The Gospel for the Relational Failure

BY JESSICA THOMPSON

Today I want to give you some good news. It is good news for the relationship failure; for the one who is self-focused; for the one who is impatient with the change in others’ lives but is comfortable with the slow as molasses change in their own; for the one who reopens wounds daily, for the one who is demanding with those around them; for the one who feels like even when they try, they never get it right; for the one who has given up on all relationships because of the pain relationships bring; for the broken; for the down-trodden; for those who have called it quits: You are loved, you are forgiven, you are not alone.

You are Loved

You aren’t just loved in a generic sense, you are loved personally and passionately. You are loved so deeply that “nothing will separate you from the love of God in Christ.” There is no relationship that separates you. Your spouse’s opinion of you does not separate you. Your children’s obedience towards you does not separate you. Your parent’s neglect of you does not separate you. Your bosses disapproval of you does not separate you. Your competition with your siblings does not separate you. Your lack of true relationship with those in your church does not separate you. Your disinterest in the lost does not separate you. There is a love that covers. There is a love that is safe. As Mumford and Sons says, there is a “Love that will not betray you, dismay or enslave you, It will set you free. Be more like the man you were made to be.” This is what God’s love does for us. It sets us free from our opinion of ourselves or someone else’s opinions of us, and it sets us on the path to be the man or woman we were made to be: naked and unashamed; loved as is.

You are Forgiven

For all the times you have been the cause of deep hurt in someone’s life, you have been forgiven. As far as the east is from the west is how far God has removed your transgression from you. For all the times you have enjoyed the pain you have inflicted on someone, you have been washed in the blood of the perfect Lamb. For all the times you have looked the other way when someone is abusing you or hurting you because you don’t want conflict, you are perfect in His sight. For all the times you used someone to gain something for yourself, you have been declared “not guilty.” For all the mistakes you have made that you didn’t even know about; for all the slights, for all the disinterest in the lives of others, every single sin in every relationship you have had has been forgiven. Each one of us, is a relationship disaster in need of radical forgiveness. We are all hurting looking for a word of grace, looking for a word of forgiveness, looking for a word of love. That word has been irrevocably written over your life. Revel in His unending forgiveness and give that gift to others; forgive as you have been forgiven.

You are Not Alone

In every lonely moment that you wake up in the middle of the night and feel like a stranger in your own home, there is a promise from God that He is right there with you. In every church function where you look around the room and are convinced that no one cares about you, your friend Christ is praying for you to be aware of His great love for you. At every work meeting when you just wish the ground would open and swallow you up, you have a Rescuer that longs to bind the brokenhearted. In every instance of betrayal of abuse or neglect, your Father is stooping down to shower His love and grace on you. In those moments, whatever those lonely moments may be, you are not alone, you are not forgotten, you are treasured and loved. So now, love and treasure others. Look for the outcast, look for the lonely and give them the greatest love you have ever known. The love that the Father has for the Son is yours today.

Jessica is an author of several books and a frequent conference speaker. Her heart is to see women, families, and children freed from the bondage of moralism and to live in the truth that in the gospel there is joyful freedom awaiting them. Jess has a Bachelor's Degree in Theology and with her mother, Elyse Fitzpatrick, she co-authored the books Give Them Grace and Answering Your Kids' Toughest Questions. She has also written Exploring Grace Together and Everyday Grace: Infusing All Your Relationships With the Love of Jesus. Jess believes the truth that salvation is "naked confidence in the mercy of God." She has been married to her high school sweetheart since 1995. Together they have three teenage children.

Twitter @TheJessLou