“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.” – 2 Corinthians 13:11
Restoration is not an easy business. It’s messy and complex. It often involves sifting through our own brokenness. It means we discover wounds we thought had healed long ago and that can be painful.
But God calls us to restore our relationships where possible. Perhaps you said an unkind word to a friend that resulted in a huge argument. Maybe your spouse angered you and you unloaded weeks of resentment onto their shoulders.
Whatever the tear, consider how you might restore the relationship. Could you apologize to your friend or call your husband? Have you considered writing a letter to your mother-in-law to let her know you’re sorry for how you treated her?
You don’t have to be the one who inflicted wounds in order to seek restoration. You might go to a loved one or friend and say, “Your words hurt me, but I’d like to move past this. Can we mend fences?”
Of course, not every relationship should be restored. If you’re in a violent situation, it’s not wise to put yourself in danger. In these situations, it’s OK to say, “I’m working on forgiveness but I think we need to heal apart for a little while.”
Before you seek restoration with another, start by going to God in prayer. He’s been in the restoration business for thousands of years!
God, I’m broken about my relationship with (name). I want to see restoration and healing. Please show me how to reach out. Guide my efforts and let me be gentle with their heart. In Jesus’ name, Amen.