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Biblical Guidelines for Restoring Relationships 1

Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Psalms 51:10 (NKJV)

I have been blessed to be a part of many counseling sessions with people that have a heart to know God’s will, and to abide in His will. They may be going through a very rough time, but I know they will make it through their trial, because they are committed to surrendering their will to God, and being obedient to what they know to be right by His word. 

Having the Bible is like having a detailed instruction manual for building and repairs. It even includes many sections, containing a host of examples on preventative maintenance. I believe Ephesians 4:27-32 is a great example, as it contains six Scriptures to guide us into bringing restoration to any potential dispute, or broken relationship we may have with another person. I believe these verses are also great instructions to help us in many other situations, but for this multi-part devotional, we will focus on using them to help with broken and strained relationships. 

Before we go any further, it is important for us to be faithful to apply each of these scriptures in our own personal walk, and be committed to let God take care of the other person. It is never our job to “fix” others. This job belongs solely to the Holy Spirit, and not us. The idea here is in our applying these guidelines to our own life, as we are allowing God to clean us up. So, here we go! The first guideline for restoring a relationship is:

1.            Don’t give place to the devil (Eph. 4:27).

One way we give the devil a place in our life is when we stay angry at one another. When we let that anger go unchecked, then we begin to grow a bitter root. Ephesians 4:26 tells us we are not to go to bed angry, and Hebrews tells us this as well:

Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; Hebrews 12:14-15 (NKJV)

The second guideline given to us by God to restore broken relationships can be found in Ephesians 4:28, and it is critical.  

2.            Repent of ungodly ways (Eph. 4:28).

The actual command in Ephesians 4:28 is for those who steal to steal no longer. But we can derive a solid principle from this in that we are to stop our sinful action and “repent,” or “turn around” from those wrong ways. Our actions should never be based solely on whether we feel like doing something, but on the way God’s word has instructed us to. In the context of a relationship problem, we need to stop doing anything that is not in the will of God. We should be remorseful of these things we are doing that cause fighting, division, hurt, hostility, and separation. We need to seek the Lord, and humble ourselves.

Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor. James 4:8-10 (NKJV)

In Part II of this devotional we will look at the next two guidelines that will ensure our being clean and righteous when being confronted with potential relationship disputes.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn from the Scriptures contained within this devotional with regard to the actions we choose?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you seeking God daily to ask Him to create a clean heart in you? Are you willing to worry about yourself only, rather than trying to fix others? Will you allow God to shape and transform others?

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Seek the Lord in prayer for all these things. Ask Him to show you any area where we need to repent of your actions. Seek out others and ask for forgiveness for anything you may have done that was not in God’s will within a relationship dispute.

MAKE THIS YOUR PRAYER TODAY: Father, thank You for Your mercies, which are new each and every day. Thank You for forgiving me each and every time I come to you and confess my failures. Help me to do my part and to love others, even when they are not doing their part. 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