I have seen so many people put up with mistreatment, selfishness, and disrespect, and settle for less than what they deserved and what God would have for them. Not fully understanding their self-worth, a worth so valuable that only the blood of Jesus Christ was valuable enough to pay for it. But the sad part is that we often make excuses for dealing with these things. I, myself, have been there. I’m not just talking about marital relationships, but I’m speaking of all relationships including dating, friendships, and family relationships as well.
We often tolerate mistreatment in these relationships for various reasons. It could be low self-esteem, fear of the relationship ending and being alone, starting over, or even in some cases, the loss of financial comfort. Whatever the reasons, know that you are worth so much more. Often times, people don’t even know what a healthy relation is and therefore, constantly subject themselves to unhealthy ones.
Friendships should be with those who you trust will have your best interest at heart, are supportive of you, and are willing to tell you the truth even if it hurts at that moment, knowing it is for your good. One who will not lead you to, nor put you in danger, or in an unhealthy compromising position. True friends are those who will be there with you when you’re crying or laughing. They can rejoice with you, as well as pray for you and with you. They will stand by you through the rough patches in your life as well as the smooth ones, and not just come around when times are good. You see they will be truly happy for you when wonderful things happen in your life and not envious or jealous. A friend would never advise you to do anything that would cause you harm or disgrace and will never be disrespectful towards you or any of your other relationships (i.e. marriage). This doesn’t mean that they will agree with all of your decisions, but the mutual respect you have for one another will allow you to agree to disagree. (Proverbs 17:17 NIV) 17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.
Dating can be an exciting and nervous time in our lives, especially because this is during the time we are getting to know a person, finding out what we have in common, if we have the same values, similar goals, religious beliefs, and if we enjoy each other’s company. It’s not the time to see if you can deal with them treating you like crap, disrespecting you, and not treating you with the respect and dignity you deserve. It’s not the time to find out if you can handle the verbal and/or physical abuse they give! NO! If you are experiencing this, then this is the time “to hit the road” and hit it fast! Remember the saying, “run and don’t look back.” Understanding that what you get during the dating period, most likely is what you will get as the relationship continues, possibly culminating in marriage. Yes, I understand there are times that people tend to be one way dating and another way after marriage, but truth be told, there are always signs, no matter how subtle they are. Maybe we’ve just chosen to ignore them. Simply stating, if a person cheats on you while you are dating, more than likely he/she will cheat again! If a person lies to you, more than likely he/she will lie again. If he/she hits you or are verbally abusive, more than likely he/she will do that again. Am I making it clearer now? Notice I stated, more than likely. I say this because change can come with help and through “Christ.” But that’s a chance you will have to take. Don’t lower your standards, nor sacrifice your relation with Christ for anyone. God will not send you anyone that will pull you away from Him or make you choose between the two. Keep in mind you are only dating. Life’s too short to be wasting your time! (1Corinthians 15:33 NIV) 33 Do not be misled:“Bad company corrupts good character.”[e]
Marriage truly is a blessing when both individuals are equally yoke, walking together in Christ yet having their own personal relationship with Him. There’s joy in having that person as your best friend, confidant, lover, companion, motivator, accountability partner, spiritual partner, financial partner, parenting partner, travel partner, prayer partner, and more. There is comfort in knowing that you have each other’s back. This doesn’t mean that challenges won’t come and some are probably saying that you don’t have to have Christ in your life to have this. Let me say this, it’s much easier when you do, for marriage mirrors God’s covenant relationship with His people. Marriage does not complete us, only Christ does; but, by applying biblical principles to marriage gives us a stronger foundation. Marriage is honorable! Treat it as that! (Mark 10:7-9 NIV) 7 ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,[b]8 and the two will become one flesh.’[c]So they are no longer two, but one flesh.9 Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (2Corinthians 6:14-15 NIV) 14 Do not be yoked togetherwith unbelievers.For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?15 What harmony is there between Christ and Belial[b]?Or what does a believerhave in common with an unbeliever?
The common threads between these relationships are love and respect. Knowing your self-worth and not allowing yourself to be torn down as a human being which is not what God created us for. We were created out of the love that Christ has for us. So much love that He knew us before we were even formed in our mother’s womb, and He gave His life for us so that we may not perish but have everlasting life through Him. It’s not His desire for any of us to be in unhealthy relationships. That’s why it is important that we have a relationship with Him so that we may seek Him in all thy ways, and receive His guidance for our lives. Everything that looks good for you is not, and although no relationship is perfect there is one that is. (John 3:16-17 NIV) 16 For God so lovedthe world that he gavehis one and only Son,that whoever believesin him shall not perish but have eternal life.17 For God did not send his Son into the worldto condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
Understand your worth and know that you are truly loved by God.(Psalms 139:14 NIV) 14 I praise youbecause I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.