Relationships not achievements or the acquisition of things, are what matters most in life. So why do we allow our relationships to get the short end of the stick? When our schedules become overloaded, we start skimming relationally, cutting back on giving the time, energy and attention that loving relationships require. What’s most important to God is the displaced by what’s urgent. Busyness is a great enemy of relationships. We become preoccupied with making a living, doing our work, paying bills, and accomplishing goals as if these tasks are the point of life. They are not. The point of life is learning to love-God and people. Life minus love equals zero.
One of the ways God measures spiritual maturity is by the quality of your relationships. Jesus said the way to love him is to love his people.-Pastor Rick Warren-
What On Earth Am I Here For?
Along this journey of recovery from foot/ankle surgery the Lord has really shown me the value of relationships. There are many different kind of relationships and how we operate and relate in each of them. Often times our background, how we were raised to relate to one another is how we will treat one another & prioritize relationships as we grow into adulthood ; friends, family, marriage and acquaintances.
I have now been home for the most part for roughly 8 weeks and without relationship I am not sure how I would have walked through this very difficult time. I have been amazed at those who have taken the time to come to the house to visit, bring food or just give me a call. Relationship says I want to take the time to invest in you. I have also noticed that I can tell who I haven’t developed close relationships with that I assumed I had. More of an “arms length” kind of relationship. I really am not a fan of these I have learned, I want to know how folks are doing and if there is anything I can do that says, ” I see you.” How and who do we decide is important to us and that we choose to invest in?
This isn’t a multiple choice question. The Bible says, the investment in people (family of God) is how we express the love of God and also help the meeting needs of His people. I am the queen of not being able to do small talk. I have found out that it’s a fear of not being able to relate. I usually just go straight to personal, and how can I help you with something. The interesting thing is people really do want to “small talk” just listen and relate. It says, I want to invest in you and spend time listening.
For example, my grandparents came to visit me this past weekend. We sat and talked for over 4 hours. We watched a video when I was in a school play from the 6th grade. We looked through pictures and talked about those in them that have already gone on to be with the Lord. We drank buckets of coffee and ate donuts. My grandfather talked about what it was like when he was in school and how how vastly different things are today. I learned about part of my family history and on and on. My grandmother enjoyed just sitting and listening, relating and spending time. At no point were we focused on our accomplishments or diplomas, we focused on relationships, showing love by spending T-I-M-E.
How do we overcome our fears of letting others in? How do we spend T-I-M-E in a world where it seems there isn’t enough? How do we overcome the issues from our past and how we were raised to relate? How do I invest in someone I really may not know?
I am so glad you asked, it’s a decision to see people (God’s family) as an investment that is of more value than work, hobbies, tv shows, opinions , the need to be right and so on. We make a choice to reprioritize . Slow down, spend and hour and just listen. That person that keeps popping up in your heart, give them a call and just listen. The person you see who has a need when you are out and about, help fulfill it. The elderly person you see while out shopping, help them get something off of a shelf they can’t reach. Invest in your spouse by just sitting down to talk and listen. Spend time listening to your kids and not just telling them what they should do and not do. If you have pets, go throw the ball, give them a bath & set down and pet them. The list goes on and on. The answer is T-I-M-E. Showing we love God’s people is investing into them. Stop the excuses and make a decision to make a difference today by investing in someone by spending the T-I-M-E to show them you love them.