For five years I have had a girlfriend in another country. I have been saving money so that I can move there and make a life with her. However, lately my savings keep running out. It seems like there is always something that keeps me from getting ahead and reaching the monetary goal necessary to make the move as I want to.

I always have very mediocre jobs, so I never earn a good salary…. I feel that I’m going to let my girlfriend down. I don’t want our relationship to end because I can’t afford to make the trip.

Dear Friend,

We congratulate you for caring about how your girlfriend’s life and emotions are being affected by the delay in your plan. Obviously, your emotions are also affected, and you don’t want to have to give up on the goal you set, especially after having invested five years into it. However, after a five-year relationship, it is wise of you to begin to question whether your goals are realistic.

{The ease of communication made possible by the Internet can give us the illusion that moving to another country is as easy as moving to another neighborhood. So far you have only focused on your financial goal, so you may not have discovered how complicated the paperwork of visas and work permits are. Even those people who already have enough money often find that they cannot move to another country because of immigration issues.}

You are frustrated because you can’t find well-paying employment. Is there some kind of work that you would like to do if you had more education and preparation? How much time might you have for studying online if you weren’t so focused on your international relationship?

When we trust God and become His followers, He promises to always work on our behalf. The Apostle Paul taught that, “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (1) According to that teaching, in order to find God’s good, there are two prerequisites. First we must love Him, and then we must be called according to His purpose. That means that we must be committed to fulfilling His purpose in our lives and that we are trusting Him to show us His will.

{His purpose doesn’t always include what we have dreamed of or what we are convinced is best for us. He has supernatural knowledge about our futures, and can be trusted to work things out even when we don’t understand.}

If God knew that it would be best for you to move to another country and have a life with your girlfriend there, He would have helped you save the money. At this point, it is better to accept His will and to release your girlfriend from any commitment that she has made to you. Tell her that you trust God to work out His will in her life, as well as in your life. Tell her that five years is enough to prove that this relationship is not part of God’s will for your life or for her life. And explain to her that it will be easier for both of you if you stop all communication.

After that is done, devote your time to discovering what you need to do to prepare for and find better employment. Make it your goal to be the best that you can be at any job you have, even if you don’t like the job. Practice being the kind of employee that any employer would want to have. And be faithful in what you do have in order to show that you are prepared for what is coming.

We wish you well,

1 Ro 8:28