Relationships: 2

‘Love is patient, love is kind.’ 1 Corinthians 13:4 NIV

Yesterday we looked at how we can grow our relationships. The second place we can find growth in relationships is in ourselves. Relationships help us to get to know ourselves better. Even when we’re committed to being a good friend, family member or partner, we’ll still have days when we struggle with the relationship. People will frustrate us. People will make mistakes.

But the tough times in relationships can grow us. It’s in those times we learn how we respond to frustrations. Do we remain open or do we dole out the silent treatment? Are we ready to forgive or do we harbour bitterness and resentment?

In order to grow, we have to see ourselves clearly. Our relationships with other people provide good opportunities to do this. The people closest to us help shape our beliefs, character, and faith. They influence our choices and habits.

In 1 Corinthians 13, we find a list of the characteristics of love. It’s a useful checklist for our behaviour in relationships. It says: ‘Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ (1 Corinthians 13:4–8 NIV) If we want to grow through our relationships, we need to evaluate where we’re at, what we need to improve on, and then put in the work to grow in those areas.

SoulFood: Deut 8–10, Luke 11:14–28, Ps 78:65–72, Pro 17:1–2

word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2020

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