Of all the challenges in life I believe maintaining good and healthy relationships are the biggest. We all have our perspectives on life and what that should look like and when we mix that with all the various family members or friends that bring to the table their perspective on life and what that should look like for them it really shouldn't surprise us that there is conflict or at least a little conflicting thinking.
So how do you maintain the very best relationships with those you love but may be very different in thinking and behavior than you? Good question. I certainly don't have all the answers but scripture does give us some clues. One of my theme verses for this time in my life is Romans 12:18, "Do your part to live in peace with everyone, as much as possible".
Let's break it down.....Do your part... OK so we have some responsibility here to do what we can to keep peace. With who??? I think it says everyone. :) I am not a Greek scholar by any means but thought I would look up some of these words in the Strong's dictionary to get the original meanings. Everyone is basically EVERYONE. Which means we can't pick and choose who we want to be at peace with....sorry I didn't write it. Live in peace meant to cultivate.....I think cultivate means we need to be working it. Now lets just look at that last little part.....as much as possible....here is what the Strong's says about that....be able, have power whether by virtue of one's own ability and resources, or of a state of mind. Mmmmmm....I wonder if we are really using all our abilities and resources to really live at peace with those God has placed in our life. I think I am going to have to reflect on this a little.
One last little thot on this..I recently did a Beth Moore Study and in that study was a section about unity. This is what it says....Stay with me now.... Many of us have distanced ourselves from extended family because we've replaced them with people we prefer. Though some elements of the transition are justified and godly, others are selfish. Let's face it. Family is more trouble than friendship, and the fear that we might share similarities with some of our members also carries an indictment too strong to face on a regular basis. For one think, we can drop friends more easily when the relationship becomes inconvenient. Here's the rub and maybe the help.....God Chose our Family even if We Didn't. Even the challenges they pose can be effective motivation to seek his throne and His healing (aka: deal with OUR stuff) After all, where would our prayer lives be without family? (: IF we only chose to be around those who require nothing hard from us, what will prompt us or possibly force us to change?????
Just some thots...........