Friday, June 11, 2021
You have to realize that relationships have limits. You say, "But Vince, if relationships have limits and I have love-needs, and they can't meet my love needs, then where do I turn?"
Friday, June 11, 2021
Proverbs 20:6, Proverbs 18:24
Today, I want to talk to you about this truth: all human relationships have limits. I think you know that, but I think we sometimes forget it in the heat of relationships. Sometimes we put too much on people. We want people to meet needs they can't meet. We want people to love us in ways they can't love us. We want people to be something for us that they can't be, and the problem is not them. The problem is in our expectations. Relationships are important, you have to have relationships. The worst thing you can do to a human being is to put them in solitary confinement in prison. But you have to realize that relationships have limits. You say, "But Vince, if relationships have limits and I have love-needs, and they can't meet my love needs, then where do I turn?" You turn to the lover of your soul, to God, to Jesus Christ.
The rest of that verse says this, "But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." Nobody knows for sure. But this seems to be proverbs doesn't necessarily do this a lot. But it seems to be a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is our brother. He's our father, he's the Son of God, he is our Savior, but He is also our brother in a certain sense. He is the lover of our soul, and he will love you in a way that no human being can. Are you making sure that your most important relationship needs are being met by Jesus Christ and not by human beings? Because humans can't do it. And they'll let you down and they'll hurt you not because they're intentionally doing it, although sometimes they do, but because they can't. Only Jesus Christ can. Are you letting Jesus Christ love you? You know, to become a Christian is the way you start letting him love you. And if you are not yet a Christian, you can't experience the love of God. When you say, "Jesus Christ, you are God. Jesus, I am a sinner, I sin, I mess up, I make so many bad decisions that hurt you, others myself, my family," and when you believe he died on the cross in your stead, in your place for your sin, and you receive him into your life by faith alone you become a Christian. Then you have his love, then you have the love of God. And you will have your deepest love needs met through Jesus Christ. You need your human love needs met, but there's a limit to that. Jesus Christ is infinite. And he'll meet your deepest needs in ways you never dreamed possible, because he's the lover of your soul.
Monday, June 7, 2021
We don't always do relationships so well. If we are great at relationships, then why is the world such a mess?
Monday, June 7, 2021
Proverbs 12:26, Proverbs 19:2
Relationships are super important. I have found more and more that people need biblical help on relationships. We don't always do relationships so well. If we are great at relationships, then why is the world such a mess? It's a mess, in part, because people struggle with how to relate to each other. So today, I want to talk to you about this truth. This is a little bit of a challenging truth, it's going to challenge your views on relationships. Here it is: Not everyone is a close friend. You know, there are three levels of relationships. You have acquaintances, friends, and close friends. I would define a friend as somebody who you might see semi-regularly, you can share a little bit with them, and you remember things about each other. Close friends, or companions, are really tight relationships. Here's what I want to say. Sometimes you can treat an acquaintance like a close friend and you get in trouble. Or you can treat a friend like a close friend, or a companion like an acquaintance. You have to know and correctly define your relationships. Not everybody is a close friend. In fact, here's what I want to warn you. I believe this because I have found this to be true. You have fewer close friends than you realize. We tend to think we have lots of close friends, but they're not as close as you think. I think you have less close friends. I think most of us have less super close friends than we think. There are exceptions, of course. Where do I get that from? Here's a couple passages of Scripture that speak to this from the book of Proverbs.
Proverbs 12:26, "A righteous man is cautious in friendship." Why is a righteous man cautious in friendship? Because not everybody is a companion or a good friend. They might be a friend, they might be an acquaintance, so you're cautious. Remeber that you have to pace relationships. Don't go too fast. Don't go 10 miles when the first time you meet somebody you should only go 100 yards. Here's another one - Proverbs 19:2 says, "Zeal without knowledge is not good." In other words, you may be zealous for a relationship, but if you don't know that person, it doesn't work out. By the way, that speaks of anything. Zeal without knowledge in any area of life is not good. So who are your closest friends? Are you sure they're your closest friends? Who are your friends, or your acquaintances? You probably have no more than 5 to 10 really, really close friends. I heard one person say that a close friend is someone you call at three in the morning with something you need to talk about, and not one time in that conversation do they say, "Do you know what time it is?" That's when you know you have a close friend. So, just be careful with your close friends. Not everybody is a close friend. Don't expect to have massive numbers of close friends. By definition, a close friend is a small, tight knit group.
Let's pray. Father, it's so important that we understand our relationships. And it's so important that we understand that not everybody is a super close friend. We may wish it, we may want it, but it takes two to form a close relationship. Help us to know who those close relationships are with, and who they are not with. Help us to accept that. Someone we thought was a close friend is just a friend, or someone we thought was a friend is just an acquaintance. God, help us to be pleasantly surprised that a friend was really a close friend who loved us more than we ever realized. Help us to discern that and accept the close friends you've given us, and to do everything we can to be close friends back to them. We ask this in Jesus' name. Amen.
Friday, June 4, 2021
Relationships are what life is all about. The people who have the best relationships are always learning how to relate better, and we all can learn to relate better to people.
Friday, June 4, 2021
Proverbs 25:19, Proverbs 17:17
Here's all I want to say: If you want to have great teeth, you have to have regular checkups to see if there are any problems. If you want to have great relationships, you have to check up on your relationships. That's why relationships are like teeth. And I didn't just randomly make that up, I get it from the Proverbs. The book of Proverbs has tons of advice on relationships. Look at what Proverbs 25:19 says. It says, "Like a bad tooth or a lame foot is reliance on the unfaithful in times of trouble." In other words, if relationships are like teeth, and you want to do checkups, sometimes you think you have a great relationship and it's not. you think that's a strong tooth, but man it's got a massive cavity or a small cavity that you haven't seen. You have to check up your relationships know where your relationship is, do a little trial tests to see how they respond. And you may sometimes find that you have overestimated that relationship.
Let's pray. Father, thank you for the reminder that relationships are like teeth, and we need to rely on the right ones, not the wrong ones. Help us to know how to give ourselves relational checkups like our dentists knows how to check our teeth for cavities. Help us have the discernment to know who we can rely on, and who we shouldn't in our relationships. In Jesus' name. Amen.