I want this…I need that…we are a culture that is never satisfied. Enough is never enough. This becomes an even bigger problem when we allow this mentality to seep into our relationships. We focus on what our significant other is not doing, instead of focusing on the positive attributes they bring to the relationship “table.” It is like a relationship buffet with a table full of foods you like, but you focus on the one thing you find distasteful.
I specifically didn’t reference marriage in the above paragraph because I think this mentality starts in the dating relationship as well, setting a tone that can later become a monster. People date with the outlook of what they can get out of the relationship. They ask the question, “What’s in it for me? Am I getting what I need?” I recognize that to some degree one must do this; however, I believe many relationships are approached with an over emphasis on self.
Usually when someone seeks me out for relationship counsel, they want to talk about what the other person is failing to give them. It is extremely rare to find that gem of a woman who asks, “How can I be a better girlfriend? How can I be a better wife? What can I bring to this relationship?”
Many times I have heard, “I want a man who treats me like your husband treats you.” And, yes, I can totally appreciate why someone would say that. He takes me shopping, he surprises me with new dresses that fit perfectly, he leaves me endearing notes around the house, he sends me texts during the day, he makes time to talk with me, he helps with the house, he…he…he… he sounds perfect! Looking in, things can look and sound perfect, but bluntly put, our relationship is based on mutual selflessness. And quite frankly, it is not perfect.
And now, getting to the bottom line of my editorial is that relationships, good healthy relationships, are based on selflessness and not self-centeredness.
Christ-centered relationships are about selflessness and not self-centeredness.
By nature we are self-centered people, but in order to have the connectedness we desire, we need to fight the beast within us, with the unquenchable appetite that rants on with, “I want, I need.” Instead, focus on what you can bring to the banquet, turn yourself into the best girlfriend/wife you can be. I’ll bet it won’t be long until you find yourself in the “perfect” relationship.