- Westcliff Baptist Church
- 560 London Road
- Westcliff on Sea
- SS0 9HS
News & Views
“I am convinced that material things can contribute a lot to making one's life pleasant, but, basically, if you do not have very good friends and relatives who matter to you, life will be really empty and sad and material things cease to be important.”
These words were spoken by someone who knows what it is to possess material things, David Rockefeller, the 98 year old banker and son of John D Rockerfeller. They concur with what many of suspect - that good relationships are far more likely to make us happy than no end of possessions.
At times relationships can be frustrating, disappointing yet we can’t do without them. As John Donne observed, “No man is an island entire of itself;”
But how to develop and maintain good relationships – relationships that will make us happy and stand the test of time, rather than ending in heartache and pain? By definition relationships take two. However much effort we commit to a relationship, we cannot force another to love us.
Our difficulty does not stem from a lack of advice. Whether it is Cosmopolitan magazine, counsellors at Relate, or the examples we mimic from Hollywood or the small screen, there is no shortage of influences.
One we may not turn to frequently is the Bible. It has much to say on the matter. We might imagine that all those words simply lay down lots of rules for relationships. Moreover ones from a bygone age that are no longer relevant to our society and way of living. The truth is that there are some principles. God gave them because he wants the very best for us. He is not waiting for us to slip up so that he can judge us. Rather, He wants us to experience life in its fullness – life at its best. Whatever we’ve known in the past, God takes our brokenness and makes something beautiful of it.
Relationships begin with God since God is love. He defines love. He shows us its truest expression. God has always existed in loving relationship between Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
God created men and women in order that they might enjoy relationships – with Him and with others. It is the very reason we are here. Our enjoyment of Him comes to fullness by sharing the gift of life, not by being isolated. Whether with a spouse, with family, or through precious friendships, whatever our personal circumstances, we can still experience this blessing of relationship.
It is when we love others – not just in feeling, but in deed - that we discover the greatest satisfaction. The best relationships happen when we are not seeking what we can get out of them, but rather concentrating on what we can give.
During November we have been looking at relationships, at God’s ideals and how we can experience more of his best for ourselves. Why not pop in and join us?