“The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.” Genesis 2:18
Has anyone ever said to you, “I knew you when you were only a twinkle in your father's eye”? They meant that you are the outcome of your mom and dad’s relationship, a union that was far beyond the physical.
We humans not only begin through relationship, but we arrive fully honeycombed in community—we fit in tightly among parents, grandparents, siblings, aunties and doting family friends. We are not born separated; we arrive relationally bundled where we receive our name and nurture.
In fact humans are so wired for connection that we wither if we don’t get it. Did you know that children who are cooed to, cuddled close, played “peek-a-boo” with, and breastfed tend to thrive developmentally compared to infants who are left in cribs and given a bottle? The latter suffer from marasmus, a wasting away disease.
We should not be surprised that we are so dependent on others—or interdependent with them. Why? Because God is interpersonal, and we are made in God’s image.
Do you think of God as a community? As Christians we believe God is Father-Son-Spirit, three persons in eternal relationship. Consider who God was speaking to when he said “It is not good for the man to be alone.” We get a hint in the book of John where Jesus says, “Father … you loved me before the creation of the world.” Not only was Jesus at the Father’s side as they lamented Adam’s singleness, the nature of his relationship with the Father was love.
Have you ever wished to cut off relationships and withdraw to a place by yourself? Doing so would, in the long term, yield your own wasting away.
Dear God, thank you for family and friends and the life they provide me. Help me reach out to connect even when I don’t feel like it, for in relating I will thrive. Amen.
Call or text someone right now who means a lot to you; affirm your relationship.
Read Stan Toler's If Only I Could Relate to the People I’m Related To. Toler breaks down relationships into five key areas: lifestyle, family, support, development, and online, and his ideas can apply to friendships too.