[2020 Vision] Rest-olutions and Resolutions, Part 3. Meaningful Relationships

Day 1 of 5 • This day’s reading

Devotional

Resolve to Build Meaningful Relationships


Did you know that today loneliness is in epidemic proportions? It is so bad that in 2018 in the United Kingdom, they even appointed a minister for loneliness—a governmental position for loneliness! 


Loneliness is bad for your health. One study said that it is like smoking 15 cigarettes a day. Risks associated with loneliness include reduced lifespan, dementia, anxiety, and cardiovascular disease. Statistics from a recent CBS News segment on loneliness in America said that 46% of Americans sometimes, or always, feel alone. Gen Z, adults 18 to 22, is the loneliest generation. Millennials are right behind them in experiencing loneliness. It is not because of social media. I haven’t done the research, but I think the loneliness in our society is due to the breakdown of the home and the lack of church involvement. 


There is loneliness. We must understand what it means. People who report being less lonely are more likely to have regular, meaningful in-person interactions. They are more likely to be in good overall physical and mental health. They are more likely to be employed and have good relationships with their co-workers. They can likely manage their daily activities, including getting the right amount of sleep, socialization, and work-life balance. 


So, how do you begin? How do you have meaningful relationships? 


Here is our first resolution: I resolve to build meaningful relationships. A meaningful relationship is characterized as one that is of personal significance, is healthy, caring, and long-lasting, and is one that we could not do without. It is a person who helps us grow, supports us, encourages us, and is there with us and for us, and we need them. It takes time to build those meaningful relationships. You don't get that overnight. 


I love this poem:


I went out to find a friend, 


but could find no one there.


I went out to be a friend, 


and I found friends everywhere.


Proverbs says that he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. We can show friendliness to other people, to connect with them. I want us to get to the point that we’re able to say, “I want to step forward into people's lives,” not for just me, me, me, but to be able to minister. We can resolve to build meaningful relationships.