The Value of Relationships

So, yesterday was my birthday and sometimes birthdays are a time of reflection on the past and future. I reflected a bit on the past and what I’ve learned, OVER HERE, so today I’m sharing my heart’s passion as I continue my journey onward. Over the years, I’ve begun to value relationships more and more – healthy relationships that are based on two healthy and empowered people being themselves and choosing to love each other. It’s a journey that we grow in daily, sometimes plugging away through the messy times and skipping along through the sweet times. But there’s no doubt that God intended us to have relationship with each other….

“It is not good for the man to be alone, so I will create a companion for him, a perfectly suited partner.” Genesis 2:18 (The Voice)

It’s funny to me that Adam actually wasn’t alone. He was there in the Garden with God, His Creator and Father. Many Christians like to say something that sounds spiritual {I’ve said it myself} but isn’t accurate. “I only need You, Jesus.” But God looked at this exact situation and said, “it is not good”. And so, He created another human for Adam to interact with and have relationship with. He didn’t even stop there but said, “Now go have babies and fill the earth.” (my paraphrase!) God’s plan from the beginning was not that it would be ‘just Him and me’ but that we would do life together with other humans. THAT is what He called good.

“God saw all that he made, and it was very good…”  Genesis 1:31 (NIV)

Here’s a few purposes of relationship:

  • protection
  • identity
  • provision
  • companionship
  • communication
  • nurture
  • comfort
  • teaching

We provide these things, and more, for others, and others are there to provide them for us. One of my favorite quotes is from Brene Brown,

“Connection doesn’t exist without giving and receiving, you need to give and you need to need.”

The giving and the needing are a beautiful dance in a healthy relationship where both parties are choosing to love.

Here’s a few tips for strengthening your own relationships:

1. Develop relationships built on understanding, not agreement. 

We will never fully agree with anyone but that doesn’t need to be a hinderance to the relationship. Understanding means: to grasp the significance, implications or importance; to learn or hear. Listening and understanding what is important to the other person is choosing to love well.

2. Don’t be selfish. 

Part of relationship is getting our needs met and fulfilled but if that is a sole-motivator, you will find yourself disappointed and hurt over and over again. I love Philippians 2:3-4 in The Message,

“Don’t let selfishness and prideful agendas take over. Embrace true humility and lift your heads to extend love to others. Get beyond yourselves and protecting your own interests; be sincere, and secure your neighbors’ interests first.”

3. Make room for and honor others.

This is especially awesome when it is walked out with those either younger than you or older than you. Valuing what God has placed in someone that is not your peer, sometimes takes seeing with God’s eyes but when we do this, we are bridging that ‘generational gap’ and seeing hearts returned to each other like we see in Malachi 4:6 (my life verse!).

“and he will return parents’ hearts to their children and children’s hearts to their parents…” (The Voice)

I believe we’re living in a day where God is restoring relationships. He is helping us to be vulnerable with our hearts. He is helping us to become a safe place for other’s to share their hearts. Let’s choose to be brave and open up our lives to know and be known!

new dani whimsy

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