|My little 2 year old resting on my shoulder|
He says, "You will find that the most meaningful thing in your life is the relationships that you have built and cherished and nurtured...A clue to life's meaning is in relationships. We have a God who is not just distant and transcendent and far, we have a God who has come near..."
The implication is that Jesus came to earth to make Himself near to us (so that now we may have intimate relationship with Him), and God created human relationships, so as we build healthy bonds with others, we can be reminded that our God is relational and wants to come near to us.
It also makes me think of how Paul uses the marriage relationship as a picture of Christ and the church (Ephesians 5). As I've experienced healing, and studied God's intention for marriage (sacrificial love, the husband covering over and protecting the wife, the wife respecting the husband, etc.), I've been reminded that marriage is such an appropriate picture of Christ's relationship with the church. Both the earthly picture of marriage between a man and a woman, and the spiritual picture of Christ and the church are simple, yet hard for our selfish hearts to put into practice; mysterious, yet so clear, and such a creative, beautiful work from the heart of God.
This Lenten season, one area I will be praying more intentionally for is wisdom in my relationships, and direction on how God wants me to cherish, love, and cultivate kinship with Himself and those around me.