Now we come back to our original question from 3 blogs ago:
Could it be that our horizontal relationships with each other are jacked up because our vertical relationship with God is jacked up?
To that I would like to add this supplemental question:
If our relationship with God gets right, could our relationships with each other get right?
To both of those questions I would have to respond YES… but don’t take my word for it. Check out this passage of scripture for yourself.
“If anyone boasts, ‘I love God,’ and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar. If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt: Loving God includes loving people. You’ve got to love both.”
This scripture is taken from 1 John 4:20-21 (MSG). The idea is pretty simple. Love God. Love People. You can’t do one without the other therefore you’ve got to do both. Nowhere in this scripture did it say that loving people would be easy, it just said that you have to do it. I’ve learned over the years that you can love people, but you don’t have to like everything that they do. Part of the human condition is that we mess up from time to time (to time to time to time). Sometimes that can make loving people really difficult, BUT your love for God has to supercede all of that.
Jesus stated it simply in John 14:15 (NIV): “If you love me, keep my commands.”
How about that. Yet another simplistic thought to apply to our everyday living. So if you’re having trouble loving those individuals around you that just constantly and consistently get under, over, in, through, and up in your skin, then I would suggest that you check your vertical relationship with God first because your horizontal relationships on Earth are important.
We’re not on this Earth alone which must mean that WE NEED EACH OTHER, but don’t forget that the proper order in relationships is vertical (with God) THEN horizontal (with each other).
What do you think? Leave a comment.