“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they will keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him — a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Something is drawing me back to Ecclesiastes, the book that Leslie blogged extensively about last month. The verses above have been used to describe the unions of both marriage and friendship. When we go back to the very beginning, God said,
“It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Genesis 2:18
According to the author of Ecclesiastes we’re meant to live in relationship, in union with others. With a friend or a mate, life is easier, safer and more comfortable. We will be happier and accomplish more. But did you notice anything else? In every relationship there must be a third component — that’s God. God is the glue that holds every human union together. Without Him, we’re bound to eventually break apart on the rocks of our own selfishness and sin. It’s the third strand in the cord that keeps them going.
So, we don’t need to just have a relationship with God, we need to make God a part of every relationship in our life. Peace, joy, patience, kindness, love, self-control–no union survives without them, and we can’t manufacture them on our own. They’re gifts of the Holy Spirit. So as Charles Spurgeon once said, “Let the lion out of the cage.” Don’t keep God penned up except for Sunday mornings–let Him into your marriage, your friendships, your workplace, your family. Let Him transform all those relationships.