Getting real about Relationships 1
Mark 12:31 'Love your neighbour in the same way you love yourself.' NIV
Romans 15:7, “Accept one another then just as Christ accepted you in order to bring praise to God.”
Eph 4:2-4 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. NIV
Relationships is a subject that should interest all of us because the quality of our lives is based on the quality of our relationships.
It’s in the area of relationships that we can experience the greatest highs of life…..
and also the greatest lows of life.
As Christians we want to be positive about things , we don’t want to dwell on the negative, and all that is great, but what do we do when things don’t work out like we planned?
Nothing has turned out as we expected :
How do we deal with our dis-appointments?
We need to be able to work through our disappointments in a supportive community because otherwise they will fester inside of us in the form of anger and offense.
And here’s the thing….in order to be dis-illusioned we have to be first under and illusion.
An illusion is an un-realistic expectation
When we have unrealistic expectations of people it is only a matter if time before we are suffering from dis-appointments
So that’s why we need to ‘get real ‘about relationships
But we are not perfect :-
- We are flawed from our families of origin,
- flawed from the negative side of our temperaments and personalities,
- flawed from our selfish nature,
So one of the first things we need to do to reduce the dis-appointments in our relationships is stop fighting reality.
And the reality is - that person you married or that child that you had or that friendship, that person is not perfect …. and neither are you.
Only God is perfect! (fault-less) He’s the only one that can meet that need in your life.
- You expect a person to always be there for you ? Only God can always be there.
- We’re asking people to do things they can never do.
- You’re asking a person to never fail you ? Your husband will fail you. Your wife will fail you. Your kids will fail you. Your friends will fail. Only God will never fail.
Secondly, if we are going to get real about relationships we have to understand God’s original plan for Male / female relationships.
And the Lord God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him." NKJV
So ‘Helper’ is not an inferior term at all
Notice the context in which it is used God says, "It is not good for man to be alone, for that reason, I will make a suitable helper for him."
God created the woman to enable the man to experience community.
So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. NIV
What I want you to see here is that God created the first human-being with the capacity for both male & female
– this must be true because to make the woman, God did not start again forming a body from the dust of the Earth
– instead He reached inside of the original Being and took out a ‘Chamber’ from which the female was formed
So what is my point?
God created the first Being to represent His likeness & image on the Earth
He then took the feminine out of the original Human-being and made Woman
So now it requires both Male and female to give a full expression to the heart of God
- In spite of all the evidence that Men and women are different, physically , mentally , emotionally we still expect the other to act like us !!
God made us to be different. He did it on purpose, not to frustrate us, but to complete us.
A man's sense of worth is defined through his ability to achieve results.
• A man rises to his best when given the opportunity to prove his potential,
• Men are motivated and empowered when they feel needed. ‘Not to be needed’ is a slow death for a man because his deepest fear is that he is not good enough
A woman's sense of worth is defined through the quality of her relationships.
• Women are motivated and empowered when they feel valued
• This is why they need caring, understanding, respect, devotion, validation, and reassurance.
A woman just wants to share her feelings about the frustrating things that happened in her day, she doesn’t want him to fix the problems , she just wants him to listen so she can feel better.
But men don’t hear it like that – because when men share problems they are searching for solutions .
So when he hears the woman share about her problems what does he do??
He doesn’t listen, he keeps interrupting her to give the solutions which she doesn’t really want to hear !!!!
So both the man and the woman walk away feeling frustrated because neither got what they wanted
– the woman wanted someone to listen to her
– and the man wanted to be a hero by fixing all her problems so she could be happy.
Jesus gives us this brief but profound key to successful relationships when He said Mark 12:31 'Love your neighbour in the same way you love yourself.' NIV
All our relationships are a reflection of our relationship with our self
- the way you treat others is a reflection of how you feel about yourself
- the struggle in our relationships can be a reflection of the struggle in ourselves
So the best thing you can do for your marriage , children, friends, society is experience the wholeness of God in your own life