Updated: Jan 8
Welcome to day 4 of our week of prayer and day 3 of the Lockdown.
We’re looking at our wellbeing, or Shalom Peace (wholeness / completeness) at the Old Testament calls it, or eirene Peace as described in the New Testament.
Ultimately Jesus is our peace, and brings us peace, after all he is the prince of Peace.
This week we’ve looked at and prayed for physical wellbeing, emotional wellbeing and yesterday spiritual wellbeing and today we’re focussing on relational wellbeing.
Life is all about relationships and we can know God’s peace when we’re in a right relationship with Him, through faith in Jesus (think vertical) and consequently, when we’re in right relationship with people (think horizontal).
Now, some of us, myself included, quite like being on our own, for periods of time, but the way we are made, we need relationships. Right from the start God said, “It is not good that man should be alone.”
God is one, but is in three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, all relating in love, and we are to be the same. Right from the start, people have needed other people to be complete.
The human brain more than any other species is designed for relationships. Some neuroscientists have called it the ‘social’ organ. Our bodies even release Oxytocin, when we make positive social connections which helps to bind us together and increases our feelings of wellbeing.
Back to our study of Elijah. It’s interesting that before his meltdown, he dismissed his only companion, his servant and decided to go it alone. Things only really got better once Elisha started working alongside him!
I say all this near the start of our 3rd national lockdown, in the middle of a world pandemic. Even if we can’t be seeing each other, now is the time to be increasing our contact with each other. Especially with those people living on their own.
Some of us are as busy as we’ve ever been, others have time on their hands. Let’s be creative … let’s be courageous … let’s be loving: make that phone call … send that message.
There are different levels of relationships. We can’t be best friends with everyone … but we all need some friends.
As well as the crowds and ‘the 72’, Jesus had his 12 disciples, but he also had within that his 3 best friends in James Peter and John. It’s them he called to witness the Transfiguration, a huge high … it was also those 3 he called on when he needed prayer and consolation in the terrible low of the garden of Gethsemane.
Jesus also had a special friendship with Lazarus and his 2 sisters Mary and Martha.
So, a few questions to finish with:
Who are the people I need to be praying for or encouraging this month, this week, today!
Is there anyone I need to forgive or be reconciled with, or at least start the journey of forgiveness. As Jesus taught us to pray, “forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.” Not carrying bitterness plays a huge part in our general wellbeing.
How can I best be expressing love to those around me: listening, giving, serving, affirming, virtually hugging!
All these things will help others wellbeing … and ours too!
Shalom - and as I say each Sunday morning: God bless, stay safe and stay in touch.