Ever wonder why even your relationships with other believers often fail or discourage you? Ever question where God is in those relationships? Ever read an article about it? Well, now you get to.
So you’re a Christian and they’re a Christian and you’re both friends. That’s great – really, it is! But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have a godly relationship with them. In fact, a majority of the time God isn’t at the center of our relationships with other believers. And that’s a huge problem.
So here’s what I’ve done – I’ve put together a few elements that should be KEY when it comes to having a strong, godly relationship with another believer.
This is by far the MOST. IMPORTANT. PART. EVER. (Did I make that clear enough?)
1 Corinthians 15:1-2 says, “Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.” (NIV)
Notice the bold words? It is BY the Gospel we are SAVED. How can it not be the center of our daily lives?? Imagine every part of you centered on the Gospel and what Christ has done for us. Now, imagine being in a relationship that has that SAME focus. That’s what we must strive for.
Realize that You’re Both Sinners (Readily Forgive)
Romans 3:23-24 says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”
We are ALL SINNERS. As you’re building and growing in a relationship with another believer, or anyone really, this NEEDS to be at the forefront of your mind. Because life is not perfect and sometimes people make mistakes and friendships falter. But here’s the thing… Jesus has chosen to forgive ALL believers…not just you. (Crazy, right??) So when it comes to your relationship with another believer, you need to be willing and prepared to readily forgive that someone. Just as Jesus forgave YOU.
God loves you with an unfathomable love and calls us to love others just the same. Friendships can be tough; but we need to do our best to love them despite the hardship. Love faithfully, and sacrificially, and in ALL circumstances.
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.” (Proverbs 17:17 NIV)
Build Each Other Up
1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” (NIV)
This includes everything from being an accountability partner for them, praying for them, having Gospel-centered conversations with them, speaking the truth (in love), and just being there for them in general.
“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” (Proverbs 27:17 NIV)