Run 4.56 gears. That should give you a happy-ish medium for streetability and life of the 44 (the larger the pinion you can run, the better)
For steering, 1.5x.25 DOM tubing with ES2010R/L tie rod ends, 7/8x18 tubing inserts and jam nuts, and a set of high steer arms should do you nicely. This will require reaming of your stock pitman arm, but the tie rod ends will fit into the high steer arms or the stock knuckle locations fine (assuming you get the proper holes drilled/reamed in the high steer arms). If you run true high-steer, there will be no need to run the larger 'draglink' ends because it will be nearly flat. I am running this exact steering setup on my XJ with waggy d44 up front, but am only using a high-draglink. The tie rod is in the stock location, and I could not be happier. I wish I could go full high steer though, because taking the carrier out of my axle requires removal of the tie rod which can be a pain if it has been in there awhile.
I also highly suggest Alloy USA shafts and joints if you are going to run 38's.