Family and friends make life fun. Relationships bring joy and productivity, but there is some fine print. There are some hidden fees and a lot of – how shall we say it? – poop. Listen to what Solomon said in all his wisdom:
Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty, but from the strength of an ox come abundant harvests. Proverbs 14:4 NIV
There are great benefits to relationships, but even in healthy relationships things can get messy. What causes relationships to go sideways?
Unrealistic expectations – Sometimes people enter into relationships with the hope of finding a savior – someone to meet their every need. Unrealistic expectations snuff the life out of a relationship. Jesus is the only one who can save.
Drift – If we take our relationships for granted, we get carried away by the current and we drift apart. Drift is the opposite of savior syndrome. Sometimes relationships are destroyed not by what we do, but what we don’t do.
Unforgiveness – We are all flawed individuals. We all make mistakes. Unforgiveness keeps us stuck in the pain of our imperfection. Without forgiveness we never move forward.
Healing broken relationships is what Christianity is all about. Reconciliation is the byproduct of love and love is the highest value in the kingdom of God. The Bible offers us a clear pathway for reconciling relationships.
“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. Matthew 18:15 NIV
Go – It’s not always easy to go. It’s scary. It’s risky. You may have to press through some fear, but love goes. Love takes the risk of moving toward reconciliation.
In private – It’s not easy to keep conflict between the two of you. Be aware of polluting other people’s minds with the temporary toxicity of your conflict. Please don’t post your relational conflict on social media. Go in private.
Seek to reconcile – When you go in private, with a heart that seeks to reconcile the relationship, you have a much better chance at restoring and reestablishing your relationships. All relationships have difficult moments. There is too much at stake to just walk away.