Master the Secret : How to have a successful relationship

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What is the "real" secret to successful relationships?

"Every human being has the ability to transform any weakness or suffering into strength, power, perfect peace, health, and abundance"(The Secret) ...I am not talking here about personal wealth, power, physical beauty or a calm serene feeling that the "secret" claims...,I am looking into a deeper realm, into the heart and mind of a person's spiritual life. It is here that we have the greatest transformation, and experience true success in our personal relationships with each other.

Ephesians 4:23-24 tells us to "be made new in the attitude of your minds and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. ".

Attitude is everything... once our heart is right. If we want to have true success in our relationships, we need to change our attitude, especially when we experience difficult circumstances. If our attitude is right, a tough situation can have a positive outcome.

It may be challenging to determine how we are to respond to something, however, without a great role model or mentor who can come along side us to show us what to do. They can help us know how to change our outlook or reaction to something by their wisdom and experience. For instance, if we are having a disagreement with someone- how should we handle the situation? Unfortunately, our first response often comes from our emotions.

I find it especially hard to have the right attitude when it comes to relationship problems. I want to protect myself, and that tends to make me react to things selfishly. If left to myself, I react badly, only escalating the problem. Being able to seek advice on how to deal with issues helps me to keep things in proper perspective. I turn to my role model for this.

I have the best role model there is for relationships (and it isn't a secret) - it's Jesus. Because of his example, I have the ability to have the true power to change my way of thinking. As a role model, Jesus number one goal in relationships is to have a unified loved towards one another.

The Apostle Paul followed Jesus example in desiring this same goal. In Philippians 2:2-11, Paul asks the Philippians to make his joy complete by having “one mind, one spirit, one love, and one purpose”. The goal Paul defines requires a particular mindset or attitude in our relationship to one another. By having this way of thinking, it helps to guard against selfishness and disunity.

Five of the attitudes in Jesus that would contribute to unity are as follows:

  • Look to the interests of others as well as your own
  • Consider others better than yourself
  • Take on the nature of a servant
  • Be humble- give way to the other person
  • Be willing to do things that are right- based on truth

Sometimes it helps to understand what something is, by looking at what it is not. If we look at the opposite outcome of each of these attitudes, they would be similar to the following:

  • ·Look after your own interests and forget about the other person.
  • · Consider others inferior to yourself.
  • · Make others your servants and you the master.
  • · Be proud and stubborn, not willing to bend or change
  • · Do things that are wrong. Be rebellious.

In order for there to be “oneness”, we can’t have an attitude of independence, superiority, and pride. These attitudes lead to discord, jealousy, anger, and strife (among other problems). Therefore, renewing our mind to have the mind of Christ and taking on His attitudes, leads to God’s delight (just as Paul desired this for the Philippians). God desires to see us live as one- in mind, spirit, love, and purpose.

Probably one of the hardest things to overcome is the attitude we are taught in our society that is directly opposed to the attitude of Christ. We are led to believe that looking out for self is the primary goal in life. Philippians 2:3-4 tells us to “do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others”.It doesn’t say we are to forfeit our interests, but it does say that we are to consider other's interests ahead of ours.

If we take on this attitude, imagine how it could transform the next difficult situation we have in a relationship with someone as we seek their good first…perhaps even transforming our society! Successful relationships don't start with a secret formula, they start with a change in our heart which ultimately leads to a changed attitude. The most excellent way to do this is through the influence of the greatest role model of all time- Jesus Christ.

Mastering the secret to a successful relationship is always within our reach.

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