By Jill Briscoe
How do you cultivate strong, relationships? Do you have joy in people? Do they have joy in you? Who in your life needs your delight? Lloyd Ogilvie offers this Christian relationship advice, "we must delight in the person to whom we want to relate significantly.” He suggests we need to take an honest inventory of the delight people get from us! Someone needs you to delight in them, to have them “in your heart.”
Listen to Paul’s rich language of delighted love: “God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 1:8). I think I understand what he is saying.
Shortly after Stuart and I were married, we were sitting in our new living room after what had not been the best dinner Stuart had ever tasted. Perhaps it should have been he instead of I who was experiencing heart pangs. But be that as it may, sitting there in the cozy quietude of our home, I began to cry.
“Whatever is wrong?” inquired the new bridegroom.
“I want my mother,” sobbed the bride. I can’t describe the sensation better than to borrow Paul’s words. At that moment, I yearned with a homesick affection for my mom! I had her in my heart, though not in my living room!
Do you have a heart for your mother, your husband, your neighbors, your giggling band of middle school choir girls? Do you know how much they need you to delight in them? Do you have them in your heart and do they know it? Such Holy Spirit affection builds strong, relationships - which are forever relationships! What joy!
‘“I have you in my heart.’” ~ Philippians 1:7
Lord, I know that my relationship with you has to be more important than any other relationship in my life. You also know my heart and can see that I do have great love for my family and my friends. You know that there are times I want to receive more from these relationships, with you and with others, than I give. Help me to turn my affections outward and to show delight in new and fresh ways for you and the loved ones around me. Amen.
Just Between Us (JBU) is here to support you on your journey to build strong, meaningful relationships. Our articles and Christian relationship advice can serve as roadmaps for your journey. Take a moment to read one that speaks to you. Learn from the experience of others and perhaps find comfort and encouragement in your own quest to cultivate lasting relationships.