Today’s Quote: “Never sacrifice what you want most for what you want in the moment.” -Unknown
Today’s Song: “Born Again”- Third Day
Yesterday we talked about sweet freedom in Christ!
(Oh thank you, Jesus) And what exactly that looks like in comparison to being distant from him.
There is nothing more staggering and more true than that difference.
And that’s why we need to trust in the one who sees the big picture.
Walking by faith and not by what we see.
But resisting the urge to do what is immediately gratifying is so hard.
Especially when it comes to relationships.
The short-term rewards of doing things the world’s way are just so good! (Maybe that’s why so many people have a whole string of short-term relationships!)
But we need to remember that no matter how long those benefits might last, if we’re not doing it God’s way, the relationship is ultimately going to give way to the consequences of the sin involved.
Then how do couples who are distant from God survive in the long run??
I have to tell you that I was so tempted to not even pitch this question out there, and just skip over it. I know it can be a touchy thing. We all have loved ones whose relationships we admire or who we are rooting for. But I just want to so gently remind you again that none of us function as we’re suppose to independently from our creator.
Not that we’re bad people, just lost.
And of course God can bless whosoever He chooses, howsoever He chooses to do it.
And of course also, He’s the only judge and the only one who knows the true condition of peoples' hearts.
So this is not me trying to be all higher-than-anybody. (Trust me, I am the idiot of all idiots). This is just me, forming an opinion (nothing scriptural), based on a lot of what I see- and trying to put a very simplistic, human explanation on something very complex and divine.
Ok, now that I’ve given you a three-paragraph disclaimer, let’s get back to the question:
How do ungodly relationships that have sunken below their short-term fun, survive in the long run?
I would say that most of the time, it is by one of three ways:
1. They swim- Either one or both people work, work, work to keep the thing up in the good box. But a person can only swim for so long before they become exhausted.
2. They grab onto life preservers- Constantly doing different things to keep both people occupied and happy (which I think is a lot of times the case with people who have a lot of financial freedom.) They are more in love with what they’re doing then they are with eachother. Or..
3. They sink- They either end the relationship or stay together- but with completely hardened hearts toward one another. Not truly happy or in love.
Or probably a lot of the time it is some mix of these.
The point is that the relationship will only be as healthy as the two hearts involved. And a heart without Christ is incomplete, at best.
I realize that this sort of talk is depressing.
I too hate the thought of people striving and struggling to keep their relationship good and getting frustrated because they can’t figure out why the heck it’s not working. Probably because I know it so well.
Oh but girls there is hope in Christ. Something good.
And starting right now, we are going to be focusing on that.
The side of relationships that we haven’t looked at yet.
Relationships made up of people who have surrendered their lives to Jesus, and want to do things His way.
Just what would happen in our love lives if we did that?
Do you remember at the beginning of our journey when we read the story about Jessica and Justin and the general pattern of a worldly relationship? (if not, look back at Day 2 for a refresher).
Well now I want to look at three things about Godly relationships, and how they differ from those worldly relationships that we are all so familiar with.
Now again, these are just observations.
But I will tell you, from what I have seen, they are three very obvious trademarks in Godly Relationships that strongly set them apart from Ungodly Relationships:
1. The two people do not rely on each other or their circumstances for happiness.
God is the center and is the source for each individual’s well-being. There is not that sickly codependent thing that often manifests in unglodly relationships, or just that general spirit of discontentment. Each person is able to love the other freely because each person is already content and complete in Christ.
2. They live their lives with a very real sense of purpose.
God created us each with purpose and there are few things more satisfying than living a life for something greater than yourself. But real purpose can only come from God, so ungodly couples miss this.
If there is a sense of purpose it is usually self-created rather than divinely appointed by God, and therefore lacks the ability to fulfill and satisfy them in any kind of lasting way. Only God can do that.
3. (and most importantly) THEY HAVE GOD’S BLESSING!
You can see it, you can feel it. God’s all over it. Blessed lives! Not that they will never face hard times or go through anything bad- but even when they do God’s hand will be all over it and it will ultimately work toward their divinely appointed purpose.
There is nothing like God’s blessing all over your life and relationship. Nothing like just being blessed! Be blessed!!
And just as ungodly relationships will by nature sink down, God-centered relationships, just like God-focused lives, will somehow defy earthly gravity, and rise!
Thank you Jesus!
My relationship is a living and breathing example of this. And I don’t want to go bragging about it, but GIRLFRIEND, as someone who's done it both ways- trust me when I say that God knows what He is doing!
And those amazing kinds of relationships; that is what he has in store for those of us who surrender our lives to him.
And just as He created each of us completely unique, He created a completely unique love story for each one of us.
If you have a heart after God, look forward to that.
And don’t ever feel like you’ve missed it or it’s too late. Every one of us, even if we’ve done it the wrong way a thousand times over is a princess to our Lord Jesus.
He wants to take you under his wing, wash you, love you, place that crown on your head and prepare you for a custom-made love story.
Can we just say thank you Jesus for love and romance and how he created us! It is so exciting!!!
God wants to do something here!!
Today’s Dare: Oh, today’s dare is a juicy one! I want you to write a letter to your future husband, that you will give to him someday. Tell him some of that ways that you are growing and changing, and what kind of woman you are trying to become. Tell him that you’re going to begin praying for him everyday and actually do it!
Also pray that God would begin to give you a taste of, and an excitement for being with the man that He has set aside for you. And that you would never again settle for the shallow, counterfeit version of that!
Oh I can't wait for these next few days with you!!!!