I can't seem
to maintain
a personal
relationship.
 
Have you ever tried to tell yourself you don't care? That you don't need anyone? That you can make it on your own? If so, hopefully you didn't succeed in convincing yourself, because it just plain isn't true.

Human beings are social creatures. We thrive when we are part of a whole. We feel happiest when we love and are loved. We have an innate need to be wanted. To matter to others.

But for a surprising number of people, they find that they cannot achieve these goals. There are times when they don't have a single relationship in their lives that is balanced and healthy. They are alone. And we just aren't made to be alone.

So take courage in knowing that your experience is not unusual. No, not by any means. One doesn't have to look too deeply at our culture to see that healthy relationships are not nearly as common as we would like to think. Shattered marriages are the norm. Broken commitments no longer carry the shame that they once did. In a society that glorifies self, healthy relationships that are sustained by selflessness become a rarity.

O.K... we realize that there is only so much comfort in knowing that others are as miserable as you are. The bottom line is that you want it to change. You want to succeed in this area. To really make contact with others and have the kind of relationships that make your life worth living.

Good. Let's go there. But to do so, you've got to start with number one. Forget about those around you for now. Look in the mirror. Who is this person? Would you want to be close friends with this one? If you're truly honest (and few of us are in this respect), you're going to have to admit that you definitely have a few rough edges. That you fall slightly shy of perfection when it comes to carrying your part of a relationship.

Forget about fixing yourself up. You can stand in front of that mirror all day, every day for a month encouraging yourself to shape up, and while you will hopefully have made some progress, you won't have really got started unless somewhere along the way you looked up. At what? At the only One who can truly rework you on the inside and make you the kind of person you need to be for others. The only One who can change your nature, and actually make you a brand new person.

Because that's what it's going to take for you to truly succeed in the relationships in your life. Let go and let Him do something amazing within you. Discover how letting go of your life is the path to finding your life. Experience the beauty of truly caring for others more than you care for yourself. Find out what sacrificial love is, and how it transforms your whole life view.

There's no better way to live.