Psychologist John Townsend says, as believers, we all need more energy and vitality to help us stay motivated and focused to execute the kingdom duties to which God has called us.
The fuel, Townsend says, can come from what he calls "relational nutrients," elements that will help build solid relationships and let people see the Christlike character God hopes for in all of us children. Although there are many relational nutrients, Townsend highlights two that every Christian should partake in regularly.
"Our bodies require physical nutrients to stay healthy. When we have similar relational nutrients, which we can give and receive, then we can grow mentally and emotionally sharper and healthier," Townsend told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of "Greenelines" on the Charisma Podcast Network.
"There are many of these relational nutrients; one is encouragement. Every morning when you wake up, you've got to think two things. One, who do I need to help today—my clients, my spouse, my kids—and who can help me today? Sometimes it can be an eight-minute conversation and sometimes it can be a 30-second text. You might say, I've got an overwhelming day, I've got crocodiles coming at me, I've got challenges. Your person says, 'I've got your back, I'm thinking about you, I'm praying for you.' You just received the relational nutrient that will help you carry the day.
"Another is forgiveness, which is one of the most powerful and energizing relational nutrients that exists. The Bible talks about canceling a debt. We say, "You don't owe me anything, and I'm letting you go. Everybody thinks that forgiveness is for the person being forgiven. Not really. Forgiveness is for you—because the person you have not forgiven is driving the car of your life; they are in your head. They are in your decisions. You are thinking about them. Take control back of your life and let that person go."
It's about having the right kinds of relationships with others, Townsend says—not the ones that drain us, but ones that refuel us.
For more about Townsend's ministry, listen to this podcast.
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