“And refused to obey, neither were mindful of thy wonders that thou didst among them; but hardened their necks, and in their rebellion appointed a captain to return to their bondage: but thou art a God ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and forsookest them not.”
If you could mirror God’s treatment towards you in every relationship, you would find that you could have a fulfilling relationship with every person. The verse above shows how God treats people. Though Israel had hardened their neck towards God, He never forsook them. Instead, God was “ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness.”
Imagine if you acted like God with every person. Imagine if when someone did something wrong towards you that you responded in a godly manner towards them. You would be able to salvage relationships with those who have done you wrong, and you would be able to build meaningful relationships with every person. Meaningful relationships are not built on good times, but they are built by working through your differences, which creates a greater trust in each other. In the verse above, there are several godlike responses you must have towards others when they do you wrong that will build a fulfilling, meaningful relationship with people.
First, you must determine not to be quick to forsake relationships when you disagree. God wasn’t looking for the next “greener grass” relationship; rather, He decided and chose never to forsake the children of Israel. You don’t build lasting and meaningful relationships over a short time, but you build them by choosing to stay together in spite of differences and wrongs that may happen.
Second, you must be ready to pardon people when they do you wrong. When you feel someone has wronged you, you must be willing to absolve them of their actions if you want to have a meaningful relationship. You can’t go around holding things against people and expect to build relationships. You have to be willing to pardon people of what they have done for the sake of enjoying the relationship with that person.
Third, you must be gracious and merciful when people do you wrong. Grace and mercy cannot be separated. When someone does you wrong, you must be merciful not to react in a manner that they deserve, but you must be gracious to give them love and forgiveness which they do not deserve. This is the greatest key to building lasting relationships. No great relationship is ever built without grace and mercy being a main ingredient in it.
Fourth, you must be slow to anger when people do you wrong. Don’t be quick to get angry with people; rather, slow your anger down so you give people a chance to correct what they have done wrong. If you quickly fly off the handle every time people do you wrong, you will make people wary about being around you; thus, you will create a lonely world for yourself.
Fifth, you must be kind to those who do you wrong. If kindness is the response to people wronging you, you will find it easy to be slow to anger, and gracious and merciful all at the same time. Friendships will be tested with wrongs and disagreements, but kindness in those difficult times is what builds fulfilling and lifelong relationships.