Relationships are complicated, even disappointing, and painful at times. But they are also necessary; we were made for them. Through them, we grow. Relational health determines the richness of our lives. When handled intentionally, our relationships can be beautiful and genuinely fulfilling. They can be all they are meant to be when we give God control.
The tongue holds the power of life and death. The words we say can deeply devastate or encourage greatly. It’s our choice to make. We don’t usually stop long enough to make a calculated choice. And that pause makes a world of difference.
When discussing the quality of your life, few things matter more than your circle. Your circle is made up of the people you surround yourself with. The true trajectory of your life is discovered simply by looking at the company you keep. Hang out with chaotic people, and you’ll invite chaos into your life. Drama leads to more drama. What have you unintentionally invited into your life because you haven’t been paying attention to who is in your circle? This message dives into the characteristics you need from people in your circle.
In a world where everyone tries to get ahead and level up, humility can feel unnatural and contrary. But thankfully, Jesus is an incredible teacher. His captivating sermons and parables simplify heavenly concepts, and his life upheld everything he preached. Today, we’re diving into his teaching and example of selfless serving.
Negative. Critical. Cynical. Like the Israelites in the desert, freshly rescued from slavery, that’s us sometimes. We always see the cup half empty. We often forget it’s a choice. We can choose how we look at things and follow a mighty God who redeems everything.
We know boundaries are essential. God set them, and Jesus modeled them. But establishing them is just the beginning. Boundary breakers still test our limits sometimes, and the opposition gets stronger the closer we get to a breakthrough. Let’s look at how we can be prepared to protect our carefully laid boundaries.
Conflict is going to happen. Hoping to float through life without a hitch is unrealistic. But that doesn’t mean we are powerlessly subject to it. There is a way through that honors God. We can be well-equipped and prepared for when it inevitably comes our way.
Life tempts us to run in so many directions. Bombarded with opinions, we can easily be derailed and disoriented. But God has a plan for each of us, a fulfilling purpose. We miss it when we overcomplicate things. The right choice isn’t usually easy, but it’s simple: follow Jesus. He’s not hiding in heaven or far across an ocean. He is right there with you.
Though we need to care on some level what others think, we can care too much. When we allow ourselves to be manipulated for fear of disappointing others, it doesn’t just affect us physically, socially, and emotionally; it affects us spiritually. But there is a healthy balance, and it’s found in Jesus.
Unwillingness to forgive is how we look to protect ourselves. We think it will keep us from being hurt or taken advantage of again. But it really builds a wall between us and everyone else, including God. Discovering the keys to forgiveness is empowering. And choosing it is freeing.
It starts subtly…but the consequences are enormous. Ego is the unhealthy belief in our own importance and wreaks havoc in our relationships. There is a balance to self-view, but too far left or just far enough right gets it all wrong. Let’s talk about ego and find a healthy perspective.
Loneliness unchecked distorts. The longer we ignore it, the heavier it gets—the more significant the burden, the deeper the pain. So, we rush instead of waiting to fill the void as quickly as possible. Instant gratification sounds good when we’re worn out by loneliness, but the peace and wholeness God offers is the real thing.
It’s easier to think about loving the people close to you better. We could get on board with that. But we are called to love everyone. And if it were just a feeling, we’d be in trouble, but actual love goes way deeper than feels. Love is an action and a choice. Understanding that love is so much bigger completely transforms relationships and lives.