Background: I had the pleasure (and by pleasure I mean not pleasurable) of being a part of a heated discussion today. There came a point when I could have walked away from the discussion with the other party still disgruntled. But I couldn’t let it go. I re-entered the heat and did what only a believer can do, and that was brought peace. I didn’t completely quench the fire but at least it wasn’t 1000 degrees in that room any more.
When things get too hot, nobody wants to stick around. Why be singed or even burned if leaving is an option. Here’s why. Things that are of worth can withstand heat and depending on the value of it, heat only makes it better. Relationships are one of those things of worth that can withstand heat and become more precious when the heat is removed. Relationships with others are how we exist on earth. We weren’t meant to be alone and life is better when we are work with and respect each other. Now, the key is a relationship of worth. You’ll know a relationship of worth because both parties benefit. If the other party in a relationship gets all the benefits, and you are left drained, that relationship may not be able to withstand heat. (When I typed this, the relationships we have with our children came to mind, because they feel one sided at times. But they are our greatest investment in life and we must endure the one sided nature of that relationship until it blossoms and they begin to make positive contributions to the relationship. Had to clear that up just in case I wasn’t the only one thinking that).
10 If you can find a truly good wife, she is worth more than precious gems! 11 Her husband can trust her, and she will richly satisfy his needs. 12 She will not hinder him but help him all her life.
We all know that precious gems are found in rough places. We all know that trust is earned. Who doesn’t enjoy a person that helps you as opposed to one that attempts to hinder you. One of the most intimate relationships on earth, marriage, is being depicted in these few verses. Those of us who have been or are married know that this relationship, above all the relationships in our lives, takes work. And it sometimes comes under fire. Almost all relationships do. But the result is what you see in these three verses. A genuine relationship, worth withstanding fire, involves trust and help and it is satisfying. It may not start off satisfying but with work it can become that. You may not get help every time you need it, but it does come. And trust may be broken, but with time and work, it can be regained.
This incident above occurred on my job, and I’m all about customer service. Customers are people you and your company are in relationship with. Your relationship with customers can be rocky sometimes but you must gain their trust in order to satisfy the needs of your business. So heat in relationships is not all bad, even though going through it sucks. But relationships that are of worth will withstand periods of fire. And sticking it out with the other party in the relationship will bring satisfaction when the fire subsides (remember our definition of relationships of worth)
References: Proverbs 31:10-12