Jesus was asked: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments. Matt 22:36-40 (Amp)
How many of you made New Year’s resolutions this year? Most of us do in some degree or fashion. Most of the time it has to do with our heath… “I am going to get in better shape this year.” or our weight… “I am going to lose a certain amount of weight this year.” Some have to do with work… “I am going to get that promotion or sale the most this year.”
Most of our resolutions seem to have to do with something for me, myself and I. My weight, my health, my job, my etc. What if we could change our resolutions this year to reflect relationships. I believe this is critical to everything going on in our lives. When we have relationship problems which we do not deal with in positive ways we can sometimes let the problem grow to the point where it takes over our better selves. That one bad relationship can spread to affect other relationships in a negative way.
So what should we do if we want to make relationships a resolution for 2015? I think I would begin by coming to a clear understanding of what God wants me to do. Know that Jesus said: “the two greatest commandments are to love God with all your heart, mind, and soul, and to love your neighbor as yourself.” These words of Jesus must become words we live by… words that guide our lives. Once we start believing that loving God and neighbor makes a difference in us and all that we do… we will seek to love more.
The second thing for me would be to realize that I am part of the broken relationship. I have a role it in. So I need to examine how things became broken and the role I played in it. I need to meditate upon it, pray about it and come to a calm understanding of what the situation has become.
Then I need to take the first step toward repairing it. So I make the call, the visit, the move. I cannot wait for the other person to come to me. I take the first step. It may not work. It may never work. However, we need to make the move believing that if we will keep our cool, swallow a little pride, and put restoration of the relationship above all agendas, it has a better chance of working.
So change your mind, your heart, your spirit to know that God wants you to love him and your neighbor. Wrap any broken relationship in prayer and meditation, and with God make the move to heal the relationship. You just may make a best friend.
Dear Lord, I know I allow broken relationships to exist perhaps even foster deeper divides in those breaks. Help me in 2015 to learn to love you more by loving my neighbors, especially the ones with whom I hold ill feelings. Do this in and through Jesus. Amen.