Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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My girlfriend lives in another part of my country, we speak mainly on the phone. We like each other a lot and are taking one day at a time. She has 3 children from previous broken relationship, a teenage boy, and 2 small boys, 4 and 5 years. She has never been married and had these children before she came to Jesus. It troubles me at times thinking of taking on such a responsibility, and I pray and wonder what God's will is in this? What is the church's point of view in such a situation?

When you talk about taking on such a responsibility, I assume that you are considering marriage. I would like you to discuss the status of your current relationship. You are calling her your 'girlfriend' and as it stands now your relationship is nearly restricted to nice phone conversations. Would you really be able to say that you know this person by just talking to her on the phone? To make a commitment for life you need to know the person more closely, and this would never be accomplished through phone conversations. You need to know her better through  close interaction and examine her behavior in different circumstances. On the phone, it is easy to hide emotions and pretend who and what you are not. I am not saying she is doing so but this is unfortunately a common situation we see with many couples who got to know each other either on the phone or through emails and finally when they got to meet each other face to face the picture they painted for each other disappeared; and after that they discover they are facing a new person they did not anticipate. You have said that she came to Jesus.bIs she staying with Jesus and living a life that is acceptable to our Lord? Many people come to Christ and know of Him but do not really know Him. What is her relationship with her children? Is she a good mother? Is she raising them the Christian way? Do they know and live in Christ?  

To take your relationship one day at a time is I am afraid giving her hope for a serious commitment, which I do not think, is e foreseeable right now.

Marriage is a long life commitment. When contemplating marriage with someone I think the following questions should be answered:
  1. 1) Is this a spiritual person that will help you to build a Christian home? Is this a person you will be motivated to help build this home with? Can you both help one another?

  2. 2) Are you both mature and well prepared to lead a happy Christian, life together? Cooperation in this manner should be well examined. Will your house be built upon a strong foundation? "Being attracted" to and having the "emotions" towards someone might feel nice. However, it is not a strong enough reason to make one commit to a very serious life long endeavor such as marriage.
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