WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
NOVEMBER 27, 2022
TOPIC: BUILD RELATIONSHIPS BASED ON LOVE
BY T. O. BANSO
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34 New King James Version).
Networking is one of the concepts you hear nowadays, especially in business and among professionals. Networking is “the activity of meeting people who might be useful to know, especially in your job” (Cambridge Dictionary).
God didn’t create you to go through life alone. Nobody can succeed alone. Everybody needs somebody. Some people are strong in the place you are weak, and vice versa. Some people know what you don’t know, and vice versa. Similarly, some people have what you lack. The converse is also true. You need other people and they need you too.
You need positive, godly, and beneficial relationships, not relationships with just anyone. Connecting with the right people can impact your life and whatever you do significantly. It can expose you to new ideas, better skills, and new partners and markets. It can help you to attract more clients or customers. It can take your ministry, business, or career to the next level and increase your productivity and profitability.
Although, God doesn’t want you to go through life alone and you need others, don’t go into relationships for a selfish reason: only what others can do for you or what you can benefit from them. Others will bless you with what they have or know but this shouldn’t be the basis of going into relationships. Build relationships based on love. Love people, not only their pockets, skills, influence, contacts, spiritual gifts, and so on.
1 Samuel 16:22-23 says, “Then Saul sent to Jesse, saying, ‘Please let David stand before me, for he has found favor in my sight.’ And so it was, whenever the spirit from God was upon Saul, that David would take a harp and play it with his hand. Then Saul would become refreshed and well, and the distressing spirit would depart from him’” (New King James Version).
Although verse 21 says when David came to Saul and stood before him, he loved him greatly, and he became his armorbearer, you could see that the reason Saul sent for David was that he was useful to him. Put in another way, he wanted to use David. It appears that the love he had for David was based on what he would benefit from him because he had been told what David had to offer, as he continued to be tormented by an evil spirit from God. Verse 18 says, “Then one of the servants answered and said, ‘Look, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, who is skillful in playing, a mighty man of valor, a man of war, prudent in speech, and a handsome person; and the LORD is with him’” (New King James Version).
Many people build relationships based on what others can do for them. In other words, they want to use others. This is what networking is about. It is about what others can do for you or what you can benefit from them, not what you can do for them.
Romans 13:10 says love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfillment of the law. Could it be said that King Saul loved David when he made different attempts to kill him thereafter? He saw him as a threat although David had no intention to dethrone or kill him. Until Saul died, he pursued David everywhere, trying to kill him. But twice, David had the opportunity to kill him. He, however, refrained from doing so because Saul was the LORD’s anointed.
Build relationships based on love. 1 Corinthians 13:5 says love does not seek its own. In other words, love is not self-seeking or selfish. Don’t go into relationships with people because you want to use them. Go into relationships because you love them.
Some people don’t sincerely love the people they say they want to marry, They could be gold diggers – someone who uses the fact that he/she is attractive to get money from those he/she is in a relationship with. Such a relationship doesn’t last. Do you really love that person or do you love his/her money, wealth, or influential position? There are also gigolos: men paid to be the lovers of older women who are rich! That’s not love at all.
Love sacrifices for others without strings attached. If you love others, you will sacrifice for them. You will serve them. You will give yourself to them, not expecting what they will give you. This is why there are many fair-weather friends today. Once their friends are facing a hard time and they cannot get from them what is their goal in their relationships, they quit. “Wealth makes many friends, But the poor is separated from his friend” (Proverbs 19:4 New King James Version). Proverbs 14:20 says, “The poor man is hated even by his own neighbor, But the rich has many friends” (New King James Version). Also, Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (New King James Version).
The Bible says, “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. but woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up. Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm; but how can one be warm alone? Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NKJV). This is not a parasitic relationship. Don’t go into a relationship to be a parasite. This is exactly what may happen if you go all about looking for people who might be useful to know in your business or any enterprise.
Some people even have this same attitude in ministry. They are looking for people they will connect with and use to have breakthroughs in ministry! They are not sincerely looking for what they will do for their ‘much loved’ servants of God or their ministries. But they are more concerned about how such ministers will lift them up or how they can use them to rise. They don’t want to serve but are looking for how to receive the anointing upon some big men of God! On the other hand, some servants of God are serving faithfully, not for once thinking about what they would get from some senior men of God but what they could give. It is such people that the mantle falls for like Elisha.
Nobody can make himself great. As Jesus said, whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted (Matthew 23:12; Luke 14:11, 18:14b). Greatness comes by serving others. Jesus said in Matthew 23:11, “But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant” (New King James Version). He also told His twelve apostles, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all” (Mark 9:35 New King James Version). Matthew 20:26b says a similar thing that whoever desired to become great among His disciples should be their servant.
Let your relationships with others be based on love, not what you hope to gain from them. Be more interested in serving them or what you can do for them than what they can do for you. If you have this attitude, as you serve them, they will bless you more than you can imagine because you’re not selfish. Love others. Jesus said, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34 New King James Version). John 15:12 says a similar thing: “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you” (New King James Version). Jesus loved you and died on the cross for you. Build relationships based on love.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, I repent of any selfish motive for going into relationships with others whether business, social, ministerial, or marriage relationship. Holy Spirit, help me to build relationships based on love. Help me to love others as I love myself and to love them as Christ has loved me.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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