is no supervisor for both of us, other than her parents. We both are from EU, live in the same country but in different cities. This was a summer ministry work and she got to go there in Italy while I was in another mission in another country close to her. So we didn't interact even though these two missions were at some level connected. After that I returned home when the ministry term finished and she returned home when her ministry work was completed. But we didn't get to interact with each other so we don't know each other.
     
  5. Jamie.B

    Jamie.B New Member

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    It is easier said than it is done. She's from a different city, while I live in another one. And we don't know each other. I can't just walk up to her. I believe this would end in a outright rejection. Of course, the other options don't grant success but at least things would be different. This isn't the US so people here when they get to know each other in a serious manner they wouldn't approach it this way. There has to be at least some level of introduction to each other. Which is why I was thinking of going through some one in this.
     
  6. SGO

    SGO Well-Known Member

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    • Agree Agree x 3
  7. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    I suggest approaching her parents before approaching her. If you do so and they agree that you are a suitable suitor, you have powerful allies. Also, you would be helping her honor her parents, which is a command of God. The whole family would then know that you are serious about the Lord's will, and not looking for "recreational dating"--just out to have a good time. Then, including her parents as chaperones on your dates will be even more helpful in this regard.

    I also suggest that you pray that the courtship will happen in a way that will glorify God. I prayed this way for a mate for 7 years, and God finally led me to the woman who became my wife. God even chose the wedding date by leading her to circle May 5 on her calendar, without saying a word to me. At the time I was a missionary on deputation. As it happened, the only date I had free in the Spring was May 5, so that is when we were married. We served God together in Japan for 33 years, and will soon celebrate our 43nd anniversary. God is good.
     
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  8. RighteousnessTemperance&

    RighteousnessTemperance& Well-Known Member

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    Since you have your churches and this mission work in common, have you considered going that route? I mean through ones involved, for example, pastors, leaders, organizers.

    Her living at home would not be a negative in my opinion. If you want to be really old-fashioned, perhaps ask her father what he thinks about how you should approach his daughter. It might really move you to the front of the line. :Thumbsup
     
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  9. RighteousnessTemperance&

    RighteousnessTemperance& Well-Known Member

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    Well said. If I had seen this reply first, I probably wouldn't have bothered posting mine.
     
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  10. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O. Moderator
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    Before I give my reply - there is something I am confused about.

    HAVE you actually met and talked to her yet?
     
  11. Jamie.B

    Jamie.B New Member

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    Not yet, we didn't have the opportunity yet. The timing of my returning home and her returning home didn't coincide even though the missions were interrelated. So we didn't have the occasion to properly meet each other.
     
  12. Aaron

    Aaron Member
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    It would be no harder than stalking her at church. Plus it's honest.
     
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  13. Jamie.B

    Jamie.B New Member

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    I don't lack faith nor courage. Rather I am prudent as I want to invest in this potential relationship. So I am cautios towards anything that might cause me to act improper. The thing is such approach would be pretty blunt and it's not a cultural trait here, especially in the Christian community. I am not talking about stalking. I was thinking of building a bridge towards her through an acquitance and build from there. And afterwards I could visit her church and maybe see her there. In the meantime start a communication with her and see forward from there.
     
  14. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

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    1 Corinthians 7
    YLT(i) 1 And concerning the things of which ye wrote to me: good it is for a man not to touch a woman, 2 and because of the whoredom let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her proper husband; 3 to the wife let the husband the due benevolence render, and in like manner also the wife to the husband; 4 the wife over her own body hath not authority, but the husband; and, in like manner also, the husband over his own body hath not authority, but the wife. 5 Defraud not one another, except by consent for a time, that ye may be free for fasting and prayer, and again may come together, that the Adversary may not tempt you because of your incontinence; 6 and this I say by way of concurrence—not of command, 7 for I wish all men to be even as I myself am; but each his own gift hath of God, one indeed thus, and one thus. 8 And I say to the unmarried and to the widows: it is good for them if they may remain even as I am; 9 and if they have not continence—let them marry, for it is better to marry than to burn;
    10 and to the married I announce—not I, but the Lord—let not a wife separate from a husband: 11 but and if she may separate, let her remain unmarried, or to the husband let her be reconciled, and let not a husband send away a wife. 12 And to the rest I speak—not the Lord—if any brother hath a wife unbelieving, and she is pleased to dwell with him, let him not send her away; 13 and a woman who hath a husband unbelieving, and he is pleased to dwell with her, let her not send him away; 14 for the unbelieving husband hath been sanctified in the wife, and the unbelieving wife hath been sanctified in the husband; otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy. 15 And, if the unbelieving doth separate himself—let him separate himself: the brother or the sister is not under servitude in such cases, and in peace hath God called us; 16 for what, hast thou known, O wife, whether the husband thou shalt save? or what, hast thou known, O husband, whether the wife thou shalt save?
    17 if not, as God did distribute to each, as the Lord hath called each—so let him walk; and thus in all the assemblies do I direct: 18 being circumcised—was any one called? let him not become uncircumcised; in uncircumcision was any one called? let him not be circumcised; 19 the circumcision is nothing, and the uncircumcision is nothing—but a keeping of the commands of God. 20 Each in the calling in which he was called—in this let him remain; 21 a servant—wast thou called? be not anxious; but if also thou art able to become free—use it rather; 22 for he who is in the Lord—having been called a servant—is the Lord's freedman: in like manner also he the freeman, having been called, is servant of Christ: 23 with a price ye were bought, become not servants of men; 24 each, in that in which he was called, brethren, in this let him remain with God.
    25 And concerning the virgins, a command of the Lord I have not; and I give judgment as having obtained kindness from the Lord to be faithful: 26 I suppose, therefore, this to be good because of the present necessity, that it is good for a man that the matter be thus: — 27 Hast thou been bound to a wife? seek not to be loosed; hast thou been loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. 28 But and if thou mayest marry, thou didst not sin; and if the virgin may marry, she did not sin; and such shall have tribulation in the flesh: and I spare you. 29 And this I say, brethren, the time henceforth is having been shortened—that both those having wives may be as not having; 30 and those weeping, as not weeping; and those rejoicing, as not rejoicing; and those buying, as not possessing; 31 and those using this world, as not using it up; for passing away is the fashion of this world. 32 And I wish you to be without anxiety; the unmarried is anxious for the things of the Lord, how he shall please the Lord; 33 and the married is anxious for the things of the world, how he shall please the wife. 34 The wife and the virgin have been distinguished: the unmarried is anxious for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit, and the married is anxious for the things of the world, how she shall please the husband. 35 And this for your own profit I say: not that I may cast a noose upon you, but for the seemliness and devotedness to the Lord, undistractedly,
    36 and if any one doth think it to be unseemly to his virgin, if she may be beyond the bloom of age, and it ought so to be, what he willeth let him do; he doth not sin—let him marry. 37 And he who hath stood stedfast in the heart—not having necessity—and hath authority over his own will, and this he hath determined in his heart—to keep his own virgin—doth well; 38 so that both he who is giving in marriage doth well, and he who is not giving in marriage doth better.
    39 A wife hath been bound by law as long time as her husband may live, and if her husband may sleep, she is free to be married to whom she will—only in the Lord; 40 and she is happier if she may so remain—according to my judgment; and I think I also have the Spirit of God.
     
  15. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O. Moderator
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    Thank you for your response. I am on my way out the door to a board meeting. I will give you my humble suggestion when I come back this evening.
     
  16. Aaron

    Aaron Member
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    Then why did you ask Americans? Go ask her papa, like has been suggested.
     
  17. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O. Moderator
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    So, you've never met each other and you live in two different towns. That poses a problem. I can appreciate your wanting to be a man of propriety, but propriety doesn't always mean "old-fashioned". It just means being mannerly and moral.

    You can take a great risk and still be a proper man.

    Let me tell you this true story about one of my best friends. We were all in our mid-20's, living in Louisiana, and one of our other friends who had joined the army had married and she was stationed in Seattle, Washington for a short time. Her husband of course, was with her.

    She was soon to be transferred to Korea for a long term with her husband going, too. We were all going to miss them and my friend I am talking about wanted to fly up there to say good-bye. I couldn't take off for a week as we had just come back from a vacation at school, so my single friend went alone.

    When she came back, I was very interested in what all happened. She went to church with them while she was there and she told me "I have met the man I am going to marry!" I said, "What?!?" She said she saw him at that church and it was love at first sight. I thought she was out of her gourd. What she said next solidified it for me.

    She said, "I'm moving up there - next week". I though she was crazy. She said that she had prayed about it and was certain. It took less than a week for her to quit her job at the telephone company - get transferred to Seattle and pack her bags. She was GONE!

    She hadn't even spoken one word to the man and only knew his first name. I was so worried. But my worry was for naught. She joined the church and smiled at when he looked her way. He began to appear to be interested in her and as time went by - he asked her out.

    They've been married for 32 years and have two adult children. They are as happy as happy can be.

    I said all that to say this.
    • If you have been pining for this girl since last summer, the time is PAST for you to strike up a meeting with this girl.
    • Do you KNOW someone who KNOWS if she is in a relationship or not. Find this out and then do not use that person as a go between.
    • Start visiting her church every Sunday. If she is there - smile, nod, strike up a conversation about the mission work the two of you did last summer.
    • You have a difficult task without ever having been introduced to her and living so far apart.
    • BUT it's not an impossible task.
    If God has spoken to you about this - remember my friend.

    Take a chance. It may work out - it may not. But you will never know until you try.
     
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  18. graciecat

    graciecat New Member

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    Invite her in a Christian Forum where you can interact with her without using social media apps. Also, throw your chances to visit her in their church since you are living in one country only. Is your city far away from hers?
     
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