God’s desire for us is to work together in unity and peace. But as we look around the world today, there are broken relationships everywhere and division among His people. Did we miss the mark on expressing God’s heart for relationships?
Trillia Newbell reminds us of the importance of enjoying the relationships that God has created, and stewarding them the way He intended them to be.
“We can be tempted to think that we can do life alone. We can be alone and we can isolate ourselves, but throughout all of scripture you see God making people for people.”
Scripture continues to provide examples for how important relationships are to God in fulfilling His purposes and plans.
“Adam was alone and it wasn’t good so He created Eve. Then we see a church and it’s built with many parts and many people.”
“Throughout scriptures you see all of these references to one another; to encourage one another, to spur one another on, to admonish one another, to sing over one another, to kiss one another. We are in constant encouragement to be in relationship in some form and that’s where I see in the scriptures the importance of relationships.”
Where did we go wrong? Trillia points out that our relationship troubles started after the fall in Genesis 3. She elaborates on the fallen nature of our flesh.
“We have a battle with our sin nature that we have to fight against. One of the things we have to remember is our fight isn’t ultimately against flesh and blood. We have an enemy that would want to divide people and keep us bitter.”
Rather than allowing our hearts to become bitter, we are encouraged to love one another, forgive one another, and bless one another continually. This will honor God’s design for relationships and bring healing and unity to the body of Christ.
“We see that throughout scripture, Paul addressing the church and trying to help them to solve conflicts, repent in various ways, and to not elevate one person against the other. There’s a lot that we have to battle against, but as one author has said, ‘relationships are a mess worth making,’ and they really are.”
Trillia J. Newbell is the author of Enjoy: Finding the Freedom to Delight Daily in God's Good Gifts. A gifted speaker, she regularly speaks about femininity, the church, theology and diversity to women in the United States and around the world. She is the Director of Community Outreach for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.God's heart for relationships