Unhelathy Relationships


Pastor Top is bi-vocational pastor of Little Oak Baptist Church somewhere in a rural area.

It seemed to Top most folks were upset about something. At work the men seemed to bicker about everything. Top was accused of favoritism, sending people home from work, and not praying equally for all workers and their families. At least he wasn’t in trouble for praying. Society as a whole seemed to be set on an antagonistic mindset. The nation seemed divided politically and this is affecting every fiber of society.
The church didn’t seem to be doing much better. Folks in several churches seemed out of sorts, families were often struggling with their personal relationships bringing harsh feelings into the church. Folks were divided over the prior election and the movie the Shack. Top knew this isn’t what Jesus had in mind for his follower’s behavior. Jesus said In John 13:34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Jesus tells us plainly how we love people is an indicator of our relationship with Christ. He went on to say everyone will know of our faith by how you love people. Top knew he must find a way to love people and communicate a depth of love that only Christ could give. Top knew his love demonstration had to begin at home and work. How do you love construction workers? Simple you show them you care. Coffee and doughnuts were not the answer. Caring for people meant caring for their family and learning what was going on in their families. Top was the pastor of the church yet he had to become the Pastor of the Job Site. Serving the church family Top would need to lead them to love each other by loving the folks more than ever. To really love people he would need to rise above the petty complaints and griping. He would need to challenge people to find ways to love those folks God put around them. Next he would set a positive example by living out Hebrews 3:13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.
Encouragement was so easy it became hard for people. Generally speaking folks had fallen into a mindset that complaining was chosen over encouragement. Top knew the secret to overcoming complaining was found in Jesus teaching in John 13. Love as Jesus loved. Jesus put aside his life, feelings, time, and energy to show people how he loved them. Very rarely did he appear angry. He didn’t seem to complain yet he warned his followers not to become hateful, bitter, and look down on others. In fact Jesus warned all of us not to think more of ourselves than others. That could be at the root of complaining. Love one another as I have loved you were the words of Jesus. Love others sacrificially putting their feelings ahead of mine. Love others so they will see Jesus in me. Love those which use me for their own agenda. Love until it becomes a life habit.
Top was beginning to realize he too had fallen into the habit of criticism and complaining being his first response. He was challenged by Jesus to live out love.

Leave a Reply