I really believe that the quality of your life, is not just related to, but contingent upon the quality of your relationships.

If that is true, how YOU know people will determine the quality of your life.

How do YOU know people?

Let’s take a look at marriage for example. How do you know the person you are married to? We marry the person we marry for many reasons, but whether we realize it or not, we marry a person because we “feel” like we know them and they know us. Could it be that we actually “fall in love” with the person we do because we “feel” this person gets me and I get them (understands and connects with me and me with them) in a way that I have never felt with anyone else?

Do I “fall in love” with this person because they get me like no one else or…

Do I “fall in love” with this person because I KNOW them?

Do you “fall in love” with someone because you really KNOW them or maybe do we “fall in love” with this person and decide to marry them because…

Of how they make us “feel” about ourselves?

Why do some people who “fall in love” and get married have struggles to the point that they divorce? Just as we marry the person we marry for many reasons, there could be many reasons for divorce.

But…I think one common denominator would be that we don’t “feel” anymore what we felt when we married the person that we thought we “KNEW” when we decided to marry that person. We have “fallen out of love” with that person because we don’t “feel” they get us and we don’t get them (I don’t “feel” understood or connected to them nor they to me)…anymore!

Thus, the question: How do YOU know people?

Let’s look at friendship. How do you decide who your friends are going to be?

Could it be that ALL of our significant relationships happen the same way?

Could it be that we actually “fall into friendship”with the people we do because we “feel” that this person gets me and I get them (understands and connects with me and me with them) in a way that I don’t with others?

Again, I ask the question, How do YOU know people?

Let’s look at what Jesus says…

“Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them.”(Matthew 7:17-20 NKJV)

Jesus said, “Know people by the fruit that is in their life.”

I am afraid to oftentimes in marriage and friendship we are KNOWING people by OUR “feelings” and not by THEIR FRUIT.

I think some of our struggles in our relationships are based more on how people make us “feel” both good and bad, happy or sad, comfortable or uncomfortable, than KNOWING people by the fruit of their lives rather than the “feelings” of our souls, which relate to our personal EQ…Emotional Quotient.

So marriages struggle and friendships are affected, for better or worse based on one thing…

How YOU Know People!

I want to encourage you today to KNOW people beyond your “feelings.” If you base your relationships on whether somebody “roles” like you emotionally, you will eventually struggle in your marriage and not benefit from friends who have strengths you don’t have.

If everyone in your life has to make WHO they are and WHAT they do make you “feel” better about YOU so you can “feel” good about them…

You will never KNOW people the way God wants you to…being the beneficiary of “their fruits.”

You will only KNOW people by how they make YOU feel and your life will be “feel-driven” and not FAITH-driven!

Eventually in all of your relationships you will “feel” your way into an action or inaction and your quality of life will be lowered to the level of your comfort-ability.

I believe God has called us to believe the best in people even and especially when the worst has been displayed.

I believe God wants us to act our way into a feeling not feel our way into an action.

I believe God wants us to have GREAT, healthy, quality-filled relationships and for us to Know people by their fruits not our feelings.

One last time: How do YOU know people? Jesus said, by their fruit. When you look at a person’s life, look at “their fruits” and if your feelings are different than their fruit for better or worse…

Choose to KNOW people the way Jesus said we will know them. Don’t allow your feelings to override their fruit!