The First Step in Healing Relationships

“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1).

It would be difficult to calculate the amount of money spent on relationships gone wrong. People hire attorneys because of perceived wrongs, and then they hire psychologists to address the trauma brought on by relationship troubles. They hire doctors to apply their skills to medical conditions brought on by stress and bitterness. But God spells out the true path to relationships that work: We should seek Him.

In this chapter, Paul addresses children, wives, husbands, workers, employers, and then all Christians. He lays out a proper order and some structures we should follow in pursuing godly relationships, but he opens the chapter with the true source of relationships that flourish. We should seek God first.

We relate to people from our hearts. From the heart flows the springs of life (Proverbs 4:23). The heart directs the body’s activities, whether we speak gracious words or spew out venom. Jesus spoke of this:

“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

If the heart directs so many of our actions, we would do well to pay close attention to our own hearts. We should “seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.”


1. Begin each day with God.
We tend to pray for God’s intervention in our daily activities, but remember, the heart determines our actions to a great extent. We should ask God to renew our hearts into His own image (Colossians 3:10). When we depart our homes (or arrive back at home) with stressed, troubled hearts, it will spill over to the people around us. Ask God to calm your heart and tune it, much like a musician tunes his or her instrument prior to a concert.

2. Keep your lines of communication open with God.
Paul encouraged his readers to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Keeping up our communion with God during the day helps to keep a stressful world from troubling our own heart. None of us can relate to others as we should when our hearts are troubled. We should not wonder why even Jesus cautioned His disciples not to be troubled (John 14:1).

As we seek God, His peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7).

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