Restoring Broken Relationships

October 2005 Newsletter

By Pastor Rob |  September 30, 2005

It seems that everywhere you go these days, you hear about broken relationships. Husbands and wives, lifelong friends, co-workers, even church people are living in broken fellowship. God did not create us to live in broken fellowship with one another. He has created us to love one another and to live in harmony with each other.

1 Peter 3:8-9 Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.

Broken fellowship between Christians is a disgraceful testimony to the world. It is not the way God intended for us to live. He desires for us to always, work at reconciliation. The Apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:10 
 
I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.

Reconciliation is hard work, but here are seven biblical steps to restoring fellowship. (If you have been reading the “Purpose driven Life by Rick Warren” you can find these steps located in Chapter 20.)

1. Talk to God before talking to the Person. Talk to God about your problem. If you will pray about it first instead of gossiping to a friend you might find that God will either change your heart or change the other person without your help. James 4:1-2

2. Always take the initiative. It does not matter whether you are the offender or the offended: God expects you to make the first move. Matt 5:23-24

3. Sympathize with their feelings. Use your ears more than your mouth. Before attempting to solve any disagreement, you must first listen to people’s feelings. Paul advised; Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4

 

4. Confess your part of the conflict.

If you are serious about restoring a relationship, you should begin by admitting your own mistakes and sin. We all see things more clearly, when we get the plank out of our own eye first and then deal with the speck in our neighbor’s eye. Matt. 7:5

5. Attack the problem not the person. You cannot fix the problem if you’re consumed with fixing the blame. You must choose between the two. Proverbs 15:1 says A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

6. Cooperate as much as possible.

The Bible says we are to do everything possible on our part to live in peace with everybody. Peace always comes at a price; it might cost you your pride, or your self-centeredness. For the sake of fellowship, do your best to compromise, adjust to others, and show preference to what they need. Romans 12:18, 10, Philippians 2:3

7. Emphasize reconciliation, not resolution. It is unrealistic to expect everyone to agree about everything. Reconciliation focuses on the relationship, while resolution focuses on the problem. When we focus on reconciliation, the problem loses significance and often becomes irrelevant. God expects unity, not uniformity. John 17:20-23

With whom do you need to restore a relationship? Don’t delay – do it today.

 

 

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