CULTIVATING A REAL CONNECTION – POST #4 in Real Connection Series

Challenge:

How do I cultivate a real connection with someone?

REALity:

For those of you that are good at cooking, I applaud you.  I’m not in that category.  When my husband (nickname: Mr. Big Guns) and I were dating, I attempted to make him dinner.  The potatoes were the last thing to be done and were in the oven.  When the timer went off, I grabbed the dishtowel to pull out the pan of potatoes.  They were purple!!!!  I followed the recipe exactly – what in the world happened???? 

Mr. Big Guns had a sheer look of horror on his face.  I said to him, “yes I know the potatoes are purple; I don’t know what happened.”  He kept pointing to the pan, speechless; unable to talk.  “Yes, I know I can’t cook, but at least you could be a little encouraging.” 

I finally realized that the dish towel had caught on fire when I used it to pull the pan out of the oven!!!  Because of the purple potatoes, I hadn’t even noticed the fire.  Mr. Big Guns was so shocked by the blazing dish towel that he couldn’t even talk.  Honestly, I was relieved that his reaction was due to the fire and not my lack of ability in the kitchen!  Thankfully he looked past my lack of cooking skills and still married me.  The Lord knew the dangers of me cooking in the kitchen, so He gave me a husband that can cook!  Hallelujah!

Want to Create more Meaningful Connections in your life?

The Real Connection Starter Guide will give you:
* Personalized Prayers for Positive Change
* Roadmap to Real Connections
* Mind Full Eating 

Best of all, it’s completely FREE –simply opt in below!

Inspiration:

There is a simple formula for a real connection.  To connect, you want to use the 4C’s – Click, Commonality, Communicate, Cultivate.

Let’s compare the 4C’s to making a recipe.  Hopefully, you are better at making recipes than I am!

Click – To find the best recipe, you first look through different recipes to pick the one that’s right for you – a recipe in which you like all the ingredients.  This is the same for connecting where you find a person that you like and enjoy her company.

Commonality – Once you have picked your recipe, you assemble all the ingredients and tools that you will need.  As with a new connection, you start to gather information to find all the commonalities that you and the other person have.

Communicate – After getting the ingredients and tools, you carefully follow the instructions for making the recipe.  This can involve preparing, chopping, measuring, mixing, stirring and pouring.  Just like there are many steps in following recipe instructions, there are steps in communicating.  It is a back and forth opportunity to enhance the connection.

Cultivate – The fun part of making a recipe is enjoying it!  You are meant to savor the fruit of your labor.  This is the same for our connections.  They are meant to be cultivated by tending to them, enhancing them, and deepening them.

The Word of Truth:

Paul and Barnabas
In Acts 9, we read about the beginning of the relationship between Paul and Barnabas.  Barnabas was well respected by Jesus’ disciples, but Paul was a recent convert to Christianity.  With Paul’s background as a Christian killer, the disciples were afraid of Paul.  They certainly did not trust him or really believe that he had changed his ways. 

However, something clicked between Barnabas and Paul.  Barnabas had watched Paul preach in Damascus and knew that the conversion profoundly changed him.  Barnabas realized that he and Paul had a common interest in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Barnabas even convinced the disciples to welcome Paul as a fellow Christ-follower. 

Barnabas and Paul made a real connection that carried them on many missionary journeys together.  Not only did they communicate and encourage each other, they also powerfully shared the gospel to many people.  Acts 12:24-25 says, “The word of God continued to increase and spread.  When Barnabas and Paul had finished their {current} mission, they returned to Jerusalem, taking with them John, also called Mark.”

Many people were against the message of the gospel that Barnabas and Paul were teaching.  Acts 13:49-51 “The word of the Lord spread through the whole region.  But the Jews incited the God-fearing women of high standing and the leading men of the city.  They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas and expelled them from the region.  So, they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium.”

A real connection doesn’t always mean smooth sailings.  There will be difficulties in every relationship.  A real connection must be cultivated in order to withstand the hard times.  I love that Barnabas and Paul just ‘shook the dust from their feet’ which means they didn’t allow the current situation to stop them from completing their common goal of spreading the gospel.  They kept cultivating each other’s faith in Jesus, each other, and their mission.

The Bible continues to tell us that the two men went to Iconium where they spoke so effectively that many people became believers.  A cultivated connection will include obstacles, but it will also include victory!  Acts 14:3 says, “So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of His grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders.”

To learn more about Barnabas and Paul, read their continued story in Acts 15.  You will discover the eventual conflict that separated the two men as well as how God used that conflict for the good of many.

Want to Create more Meaningful Connections in your life?

The Real Connection Starter Guide will give you:
* Personalized Prayers for Positive Change
* Roadmap to Real Connections
* Mind Full Eating 

Best of all, it’s completely FREE –simply opt in below!

Action Plan:

For real connection, use the 4C’s

Click, Commonality, Communicate, Cultivate

Bonus Action Plan Tip:

Do not try to cook potatoes on an untreated metal pan. The potatoes will react to the metal and turn purple!!

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