Counselor’s Corner: When it’s Time to Let Go of a Relationship and Let God
Some relationships are harmful to us, and holding onto them may hinder us spiritually, physically, and mentally.
When do you know it is time to let go of a relationship, especially if their family? When you have done all that you can do and nothing has worked to mend that person or the relationship. You have held on so long to this relationship believing if you just did one more thing, perhaps then they would come around or treat you better.
There are times we are in codependent or enabling relationships that need to be let go of so God can rebuild that relationship in a healthy manner. Some relationships can recover quickly from betrayal, rejection, or trust issues, and other relationships need to be surrendered to God immediately. If you are experiencing worry, anxiety, fear, doubt, sickness, depression or low energy as a result of hanging-on to a relationship, it is time to let go and allow God to mend what you obviously have tried and cannot. It is not up to you to fix every broken relationship. We can do our part by offering to reconcile by honest and open communication, but if that person does not want to reconcile through honest and open communication, you can’t force them.
If you are being harmed emotionally, physically or spiritually by someone more than being loved, appreciated, validated and respected-cut your losses and move onto relationships that foster health. It is more of a challenge to let go if you are dealing with a family member, especially if it is an adult child; but chasing, fixing, rescuing, and being mistreated, manipulated or controlled is toxic to your overall health. There are some people who are just not good for you. A healthy, vibrant relationship is one where there is mutual respect, honesty and open communication.
Reflect and ponder: Are you continuing to hold onto a relationship that is damaging to you either spiritually, emotionally or physically? Do you feel an obligation to hold onto this relationship because it is family or you have known this person for a long time?
Some examples of different types of relationships that may need to be let go for a season:
1) Any relationship that you or giving more. The relationship is a one-sided relationship, and you find yourself being that person’s emotional or financial support.
2) A family member that is abusive in any manner, whether emotionally or physically. If you are being called derogatory names, that’s abuse.
3) A relationship that is manipulative and controlling. If you don’t do what they want, it’s the “cold shoulder.” Guilt is multiplied in manipulative and controlling relationships.
4) A family member or friend who is abusing drugs, alcohol or any other addiction and they are not interested in quitting.
5) Any relationship where you are used for that person’s gain, whether monetary or emotionally.
6) Relationships that are not honest and open communication is not welcomed.
7) Prodigal children who insists on staying in the “pigpen.”
8) Unfaithful spouse who continues to be unfaithful.
9) Any relationship that causes you to sin.
Letting go does not mean:
· Being unforgiving
· Being unloving
· Speaking negatively about that person
· Becoming bitter over the way you were treated
· Holding onto to grudges and resentment
· Holding onto anger
Letting go means:
· Releasing your loved one into God’s capable hands
· Trusting God with your loved one
· Praying for them and blessing them with your words
· Never giving up hope on their restoration
· Living your life and taking care of you
LETTING GO IS ONE OF THE HARDEST THINGS TO DO, BUT HOLDING ONTO A RELATIONSHIP THAT IS NOT HEALTHY CAN MAKE YOU SICK. Bring your pain to God-you may cry, grieve, but then you enter into acceptance. Accept the things that you CANNOT change. You cannot change someone else, but you can change you!
MEDITATE ON THESE SCRIPTURES:
Casting all of your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7
Don’t worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace which exceeds anything we can understand.