Relationships can be defined as the mutual dealings, connections or feeling that exist between two parties, countries, people or business. Relationships exist where there is a form of interaction between two parties. Unfortunately, when people hear the word “relationship”, the first thing they think of is affection, love or emotional involvement between two opposite sex. Even though this is not incorrect in some instances, it is however incomplete because relationships as defined above goes beyond emotional or sexual interaction. Relationships do exist between father and children, husband & wife, work colleagues, business associates, countries and regions, neighbours, God and His creations.
In fact, no one can exist outside of relationships. Imagine the relationship between man and his environment. Human beings inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide while plants and trees inhale carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen. It is therefore safe to conclude that there is a relationship between man and the trees in his surrounding. Every good thing in your life will happen within the relationships that you are involved in. Your relationships in life is more important to your physical health and well being than the food you eat, your daily exercise and even your inherited genes. Every relationships needs a nurturing environment to grow and blossom, hence you are required and expected to do everything within your power to add values to your relationships. The Bible says if its up to you, live in peace with all men.
In life, if you go out looking for friends, they are very scarce but if you go out being friendly, you will make a lot of friends. Every relationship you are involved in will either add values to you or take values from you. Even though there is nothing wrong with this, the important thing is to keep it balance after all balance is the key to life because life is lived on the platform of giving and receiving, sowing and reaping. You give some and you take some. Unfortunately, a lot of people live their lives from a selfish point of view. They get all they can, can all they get, seat on their can and spoil whatever is left for others and then they wonder why they don’t have friends!
Before you can add value to your relationships, you must possess some for your self. You can only give what you have. The Bible commands us to love our neighbours as much as we love ourselves but if you don’t love yourself, what chance has your neighbours? So before you can add values to others, you must ensure you have the following values in your life.
a. Have the fear of God – it is the beginning of wisdom.
The fear of God will keep you within the straight and narrow path to success in life, help you to be focused and ensure your priorities in life are right. When you look at the 10 commandments for instance, the first 4 are about honouring God and the last 6 are about honouring your fellow human beings.
b. Be truthful to yourself.
It is a bad thing to be deceived but is almost an unpardonable sin to lie to yourself. If you cannot be open and honest with yourself, how can you be with others? Remember, you are the most trusted person that you know and you cannot trust yourself, then the people in relationship with you have no chance at all. But when you add this value to yourself and live your life in truth and honesty, your relationships will not have to fast and pray about what you say or do, thereby adding values to them.
c. Live your life on the following principles
d. Practice the principle of CAN I [constant and never changing improvement]
Having done all these, now you are in a good position to add values to your relationships as listed below.
1. Show respect
2. Be genuine – be real with people
3. Be a good listener – you don’t learn anything by talking, you only learn when you listen.
4. Always give the other party the advantage and not take advantage of them.
5. Have a servant heart.
When you do all these and rule you life by them, you will have a wonderful and happy relationships experience for the rest of your life.