Sunday, July 23, 2006

Dealing with a Troubled Relationship

1. Thank God for giving you a glimmer of hope that He can help you through this difficult time in this troubled relationship. (Psalm 16:7-8)
2. Ask the Lord how to proceed. Be open to His leading. Be willing to wait quietly after you've prayed. (Psalm 37:7)
3. Honestly tell the Lord that what you've done has contributed to the problem.
4. If you have any known sin it must be confessed to the Lord. Don't overlook the power that little things have had over you, such as feelings of irritation, confusion, unwillingness to talk about the problem, keeping too busy to think about it, adopting a phony "I'm OK" attitude. (1 John 1:8)
5. For your own use write out your perspective of the problem, even if it's only a few sentences. Seeing it on paper helps bring focus.
6. Keep in mind that if for some reason you are not able to talk about the problem with the other person(s) you can still make progress, even by yourself.
7. You must be willing to forgive the other person(s), even if they aren't willing or able to agree that what they did was hurtful. When you relinquish your "right" to feel unhappy about them and the situation then you allow God to work actively in His own wisdom and in His own timing. (Colossians 3:13)
8. You must forgive yourself for falling into the sin or the problem. When you do not own up to your part and consciously forgive yourself you will give the devil an open door to come and stir things up again. (11 Corinthians 7:10)
9. You must receive forgiveness from the Lord and from your own heart. Speak it aloud. Write it down with your name and date. (1 John 1:9)
10. Be willing to take steps to bring healing to the other person as the Lord leads you. There might not be one big, all-encompassing thing that you are to do. There may instead be many little things. (11 Timothy 2:22-23)
11. Do not get discouraged. God is always faithful to His Word. He is actively working on your behalf. In fact, sometimes things seem to get worse before they get better. When you are close to a breakthrough the devil may intensify his attack. Let that remind you to come closer to the Lord. (Philippians 1:9-11)
12. Trust God for the healing of the relationship in His wisdom and in His timing. He wants to build your character and make you a godly person. Use this to bring you closer to God. (John 15:9-11) Continue reading His Word. Trust and obey.
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By Elaine Hardt ©1992