The goal for troubled relationships


Most people are only as happy as their core relationships are healthy.

That is because broken, unhealthy, dysfunctional relationships take a toll on us. There is a physical, mental, emotional and even spiritual price to pay when we are facing relational turmoil.

Nobody has ever gone to a counselor or therapist and had their counselor say, “The emotional problems you are facing right now are directly connected to the overly healthy relationships you have with your parents and siblings.”

Has any doctor ever told you your healthy relationships are contributing to the ulcers, high blood pressure and stress you are facing in your life? I have read studies that connect some forms of cancer and heart disease to the tension that is so often experienced in troubled marriages. Healthy relationships are never the root cause of our mental, emotional or physical problems.

Our goal in troubled relationships is not reconciliation since we can’t control the response of the other person. Our goal is to be able to live with no regret. We can choose to live with no regret ourselves. It is so good to know you have done everything in your power to make things work in every relationship. I think that is what Paul said … “Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” — Romans 12:18 (NLT)

Reassembling a broken relationship requires some important decisions. First, it requires that we be proactive. That is a decision that can pave the way toward reconciliation, but there is still no guarantee the relationship can be restored. That is up to the other person.

In Philippians 2:5, we are told to have the same attitude or mindset as Jesus Christ. If you know anything about Jesus and relationships, you’ll know he was always the offended, never the offender. But even though he was always the offended in every relationship, including his relationship with us, he always takes the initiative. He always makes the first move. This approach represents such incredible humility.

The big obstacle in our relationship with God was sin. It was an obstacle we couldn’t do anything about. So God took the first step. He chose to remove the obstacle that stood in the way of our relationship with him. Aren’t you glad Jesus made the first move? Aren’t you glad he didn’t wait for you to do it? Is there a relationship where you need to take the initiative and stop waiting for the other person to make the first move?

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