Dependence, Independence, and Inter-Dependence
In my post on obedience I wrote a lot about our dependence upon God and about the goals of independence from me and of inter-dependence with others that I have for my sons when they are adults . . .
And so I have been thinking a lot about that dance in each of our lives and each of our relationships. When we have uncomfortable relationships we either detach a bit from the relationship or communicate the changes we need in order to be more comfortable, or both. When we have very comfortable and satisfying relationships there is the tendency to move from a healthy inter-dependence toward a dependency that isn't healthy for one or both. And our culture holds up the ideal of independence as the measure of maturity and success . . .
And I believe that Jesus' teachings on agape love are all about this dance! We are to learn increasing dependence upon Him, and an increasing ability to move intuitively into healthy inter-dependent relationships that allow you to be the tool God wants you to be in my life and me to be the tool God wants me to be in your life and that resist the temptation toward full detachment and independence from each other and that also resist the temptation to allow an unhealthy dependence on either side. Such relationships also point us back to Him as the One that we should each be fully dependent upon -- or we will not have the ability to be used by Him or to have Him meet our needs through whomever He chooses to use to do that.
He is our Source. And He points us toward loving each other in truth . . . and the stranger and our enemy.
This dance is one of the great joys in this life! This is relationship -- right here and right now! May we relish each step!