S: By:Morgan Fauber
1: Sometimes the people whom we've known for only a short time have a bigger impact on us, than those we've know forever.
2: Philophobia. The fear of love, affection, and a deep relationship. The fear that I, held so deep inside. I never knew that one summer would completely change how I felt about not just relationships, but love in general. A relationship with my parents, my peers, God, and a guy...
3: It all started when I applied for a summer ministry trip called Operation Barnanbas. Teens from all over the world gather together for one summer to do ministry in different areas, spread God's word, and to just grow spiritually. I patiently waited in my cozy Virginia home for that one letter. Months past and a few days after Christmas, I received and acceptance letter. I did not know that the letter that was in my hands, was the one piece of paper that would change my life forever. The months past so quickly as I raised money for the trip, and prepared myself for what was to come. Through out those months, I was already building relationships with the teens that were also going. We all had conversations together, emailed, called, and texted each other. It was like we were already family, and had never even met.
4: I started to build a relationship with a guy named Hector. He was also going on the missions trip that following summer. After sending numerous emails and texts, we decided to talk to each other on the phone finally. It was Valentines day (how perfect). My birthday was the next day, and when I tried to hang up he asked me to talk a little while longer. I didn't realize at that point what he was going to do, but when twelve a.m. rolled around on February fifteenth, he sang happy birthday to me. I knew from that moment on that this would one of the most important friendships that I would ever have in my life, and for once, I wasn't scared of what was to come.. | Months past as we continued our all day all night text and phone calls. In the background of all this, I was going through a whole lot and having him in my life, gave me that one person to talk to just when I needed it. But what I didn't realize was we were both letting each other take place of our relationship with God. Eventually, we were tore apart from each other. It was so hard because he had become my best friend, but I didn't know or trust that God was doing it all for the right reasons. I didn't give Him that trust alone, and I should have. Time went on and a few months past, and Operation Barnanbas was only a few days away. When I finally walked into those doors, a whole swarm of emotions took over me. I was finally putting faces and names together and meeting all these people I had been talking to for months, and was totally overwhelmed.
5: Then Hector walked in the doors. I finally could see this person that I had gotten so close to in only a matter of weeks, but I didn't have the courage to actually talk to him. A few days went by before we even said hello to each other. When we finally did, I didn't know what to feel at this point. The only thing I did know, is my focus needed to stay on God and that's all that mattered to me. We were all split up and divided into three teams, and once again, Hector and I were seperated. I was starting to realize that if we were ever going to be anything, it wouldn't be together. Over that month I faced so many challenges and changes. I had a really hard time giving respect to the authority there, and building relationships with the other teens. It hit me, as I lay alone in my bed, that there was something not right. I had a fear. The fear of accepting love, getting close to someone,and having a deep | relationship. I had no idea how to get over this so called fear. I never knew how important it was when it came to just a relationship with a friend. There was so much that I just couldn't understand. I prayed. I prayed a lot! And then, I prayed some more. I began to really work on my relationship with God, and try to turn my life around. Then, i started to write letters. I wrote letters to my parents, a few friends, and Hector. I started to build relationships with these people. I tired to train myself how to get over this fear. The reason it became so easy to me, was that I was not near them. I did not have to see them everyday. I was gone. But when reality set, and I realized I was going home, and had to face them all.
6: With you is where I'd rather. But we're stuck where we are, and its so hard its so far, this long distance is killing me.
8: "He has made everything beautiful in it's timing" Ecc 3:11
9: Operation Barnabas was over, and I was heading back to Virginia, and Hector was heading back to Pennsylvania. Seperated once again, and all of the fears I had put behind me that summer, were finally in front of me. I had a choice, I had to chose if I would go back the same ways, or take everything I had been taught and change; and have real relationships with people. Hector and I decided to continue our relationship 352.45 miles away from each other. We had already been friends for over a year, and we both wanted to continue the friendship. This was such a new thing for me: learning how to trust someone again, how to tell them even the embarrassing things. I loved what we had. I felt like I was moving forward. Doing something right!
10: We both held God as the top priority, and that is why our relationship was working. He came to visit me in Virginia, and just spending time together really helped me to see that maybe this could be something, Things were great. With God, my parents, and my friends. I finally knew how to make the best decisions for myself, and I knew how to show love towards all of these people. It even became a passion of mine. I loved pouring all of this love I had to offer on people. I soon realized that the Lord had let me experience all of this, just so I could help someone else. | He had completely changed my life and I never knew it had happened. I was so thankful for what God had done, and was still doing. I felt like a new person. Hector and I eventually started dating. My first official long distance relationship. It is not easy, it is actually very hard. But there is no way that we could do this, with out God. He let us both experience things this summer, just to teach us how to be strong, and to get over the fears that controlled our lives. I learned so much that summer, and the decisions I made and trials I faced made me all that much stronger. God has so many different ways of working, but his plans always have beautiful endings. His timing is always perfect. I was no longer afraid of love, or being loved. I was finally over my Philophobia.
11: Distance is for those who know a good thing when they see it, Even if they don't see it enough.
12: You are my