Prioritizing Relationships

I hope you read our theme reveal post last week.  We are excited to dive into different facets of community with you this year.  There are times when we must address prioritizing relationships.  Especially how it relates to engaging others we share proximity with.

Recently our family was dining at a local restaurant and were seated by the bar.  Three young men came in and plopped down and began interacting about their day.  It wasn’t long before there were a lot of F-bombs being dropped casually into the conversation.  I am by nature a non-confrontational person, but there are limits to my patience.  I had to loudly speak up and remind them that they were in a community with tiny ones and it was inappropriate to speak that way.  They complied and we all went on with our meals.

Moments like these take discernment and decisions.  My main priority was not to be harsh to others or bring shame into their lives.  It was to protect my family.  It is easy to choose between strangers and my children.

Different relationships also require the same discernment, although the distinction becomes more difficult.  How do we make a decision on who to give priority to if it is two important people in our life?  For example, if you have two close friends that are asking for a commitment during the same time one of them must be turned down.  Decision making in these instances can be determined upon the strength of the relationship.  Or it could be the interest in the event that is taking place.  Another thought is the recent contact with each individual and choosing to spend the time with the one you haven’t seen recently.

However, I feel the most important aspect to take into consideration is how you handle each person involved.  Not every RSVP requires an explanation of why the invitation was turned down.  That being said, how you say yes or no is often more important than your answer.  If you send a regret, imagine the emotional impact it would have if you sent an encouraging message that included a request to get together at a different time.

Love As An Action

As we grow in these little relationship details, we get closer to love as an action.  If we are serious about deepening relationships with acquaintances and friends, this is a path we will want to travel down.  We may repeat this phrase over and over and it bears repeating here.  We were created for relationship.  God’s original intent was for us to be in close relationship with Him and each other.  Due to the fall of mankind, our relationships with God and each other are effected.

Once we offer our broken way of relating with others to God, He can help us walk in wisdom.  It is possible to relate well in all of our relationships.  It takes effort and intentionality.  And it sure is worth it.

Have you had to address prioritizing relationships recently?  Please let us know how you responded.  Have a great week!

Jake and Shannon

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