Avoiding unhealthy dependency on others

 

Codependent relationships involve unhealthy dependencies.

 

 Codependency was the counseling buzzword of the 90’s. And while we don’t hear it used as frequently anymore, the issue it related to is still very much alive.     

There can be unhealthy dependency on the identity we gain through our calling and gifts…and through the people we are in relationship with in those roles.  While we serve God’s purposes in the lives of other people, we are never meant to become or to make others into  “Jesus-substitutes”.
 Healthy, God-formed relationships will prepare us for change and support us as we grow, but not insulate us from trusting God, making tough decisions, and taking the risks of faith that are associated with obeying the Father’s directives for our lives.
Do not allow people to expect of you what they refuse to go to Jesus for.  Do not expect from others what you have not allowed Jesus to do for you.  Though there are seasons that we play an almost mediatorial role between people and God, that must always be short-lived. Our goal is always for them to become powerfully connected to God as their Father, with no other mediator than Christ.
 
Here’s a very important question each of us needs to ask:
 
Who am I?
 
How do you answer this question? Do you define yourself in terms of the tasks you do, your job, or gifts? In terms of who you work with or for, or are married to?  In terms of another person?
 
Here’s a diagnostic question relating to codependency:
 
If the title or task or the important person you’re associated with
were removed, how would this affect you?
 
“I’m important because…I’m the director of the department…the owner of this business…the only person who knows how to do this….the wife of the pastor…a deacon at the church…chief usher…the pianist…” etc..   Etc..  

  

While our giftings and callings do affect the way we view life around us, they must never be the lense through which we view ourselves!  No matter how successful or unsuccessful I may appear in my own eyes or in the eyes of others, I must continually renew my mind with the identity of who I am in the Father’s sight!     

  

Our highest calling and privileges are associated with the FACT that God loves us and knows us and has acted on our behalf in actual history through the redemption we have in Christ! Any substitute for this powerful reality is unhealthy…and possibly even idolatrous.     

 Through faith in Christ, we have become the children of God, sons and daughters of the King! We are God’s beloved children!  We are not orphans.  We are not common people. We are not outsiders trying to get into the party.    

  

  

A cobbler may be known according to the tasks he does.  A baker may be known by the bread he produces.  But not so for the prince or princess.  Those who are offspring of royalty and heirs to a throne find their identity in a bloodline.  The splendor and honor of being born of the royal line changes the way people view themselves.  They may even be a mess, but they are a royal mess!    

  

The quickest way to escape the trap of unhealthy relationships with people is to get rooted and grounded in your identity as a true child of the Living God and a co-heir with Christ.  Don’t be surprised if God upsets your “nest” of temporary security at times, and gives you opportunities to find your value in Him alone.  

    

Is this happening to you in this season of your life?  If so, don’t fight against it.  Don’t stress-out trying to play “god” by continually resurrecting things that actually prolong dependencies on people that have become unhealthy.  Continue to grow in Christ.

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