Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
A Community of Prayer Champions, Praying Churches, Prayed-for Communities
Unhealthy Christians—Healthy Christians
By Lewis Turner
Unhealthy Christians—Those who continually study God’s word but not personally connecting with others. They may be mentally sharp, but not relationally sharp.
Healthy Christians—those who study God’s word and take the time to connect with others through doing things with others, obeying the law of God to love our neighbor as ourselves.
We can do projects for others or WITH others taking a personal interest by working alongside of them. Working with others develops our ability to be relational. It involves many relational skills, which includes listening, eye to eye contact, and other relational skills.
If we take an interest in our daughters developing—we can connect with them—teaching homemaking skills, and other skills needed for them to use in life. They learn interrelationship with others through this connection.
Men, we can take an interest in men’s hobbies and find ways to do things with them—not just a sport game—though that may be a start.
Not taking and interest in people can have detrimental effects. I remember having a depth perception problem, and I did not know it. When I played ball, the balls would hit me in the face as a young child. That made me afraid of balls. That could have been overcome if someone had taken time to help me work through it. Their help would have helped me to learn to compensate for that depth perception problem. In college (A Christian College) I had a college coach laugh at me about it—that laugh killed my interest in sports after that incidence. It has resulted in making it hard for me to take an interest in sports today, and that may possibly hinder my connection with some men even today. They do not understand why I feel as I do. Still, it is a hindrance to overcome. It is important to take time to connect with others.
I remember when as a student in college, I would have some people come to me and say, ‘you are not being yourself’. Those other students did no know who I was. They hardly knew me—how did they know who I was????
The Bible speaks of the concept the poor man searches out. Proverbs 28:11 (KJV)
11 The rich man is wise in his own conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out.
–carrying this principle further about the poor man--(the poor may be one that is possibly also poor in heart), we seek for answers when we do not understand.
Perhaps something positive we can do is to make a real effort connect with others.
Here are two more things that I have experienced to help others possibly to consider the seriousness of this issue. Keep in mind that a failure to connect can cause missed opportunities to be in position to help another person.
*I have asked an elder in my church if they knew what I was involved in. They did not. If they as leaders do not know what you are involved in, how can they lead you spiritually?
*It is also important to take the time to listen to a different point a view than ours. We may think ours is RIGHT, but genuinely listening is critical to building relationships. Perhaps our thinking has come from narrow thinking tainted by only one point of view. That can change if we become willing learn by listening. When we listen, we may discover that there are often other views or thoughts on a subject. What we learn may help us relate to a real need somewhere else which can bridge gaps that divide.
In the search for answers, which has taken me a lifetime, I believe God is showing that we need to be involved in interpersonal relationships, showing others that we are personally interested in them. That will give us the opportunity to share our faith with them and challenge them to come to and to grow in Christ—this gives opportunity for ministry and especially prayer ministry to occur.
One way I have found to help with relational issues, is that praying together with others over a long period of time has opened the door to being involved one way or another with them. It has tied us together spiritually, and personally. It gives opportunity to stretch our relational ‘muscle’.
This journal of thoughts on this subject could go on and on. We need to take the time to genuinely want to know how we can connect with others.
When we do not take time to connect with others, we can become as unhealthy Christians, knowing a lot, because we are not giving out to others by involvement with them.
Connecting with others gives opportunity to give out so we can become healthy by our being refreshed when we do. Job 32:20 (KJV) I will speak, that I may be refreshed…
I would like to hear from others on this subject, and how prayer has helped in ministry to others.
Your commentary makes me think of James warning us that faith (and that includes Bible study) without works (love-motivated actions) is dead (useless)...
Phil, this in a way is confession from one who has studied and needed a way to give out. Sharing with others is so important, and when we share there is something important that we need to do. It is through listening to those around us that the Lord will help us to find a way to share his love. Listening is a major important step in coming alongside of others. The willingness to take the time to encourage others after we have taken the time to genuinely listen is as one intercessor puts it -so important. True encouragement is not preaching at, but humbly reaching out, letting the love of Christ guide us in our relationship with others.
I have appreciated the forum of Pray.Network. It has giving an opportunity to connect and encourage others. In so doing, I too have received much encouragement.
I am also sensing that the Lord want me to connect with others outside our circle, and am asking the Lord to open those doors. With God’s encouragement and providing the opportunities, we may come to the point where we can also reach out to others and be ready to answer for our faith. Yes, by our action of listening, opportunity may come in interaction with others to find ways to exercise our faith and share it in various ways to help the other person to learn about who God is and that He cares about them.
Those are just some thoughts—reflective thoughts. I would like others to share about prayer, study of God’s Word, and how it is leading to helping us interact with others.
Keep thinking and praying and sharing!
LEWIS - May I share this quote from you?
"I have appreciated the forum of Pray.Network. It has giving an opportunity to connect and encourage others. In so doing, I too have received much encouragement."
If yes, OK to include your name?
Yes, you may use my name.
Also, thanks for your encouraging words in the above reply. That encouragement echos the words of my first pastor, who is in his 80's and is still a personal friend. He shared with me--'Keep on, Keeping on!'
...and thanks for permission