Broken Friendships and Offense
Some people are in your life forever (family, children, parents, special friends) some are only in your life for a season. Some seasons are longer than others.
BUT everyone is in your life for a reason! My challenge (and your challenge) is to discover the reason we are in each other's life!
I have often been broken when people have walked out of my life. I know others have been saddened when it seemed like I was disconnecting a friendship, rejecting their love, etc…but when God begins to move you into a new season, not everyone who is in your life now can or will go with you into your next season in God.
People are often offended when a separation comes…and that offense develops an attitude against the one who seemed to abandon the relationship.
God help us to gain the maturity to know and understand, it may not be sin or rebellion or a loss of love or even "new friends" that are severing a relationship (not talking about marriage); it may be God moving both parties in another direction that is bringing all of us into our Divine Destiny.
People may be in our lives for a season…but everybody is in our life for a reason!
It's our job to understand, discover, acknowledge the reason we are in each other's lives and get all we can from the time together; because we will need what we learn in this season in the place where God is taking us!
Things to ponder about relationships:
People that do not increase you will eventually decrease you. Those who do not build up will eventually tear down.
People who do not encourage you will eventually discourage you.
People, who do not completely embrace you and the call of God on your life, may eventually work to destroy you and the call of God on your life!
1. Take stock of what you are gleaning from every relationship. Not every relationship will produce good fruit in your life. Right relationships are wonderful; they produce peace, true (agape) love, encouragement, focus and fulfillment. Other relationships produce distractions, disappointments, drama and destruction. EVERYTHING and EVERYONE that distracts, discourages you from pursuing God and His calling on your life will only produce destruction and disappointment. They plant seeds of hardship and failure. Don't be afraid to disconnect from people who are not conducive to imparting something in your for your next season in God! Only keep productive relationships!
2. Discern those who disagree with your goals. I'm not saying we only need "yes men" in our lives. We need people who will challenge our thinking and our motives; not with a spirit of contention, but acknowledging iron sharpens iron. But some people are not mature enough to disagree with you and not become contentious. Often those disagreements lead to sorrow, bitterness, confusion and yes, separation. Learn from the unhappy voices around you, but never come into alignment and agreement with someone who is totally against the purpose and destiny God has called you to! Know when to allow people close to you, and know when to let them go. But always leave the door open for future restoration.
I can remember as a Youth Pastor back in the early 90's our youth group began to mature and separate. I didn't realize at the time this was a God thing and that it was the Spirit that was moving them (and us) into their next season of life. Some married, others went to school in another city; others moved away to begin a career.
At the time I thought they were abandoning Pam and me. I felt betrayed and crushed! One by one as these youth departed from us I thought our whole life and ministry was collapsing. God began to show me that I, without realizing it had tried to make these young people who were still on fire for God become co-dependent on me for their pipeline to God. But in reality I had become co-dependent on them. But when I let them go, God blessed them…and blessed us with new direction for the new people He wanted Pam and I to be involved with.
At the start of this year, the Spirit whispered into my heart one day as I was preparing to preach "…restoration begins today!" Since that day, one by one, there has been a reconnection with many of those young people we have at one time or another had influence with. Better than 90% of them are either in ministry, or still sold out to Jesus!
Pastors and ministers: learn when to hold people close; and know when to let them go! It's real easy to let the contentious people go, but some will have to let good people walk out of your life!
Child of God, let those people go who seem to be walking out of your life right now; don't allow bitterness, anger and confusion attempt to bind them to you; Not everyone who starts with you in this journey called life stays with you forever! And God never allows you to lose something or asks you to let go of anything, that He doesn't already have a replacement for it.
"I hear the Spirit of the Lord saying, you cannot take any baggage with you into your next season in God! Let those things and people and places go that are causing bitterness, sorrow and frustration; and see the healing balm of Gilead pour into your Spirit bringing healing and hope. And yes, for many I hear the Lord say, I will restore some people who have been absent from your lives for some time; and as I do, they will have a new word, and fresh anointing to deposit in you and you into them; it will never be like it once was says the Lord, but I will make things better than they have ever been, for I AM the God of Restoration says the Lord!"
The best is yet to come!