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Daily Devotionals

Day 16 – Issue 16

todayMay 1, 2015 10

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Be Still Know

Ephesians 3:15 NLT

‘The Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.’

I have been remarried five years. Previous experience counts for little since every individual is different. The relational skills built with Katey didn’t naturally pass across to my friendship with Jayne. Different people require different things and react in distinct ways. No surprises, since God made each one of us unique.

Relationship history plays a critical role in our reactions and responses. Jayne, having been abandoned by her husband, had deep feelings of rejection flowing throughout her psyche. Social background and school experience had themselves laid the foundations for this deep sense of unworthiness and expectation of rejection. My self-esteem, on the other hand, was overinflated and I had a consequent sense of shame if I was belittled or exposed in any way. My discomfort led to a strongly defensive reaction designed to overwhelm and silence my detractors. While love flowered between us, it risked being broken in the storms that erupted.

On reflection, after the storms, to which we both contributed, we were aware of how our historic construction, a combination of factors that lay beyond our control as well as many that we had been willing contributors to, determined our behaviours. What to do?

In recognising that our family line begins at the cross of Christ, and that every family is named and known by God, we realised that the hard work of pursuing Christ is expressed in learning to live by the values made available to us by the cross. It may well be that there is within me a whirlwind of reaction when I hear something said or feel demeaned in some way. Yet, this is always my fractured human reaction to such feelings and the internal narrative they initiate within my head. Learning to take responsibility for, rather than remain subject to, this narrative is the first principle of love. Without it love will falter and fail. With it we learn to live by grace – which by definition is always sacrificial yet in every instance authentic.

QUESTION: How has your history and experience shaped your relationships today?

PRAYER: Lord, you made me and you know me. All my fears and all my failings…keep remoulding me in the image of your Son, Jesus.

Written by: Matt Weet

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