Summary: Series based on The DNA of Relationships by Dr. Gary Smalley. Every relationship should be a team effort. Every person’s opinion needs to be valued.
MAKING EVERY RELATIONSHIP A TEAM EFFORT
A. Today is the conclusion of our series of lessons on The DNA of Relationships based on the book by Dr. Gary Smalley. Today’s lesson is on Making Every Relationship a Team Effort.
A man had been feeling SLUGGISH and rather SICKLY. After taking a battery of tests his DOCTOR informed him that STRESS was KILLING him. Then inquiring about the man’s WORK and HOME LIFE the doctor said, “You are in terrible CONDITION, and you’ve better take some STEPS to correct it”.
The doctor then began listing things that needed to be done, “First of all, tell your WIFE no more eating FAST FOOD and to start COOKING more nutritious meals. You got to stop WORKING like a dog. Also inform your WIFE you’re going to make a BUDGET, and she has to STICK with it. And have her keep the KIDS off your back so you can RELAX.”
Then with a somber tone the doctor said, “I am serious about this. Unless there are some DRASTIC CHANGES in your life, you’ll probably be DEAD in a MONTH.” “Doc”, the patient said, “believe me, this would sound more OFFICIAL coming from you. Could you please call my WIFE and give her those INSTRUCTIONS?”
When the man got HOME, his WIFE rushed to his side. “I talked to the DOCTOR” she wailed. Her husband asked, “Did he tell you what I needed from you?” “Yes he did,” she said. “You POOR MAN . . . you only have 30 days to LIVE”.
I may be wrong, but I don’t think there’s a lot of TEAM EFFORT in that RELATIONSHIP!
B. Obviously we want all of our RELATIONSHIPS to be STRONG and HEALTHY and HARMONIOUS.
1. But the reality is, it’s not always that way—even with our closest RELATIONSHIPS.
Because of our unique DIFFERENCES, EXPERIENCES, and BACKGROUNDS, we will not always see eye-to-eye on every ISSUE. There will be DISAGREEMENTS along the way—some MINOR and some MAJOR.
Usually when a HEATED ARGUMENT is finally over and the DUST CLEARS you will find one who got his or her way and the other didn’t. Although the person may have “WON” the argument, it is done so at the PRICE of straining a MARRIAGE, disparaging a CHILD, disrespecting a PARENT, losing a FRIENDSHIP, demeaning a CO-WORKER, ostracizing a FELLOW-CHRISTIAN. THERE ARE NO WINNERS—ONLY LOSERS.
2. Wouldn’t it be great even if during those MAJOR DISAGREEMENTS both parties could come to a WORKABLE SOLUTION that will please both?
If you’ve read the book The DNA of Relationships, you know that I when I say WORKABLE SOLUTION I mean more than mere COMPROMISE. A COMPROMISE is coming up with a SOLUTION that is TOLERABLE for both parties, yet no one really feels GOOD about it.
During those DISAGREEMENTS in our RELATIONSHIPS, we need to WORK TOGETHER beyond COMPROMISE to develop a WIN-WIN SOLUTION. How do we do that?
I. REMEMBER THAT WE ARE ON THE SAME TEAM
A. Families are on the SAME TEAM.
1. There is no greater UNION or PARTNERSHIP on this earth than that of HUSBAND and WIFE.
a. 1 Peter 3:7- “Husbands…be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner, and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.”
b. Ephesians 4:21-33 (READ and COMMENT)
If HUSBANDS and WIVES have this kind of LOVE and RESPECT for each other, they are not going to allow DISAGREEMENTS to drive a wedge between them. They will do all they can to look for a WORKABLE SOLUTION to BENEFIT them both. They want their PARTNER to be HAPPY and to FEEL GOOD about DECISIONS that are MADE. When one FEELS GOOD, they both FEEL GOOD.
2. Parents and children should be heartily aware of how VALUABLE their RELATIONSHIP is.
a. Our CHILDREN are a PRECIOUS GIFT from God. -Psalm 127:3- “Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from Him.”
There is nothing like experiencing the BIRTH of your CHILDREN and your GRANDCHILDREN. The LOVE you have for that tiny STRANGER—that little BUNDLE you hold in your ARMS for the very first time is INDESCRIBABLE. That LITTLE BABY can do no WRONG . . . but then they become TEENAGERS.
The tough part of parenting comes when your children grow older and become more independent. That’s when something often happens between PARENTS and TEENAGERS that leaves both parties FRUSTRATED and ANNOYED with each other. That’s not what we want.
Undoubtedly parents of TEENS are often tempted to follow Mark Twain’s advice about how to rear TEENAGERS.
He advised that when a child reaches 13 years of age, a parent should place the child in a BARREL, NAIL the LID shut, and FEED the teenager through a KNOT HOLE. And when the child turns 16 years-old . . . PLUG the HOLE!