Our society is full of unhealthy messages about romantic relationships -- from confusing infatuation with true love to promoting destructive sex through pornography. In an atmosphere like that, it can take a miracle to be able to build a healthy relationship with someone.
But God, who is the source of all love, has created many loving angels who can help answer your prayers for a better relationship with your boyfriend, girlfriend, or spouse. If you let faith (not emotions) guide you, you can miraculously break free of unhealthy romantic patterns and discover the joy of a healthy romantic relationship.
Here’s how you can work with God and the angels to build a healthy romantic relationship:
- Understand the differences between healthy and unhealthy love. Healthy love: is reality-based, completes another, finds a friend, sacrifices, is patient, is kind, is forgiving, doesn’t hold grudges, is born out of security, is vulnerable, is allowed to develop, is gentle, is honest, and is satisfied. In contrast, unhealthy love: is fantasy-based, seeks to be completed, seeks a victim, demands sacrifice, is impatient, is rude, is resentful, seeks revenge, is born out of fear, is defensive, is pressed to perform, is combative, is deceitful, and is restless.
- Shift your focus from receiving to giving. Understand that, as much as you desire intimacy, you can’t achieve it if you continue to focus on your feelings and how to try to gratify yourself. Replace unhealthy dependency on other people with healthy devotion to God, who can truly fulfill you. Look to the angels as role models of healthy love, where the focus is on giving rather than receiving. Ask God and the angels to help you shift your focus from your own desires, needs, and hurts to those of other people. Look beyond yourself and your own life toward God and other people. Focus yourself outwardly to gain genuine love for them.
- Understand how your background has affected you. Think and pray about your childhood and other past experiences that may have contributed to you developing unhealthy attitudes about romance and unhealthy behaviors that sabotage your relationships with others. Consider whether you learned poor communication patterns that encouraged you to keep secrets, whether your feelings were acknowledged or denied when you tried to express them, and whether you learned how to trust other people. Once you understand how your background has affected you, use that knowledge to equip you to do think and act better in the future. Never blame your current problems on your past or believe that there’s nothing you can do to change your situation. Instead, once you uncover the sources of your problems, decide to deal with them head-on, with help from God and the angels.
- Confess sins that are hindering you from giving and receiving love as God intends. Rob your secrets of their destructive power by bringing them out into the open. Confess each of your sins to God. Confess your sins to others you may have hurt, and humbly ask for their forgiveness. Join a support group or build friendships with a few others who are struggling to recover from the same issues you are, so you can hold each other accountable and encourage each other.
- Embrace forgiveness. Forgiveness will help you resolve the past and clear the path toward a better future. Accept the forgiveness that God and the angels offer you after you confess your sins. Ask God and the angels to empower you to forgive people who have hurt you by relinquishing any plans for revenge and inviting God to heal your heart toward them. Trust that you can live with confidence in your romantic relationship once you know you’ve given and received forgiveness.
- Be accountable. Ask God and the angels to help you unlearn destructive ways of relating to people and learn how to relate to them in new, healthy ways. Take concrete action to make amends for past wrongs whenever you can.
- Be patient with yourself. Realize that you can’t take shortcuts in recovery; the process demands plenty of time. Be aware that hunger, anger, loneliness, or fatigue can trigger a relapse into unhealthy romantic behavior. Don’t expect too much too soon. Instead, simply ask yourself each day what you can do now to become the person you want to be tomorrow.
- Ground yourself in reality. Give up the fantasy high of immediate gratification to the strenuous yet rewarding task of building authentic relationships. Stop trying to take what you want in relationships and start making sacrifices for those you love. In the process, you’ll discover more fulfillment than you ever could have previously enjoyed.