"Count it all joy when you fall into various trials."

Posts tagged ‘Relationships’

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Friendship

FRIENDSHIP

Lately I have been pondering about friendships and relationships in general.  What makes a friend?  What is the difference between a friend and an acquaintance?  What if I am a friend to them, but they are not to me?    When one marries another, there is an expectation of permanence so why the divorce rate?  Why do relationships end?

Definition of FRIEND in the Webster’s:

1a : one attached to another by affection or esteem

1b:  acquaintance

2a : one that is not hostile

2b : one that is of the same nation, party, or group

3 : one that favors or promotes something (as a charity)

4 : a favored companion

There were more definitions, but these were the important ones.  I noticed that there is nothing there about the length and duration of the relationship.  It is my experience that some of the some relationships are forever and some are only for a season.

I know that there have been times in my life when I have wounded and offended a valued friend.  Often they have forgiven me, but the trust was destroyed and the relationship was damaged and never quite the same.  I find that I am still saddened by my actions.
I love this quote that I found in the comments at Webster’s:
“A friend is someone who is there through the good as well as the bad. A friend understands a point of view while disagreeing with it. A friend remains a friend through adversity. A friend takes the time to listen despite a lack of interest. The next time someone deletes you as a “friend”, ask yourself, were they really a friend?”
We all desire healthy intimacy with our friends and our spouse, but often the thought of letting down the wall terrifies us.  What if we let that one in and we are wounded?  What if we don’t?
I wrote a poem years ago after my divorce from my husband of eleven years.  The first lines are:  “The barriers between us are all carefully maintained.
                   They are nurtured by guilt, fear, tears and pain.
                   We hold ourselves off at a distance insulated and protected,
                    Unable to make a commitment out of fear of being rejected.
                   And the armour imprisons the wearer instead of making him free . “.
There is more, but you get the idea.
Scripture says that there is One who sticks closer than a brother.  I am privileged to know that One.  When He lives in my relationships, the loyalty and the trust level are much higher.  When the wound is from a fellow who is on the same path, I must trust in the One who created us all.
I wonder if true friendship and relationship are even possible apart from knowing Jesus and the Father?  I am in awe that I can now be wounded by a close companion and walk in peace recognizing that they are not my enemy but one who is struggling to do His will.  For me, I have determined that I will be a friend and cover another’s offenses.  I, too, will be wary if the door they closed opens again but I will receive them..

To conclude this, I choose to love those I have wounded and those who have wounded me.  I choose to live in peace with betrayal.  It is okay to hurt me.  I forgive and release tthe offender and I choose to walk in freedom.  Thank you Father God for your amazing peace and love.
Related Sites:
What to do when friendship breaks down. http://www.whenfriendshiphurts.com/blog/
Scripture References:
Proverbs 17:17, 18:24, 27:9
Psalm 41:9

The Bride

I heard a story about a young woman who was meeting with a wedding planner.  She was a very good wedding planner.  She had seen many young women with stars in their eyes come to her to help them decide on important elements of their special day.    As they chatted about the arrangements, the young woman asked if she could play a video that she would like to use in the ceremony.  The wedding planner said, “Sure.”

The video began to play and the wedding planner was working at the table making notes about the things they had discussed.  Every few minutes, the girl would exclaim, “Oh, isn’t he handsome!  He is such a wonderful man!”  And she would sigh with contentment and joy.  The wedding planner looked up.  He was an average looking boy; nothing special and she returned to the writing pad.

Then the young woman would burst out again and tell how kind and good he is and how she loves him.  After some time, the wedding planner stopped her work and watched the video listening to the girl’s declaration of love and adoration.  By the time the video was over, the wedding planner felt she could marry the young man!

The bride had so romanced her love that the other woman could see how she longed for him and understood and felt drawn to him as well.  A bride so loves her intended that she can think of little else. Her eyes sparkle with expectation and joy.  She draws near her loved one and serves him with delight.  She listens to him as he speaks.  When they are separated, she anticipates his return.  Every letter that he sends is treasured and read and re-read and kept always.

She sees to it that she is dressed in readiness for his appearance.  Her home is always in order so that he will find her ready to greet him.  Every moment is exciting and filled with hope and expectation.  In his presence is fullness of joy.  Each day with him is precious.  They share secrets and talk together for hours without thought of time.  She yearns for the day when they will be one.  Therefore, her mind is longing for her wedding day and she is consumed with the preparations.  Her expectation of fulfillment rises with each beat of her heart.  He is her very life.

Then the wedding day comes, the honeymoon is over and life sets in.  A wife, if she is not careful, will become weary.  She has come to know him and there is familiarity in his presence.  She no longer anticipates his return joyfully and has settled into routine and duty.  The freshness of the first love fades.  She serves him but forgets why.

There are children who have become her focus.  She is no longer fascinated by him and his letters gather dust in the box on the shelf.  The crying of a child is now her priority.  When her lover is at home with her, she is content to know that he is in the house.  They live parallel lives.  Her hair is disheveled and her jeans and sweat shirt seem fitting.  She has been too busy to shower and the lunch dishes are still on the counter.  When he leaves, there are no long kisses and grief at parting but a quick acknowledgment and a request that he stop for a few items at the grocers on the way home.  The duty has become more than the love.

When we let the relationship with Jesus become religion, this is what happens.  We no longer show our great love for Jesus and his for us.  The morning devotion is another item on the list to be checked off.

He loves us and longs for us to love him in return.  When we do, others will see how desirable he is and draw near.This is why Jesus refers to believers– both men and women – as his Bride.  This is who we are.  We are loved and He longs for us.  When our every breath is filled with thoughts of Him, we respond to his love with  preparation and anticipation of His soon return.

But he is a gentleman.  He gives us the choice.  We choose to love Him or we can choose to get involved with the press of our busy schedule, our favorite television programs, the demands of our jobs, and be drawn away.  It is up to us.  What will you choose?

It is easy to do.  The Bible says that those who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.  Read John 3:16, 17.  Find out how much He loves you and that He is just waiting for you to call out to Him.  Each of us come to the realization of who He is in a different way.  For me, I was driving down the road, listening to the radio preacher when God took over his voice and I knew for sure that He was real.  I just began to say, “I’m sorry Jesus.  I just didn’t know.  I didn’t know.”  So it isn’t a formula, it is a heart thing.  Ask Him to make Himself real and I promise that He will.

If you already know Him but are struggling, get alone with Him and fall in love with Him again.  He is waiting with open arms.  He loves you!

John 12:32

Song of Solomon

Revelation 19:7
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.

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