Fresh Hope – 24th September 2019

I heard someone recently place relationships into two categories.

You have ‘drains’ and you have ‘gains.’

‘Drains’ being those relationships that take from you. Possibly people that you’re mentoring, pouring into, or maybe even just difficult people in your world.

Once you’ve completed your time with them, you’re aware that you’ve given out (this can either be for positive or negative reasons).

‘Gains’ are those relationships that top up your tank. They’re the people who always add to your life. They encourage you, they build you up, maybe they even challenge you, but ultimately you leave their presence better than when you stepped into it.

In life, you will have the opportunity to have relationships that are both ‘drains’ and ‘gains.’ ‘Gains’ are the most attractive type of relationships, however depending on what you want to achieve with your life, I would say that both are necessary.

You don’t just want people who are adding to you, but you want people who you are adding to also.

However, I would suggest that ‘gains’ are the type of relationships many of us are less intentional about.

Much of our lives are spent giving out, so when was the last time you got around someone who was good for your soul?

I write this having just met a friend for coffee. We both are responsible for leading people as part of our work, however when we get together, we can be relaxed, informal, and simply enjoy one another’s company. I can’t speak for his experience, but whenever I get the chance to hang out, I always leave better for it.

It’s a relationship that I ‘gain’ from, topping up my relational tank, so that I’m better equipped to add value to others.

What I’ve realised for myself however, is that unless I’m intentional about being with these types of people, they don’t just fill up my calendar. I have to be the initiator.

It can seem like the selfless thing to constantly keep giving out, however unless you have points of refuelling, very soon you’ll have little or nothing left to give. Possessing relationships that provide ‘gains’ is in fact a selfless act, not a selfish one.

Can I encourage you today to take a moment to observe the rhythm of your life, and be intentional about striking a healthy balance between the ‘drains’ and the ‘gains’ in your relational world.

You and everyone around you will be better for it.

Caleb Burchell

A daily devotion for a better way of living.