Healing Relationships – Part 4

When our soul begins to heal, our personality, behavior and beliefs change. This may put our partner on the defensive and cause them to feel insecure.

Our relationship changes from independent, dependent or codependent to interdependent, and our family and friends are not used to it.

The healthy changes, which we make, will bring healing in our body, soul and spirit. It will help us to establish an interdependence with our mate, as they get used to the changes.

It will limit our negative reactions to one another, improve feelings of self-worth, change the way we meet our own needs and give us more energy to serve others as God’s Spirit leads us according to His will, rather than by codependent urges.

Intimacy increases, expectations decrease, and in conflict we blend differing ideas into a whole new concept on which we both agree. We are mutually interdependent with one another.

Unresolved disagreements cause a couple, which normally live in an atmosphere of cooperation, to form independent lives that disrupt their interdependence.

Interdependence means that it is healthy to have differing ideas, hobbies, interests, likes and dislikes, because these differences bring variety to the relationship.

Interdependence is living in a mutually reciprocal relationships. It is about forming intimate connections with another human being. We share the decision-making process in our relationship and mutually care about one another’s welfare and feelings.

We are conscious in our choices, own responsibility for the consequences of our actions, and readily admit when we are wrong.

We enjoy deeper, more meaningful associations, and greater productivity, service, contribution and growth in our relationship.

We cherish, appreciate, admire, respect, enjoy, love and care about one another, and we never miss an opportunity to affirm and to validate one another.

Prayer:
Father God, help those of us with wounds from the past to heal and to have the wisdom and courage to develop an interdependent relationship with our partner, children, co-workers, associates and church family.

Give us patience with them as they too heal from the wounds of their past. Then allow us to serve You together in our individual gifts and calling, according to Your will for each of our lives.

Thought for the Day:
Interdependent relationships bring harmony and enjoyment to any marriage, partnership or community.

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Healing Relationships – Part 3

A Fulfilled Life for Us

Any time that we give power over our self-worth to another person, rather than to God alone, we are making that person an idol in our life.

As we discover our healthy self-worth in Christ, based on knowing His Word and how He feels about us, then we can follow the Holy Spirit’s direction in forming safe relationships.

We will still experience negative feelings, such as hurt, fear, anger, loneliness, etc. These feelings are an integral part of life, and they come with the human experience.

It is impossible to love without opening our self up to be hurt. When we choose to love someone, we are giving him/her the power to love us and to look to us to be loved.

However, we can love without also giving them the power to hurt us or to allow their words and actions to cause us to feel insecure, angry or…

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Healing Relationships – Part 3

Any time that we give power over our self-worth to another person, rather than to God alone, we are making that person an idol in our life.

As we discover our healthy self-worth in Christ, based on knowing His Word and how He feels about us, then we can follow the Holy Spirit’s direction in forming safe relationships.

We will still experience negative feelings, such as hurt, fear, anger, loneliness, etc. These feelings are an integral part of life, and they come with the human experience.

It is impossible to love without opening our self up to be hurt. When we choose to love someone, we are giving him/her the power to love us and to look to us to be loved.

However, we can love without also giving them the power to hurt us or to allow their words and actions to cause us to feel insecure, angry or frightened.

When someone’s words or behavior trigger a negative reaction in us, this is a sign that something is very wrong. We can take that negative emotion to God and ask Him to reveal the origin of this sensitivity in us.

There may be an unresolved conflict from our past, which is still very much alive in our subconscious mind; or it may rise from some current situation that is causing this negative feeling. ( http://www.theophostic.com )

Once we submit to God’s healing, these slights and rejection no longer have the power to devastate us like they used to, because we have a spiritual perspective now.

God helps us to resolve our negative feelings, and we have peace within once again. At the same time, we can keep communication open between our self and others.

We can even mention, in a non-accusatory manner, that their behavior or words triggered a fearful or hurtful reaction in us. However, we do not have to attack them or cause a negative reaction in them, just because we are hurt.

Prayer:
Father God, it is so difficult to heal emotionally once we are in a caustic relationship. Our mate expects us to act as we always do. They feel threatened and confused as we start to change.

Remind us to share with them what we are learning and how we are changing, so they will not be surprised by any sudden transformation in our behavior. Create in both of us a clean heart that lives only to serve You in this life.

Thought for the Day:
The best motivation for mutual change in a relationship is to realize that change gives us a better connection.

For more information on our identity in Christ read:
http://fulfilledchristianlife.blogspot.com/2015/02/normal-0-our-identity-in-christ-alone.html

Healing Relationships – Part 2

Due to the insecurity and fear in life, many of us attempt to control people and events in order to maintain a safe and secure existence. Unfortunately, life never cooperates.

People who are wounded in their soul form relationships with other wounded people. In fact, we are all wounded to some extent or another due to our life experiences.

When we are wounded, we often choose untrustworthy people to trust, unreliable people to rely upon, and emotionally unavailable people from which we attempt to receive love. We end up more wounded than ever before.

If we are already in such a marriage relationship, God does not want us to divorce (Malachi 2:16). He will change us, which will also help to change our mate. The transition is gradual and it will take patience and time.

If you are not already married, then practice spiritual discernment and seek only God’s will for your future mate (Psalm 37:34).

Trust God to lead you to His selection for your mate. Walk in serenity and realize that when God wants you to be married, He will supply a mate.

As we learned from the Serenity prayer in Part 1 of Healing Relationships, we can only find fulfillment as we focus on eternal aspects of life and walk in God’s Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).

This changes our belief system, our choices and our pattern of behavior.

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for healing the wounds of our past as You sanctify our soul and make us whole. Help us to focus on eternal matters in life and to put the matters of our soul in Your capable hands.

You will bring us everything that we need in life when we need it. If we do not have what we want, we can be assured that it is not Your time for us to have it.

If it is not Your will for us to have the desires of our heart, then you will change our desires to line up according to Your Will. Help us to wait patiently on You (Psalm 37:7, 40:11).

Thought for the Day:
Securing counseling as a couple will teach each partner how to live in a healthy, interdependent relationship; this way, you will grow together instead of apart.
*For healing the wounds of our past, start by reading my post: http://fulfilledchristianlife.blogspot.com/2012/08/part-1-healing-emotional-wounds.html

Healing Relationships – Part 1

There are four types of human relationships. We all fit into one of them, or a combination of several:
Independent – self-sufficient
Codependent – live for others
Dependent – despise living alone, have no personal identity                                 Interdependent – mutual, reciprocal relationships

These relational types describe how we relate to other people. If we are already functioning in interdependent relationships, we are healthy and have healthy interactions.

Otherwise, we are in needy, dysfunctional relationships, which are unhealthy for us and the other people in our life. Changing our beliefs about life and our self, and altering our attitude will bring needed healing to our soul.

In dysfunctional associations, we expect the magic of a fairytale existence; we pride our self in living as the martyr or savior; we give sacrificially and then feel anger and bitterness when we do not receive the love we believe we are owed in return.

In unhealthy relationships, our self-worth is based outside of our self, in people, places and things. We desire financial security, privacy, status in society, respect, degrees or popularity. We resent any change or adjustment required of us.

However, everything in life is fluid, temporary and undependable. We even disappoint our self. We cannot look to external values and relationships for our security.

When we concentrate on maintaining the status quo, we fail miserably every time we try. That is why the Serenity Prayer has grown in popularity.

Following its advice will ensure that we keep our focus on eternal matters, rather than on temporal issues, which cannot help but to disappoint us. We will also walk in God’s will each moment of every day.
Serenity Prayer:

“Living one day at a time;
enjoying one moment at a time;
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
forever in the next.
Amen.
– by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr

Thought for the Day:
Attempting to control our environment and relationships will guarantee that we suffer from stress-related issues, as well as to alienate those who mean the most to us.

Crooked Paths Straightened

Too often, we plan our day and traverse the course of it by relying on our human understanding. We feel stress, pressure, irritation, exasperation; and sometimes, even sheer panic over everything we have to accomplish in one day.

Our to-do list grows each day, as we add what we failed to complete yesterday. We attempt to squeeze in all of the activities, which we feel are necessary for us and our family.

This all changes once we determine to trust the Lord with our day. We submit our energy, resources and thoughts to Him; so that He can accomplish through us only those activities, which He ordained for us to do (Ephesians 2:10).

God directs all of our steps (Proverbs 16:9). He takes the mountains and valleys out of our day, and makes our crooked paths straight (Palm 27:11).

We no longer feel like each day is all up hill. We do not fear trials, because we know that God is in control. We serve Him with a submissive heart and complete devotion.

God is always available to everyone who seeks His will for their life (1 Chronicles 28:9). As we listen attentively, we will hear God’s voice directing our steps all through the day (Isaiah 30:21).

We consult our Father God before we start any project, and we follow His Spirit’s direction. The Lord tells us where to go and what to do when we get there.

God promises to work out everything for our good, as we obey His will (Romans 8:28). All it takes is for us to realize that our life is not our own, but His; bought with the blood of Christ as a ransom for our sins (Jeremiah 42:3, 10:23; 1 Peter 1:18-19).

Prayer:
Father God, You do not find fault with us, and You give us Your wisdom any time we ask for it (James 1:5). We no longer feel any anxiety about what we must accomplish with our day, because You hear our prayers as we rely only on You (Philippians 4:6).

Remind us not to futilely spin our wheels attempting to accomplish our own will for our life. Help us to walk in Your Spirit and to obey His direction throughout each day.

Thought for the Day:
God will establish our plans, if we consult His will about everything we do.

– Proverbs 16:3

Jesus is a Friend of Mine

We receive Eternal Life the moment we walk away from our sinful lifestyle and follow God’s will for our individual lives (John 3:14-15). God does the rest by perfecting us according to His will.

Eternal Life is not some ethereal state of being, or one that only occurs after we pass from this life, but is simply knowing the one, true God and Jesus Christ, whom He sent to save us from our sins (John 17:3).

If we know Jesus, we know our Father as well (John 14:7). Jesus appeared to many people in the Old Testament. These are called Christophanies.

Jesus is actually the Trinity in physical form (Gen 12:7-9, 18:1-33, 22:11-18; Exodus 24:9-11; Daniel 3:23-24). He dwelt on this earth for a brief thirty-three years to give us an example of how to live.

Every day, God leads us through Christ by His Spirit (Romans 8:14). He does not speak to us in our mind, but in our spirit. It is an impression, a strong knowledge of what we are supposed to do.

The thoughts in our mind can be influenced by God, but are also influenced by the devil, our flesh and the world. Before following these ideas, we are wise to submit our thoughts to the test, to see which spirit is influencing us (Philippians 4:8; 1 John 4:1).

With practice, we begin to know God’s voice (John 10:27). Throughout the day, we do the works, which He ordained for us to accomplish before we were even born (Ephesians 2:10).

Prayer:
Father God, Thank You that Your Spirit speaks to us throughout the day. Your Spirit also communicates to other people through us (Matthew 10:20) by helping us to speak and by teaching us what to say (Exodus 4:12).

Make us ever mindful of the leading of Your Spirit in our life. Before we even put our feet on the floor in the morning, make us aware of Your will and direct our steps each moment of our day (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Thought for the Day:
We consider everything we possess in this life as rubbish when we compare it to our personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
– Philippians 3:8