THE INHERENT RISK OF COVENANT RELATIONSHIP
When two are together in any venture in complete reliance upon the other, both are in an otherwise precarious position. Each one is absolutely vulnerable to the possible failure of their associate.
The longer the relationship exists the more vulnerable each becomes. The dependency grows due to the progress accomplished. In other words, at the beginning of the contract or covenant, the only element gained is the relationship itself. The relationship is such that it is seen by both partners as having much higher value than the absence of it. Both parties had chosen to begin the relationship. Both had sowed the vital nutrients into it as it grew. Both parties benefited and continued to gain greater benefits until a point was reached when each party decided to make an absolute commitment to the relationship rather than maintain any portion of themselves apart from it.
Such a decision places one party at the mercy of the other. Though it is not perceived in that manner at the time due to the beneficial nature of the initial relationship which each party greatly appreciates, it must certainly be a consideration in the beginning. One must move slowly in learning who one can trust. We are instructed by God to guard our hearts. One must also seek the requisite compatibility. If the opposite party displays trustworthiness at the outset, the only way it can be tested is by a furtherance of the relationship. If each step reveals honesty and apparent fidelity, a sense of reliability emerges and increases. One has less reason to be self-protective. One has greater freedom to be open. One has more willingness to share.
At least, this is how relationships should proceed. It is obvious that many relationships do not develop in such a way, based simply on their finality, brought about primarily from endemic disharmony stemming from selfish and/or immature behavior. If the proper steps are not taken and applied, or if a relationship is fast tracked due to the immediate benefits of one particular aspect without paying any attention to all the other aspects, either because they are considered but rejected or simply not perceived, it allows for a poorly constructed and weak foundation which will certainly present itself in time when the growing pressures of derivative relationship accretion are placed upon it.
In the event, however, when all proper steps are taken and any evident inappropriate or harmful future possibilities are rightfully considered and all appears good to go, it still does not mean that the partnership or relationship will not be tested or suffer to some degree, only because such is the nature of life in this world and also the nature of humanity itself in that we are complicated beings subjected to many influences.
From a Christian perspective, there is always the possibility of the specter of temptation. Of course, both parties must be well aware of this and do their due diligence to avoid it knowing that so much rides upon it. Each party must have already been right with God in the beginning and must maintain their relationship with God throughout. Each party must also maintain their commitment to one another.
Any person who does not consider these aspects or embrace them are effectively attempting to create something which is bound to fail unless corrective measures are taken in the early stages to rectify any incorrect applications, improper attitudes, or selfish conduct which can only restrict or do damage to the relationship but more importantly, to the other party. The vulnerability of each partner which is always present as a necessary component of the relationship must always be considered by the other party when deliberating upon possible actions and choices, because wrong actions and choices will harm one’s partner and stand in opposition to the love one has committed to and should indeed demonstrate.
Normally, one would never do any wrong thing in this regard because their love or respect for the other would prohibit it. But human beings are not automatons. There is always the possibility of straying from one’s covenant promises and responsibilities, or failing in them entirely. Judas proved this.
On a positive note, there is also the possibility of applying forgiveness and walking in proper humility. This is relatively easy if not extremely so when one acknowledges the high price paid for saving grace. For best results, we must always prioritize the Lord’s perfect example.
YOKED WITH GOD: A NO RISK VENTURE
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30]
© 2020 by R.J. Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
 Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
Posted on September 4, 2020, in Teaching and tagged Covenant, Discipleship, Forgiveness, Lord Jesus, Love is the Fulfillment of the Law, New Covenant Teachings of Jesus, Relationship, Spiritual Humility, The Easy Yoke, Trust Your Heart With God. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.
Thought-provoking, RJ. I wasn’t sure where you were headed, at first: A covenant relationship with God? The church? Oh! As in marriage! And then it all began to make a lot of sense.
My personal experience has been a growth process. God gave us each other 51 years ago, and we have both had to learn forgiveness and humility. God has been good and gracious. It’s better now than ever 🙂
Hey Linda! Great to hear from you. That’s a wonderful testimony and a great accomplishment. I would say, in my limited wisdom, that the two of you have succeeded in marriage! This is covenant.
I wrote this post the other day all at once. It came quickly and then just stopped. I waited since then to see what I might do with it but that was all. In my latter editing I had a somewhat challenging time trying to find the right ending. It is an article that could have been longer to explain more but it apparently was not intended to be that. Also, I had in mind not just marriage but any partnership, such as business, for example. Even there it is difficult to keep an agreement in place over time.
Our best example is being in covenant with the Lord, of course. I wanted to convey that point in contrast. We know He is the only perfect partner anyone can possibly be in covenant with and will always keep up His portion of the agreement. All we need to do is our part and everything works.
I hope you’re doing well. Be Blessed.
Doing well, RJ, thanks. I’m catching up with some emails, including notifications from you. I don’t like getting behind, but sometimes it’s just overwhelming to wade through it all.
Great news. I understand. You are obviously connected to many people with relationship responsibilities to them, which means you are blessed! Sometimes time is in seeming short supply. I do appreciate your effort and time toward my work. Your input is always valued and appreciated. Blessings to you.
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