Making a Connection — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

Making a Connection — Morning Devotions

Life is full of connections. And our most important connection is the one we have with God - for it shapes all of our other connections.

By Chris WittsTuesday 4 Jun 2024Morning Devotions with Chris WittsFaithReading Time: 1 minute

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I wondered if you’ve experienced a conversation with someone lately where you felt that a really helpful connection was made. Occasionally, when you’re talking with someone else, it’s almost like you’ve found a soul mate, someone who does understand you.

You move beyond the high. How are you? You get beyond that and it’s a great feeling. On the other hand, have you had one of those conversations in which you just don’t connect? No matter how hard you try, you feel you just can’t get through to that person. You could be talking to your teenager and they look at you as if you’re from another planet. I’m sure that we want others to understand us, to know how we feel. And research has shown that good relationships help people live longer and deal with stress better.

They have healthier habits. They have stronger resistance to colds. For example, in a 2010 review of 148 studies, researchers found that social relationships improve the length of your life. True people in healthy long term relationships are 50% less likely to die prematurely than people without them. And so in terms of life expectancy, living without these relationships is as unhealthy as smoking. Humans are social beings, and the quality of our relationship affects our mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. In the Bible, we read Proverbs 27:9. It says A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.

The call of connection

Now there is something about a close relationship that does refresh us. God created us for loving relationships. And when we are appreciated simply for who we are and not what we can do for others, we do have that sense of understanding. People understand us. They relate to us. Unfortunately, most of us are never taught how to connect with others. It’s certainly not taught at school.

Some of us might not have learned healthy patterns at home, either. What does the Bible say about relating to others? The first thing is be committed to the relationship. Proverbs 18:24 in the Old Testament, says a man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. To put it another way, it’s better to have one reliable friend than several unreliable ones.

An important key in relationships is being committed to that other person. Do you remember when you made a major transition in your life? For example, you left school, you moved jobs or you moved cities. You probably made promises. Oh, yes, Look, I’ll keep in touch. But if you like most people when you move, you connect with new people. You weren’t really committed to that relationship before, but it’s not all bad. You can only be friends with so many people.

But if you want to really connect with a particular person, you’ve got to be committed to that relationship. You’ve got to say, Well, look, I’m going to be that person’s friend no matter what. You don’t need many friends in this life, but you do need a few good ones. In fact, it’s better to have two good friends than 1000 acquaintances, And the key difference between a friend and an acquaintance is commitment again. In the Bible, Proverbs 17:17, says a friend is always loyal and a brother is born to help in time of need.

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Now there are going to be times of adversity in which true friends are needed. This will be the time that, unfortunately, some of your friends will disappear. But a true friend is always loyal. When you made a mistake, friends are in your corner and they see you through. When everybody else thinks that you’re through, they walk in. When everybody walks out, they’re there even when you don’t deserve it. So every close relationship begins with a commitment.

And what about being willing to forgive? If you’re in a relationship with someone long enough, there are going to be times where you’re going to need to forgive. We’ve got to learn how to forgive offences and again, the Bible says in Proverbs 17:9. Those who forgive faults foster love, but those who repeat them ruin relationships. Friendship requires that ability to forget. Harping on about the past has destroyed many marriages and friendships. Proverbs 19:11 – people with a good sense restrain their anger. They earn esteem by overlooking wrongs. That’s a good translation. And one of the benefits of dealing honestly with problems is that you can then move on and forgive them.

Let’s Pray

Heavenly Father, help us in that area of work, of making a connection with others, making a good connection Lord. It is difficult. Sometimes people are difficult. I need your grace, your strength and your power to get along with people. You’ve made all of us in your image. We’re all your Children. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.