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Summary: (PowerPoint Slides and Cell Study Notes freely available by emailing Emile@Wolfaardt.com) Looking at the differences between men and women = powerful concept.

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Waffles and Spaghetti

Romans 15:7

This morning I want to start a brand new series that I have called "Fireproof" - a title I borrowed from an awesome film on the circuit right now on relationships in general, and marriage in particular. Like you, I have discovered that relationships can be the area of greatest joy or greatest sorrow. They can be the place we experience the love of God most plainly, and the attack of satan most painfully. Is it not true that the measure of our sense of fulfillment in life is can be no greater than the measure of how fulfilled we feel in our relationships? In fact, the river of fulfillment flows out of healthy relationships or it does not flow at all. Society cannot stand the pain when the river of healthy relationships is disrupted. That is why when people are unable to relate meaningfully or healthily to others we isolate them from society by incarcerating them or institutionalizing them. That is why when people live in a world where the flow of healthy relationships is disrupted they isolate themselves. Why? Because the pain of isolation or institution or incarceration is better than the pain when that occurs when the river of health relationships stops flowing.

I have realized that it is not the uniqueness of our abilities or the strength of our gift-set or the astuteness of our learning that determine the joy and impact of our lives. It is the product of our relationships.

This is true in business, friendship, marriage, parenting and every other sphere of life. Think about it with me for a moment if you will. After all, the only way you and I get to heaven is out of relationship - a relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Now we do not need a whole lot of healthy relationships for life to be full, rich and meaningful - but there are some key relationships that have to work or else they become a source of pain and failure in our lives. Firstly, my relationship with God must be healthy. If that is not right then nothing else can be right. Key relationships that I need to be healthy include my relationship with my spouse, and my children and others in my home, and my pastor or church, and my close friends, and my parents and my business associates. Somewhere in the mix is the way I relate to myself. If I cannot get that at least half-way decent in relating to myself I will never enjoy healthy relationships with others are any level.

So it is my goal in this series to help you Fireproof your marriage, and your relationships with your kids, and your relationships with your church, and your friends, and your parents, and at work. A lot of what I say will be applicable at all levels and in all types of relationships. Some of what I say will specifically apply to marriage. So I invite you, over the next few weeks, to join me prayerfully, as we look together at Fireproof - building healthy and meaningful relationships that stand the test of time and familiarity, and are the source of joy and richness in our lives.


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