"My grandmother used to bring an extra plate to the table whenever she served fish. Onto that plate we were to discard the inedible parts of the delicious meal. My grandmother’s counsel to me, as a young boy at her dining table was, “Eat the meat, baby, and leave the bones.”
It is the same counsel i give to you about submitting to God’s perfect will in your relationships. Embrace those interactions that uplift and nurture you. It has been said that some people enter our lives “for a season or a reason.” There is truth in that. Some people are placed in our paths and we in others, on divine assignments. They are those to help us accomplish a task, to offer comfort in difficult times to guide, teach, even challenge and strengthen us as we strive to reach a critical destination. When these people show up for us we should receive them as a gift from the Creator, understanding that some connections simply were not meant to last forever.
Some people are in our life merely to provide scaffolding. One constructs a tall building with scaffolds, a temporary but solid structure that provides firm footing as you climb. But once the building is complete the scaffolding is removed. Some relationships turn out to be just like that. These people prop you up for a set period of time and quite often their departure is a sign that you are in a better state. So do not grieve when they leave. They were simply passing through.
Other people may enter your life to school you on what you DON’T want: the cheating boyfriend, the coworker who sabotages you, the disloyal friend-they all have their purpose. It is critical that we focus not on their betrayal or deceit but on learning the life lessons they bring. Then we must leave aside the least appealing aspects of these interactions-we must discard the “bones.”
Let’s be clear:not everyone who comes into our lives means us well. This is why we must continually consult God about whom to entertain. We must strive to listen to potential friends, romantic prospects, and business partners with God’s ears to see them through God’s eyes, to size them up with God’s yardstick. God knows the start and finish of all things. If we let him do his perfect work, we will never fail to be associated with the right people at the right time. God will let us invest in them and allow them to invest in us. That is why i am thankful for every person who has entered my life, and i no longer grieve for those who have moved on. Their work was accomplished.
While there will always be people you can count on for the long haul, success in your relationships doesnt always mean that an association will last forever. So be as perceptive as you can about those whom God places in your path, seeking what is good or purposeful in the encounter. And if it turns out that you must say goodbye to someone you care about, send them on their way with love, knowing you shared a nourishing meal together in a divine “season of your life."