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Thank you for joining me in this mini-series, as I choose to reflect back on key highlights of the past year. So far, I have chosen to reflect on Health and Theology.

Today, I wish to reflect back on relationships.

Ah, the topic of everyone’s liking to have a peek and be nosey about. For obvious reasons, I will be respectful and sensitive in my reflection on relationships…

Ideally, it should be a reflection on friendships rather than relationships, especially when I am still single (Hooray!). But then, I am in a relationship with the LORD my God (Hooray! x2).

At present, I feel no pressure to become involved with a significant other of the opposite sex. And I am not in a hurry to ‘lose myself’ with someone else… if you get my drift. Besides, I am one of these types who firmly believes a relationship should begin from a founding friendship. In the case of a Christian relationship, it should really be Christ-centred from the very beginning and sustained throughout. Simples!

Well, I can officially reveal that I have tried and tested online dating, purely out of seeking a confirmation from the LORD if it’s a place of means to find a friendship, never mind find a wife. Overall, it’s just what I had perceived (even before registering a profile). I found it a bizarre way to meeting desperate-minded people. I prefer to meet a someone in-person. There is something about observing one’s body language and seeing the quirks of another. At the same time, I like the space of being myself.

Perhaps I am only speaking for myself, but there comes a unique moment where you can sense a person’s character and underlying agenda, before meeting them. The same happened to a penpal who lived in the States. I believe the LORD has given me His wisdom to discern people and situations in life. And in the case of romantic relationships, it has been profound to know whether a person is genuine in their pursuit of ‘love’ in the sense of wanting to be in a relationship, purely out of loneliness, or they have nothing else planned out in life (i.e. Pride & Prejudice), or they have other insecurities, where you are their ‘bait’ for their personal fulfilment. I can only vaguely describe the experience as a bit like Sherlock Holmes.

I still patiently seek the LORD’s will for a Godly Christian wife. I have to say… I still wish to remain pure for the LORD. But it’s nice to become acquainted with new faces in life, whether it is online or offline. Overall, it takes two people to tangle. I know when to let go, when there is no mutual interest and it becomes a dangerous game, when you allow your heart to rule your emotions.

After having the privilege to recently preach on the Armour of God from Ephesians 6:10-20, I now recognise that I desire a Godly woman who believes in the continued spiritual gifts of the Holy Spirit. In the ideal world, a Godly woman of faith and prayer.

In a fallen world of spiritual warfare, we as born-again Christians need to be equipped in God’s Living Word – the sword of the Spirit.

The Armour of God alone isn’t the only equipment we are to clothe ourselves in God’s majesty. We need to use the spiritual gifts that the Holy Spirit has given to each one of us as Christian believers. 1 Corinthians 12:4-6 is key here. Of course, you can read the entire context in 1 Corinthians 12.

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.
(1 Corinthians 12:4-6, ESV)

Reading forward, we can take heart of the repetitive stance that we are all gifted uniquely. We are of course, are to build for the Kingdom of God.

All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.
(1 Corinthians 12:11, ESV)

Putting to one side the Armour of God… overall, I am truly grateful of the current friendships of dear brothers and sisters in Christ, young and old. I pray that the LORD will continue to sharpen your sword in times of spiritual battle, as you grow in the LORD and serve Him and build for His Kingdom Come. I also want to remember older brothers and sisters in Christ who have sadly passed away this year, but I know in my heart and Spirit that they are with the LORD at this time, now and forever. Amen!

~Richard