A while back we celebrated Independence Day. Whether we were out on the lake, in a backyard, or at our favorite camping spot, we all had one goal in common; to celebrate freedom with some of our closest and favorite people. If the night was clear, we also observed a glorious display of firepower in the form of fireworks.
Usually when we think of firepower we think of the destructive capacity of guns, missiles, or military force rather than an impressive show of patterns and color in the night sky.
The important thing about firepower is that in order for it to have effective power or force, it must be harnessed to certain specifications. This is true for many things. Water, air, fire, and food, are examples of life essentials that can be harnessed for productive AND destructive uses. This is especially true for relationships.
Your relationships are one of the most essential commodities that can affect you adversely or advantageously depending on how they are harnessed.
Everything you accomplish in life is dependent upon relationships. Learning to harness them in a way that makes them an ally rather than an adversary to you will help you accomplish your life's calling with passion, purpose, and productivity. With that in mind, let's examine the top 4 relationship categories.
Your relationship with God is the foundation and guiding rudder for all your other relationships. We were created for communion with God and community with each other. When our communion with God is out of order, community with others will follow suit.
Your relationship with your spouse is second only to your relationship with God, and is paramount to you fulfilling your calling successfully. No other human on earth can help you fulfill your calling like your spouse.
A godly community will be one of your greatest assets for success in marriage and work-related issues and interactions. The opportunity for encouragement and accountability with same sex likeminded believers is invaluable.
Whether you work outside the home or inside the home, you spend a significant amount of time with those who share the daily tasks of life with you. How you act and interact with these people will be reflected by whether or not the first three relationship categories have been harnessed into allies or adversaries.
The enemy's number one goal is to destroy relationships
because fulfilling your calling scares him.
You may be thinking at this point, "That sounds great on paper, but what does that look like in real life?" The Bible has some great practical relationship advice. Here is what it has to say about five areas that need to be harnessed in order to have fireworks instead of gunfire type relationships:
- YOUR MOUTH
James 3:6 says the tongue has the power to "pollute the whole person, setting the course of his whole life on fire, and is set on fire by hell." Silence is not the key to conflict resolution, nor is letting it all hang out. God calls us listen with an understanding heart (Prov 18:13), speak the truth in love (Eph 4:15), and be good forgivers (Eph 4:32).
- YOUR MOODS
Our emotions are fickle. They play an important role in how we think and respond in relationships. We need to remember that feelings are not facts, and use Romans 12:2 as a guideline for transforming our thinking. Proverbs 25:28 warns us that letting our emotions in the driver's seat of our relationships is like leaving our house an unlocked free-for-all. Heeding James' advice to be quick to listen and slow to speak (Jas 1:19) will go a long way in mastering our moods.
- YOUR MOMENTS
Time is one of the most precious commodities we have. Our life is made up of moments that turn into days and years. Mastering our moments and using our time wisely helps in maximizing our relationships. God's word instructs us to make time for Him every day (Mt 6:33), use our time productively (Prov 31:27 and Prov 10:4), and use our time wisely and beneficially (Lk 14:28 and Col 4:5).
- YOUR MISSION
Whatever our mission in life, we must take it seriously. No mission is too small if it is from the Lord. We are to put everything we have into it (Ecc 9:10), not give up (Gal 6:9), serve and look to other's interests (Phil 2:1-4), not get sidetracked (Heb 12:1-2), and take our calling seriously (1 Cor 9:27).
- YOUR MONEY
It's been said that you can tell a lot about a person by observing how they manage their money. Jesus said it like this, "A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions" (Lk 12:15). Money is listed as one of the top 5 issues couples fight about. Money is a resource that we must have to accomplish our calling in this life, so learning how to manage it wisely is worth the time and effort. The Bible has a lot to say about managing our money, and I think a wise proverb sums it up well, "Money should be in your head but not in your heart."
Harnessing your relationship with your spouse or co-worker will always have its challenging seasons. If you need someone to be an ally for you in these areas, let us help you get set up with someone today.