Categories
Marriage Bed

The Price Of Wholeness

Wholeness isn’t something everyone wants but it’s something we all need.

It may sound like a strange statement to make but if you’ve journeyed with people for a while whether personally, professionally or in a ministry context then you understand exactly what I mean.

There’s an allure to being broken and staying broken. Sure, we may lament about our brokenness and even talk about how we want things to change. But the true test of how much we want to be made whole is whether we’re willing to pay the price for it.

You may be wondering – didn’t Jesus already do that? Didn’t He already pay the price for our restoration?

Yes, He did.

He paid the price for our restoration. But in order for us to access it, we have to be willing to pay the price of letting go of the familiar wineskins and take on new ones. New wine can never be put in an old wineskin. Restoration can never transform us if we stubbornly hold onto our old, familiar way of doing things.

Far too often we sit back and wait for the power of God to move where it has already moved and He is waiting for us to get up and do our part.

This is all the more so in our relationships.

The notion that a relationship/marriage completes us is the ultimate utopian lie. A relationship will never fix what is broken in you. It will expose it. It can provide an environment for the healing you need. But in and of itself, that relationship is only a reflection of what is in the hearts of the two people in it.  

Unfortunately, in the context of a relationship it’s easy to assign blame to the other person for what’s not working. It’s easy to assume that they should automatically know how to be your partner and in not doing so, they are entirely to blame for the outcomes that follow. It’s easy to expect them to change and even demand that they do all the while you get to stay as is.

I’ve said it before and I’ll reiterate it – I believe that marriage and children are the two sharpest tools that God uses to make us more Christ-like.

If you enter a relationship expecting your partner to fit around your needs and desires then you’ll be in for a rude shock when they end up bursting your little bubble time and time again, often without even realizing they’re doing it.

A relationship can only be as healthy and whole as the two people in it. Having a healthy relationship starts with being a healthy person. It sounds easy enough but if dysfunction in one or several areas is all you’ve ever known, then embracing wholeness is a strange, uncomfortable affair.  

There’s no one on this planet who hasn’t been through something. One of the biggest lies the enemy is feeding us is that we’re special in our brokenness. You’d be surprised just how many people have been through what you’ve been through or are going to go through it at some point.

I don’t say this to dismiss anyone’s pain but to bring it into the proper perspective. There’s nothing new – even that which is devastating – under the sun. Equally, there is nothing that God hasn’t dealt with before. There’s nothing He hasn’t brought someone out of or through in the course of human history.

It’s unfortunate that we elevate our pain above God’s sovereignty. We hold onto it for dear life and wave it like a banner in every area of our lives including our relationships.

It takes courage to acknowledge that what you consider to be “just who I am” or “just the way I am” is actually an unhealthy dysfunction that you need to address.

It takes courage to look at the person in the mirror and take responsibility for their flaws and mistakes.

It takes courage to apologize and not just promise to be better or do better, but actually do the work in becoming better.

It takes courage to lay down your human expectations of what your relationship or partner should be and trade them for God’s dreams that are far greater and better than you could have imagined.

It takes courage to actively unlearn your bad habits and replace them with good ones.

It takes courage to ask for help. To admit you’re not okay. To seek out professional or pastoral counselling where you may need it.

It takes courage to accept that wholeness is a lifelong work and none of us ever really arrive on this side of eternity. There’s always room to grow and become better, become more like Christ.

Relationships are a beautiful thing. But only when we have the right estimation of ourselves, our partners, our relationships and above all, God, will we truly enjoy everything God meant for them to be.

Categories
Marriage Bed

Chosen Not Cheated: Relationship Edition

Earlier this year, my girl – Koki Oyuke – published a book aptly titled: Chosen Not Cheated. This month, my posts are a tribute to her book (and life) message. More details on the book after the post.  

“Not denied, just in between floors.”

Koki Oyuke (Chosen Not Cheated – Chapter 8)

Romance is a billion-dollar industry. From the music to the books to the movies and everything in between, products and services that are believed to enable or enhance relationships.

I think this is because of the innate need and desire we have to love and be loved. Whether we want to admit or not, the numbers don’t lie. It’s not aliens spending all that money on matters relationship.

The premise of this industry is the promise of happiness and fulfillment in your relationship.

But if you’ve been reading this blog, then you know I write a lot about (God’s) purpose for relationships.

These two things – happiness and purpose – can often seem at odds with each other in conversations about God and relationships.

Christian relationships tend to get a bad reputation because of the notion that we have to choose between God’s will or happiness, because we can never both.  

Nothing could be further from the truth.

God chooses us for purpose in our relationships, but that doesn’t mean He’s cheated us out of joy.

The part we fail to see is all the ways our joy is intricately tied to and catered for in His purpose for us.

It’s difficult to trust God with your relationship status – whether you’re single, dating or married – if you don’t truly believe He has your best interests at heart.

It’s difficult to respect the boundaries He sets for you and heed the counsel He sends your way if you think He’s looking for a way to short change you.

This tug between purpose and fulfillment is not a new struggle for us as human beings. It’s been there from the very beginning with Adam and Eve in Eden.

Did God really say…?

Did God really mean…?

You will not die if you…

You will be like God and know good if you…

These age-old seeds of doubt have found their way into our hearts pining for love.

If God really loves me, He will instantly gratify my relationship needs and desires.

We’ve been lied to and in our ignorance and frustration we’ve accepted that lie.  

The lie that causes us to question God’s love for us in the first place, and then put conditions on that love in a bid to coerce God to prove its existence.

“Anything you don’t confront, will destroy you.”

Bishop John Gobanga

The issue isn’t that we have questions and doubts about how God will handle the relationship aspect of our lives. It’s what we do with those questions and doubts that makes the difference.

God loves you. It’s a truth you have to choose to believe. No one can believe it for you.

God wants the best for you. It’s a truth you have to choose to believe. No can believe it for you.

Whatever is keeping you from believing these truths, you need to address.

Because what the world and the romance industry hardly tells us is that relationships take work to work.

First, our relationship with God, which for us as Christians, serves as the foundation of every other relationship we have, including a romantic one.

Then our relationship with our future (for the single) or current (for the dating or married) partner.

There are no quick fixes and easy shortcuts.

Relationships take work. They’re a lifelong journey and it helps a ton to have the right company along for the ride.

So I encourage you to consider Koki’s book as a companion. In Chosen Not Cheated, she shares a lot about her relationship and marriage and how to practically journey in this area without losing sight of what matters; and how to find your way back should you lose yourself. From how God brought her and her husband, David, together, to planning a wedding while they were both jobless at the time, to clinging to faith through miscarriages. And a whole lot of laughter and adventures all through. The stories she shares are real and raw and they’ll give you a glimpse of what it means to pursue God’s purpose for relationship and marriage in the good, the bad and the ugly. If you’ve been looking for someone to hold your hand as you work through your doubts, fears and disappointments, get this book.


Book Blurb:

Chosen Not Cheated is a story about going back to the place where the light shone in your eyes. Back to the place where you feel weightless, and with your dreams within reach. It’s a story about becoming in the in-between, thin and hard places you find yourself in life. And it’s seeing for yourself, I mean really seeing for yourself, all the ways you’re chosen by God no matter how cheated you feel. This is about scars, journeys, and stories. Yours and mine. Chosen, not cheated.

Koki’s Chosen Not Cheated TV Interviews:

Chosen Not Cheated: Books & Blogs (KTN) – Part 1: https://youtu.be/BQcuPjv_b3I & Part 2: https://youtu.be/Cgm0Tw27oAk

Why You Need To Read The Book Chosen Not Cheated: Full Circle with Joyce (Switch): https://youtu.be/vNOVjjAey-M

What It Means To Live Like One Who’s Chosen: Living With Ess (NTV): https://youtu.be/va_mKuz1ZFk

Sample the book:

Read Chapter 1 on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/9966130004

Listen to Chapter 1: https://youtu.be/USpLd2X7q2M

Buy the book:

From Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/9966130004

From Koki (if you live in Kenya):  MPESA Ksh. 1300 to Buy Goods No. 388 686 and await a WhatsApp message with further details.

Show some love to Koki:

Website: https://kokioyuke.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/officialkokioyuke

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kokioyuke/