Daily Devotional for Saturday November 22, 2003
The starting line of a relationship
( 2 Corinthians 6:14, James 2:17, 1 Timothy 6:19 )
The starting line of a relationship. Probably 1/3 of the emails we get at Liveprayer each day are concerning relationships. Men and women who have gotten into bad relationships that not only affect them short-term, but for many, their entire life. Because it is so important to use not only your common sense, but spiritual sense when getting into a relationship, I thought today I would share with you my BIG THREE for starting any relationship. Please understand, that by meeting these BIG THREE, it does not insure you will have a successful relationship, or that it is God's plan for your life. However, I can guarantee you that if these BIG THREE don't exist, there is no chance that this is part of God's plan for your life.
Please take a moment and pray as you read these over. This is no accident you are reading these words today. If you are already in a relationship, ask yourself these three question about the one you are involved with. Again, God gave you the freewill to make your own decisions, but if the answer to any of the BIG THREE is NO, I would take some time and pray seriously to see if this is really what God wants for your life.
THE BIG THREE. Number one, is the person you want to enter into a relationship with saved? I have done an entire Devotional in the past, that I will re-air very soon, on being "unequally yoked." The warnings in God's Word are like stop signs. It is up to you to stop, or you can just ignore it and keep going. We all know that if you run stop signs, you are putting yourself at extreme risk, and the consequences could be deadly. I have to tell you that a large percentage of the emails I get from men and women with relationship problems, are because they have ignored this warning and entered into a relationship with someone who was not also a believer. It simply does not work. God knows that, and that is why He put that warning so clear in His Word.
Number two, if the person is saved, do you see evidence of their relationship with Christ in their day to day life. The Bible clearly tells us in Ephesians chapter two that salvation is by God's grace and our faith. No amount of good works can save you. However, anyone who is truly saved should have good works flow from their life because of that relationship. One of the best verses in the Bible is that "you will know a tree by the fruit it bears." What that is basically saying is that if you profess to have a relationship with Christ, it should be evident in your day to day life. Anyone who is truly saved, should have the evidence of their salvation visible in how they live.
Number three, is building a spiritual foundation to your relationship. One of the big catch phrases on our college campuses, and even high schools is "hooking up." It basically means to have anonymous sex with someone. NO feelings are supposed to be involved. Just have sex and go, kind of like a McDonald's drive thru. If this isn't one of the most hideous perversions of God's plan for a man and woman, I don't know what is. The sad fact is however, most couples build a foundation together based on their looks, sadly in many cases on sex, based on many things, other than their faith. If you can't build a real spiritual foundation to your relationship, then that relationship will have little chance of standing the test of time. You build it by praying together, reading the Word together, worshipping together, and finding ways to serve the Lord together. These are ways to build that spiritual foundation to your relationship that can carry you through the most difficult times all relationships experience.
I love you and care about you so much. I will be praying for you. I pray today that if you are looking to start a new relationship, or are even in one now, that you will read and pray over these BIG THREE. Again, they do not insure a wonderful and happy relationship, but they are instead a starting point. They are actually what I would call pre-requisites, since if they don't exist, you are on very dangerous ground. God loves you very much. He only wants the best for your life. That is why He has given you some guidelines.
While relationships are very emotionally packed, He has given you some clear guidelines so that you don't allow your emotions to get you into problems, some of which could follow you the rest of your life. Again, it is no accident God has allowed you to read this today, so open your heart and know that He is speaking directly to you today. Make the BIG THREE your starting point, and DON'T COMPROMISE!!!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ, Bill Keller