Any relationship worth its salt will likely go through a testing period; a marriage, a friendship, even family members. How we handle the test could be critical to maintaining God ordained relationships.
Most relationships go through a honeymoon stage. Everything is on a high. It may seem like perfect harmony is forever destined. But usually after a period of time, opportunities come that challenge the inner workings of that relationship. What will we do? How will we respond? Could this be the end of a beautiful thing?
This reminds me of the divine relationship God put together between Paul and Barnabas that we read about in the book of Acts. It started off well. They had fruitful ministry trips. The future looked good until a disagreement arose.
Barnabas’ cousin John Mark had gone with them on a prior trip but couldn’t handle the challenges and went home early. When it was time to go on another missionary journey, Barnabas wanted to give John Mark another chance, but Paul said no. Paul was the leader, so he had the final decision.
The scriptures say in Acts 15 that the dispute between them was so strong that Barnabas left the relationship that God had called him to. Barnabas is never mentioned again in the remainder of that book.
Unfortunately, Barnabas let a disagreement divide and separate him from his divine destiny. Even though Barnabas may have been right about the dispute, he would have been wise to say “Paul, I may not agree with all your decisions, but God put us together (Acts 13) so I yield to you as our leader. Let’s continue to fulfill the ministry that God has given us”.
Don’t separate or divorce a divine relationship just because there is a dispute or disagreement. Pass the test. Talk it out. Call on the Lord for His help and understanding.
Whether it’s your marriage, your church, your Pastor, a good friend, or a family member, don’t allow issues to divide what God has ordained. Pass the relationship test and watch those divine relationships soar!