They will come in and go out, and find pasture. . .I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
Dwell in the House of the Lord Forever
Good relationships are a key to finding happiness and living a full life. Research shows that solid relationships help people live longer, deal with stress better, and have healthier habits. There is compelling evidence that strong relationships contribute to long, healthy, and happy lives. The quality of relationships is the single biggest predictor of happiness.
Psalm 23 spells out that truth in a beautifully poetic way. The writer talks about his good relationship with the Lord and says, “Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life.”
So it isn’t a surprise when Jesus, the Good Shepherd mentioned in Psalm 23, says about his followers, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
It might be a surprise, though, when the followers of Jesus have difficulties in their relationships, feel lonely, or find themselves occasionally isolated. Didn’t Jesus promise a full life, and doesn’t that usually mean excellent relationships?
Jesus is aware of the difficulties in relationships in this life. He knows that his followers will go through stages, coming in and going out, getting closer and moving on.
In order to provide the most stability, Jesus offers a relationship with himself. Since he died to take the punishment for sins, he always forgives and continues the relationship. Since he rose from the dead, he is always there.
Jesus knows that relationships in this life are imperfect, so he invites us to look forward to the perfection of eternal life in heaven. Psalm 23 ends with these comforting words: “I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
Lord Jesus, grant me good Christian relationships in this life, and comfort me with the promise of perfect relationships in eternity through faith in you. Amen.