You’ve finally found your squad in church and they get you perfectly! They’re like brothers and sisters from another mother and you’re sure nothing can ever come between you. Your wavelengths are like clones of each other. Sure, they’d have quirks that irritate you a bit, but you can live with that. Until that fateful day –
- Someone promised to go with you and then cancelled.
- You see a photo of them together on social media and no one invited you.
- You’re trying to prove a point, but they seem to be ganging up to prove you wrong.
- You’re going through a tough time and no one seemed to care.
- Someone had to correct you and you think they didn’t do it right.
Looks like it’s #SquadGoals no more.
Your quest to finding the perfect squad in church must end the soonest.
I love how the church provides us with a community we can share lives with and I love how our movement puts so much premium on relationships. Thus, “Discipleship is relationship.” and “We are better together.” have easily become a household battlecry. But I realized there are things we need to know and understand as we walk through the Christian journey with our newfound family.
1. Our most important relationship is our relationship with Jesus.
If glitches in our relationships cause us to grow cold in our relationship with God, we should be concerned. When we begin to find it hard to worship, listen, and obey God whenever we are offended, it is time to ask: Is Jesus still the anchor of my faith or have I made people the basis of my ability to stay faithful?
2. Our relationship with Jesus should fuel our earthly relationships, not the other way around.
It is the love of Jesus that saved us. Our ability to love others unwaveringly, unconditionally, comes from an understanding that we can love much because we are known fully, forgiven entirely, and loved deeply by the King of kings and the Lord of lords. “We love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19).”
This excerpt from a book I read a few months back perfectly encapsulates this point:
“The shattered relationship between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit at the cross provides the basis for our reconciliation. No other relationship ever suffered more than what Father, Son, and Holy Spirit endured when Jesus hung on the cross and cried, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ Jesus was willing to be the rejected Son so that our families would know reconciliation. Jesus was willing to become the forsaken friend so that we could have loving friendships. Jesus was willing to be the rejected Lord so that we could live in loving submission to one another. Jesus was willing to be the forsaken brother so that we could have godly relationships. Jesus was willing to be the crucified King so that our communities would experience peace.”
– Timothy S. Lane, Relationships: A Mess Worth Making
We would think that relationship challenges reveal the kind of friends we have. There is truth to that. But it is also true that a strain in our relationships reveal the condition of our hearts.
Do we stay in relationships to get or do we stay to give?
Do we expect others to be gracious with our imperfections and then expect them to be perfect or do we constantly acknowledge that we are all a work in progress, and that we have to constantly choose to understand and forgive every day?
Are our #SquadGoals a list of expectations we want our friends to meet or are they goals we can work towards together?