You are currently viewing The Importance of Investing 4 – Investing in Relationships

The Importance of Investing 4 – Investing in Relationships

The Importance of Investing Day 4: Investing in Relationships

“Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.’” (Genesis 2:18, ESV)

“But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today’…” (Hebrews 3:13, ESV)

Just looking at the title, my mind is filled with many names and faces of people who are so special to me and have been instrumental in my life as a Christian. I think of their encouragement when I felt down or the words of affirmation from a loving friend. I think of countless meals and coffee dates spent sitting across from people who have a genuine care and concern for me. I remember times when I felt so discouraged and distraught, needing the listening ears and arms of a friend. Then I wonder, when have I been willing to take time to just sit with someone and hear about their life and their day without trying to talk about myself? Do I have a genuine care for those who might have different opinions about certain things? 

One thing our society likes to idolize is being independent and only needing ourselves in life. Independence, in one way, is not a terrible thing, because to a degree we all need some independence. This gives us the ability and the drive to go out in the community and get involved. But it can become dangerous when independence is idolized and a person withdraws into themselves. The Christian life was not designed to be spent completely alone. We read in Genesis 2 that God created Eve because “it is not good that the man be alone.” From the very beginning, humans were designed as relational beings. When we operate like we are an independent island, there is no one there to pick us up when we fall, no one to encourage us, no one to correct us when we might be going down a wrong path. Not only that, but it’s just sad to think of having no one to share our feelings, thoughts, and experiences with. 

So how can we focus on maintaining and enriching those relationships? I think of the five love languages in which everyone has different things that hold greater significance to them in a relationship. I won’t go into the details of each language, but I think it’s important to first consider how our friends and family most like to be supported. They might feel appreciated and loved if we give them words of affirmation to encourage and lift them up. Or they might really just love to spend time talking and catching up with their friends or family. We can approach and appreciate those around us in the way they feel most comfortable and loved. 

One way to invest in relationships is to be in tune with the needs of those around us. We should regularly ask about their needs and stay updated on anything going on in their lives out of a genuine interest in them. We can take that even one step farther—we can pray for them specifically. It’s such an encouragement to me when someone checks in on me and lets me know they are praying for my current situation. When they continue to ask me for updates weeks and months down the road, I feel appreciated and loved. 

Another way to invest in our relationships is to spend quality time enjoying and sharing our thoughts and feelings. It’s hard for a relationship to flourish if we never spend time together. That doesn’t necessarily mean it needs to be in person, as sometimes distance may separate us. In our day we can continue to stay in touch using technology to text, make a phone call, or even video call one another. But if you are able to go visit that person, it’s even more special. I have fond memories of going to visit friends in other states and the fun times we had catching up with each other. 

The above verse from Hebrews 3 says that every day, as long as it is called “today,” we are to exhort, or encourage, one another; this shows the urgency of encouraging those around us. We can’t change whether or not we encouraged them in the past, and tomorrow may be too late. I urge you to encourage and build up those around you in what they are involved in. If you enjoyed something they posted that spoke to you, tell them. If you appreciated a sermon they gave, let them know. You have no idea how far-reaching your words of encouragement might be to that person, and your words may be exactly what they needed to hear—today. 
Investing in relationships is a necessity and provides opportunities for growth in our Christian life. Just saving us from hell is far more than what we deserved from the Lord Jesus, but He has given us so much more—community with people that share the same faith as we do. What a blessing! Tell those around you that you care for them and love them—even today!

Leave a Reply