‘Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.’ Philippians 2:4 NKJV
When it comes to the truth, you should be unbending. But when it comes to relationships, you must learn to be flexible. If you always need to be in the ‘right’ and to ensure the other person is ‘wrong’, you’ll never enjoy stable, long-lasting relationships. No human being is perfect—apart from Jesus, of course—and it’s not the wrong we do that is most deeply destructive to relationships. It’s the inability to acknowledge that wrong! For relationships to thrive, we not only need to repent of the wrong we do and to correct it, if possible, but to look to God for the grace to change. Relationships are never perfect, but that doesn’t mean we can’t find a way into the fullness of life Jesus promises.
So what should you do? What’s your part in the restoration of a relationship? You must be open to change. You must face the challenge of possible correction, acknowledge the pride that refuses to admit you can be wrong, work through any shame that is an ongoing barrier in the relationship. Make the hard choices needed to reconcile with the other person. And don’t let things stagnate! Always be willing to reassess your relationship to ensure that decisions you’ve made in the past are still a proper fit for your growing maturity.
Do you know what the biggest problem in relationships is? Selfishness! We want to have things our own way. But that’s not the Scriptural way. The Bible says, ‘Let each of you look out not only for his [or her] own interests, but also for the interests of others.’
When you live with that kind of mind-set, you’ll enjoy rich, rewarding relationships.
SoulFood: Gen 25:19–27:46, Matt 18:21–35, Ps 61, Pr 6:16–19
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright [cy]