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.

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An Alien Within

Prior to coming to Christ, we determined our daily routine by our priorities. We valued, worked toward and pursued anything that would assist us in reaching our goals. We developed this habit, day in and day out, living by our human reasoning and working to please our self and to secure our future. Then, the Spirit of God moved in and encouraged us to entirely shift our mind-set.

Prior to Salvation, our flesh formed habits as we trained our thoughts, attitudes, words and actions to respond and react in certain ways to the challenges and trials of life. We were used to living independently of any restraints or parameters for our behavior (Romans 8:7-8). We served our self and made sure we would come out on top (Romans 1:25; 2 Corinthians 5:15). We did good deeds for others, but we wanted the praise.

Salvation sets up a dichotomy in our life, which causes a tug-of-war within our soul. God wants us to put to death the carnal deeds of our flesh, so that we can live an abundant spiritual existence (Romans 8:13-14). Yet, our flesh wants to maintain the status quo and control our own life. The tie-breaker is God’s Spirit, who rebirths our human spirit, which was formerly dead in sin (Ephesians 2:5).

Now, our old nature is dead and we are Born Again by God’s Spirit. Spiritually alive, we partake in the divine nature of Christ (2 Peter 1:4; Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:3-4). The nine fruit of the Spirit replace our formal carnal character (Galatians 5:22-23). We no longer live independently, but in dependence on God’s love and will.

Our former traits, alien to God’s ways, still influence our thoughts, words and behavior. However, we can crucify these independent and willful tendencies on a daily basis (Matthew 16:24-26), and obey the will of God instead. We willingly submit our old fleshly habits to the work of God’s Spirit within us (Romans 8:12-13). We restrict the deeds of our flesh by renewing our mind and surrendering our life to Christ (Romans 12:2; Mark 10:28-29).

Prayer:
Father God, by Your saving faith, a gift to us from Your mercy and love, we receive Your Holy Spirit who influences and transforms us. You draw us to Your heart and You renovate every aspect of our life by Your Spirit. This free gift is priceless and we thank You for the sacrifice Jesus paid for our eternal life (Ephesians 2:8). Teach us to walk in Your Spirit every moment of our life (Galatians 5:16-25).

Thought for the Day:
Each day we walk in more victory over the flesh by dwelling in the Spirit and following God’s desires for our life. – Galatians 5:16-26

Apart from Christ

Prior to coming to Christ, we determined our daily routine by our priorities. We valued, worked toward and pursued anything that would assist us in reaching our goals. We developed this habit, day in and day out, living by our human reasoning and working to please our self and to secure our future.

Our flesh formed habits as we trained our thoughts, attitudes, words and actions to respond and react in certain ways to the challenges and trials of life. We are used to living independently of any restraints or parameters for our behavior (Romans 8:7-8). We serve our self and make sure we come out on top (Romans 1:25; 2 Corinthians 5:15). We do good deeds for others, but we want the praise.

When the Spirit of God moves in, He encourages is to shift our mind-set entirely. This sets up a dichotomy in our life, which causes a tug-of-war within our soul. God wants us to put to death the carnal deeds of our flesh, so that we can live an abundant spiritual existence in Him (Romans 8:13-14). Yet, our flesh wants to maintain the status quo and control our own life.

The tie-breaker is God’s Spirit, who rebirths our spirit, which was formerly dead in sin (Ephesians 2:5). At salvation, our old nature died and we were Born Again by God’s Spirit (Colossians 3:3). Spiritually alive, we now partake in the divine nature of Christ (2 Peter 1:4). The fruit of the Spirit replaces our formal carnal character (Galatians 5:22-23). We no longer live apart from Christ, but in dependence on God’s love and will.

Some of our former traits, alien to God’s ways, still influence our thoughts, words and behavior. However, we can crucify our independent and willful tendencies on a daily basis (Matthew 16:24-26), and obey the will of God instead. Each day, no longer apart from Christ, we walk in more victory over the flesh by dwelling in the Spirit and following God’s desires for our life (Ephesians 2:10; Galatians 5:16-26).

Prayer:
Father God, by Your saving faith, a gift to us from Your mercy and love, we willingly submit our old fleshly habits to the work of Your Spirit within us (Romans 8:12-13). He influences and transforms us. He draws us to Your heart and renovates every aspect of our life. This free gift is priceless and we thank You for the sacrifice Jesus paid for our eternal life (Ephesians 2:8).

Thought for the Day:
The Holy Spirit exchanges the deeds of our flesh by renewing our mind as we surrender our life to Christ. – Romans 12:2; Mark 10:28-29