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Give Life to Your Relationships
By Victoria Osteen - May 04, 2010
Part of having realistic expectations in relationships is understanding what you can and cannot expect from other people. No matter how badly you may be craving steak and lobster, you can't expect to get it from McDonald's. They just don't have it. In the same way, there are some things you can't expect to get from some people emotionally because they just don't have it to give.

For example, if someone never received the affirmation and support they needed growing up, they may not know how to give affirmation and support to others. If your spouse was never encouraged, they may not know how to encourage you today. If your husband doesn't talk a lot or show affection the way you want him to, understand that he may not know how. You can't expect people to give you what they don't have. Sure, people can change over time, but they may never be as good at expressing love as you would like them to be.

If you're looking for something different in your relationships today, you might need to begin by looking at yourself. Most times, when you see something missing, it's because you are the one who brings it to the relationship. You carry the seeds of change. If you want more encouragement in your home, sow seeds of encouragement. If you want more affection and tenderness in your home, show affection to others. Relationships are just as much about what you give as what you are hoping to receive.

Remember, you have so much to contribute to your relationships. Give your spouse and the people in your life something to draw from. You can be the model of change. Don't push people to change; instead, lead by example and by investing good seeds. Dig deep within yourself and sow life into your relationships.

Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity (1 Timothy 4:12, NLT).
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