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Building Blocks for Healthy Relationships

And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.  Ephesians 5:21 NLT

Photo courtesy of pixabay.“I remember when you used to …”

Anytime I hear my wife make that statement, I know what follows: “But you used to … Things like opening the car door or when entering a store. Or coming up behind her and putting my arm around her neck while we’re shopping.

My wife has a memory like an elephant and recalls things I’ve long forgotten. Among them, how our relationship was when we first married.

“But our relationship has matured,” I say.

“Now that you’ve got me, you think you don’t need to do those things anymore,” she says.

We’re probably both right to a degree, but healthy relationships must be maintained.

Paul gives a list of instructions for husbands and wives. Some women don’t like the submission part while some husbands take issue with loving their wives enough to die for them. But Paul prefaces the instructions with a command for mutual submission. Doing this requires building blocks.

Mutual love and submission entail intentionality. If I’m not intentional or determined to love my wife as Christ loved the church or to submit to her as I desire her to submit to me, it won’t happen. Anything important requires my undivided attention.

Thoughtful words and actions are important. My wife loves to hear me tell her I love her, but she wants to see the love in action: holding her hand, opening a car door, giving her a card, kissing her first thing in the morning. These are all little things that mean a lot.

Honesty is also critical. Dishonesty will wreck any marriage or relationship. I know. I’ve been on the receiving end of dishonesty, and it leads to a dead end. Trust is built in small ways over the course of many years. One wrong move can destroy what it took years to build.

Faithfulness is a must for healthy relationships. It follows on the heels of honesty. In the marriage ceremony, I promised faithfulness to my one wife until death parts us.

More important than any other block is including God. Relationships that exclude Him are headed for failure from the start.

Use the correct building blocks to erect healthy relationships in your life.

(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)

(For more devotions, visit Christian Devotions.)

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Martin Wiles

Martin Wiles lives in Greenwood, SC, and is the founder of Love Lines from God. He is a freelance editor, English teacher, pastor, and author who has been published in numerous publications. He also serves as Managing Editor for both Christian Devotions and Vinewords.net. He is the author of six books. His most recent book, Don’t Just Live...Really Live, was released in November 2021. He and his wife are parents of two and grandparents of six. He can be contacted at [email protected].