One area in life that is often so ‘complicated’ regardless of age is indisputably that of relationships, of finding a partner. In fact, I personally believe it gets tougher with age as you have your experiences and hurts and pains.. that make you ‘wiser’ but also cautious more than perhaps necessary – calculating and analysing everything.. as opposed to the younger ones who can just dive in taking risks. There’s good and bad in both poles I guess. As believers we are left to make the decision of not only identifying and entering the right relationship but also not running away too!
“The right relationship won’t distract you from God. It will bring you closer to Him” – Adam Cappa
The above quote (which I have seen circulating on FB for a while now) is what got me thinking and spurred me to write this… I saw a lot of ‘negative’ comments from hurt people who have been hurt and thus discredited this particular quotation,
One comment was, “You don’t need a (wo/)man to bring you closer to God..” Yes, I agree. but it’s missing the point.. Of course, our relationship with God is a personal one… Even if we pray with others, with like-minded people, and with our partners, we will still have our time alone with HIM. That’s intimacy. Spending time with your partner in a group setting isn’t intimacy.. and that intimate (I’m not including the sexual dimension in courting relationships here so don’t jump the gun please! In the marriage arena, that’s a different ball game altogether) quality time is absolutely essential to have heart to heart conversations and grow in love. That’s a PERSONAL relationship.
When we fall in love, we are often taken up or even ‘consumed’ by the person. We long to spend time with him/her, he/she fills our minds and we often seek to please him/her. If the other person is worldly, then our love draws us to the world and his/ her preferences. This distracts from God and the things of God. Isn’t that what happened to the wisest man on all the earth – Solomon who got distracted and pulled away by his non believing partners. This is a result of being unequally yoked, the wrong relationship. God makes it clear that light and darkness cannot be present at the same time.
The quote above provides a good indicator or test. Many claim to be believers but are namesake Christians. We observe their ‘fruit’. Watching our relationship with God during the period of our relationship with them (whether we are being distracted from God or getting closer to God) is a great indicator…
Being consumed by the person we love isn’t healthy. This excerpt I found on https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attachment_theory is informative and provides food for thought:
Securely attached adults tend to have positive views of themselves, their partners and their relationships. They feel comfortable with intimacy and independence, balancing the two. Anxious-preoccupied adults seek high levels of intimacy, approval and responsiveness from partners, becoming overly dependent. They tend to be less trusting, have less positive views about themselves and their partners, and may exhibit high levels of emotional expressiveness, worry and impulsiveness in their relationships. Dismissive-avoidant adults desire a high level of independence, often appearing to avoid attachment altogether. They view themselves as self-sufficient, invulnerable to attachment feelings and not needing close relationships. They tend to suppress their feelings, dealing with rejection by distancing themselves from partners of whom they often have a poor opinion. Fearful-avoidant adults have mixed feelings about close relationships, both desiring and feeling uncomfortable with emotional closeness. They tend to mistrust their partners and view themselves as unworthy. Like dismissive-avoidant adults, fearful-avoidant adults tend to seek less intimacy, suppressing their feelings.
It will for sure be helpful to let God reveal to us which category we fall into and seek His embrace more intensively. Love is not an option for believers – it’s a commandment… We love God with our ALL.. and His love will then flow in us, fill us and overflow through us.
We love not with our limited human capacity but with His love.
That’s the beauty of being believers – we are not perfect, we are not fully healed but through our weaknesses, His strength shows.. and His grace is sufficient for us.. And as we yield to Him, we who are a work in progress will increasingly be restored into His image and His likeness. Then we will be able to extend that grace and mercy to others. Yes we ALL have our shortcomings – not one of us have not fallen short. That’s where grace enters the scene.. and we mutually edify one another, the work of the Body of Christ with Christ as the head.
The husband is the head of the wife while Christ is the head of the husband.. The husband is to love his wife as Christ loved us… That’s a high standard.. Women are to submit to their husbands – which won’t be hard to do if the man is loving her as he ought to do. God made it clear after creating man and woman that they are COMPARABLE helpers… they are helpmates.. We are already complete in God yet God says – this before the fall even as He observed that what He created was very good, He still said that it is NOT good for man and woman to be alone.
He has created us for union, to become one with our comparable helper and operate as one flesh not two (some do have the exemption of being single to serve). God says it is better to marry than burn with passion… That is God’s will for our lives. Besides the marriage union is a witness to how Christ loved the church…
Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart – Psalm 37:4
We are called to FIRST delight in HIM, not in what we desire. If we are delighting in God, in our Heavenly Father, then our hearts and our wills are aligned with Him.. and as our hearts beat for what His heart beats, our hearts desires echo what He desires for us… And He then fulfills those hearts desires.
We throw away all that hinders and run the race with perseverance… trusting not in our wisdom or what we see, but in God’s power.. We do this being confident of this, that He who began a good work in us will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
We allow His peace to lead us, to transcend all understanding and believe that He will give us peace even though we will have trouble!
You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you – Isaiah 26:3
Are we ready to let our minds be steadfast on HIM, in His promises and be led by HIS Spirit, not the ways of the world, or our flesh or by our human wisdom? Faith is in the unseen! Let us be believers in spirit and in truth, let us be examples of walking in HIS power in His victory, not in defeat by our fears!