Wednesday, November 3, 2010

watch for the slow fade...

watch for the slow fade. Relationships rarely crumble in a day. You have to watch for the slow fade.

This can be with any relationship you have - friendships, marriages, interactions with your kids, and your relationship with God. When a relationship seemingly blows up one day, the first question is, "did you see any signs of change - did you notice anything different?" Many times people say, "no, I thought things were fine." But if they are honest and really take a good look, there were signs. Maybe "fine" was a downgrade from good, and good a downgrade from great, and great a downgrade from perfect. Usually there's a slow fade that inch by inch destroys your relationships. Little deviations don't seem significant at first, but the repetition of them can leave you all alone. Maybe you start talking less, maybe you spend less time together, maybe you begin to forget to be polite, maybe you start to have lots of other priorities. It can start off very simply and God can be the easiest relationship to fade out - you miss church one Sunday because you didn't want to miss the big game. The next Sunday, you have a project due at work on Monday and need to focus. The next Sunday, you're exhausted and think you need the extra rest and God will understand. You stop praying, you don't pick up your bible anymore, you start hanging out with those guys who "aren't so bad", etc....Slow fade.... Are you in a pattern of slow fade right now? What relationship are you backing away from? Which relationship that used to mean so much to you is now taking a back seat? Examine your daily routine, compare it to last month, last year... and figure out if you're letting someone slip through your fingers. Maybe they are letting you slip away. If you don't want that relationship destroyed and gone, stop the slow fade. Rebuild that relationship one day at a time.

So, for today I will watch for the slow fade. I will evaluate my routine within the context of the relationships that I claim are most important to me. I will spot the signs that create distance and disharmony and I will work toward rebuilding that relationship. I don't want to wake up one day and say, "What happened? I thought everything was fine." Change that fine back into "great" before it's too late.