I was away on Sunday, but on Saturday, the night before at a truly great ‘Dessert and Movie’ night our pastor mentioned that Sunday’s sermon would be the first part of a Relationship Series. That started me thinking and wondering what it would be.
So, what is the basics about relationships? We have a relationship with our spouse, our children, our parents, our siblings, our work mates, our neighbours and in fact everyone we come into contact with. Sometimes we are not too keen on having a relationship with someone but the very moment we meet them, our relationship with them has been established. And every relationship is about the degree of love or the lack of it.
Who do we most want to have a relationship with? I would suggest God. Now if you agree, that’s great, but if you have someone else in mind then we must realize that we need to, even if we don’t want to, have God as our number one relationship. Why? You might ask. The answer is simple and it comes in two parts. Part one is when Jesus told us in Matt 22:37,38; “…Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.” The second part is wrapped up in honouring God and in keeping the second greatest commandment, Matt 22.39; “…love your neighbour as yourself;” because everything we have and everything we are is because of the relationship with God. He is our creator, our Father, our provider, our healer, our comforter and without Him we have nothing. God is pure love, perfect love. Paul talks about love in 1 Cor 13. If we do not have love we have nothing.
To have a relationship with God we must also sort out our relationship with our neighbour. Jesus told us this when He taught the apostles how to pray, “… forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who trespass against us...”
When we start to see God for who He is, it’s easy to love Him, but don’t we all struggle when it comes to loving some of our neighbours. That person who cut us off in the traffic or pushed in front of us, the one who scowled at us for one reason or another, the one who said something that we don’t agree with, the one who made fun of us or our ideas, or someone who upset our family. Maybe the one who has something that we don’t have or that we want. Perhaps the person who dresses in a way that we don’t like or is too loud or too quiet, or maybe we think that they aren’t treating us the way we think they should. You know sometimes we don’t love ourselves and we must love ourselves. God created us and He loves us. We would not be honouring Him if we didn’t. How about even our neighbours at church. Has someone upset us for some reason only known to us. This is my challenge to you. If there is a relationship with someone that is not as Jesus would have it, then how about you show that person some love next time you see or meet them. Start with a smile or handshake and build it from there. I guarantee you will feel better within yourself if you do. But I don’t guarantee that they will return the love.
Just be Jesus to them.
God bless you all