While attending a conference over the past few days, I was thinking about how many relationships I have built because of my job. This led me to think about the evolution of relationship needs and what they were like at different stages in my life. What a journey I discovered!
As a child, my relationships were solely based on whoever was allowed to come out and play. There was no deepness to it. I had no other need then someone to play with.
As I grew up, particularly in high school, the needs in relationships grew and I looked specifically for traits in people, like kindness, great listening skills, sense of humor, etc. I knew what I needed in a friend and was particular. I ended up with dear friends who, even though we live far apart, I still call friends today.
After marriage and a child, the relationships changed again. This time I just wanted people who were in the same stage as me. I didn’t care about deep levels, just people who understood and were on basically the same path. These were mostly other stay-at-home moms that I met at church.
Then I moved into my career. I have met, had great conversations with, and enjoyed meals with many people throughout Texas who have really done something for me that I didn’t know I needed: people who would serve as mentors, people who would help me grow in my faith and as a person, people who would wisely council me, – people I would grow to appreciate as unique individuals instead of a group I belonged to.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. – Isaiah 9:6
In reviewing these life transitions, I can also see similar changes in my relationship with Christ. My first stage was just praying to Him. Nothing more, nothing less. The next stage was learning that prayer was really a two way conversation and that by doing this, along with attending church and reading the Bible, my relationship with Him would grow.
Now, here I am in what I consider the best stage of my life with Christ. The stage where I realize that He is a friend. But He is also a brother. He is a Healer. He is a Defender. He is a Wonderful Counselor. He is Christ, my Savior.
It was a long journey to get here, but I am grateful for every step.