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I'm Drawing The Line! Part II

I'm Drawing the Line!  Part II

I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:1-3 (NKJV)

In Part I of this devotional, we looked at how we can and will come to the end of our own ability or desire to continue on in a relationship (Marriage) and we make the decision to say, "I'm drawing the line!" I'm done!"  We also learned that these failures and guidelines for healing them are just as practical for any type of relationship.

Every one of us has a point within our physical makeup that determines how far we will go before we say, Enough!  And for each of us, that place where we, draw the line is different.  And although there are many different types of personalities within people, I can safely say that there are (3) general categories that most people with failed relationships fall in line with.  

1.    The first type of people can go seemingly forever as not much seems to rock their world.  They have people taking advantage of their good nature and willingness to help, because they know that they will be faithful.  These people will usually go a long way before they will willingly pull the plug, but when they do, they generally are done.

2.    The second type of people have no problem telling others in a calm articulate way what they're thinking, and have no issue with saying, No more when things are being done to them that are hurtful.  Again, when these patterns of hurt continue, they will generally end up saying Enough, I quit!

3.    There is a third group of people who will scream, fowl at the drop of the hat, and seem to be hypersensitive to any perceived injustice.  They usually visualize themselves as a victim.  They may or may not see things as they are actually happening, but instead of capturing these harmful thoughts and processing them correctly, they continue to meditate on them.  

These thoughts within their own mind lead them to conclusions that are mentally hurtful and it's as if they are actually experiencing the consequences of actions that may not even be transpiring.  When this happens they will usually go on the attack.  Their responses are not always well thought out with respect to what God would have them do, and as a result, the way in which they speak can be offensive, destructive and downright damaging to the relationship.

Each one of these ways of dealing with a troubled relationship is destructive to a certain degree, and fatal in many cases.  And each one of us who fall into one of these categories should use the scriptures above as a reference guide to see us through our tribulation within the relationship.

As we look at Ephesians 4:1-3 we can break it down to see how we are to act and respond in those times where we are tempted to call it quits, and leave.  The first thing we see is that we are called:

1.    To walk worthy of the calling with which you were called

God has chosen us as His children to be Christ's representatives.  In fact were told in Ephesians 5:1 to be Imitators of God.  So this verse is challenging us to walk worthy of that calling that we have received from God.

2.    We were called to walk with all lowliness and gentleness,

This simply means to have a gentle spirit, demeanor and way of carrying yourself.  Philippians says it well when it tells us not to be selfish; don't try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.  The last thing others need is some Christian who is puffed up in their knowledge of God's Word.  This doesn't translate to the type of Love that God wants us to display.

3.    We are called to walk with longsuffering.

This simply means that we are to walk with exceeding patience.  Have you ever thought about how patient God is with you?  Are you willing to be an imitator of Him in this category?  Now's your chance.  And remember, forgiving another is not about keeping score.  We don't say, well you've done this, this, and this, and I've only done this.  And we don't stop forgiving either; we forgive continually the same way God forgives us.  Besides, we're told in scripture, if we committed one sin, then we're guilty of committing them all (See James 2:10).

In Part III of this devotional series on relationships (Marriage), we will continue to break down Ephesians 4:1-3 as we look at how we are to respond in a Christ-like way in times of tribulation within our relationships.

Hey Christian, I want to encourage you today; God knows what He is doing, and He has called you for such a time as this.  No matter what you are facing today, whether it is a problem in your marriage, your boss, a family member, a friend, or even a fellow Christian Brother or Sister, God will guide you through.  Lean not on your own understanding, but in everything, acknowledge Him, and He is going to make your path straight, and He will equip you to accomplish His goal for your relationship.

STUDY QUESTION: Can you relate to fitting into one of the 3-main categories listed above for different types of people with respect to how they come to the end of themselves in their relationship?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you willing to seek God's will for your marriage, or for any relationship that you may be in?  Or are you going to continue to live your life according to your wants, and your desires?

APPLICATION: Seek the Lord and ask Him to change your heart and mind to come into agreement with His plan for your life.  Make His ways, your ways today.  Don't compromise, because you are living a life of carnality if you do.

Father, Thank You for Your Word.  Thank You for giving me direction and guidance for every thing that I do in my life.  Help me to continue to strengthen my walk so that I may lay every hindrance down that keeps me from walking with You in the way that You've called me.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000