A little while ago my laptop stopped working. It wasn’t entirely a surprise as I had been trying to use it in what could conservatively be called a rainstorm (there was a good reason). Because I could no longer function without my laptop, my boss gave me another laptop to have my files copied over so I could get back to work. The kind, generous, helpful people in tech support did everything they could to make the process as easy as possible (I have to say that, they may be reading this). But despite all their efforts, everything was not transferred fully. I had to go back and reinstall several crucial programs, change settings to match my old computer, redo my security profile, and many more mundane but time consuming tasks. While doing this, I was unable to do the job I was being paid for. I was unable to do anything else I wanted to because I was so wrapped up in trying to restore my computer. Finally, after weeks and weeks of struggle, I got my laptop back to regular service. It works just as well as the old one, but there are still some files I can never replace and will remain forever lost.
That episode came to mind as I was discussing relationships with Bird. Sometimes, due to our own carelessness, negligence, or even downright stupidity, we expose our relationships to elements that are detrimental to their proper function. There is an eventual breakdown, and before we know it, the relationship no longer works. We now see that we need the relationship we have so cavalierly treated and we make an attempt to repair it so we can continue on with our lives. There are even some similarities between the process of restoring my laptop functions and restoring a relationship.
Our first stop once we damage a relationship should be Tech support: severe damage requires severe assistance. In the computer world we go to tech support, in relationships we need to turn to the One who can fix it. We need someone who is an expert in restoring systems to their proper function. We have to turn our system totally over to them so that they can repair it. God is our relationship tech support, He works with us and in us to put us back to our original position.
Because of the damage we have done to the relationship, however, there can be some parts that do not transfer completely. These are the parts that God will have us do on our own. These are the phone calls and talks to restore connections, to validate what might have been lost during the breakdown. In some cases, there is a frustration, because just as with the computer, you’re reloading stuff you’ve already installed. But if you’re truly trying to restore the system to function as it did, you have to be patient and follow the steps faithfully. We may have to change some behaviors, avoid certain conversations and even certain people to make certain that we have our settings returned to the way it should be. This costs time and effort, and while we are rebuilding the relationship, we may not be able to move forward or reap the benefits of the partnership that we have become accustomed to.
Just as to this day my new laptop does not function exactly like my old one, repaired relationships will not function exactly as they once did. God may give us the chance to learn new things about our relationships, people’s functions in our lives may change, but in some cases we may lose the entire relationship. Whatever the case, we need to ensure that we are careful with how we treat our relationships and understand that healing broken relationships takes times, effort, and is not always guaranteed.
Heading to deeper waters,
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Just a little birdy and fish about the Father's business. Helping to better the world one blog at a time.