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Fueling Great Relationships With Others

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
January 25, 2022 5:00 am

Fueling Great Relationships With Others

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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January 25, 2022 5:00 am

Dr. John Townsend offers practical ideas on how to create incredibly meaningful relationships in every area of your life. He describes the types of people who are needed on your “life team” to help you grow – and others who need to be held at arm’s length, as you seek balance in your relationships with friends and colleagues.

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Has the hurt in your marriage become too much to bear. Focus on the Family's hope restored marriage intensive. Can we work with you so you can have a thriving marriage you want. Find out how to receive your free consultation and help restore.com. Guard your heart for from it flow the wellsprings of life. If I don't take care my heart which is my motions and my values and my schedule and all that none of you that's Dr. John Townsend. He's our guest today on Focus on the Family during some relational tools that help us in best in others and also to allow others to speak our lives. Thanks for joining us today your hostess focus president Dr. Jim Daly and I'm job Jon. I think everyone wants to live a healthy life but they don't always know how to get there and there's always these attributes that they manifest that are very unhealthy. Our good friend Dr. John Townsend has thought a lot about this and has some wonderful ideas on how to do that. How to strengthen yourself, get yourself in a healthy position and then be that cup of cold water to the relationships around you, which is what Jesus is really calling us to do in his can offer some great practical wisdom on how to do that.

I think you want to kick back, get a couple coffee cup of tea and sit in and listen to this one. You find balance and encouragement for your daily life from Dr. Townsend. He's a nationally known leadership consultant psychologist, a best-selling author and is the founder of the Townsend Institute for leadership and counseling will have details in the show notes in his book that forms the basis for our conversation today is called people fuel fill your tank for life, love and leadership and we got copies of that here the link is in the show notes John, welcome back to focus, glad to be here guys the title people fuel is great now Jean and I just to give you an idea I mean I'm more the extroverts. She's more the introvert and we talk about how we either are fueled in a group or D field if I could say that some people say gains are drained and that that's true but you know one thing, it's so interesting to me.

I think maybe this is part of being married and I don't even know if this is clinically accurate but I think over the years I've adopted a bit of her need to back up a little bit I used in my 20s and 30s. It was all outbound and I just love being in a group and it was party time and crazy and fun. The more parties the better right and then I realize I need time to back up. I'm really empty is a kind of normal is very found out and in fact that the extrovert needs cave time.

Not as much as the introvert but everybody needs dictate so in the ideas there though fruit for her for the introvert is you do need people time to is that I was the other that God made us to need both the sort of the reflective time to say how's life going get my energy back, but also need that good stuff that comes in the right relationships and you also say in the book, which is fantastic.

People fuel that we have set needs.

I think we know what I love about this.

Let's get this right out of the way. The idea of amalgamating Christianity with psychology I think it's a fact that is you as a Christian are identifying patterns that God has set in us as human beings.

I think it's one of the most comfortable blends of science and faith in the disciplines of science. Your grade. No question.

But in fact most of what I study. Now Jim is neuroscience because every robust study that comes out about resilience or relationship or success or career. Every well done study by success. One thing the Bible has it all. Right that thousands of years ago God said those things and you keep on top Bible Passages. Is this a little bit like there's this tapestry in your your home that says symbols of love principles of success principles of child rising and then finally because of neuroscience. The authors name. God is on the bottom that tapestry the hard science now says he had a right way and it shouldn't surprise us as Christians that's the funny thing that we seem like wow that's amazing. But science should align itself with Scripture specially in the area of human behavior.

So with that understanding you say there are two sets of needs functional and relational, but that relational needs are often not met. So go ahead and describe the student speak more about unmet relational needs, yet so the functional easement briefly are that we all need to work we needed to task be responsible hold our finances together all the structure, schedule things we do, but the relational needs are like what we need to know that were left. We know that we were accepted that there's wisdom around is that we can get truth and the promise a lot of us are trying to think okay I'm supposed to give all those things to other people, but I'm a I'm supposed only get them from three sources just from the Lord, my spouse or my Labrador retriever Max. He licks may be conditionally cares about me. So I just go that way and is great.

We need the Lord and the Holy Spirit in the Bible and we need our spouse and we need Max, but the Bible says, oh so much more about other people that we need grace, and nutrients from II got the whole concept from mom I'm from the world by a nutrient you know were all into getting healthy and taking supplements need right these days, but we can never do and I start thinking okay there's bio nutrients like calcium and like iron that we need to stay healthy. I thought is also relational nutrients.

There's no way that we get those a week we get this to each other, not from a pill or supplement, but from a conversation text. A warm lunch or whatever, but we found out that we can get the acceptance we need from others. The wisdom, the encouragement the truth.

The challenge, so the concept of relational nutrients is are we getting the ones we need from each other in a first Peter 410 says that we are the stewards of God's manifold grace. God especially said I'm giving my grace to people through people and I getting that from people and am I providing that for my family and my friends right but to say I'm struggling my work on my marriage or my physical health vulnerability brings those nutrients, but it's a little scary for us but with we can pull that off with safe people. The flow of nutrients works and we go a feeling like I'm rated to take the day and that's what I appreciate about the you know the gentle nudging you're giving us here to come to get out of the comfort zone kind of the cave as you described. Get to know the cave next to her corrected kids in that way you have four quadrants of relational nutrients.

Describe what those four quadrants are and how each of them relate to us here. They're all discounted different categories of how we supply each other with the right fueling and get supplied. The first, which is called be present for squadron would be present. That means basing means to be with somebody and be present emotionally and shut up. You know in in Job chapter 2 is says that his friends sat with him seven days and seven nights, and did not speak a word to him, for they saw his grief was very great. Only good thing they did in 42 chapters right and and and so sometimes just got to be with somebody and comfort him. Sam here, I want to get in the well with you on up support you.

Number two is provide the good you know we only for people to kinda be a little dopamine hit for each other. We encourage each other was I believe in you and your struggling in your job or your health or your with coded over your finances, your spiritual life. I believe I'm on your side. I respect you and people to need that little pop-up you just gave me an endorphin and literally that's what the neuroscience says we giving children endorphins. We feel better when someone encourages us so you got to provide the positive good for people being present is providing the good that's good were the other two that the third one is provide reality because sometimes we need what I call a Gandalf you know Lord of the rings go the and he has the thought of cryptic statements and you got all my gosh and the person it can go deeper and say why is that, or here's another perspective give you honest feedback give you insight, wisdom you got to get there from the right people so that that provide so much when people go on, now I see things you give me clarity is the wisdom aspect and was the fourth 2012, the fourth one is starlight. Now let's get our butts out of the seats and do so is the action steps like what the action going to take because we can have all the presents we want all the good lope we want all the wisdom we want, but you gotta make behavior as to what your next challenge what your homework assignment.

Is there a course needed tightening you to have the conversation. That's what action is and so were all the time giving and receiving those for depending on what you needed a different time to each other and so good. That's all contained in the book. People feel Johnson to get some details about that in a minute.

Let me also ask you that Mrs. this is one that again. I think I have often tried to figure out where is this line. People think it's selfish to think of your own needs. You say it's crucial to maintain health and well-being. But where is that line especially for the Christian to be mindful of your own needs because it feels at times selfish it is that we would put ourselves first. But sometimes you need to describe when that is appropriate when it's spiritually right and what's wrong. I always go back to the Bible and that because we missed so many verses.

For example, on Proverbs chapter 4 verse 23. Guard your heart for from it flow the wellsprings of life. If I don't take care my heart which is my motions and my values and my schedule and all that then unknown be able give it to anybody else, and then Paul says in Philippians look not only to your own interests, but those of others, not only to your own, but about it so it's always been in the Bible, but I think sometimes we miss that instead to any sinus self-care is selfish any candy but if you're taking care of yourself and your healthy person you're gonna want to gift to the kingdom and to others right and I think in that context. Again, this is just a personal example that hopefully encourages couples like Jean and II think it took us time in our marriage to figure that out that I enjoyed going for worked out or doing something and at first I think she felt while care would what about time for you, leaving us yeah and you know, of course, and kids arrive and where are you I need you and we get all that, but she isn't such a good place that now you know for herself, taking a walk in doing those things she needs to do and doing them and not feeling guilty about it and then you know let me go work out and do some of those things that I need to recharge. Why does it first. Always take his time in our marriages to work that out for each other.

While it does because in the early parts you have this kind of honeymoon. What I just can't get enough of being together with you and it's good thing because that glues us together to get ready for the fact that when a man you're not perfect I'm not manganese in space, but then once the honeymoon is over, you got.

I know you and you know me all the sudden we know I need some space because space creates longing is a great song that says country song says, how can I Miss you if you don't go away your locks and make you go. I missed you when you get back together. It sounds like an introvert speak. Please go away so I can see this is Focus on the Family with Jim Daly. Our guest today, Dr. John Townsend's book people fuel is really a great treatment of this topic and I will encourage you to get a copy today. Click the link in the show notes or call 800 K in the word family. John what I love about all your books there so practical and you give such pithy direct guidance on what to do and another in your book. People fuel you mention the seven seas were knocking to take time to cover all seven will be just the two of them. Coaches and comrades.

What are you getting at with people seeking out coaches and comrades, and if you want to mention another couple that's fine too. We have the whole cost of the seven seas Jim is that we got to be take responsibility for who we spend our time with because it is so hard like we sent you earlier with some people that there are nice people but God bless and their drains and there's some people that are gains and give us rich nutrients so we can function have great energy, great creativity and focus what you got to build up those top groups that coaches and comrades so that you can help the others so the coaches category is basically someone who knows something you don't know. It could be working out. It could be music it could be business, could be spiritual director. They only not all do they know which something called a subject matter expert expert estimate, but they also have the their training, coaching you have someone you know something but then I had to train and teach and note how to provide for the obstacles in the in the strategy number go well. So they're trying to teach it, but the third one is my favorite third criterion is they have no personal need for you how tali this is great because either their pro bono because they made whatever they made in you, and they're just doing it or you pay them and and coaching pays now at about three times what you pay for this with a Harvard says say that one more time because I think I was about three times a month as much. Whatever you pay for it pace back okay so the return.

It was really credible, but the reason is good that that you have no need of it.

Then you have to spend in your little one hours, and with them half the time asking them how was your vacation.

How are your kids, how is your you know Granny when I will have tons of coaches going to have a lot of needs so and when I cannot, coach, I just say hi and he says hi and then it's all about me and 30 minutes of their lives in each can be kind of healthily selfish because is dedicated to your betterment. That's the thing that makes a coach great yeah that is good and then the comrades comrades you know I got that from the military desire into comrades in arms and all that we only what I call a life team in a life team this anywhere between three and 10 people in your life and have several characteristics. They know everything about you and they still love you and they want to push you to grow and they can be vulnerable with you.

They know it all. They love you. They want to see you grow and they want to be vulnerable with you and so you walk through life with them and I have a structure in the book about it for you. Make either a group or individually every week to week three weeks and you get together and you you commit to be an honest and open about how life is really going and you care about each other and maybe bring a Bible passage unity pray for each other, but as a way to say I need these people in my life to give me the nutrients I need an owner providing for them.

Because micro staying in that context. John you look at again culture today. I think it just personally Jean has couple Bible study.

She's involved and I would say that there is where she's getting that men tend to be more loaner oriented, you know, it's when you say 3 to 10 guys guys might not my ideas. I was close to me.

I know they are well about to have no one but you know I mean it is and I agree it's so important. I do have three that I feel are really close and that way but speak to that person that is struggling especially that man who you know they're going. While I don't think I have anyone that what can they do. I have a system in the book about that where basically and I did this to myself because I wanted to eat my own cooking is you go through Microsoft contacts.

We've all got Outlook enter somewhere between 505,000 names in there and you just want to if you can't think of anybody that knows you fully loves you fully want to grow be vulnerable somehow to the situations that your guy you will take about an hour to walk through the new go through okay him maybe. Maybe that one still in prison. Maybe not. And then you make it done and you go there's like 20 names here and you call him on his time and say hey it's going to catch up with you. How's life going to catch up and you have lunch or whatever. And here's the magic you take a vulnerable risk a little sticker told her what you don't say my life is awful you say well were struck struggling with their teenager or my job, not what it should be your marriages, struck me take a small vulnerable step and they will tell you if they're the right person by one of three, responses number one bill will say your Christian what you don't have a problems okay nice person, not a comrade of the judging you write number two they'll say yeah the weather around here is great isn't. I just love this weather well they're saying avoid or avoid okay nice person, not a comment third personal site you got a problem with your daughter okay history books to read. Here's a 70 Bible passages are you hugging your daughter. Are you having boundaries with your daughter.

Do you know her friends and they give you all there. The vice monsters to tell me I wanted be the great wisdom person for you, but I don't want to be opened.

The fourth person. This is the great one will put down their fork and lean across physically and say I had no idea about Sandra your daughter. I love her tell you more about it how you feel can pray for you coming. What's it like for you what they're telling is I can go there with you and they are a good candidate for being a light but that's good that's good okay the first for the Caesar you know, pretty healthy. There's a lot identifiers got input for the next three are more willing so go over those other three in one of the core yet.

The fourth one is care because Jesus said the poor will always be with you. People need to care for people mean that's kinda what Focus on the Family is about is how do we care nationally and internationally.

People all away from people in developing countries that have nothing to somebodies homeless are going to sex trafficking or some but a friend is in need, or whatever, and were called into that and so if responsibility do to be on board to do help to you mom and I'm always doing kind of roll your sleeves a kind of ministry and so the cool thing about that, though, is every time you finish doing a service project or whatever you and up you probably like this to and I'll be flying home or driving them always say to myself why am I not doing more. I feel like transcendent I feel like I'm with God.

And that's because God puts a little endorphin in me every time I give as a self reinforcing system to say that feel good didn't it John do it again. It's how he keeps care going because we feel so at one with God actually doing down in the chronic side of the chronic that you know I'm risen from the South we call the chronic state. Bless their heart folks their heart. They're trying that is not a term of endearment it is not noticed is nice way to say oh my gosh, because the problem with is there do not mean people to certainly not, but they have problems that never go away money problems, relationship problems, self-help problems, job problems and the key to being a chronic is that they have what I call and I'm not being I'm being charitable. Here they have what I call a flat learning curve they experience pain and loss in all this and you and I would go one a pickup from that I want to do that differently back and make the same mistake over again the Proverbs in the Bible would call them a foolish person and most of us spend way too much time trying to help with chronic change and if you've ever done that spent mentoring time was somebody in an and had meetings with Emma.

Didn't get your kids soccer games because they need you so much. The key is when date to give him a homework assignment not big on homework assignment and they come back from next meeting is able to do that thing about going to a Dave Ramsey course or did you thing about spiritual development about working out and milk out now. Been really busy and he said that's what I told you to get out your pain from last week and the other was yet to sometime site I can spend as much time with him as I like to because they can totally drain yeah and that's that's important. The last one is the most dangerous. The contaminant describe that person Tam is a person is a bad person, you know, I believe in a personal devil from the Bible.

Lovely piece of personality and I believe there are bad people and in and you see in the Bible, the people who just like the devil they want to seek and destroy. And a person is a contaminant really has a lot of envious feelings toward successful people. If you got a family. They may want to tear your family apart. If you got organization or church. They want to tear their support because they date just bad people.

The adjective so the person listening to could identify. Oh man, that's aunt Sally yeah okay several things ones.

They tend to be predatory they use and exploit other people. Secondly, never look at themselves, never about them. Thirdly, they seem to have account was strange in joy, and other people's on paint and date and then they get become. Actually, gossips to make that happen and the just bad people and they're not hurt people there bad people and that they're not a big percentage of the human race, but you gotta watch out and you can't have a lot of time with these people because they are there does not their dark people until they get saved or whatever and so what I tell people is just make sure that you tell him the truth.

Because we all deserve the truth and you make sure you got the resource around them and and be confrontive and if they change spend more time with them but don't sacrifice your family or your church or your business or your head with those people I spend more time with chronic's because God bless and they need help. Contaminants protect your life.

Yeah, that's good advice.

John and I think for the last question here as we wrap up and again, what great principles and people fuel probably the area that we have the most conflict, then it could be marriage and kids, especially dull kids, and that's one of the areas that were we receive a lot of feedback from but you have a wonderful story of conflict within the family, and I think it's a great illustration that many, many people will be able to take away so what was the story and what did they learn what did you learn in that situation. Yeah Jim on this family always been really close to in our family traveled with their family vacations.

Everybody had the chemistry and one of the daughters came up and said I'm really struggling. I don't vote among graduating from college and have a job about financial issues and my boyfriend I broke up in the hearts broken and I don't even know if I believe in the Lord because I'm in a big college vinyl blade. So I said I'm I've known you since birth. What can I do this awful. She said you can fix my mother and I said how to get from here to there. That will I go to her with these problems in my mother says look honey, you're smart, your resilient and you're gonna be a winner. So feel better and I said is that helps because now I just avoid her. I said how about his dad not talk all the time. I said I'll talk to mom because mom is a dear friend of mine saw said your daughter is struggling, and she feels like you're not listening to because look your psychologist. I had this wisdom and encouraging the God gave me in these great action steps the unit open her head up and and shut you your shrink open her head up so I can put my nuggets of wisdom and close the top and that's what you guys did when I said, yikes. So talk to mom and I said look at it this way, your daughter fell down a well well if in a relationship of well being overwhelmed. No money faith issues and she's down this well she struggling and then you come and see her and where you are, you know the sun is shining and and you spot if I was playing a hill sound and everything is there and all this and you look down is a honey your strong and resilient your winter come on out like Bob Barker you know she just blows you off because you know whether your husband is also a dear friend of mine he sees else daughter and he jumps into the well. 40 feet down he'll answer whether he picks up his daughter yells daughter any holes or is it just dark here and it's overwhelming and it's scary and I'm with you as long as it takes, and will get out together.

That's why she listens to him and not using the mother said you tell me to stick to change my ways. I said yeah I mean give grace before truth. Grace gives us the permission to give truth if they don't feel like were in the well of pain with Esther not to listen to us. So just be with her, be present and then you got great truth, but you're out of sequence. I went to John chapter 1 verse 14 where it were. John says that Jesus came full of grace and truth and in the syntax, the order in the Greek it means grace and truth.

It doesn't say to think like that orders important questions and I'll try. She tried it, I checked with about six weeks later, the daughter said mom and I talk all the time and the mom said I've learned learn how to listen before I do this and here's the message for people and I'm giving this talk is most of us think right now and they're here in this. I need to do that I need to get in that well first and say I'm with you. Tell me more about it. How does it feel before I give my truth. I got to be better about that, but that's not what I tell people to think it's a great thought put that thought on the back burner. What we really need to be thinking now is seven words in these the heartlands. Who am I inviting to my well who am I inviting to my well because that's hard. That's vulnerable. But how can I give those things to others. If I'm not asking for them to so I challenge people to get somebody in your well and say let me take how I'm really doing John this is such good stuff and that what a great resource people fuel and that I hope the listeners will respond. If you're in that spot nearly I don't have another person in my life that I can trust like that man get John's book because it can really help you identify how to go about finding those people in your life who will be that great a cyst for you and the idea that God is calling us to that.

Not to be isolated were built for relationship and that's why he created us for himself and then for each other and it's great. Let me also encourage you to make a gift of any amount to Focus on the Family become a monthly supporter will send you copy the book as our way of saying thank you for doing ministry with us and if you can afford it.

It's one of those resources. There were going to trust others will cover the cost of doing ministry to you and I'd like you to call us and asked for the book if you need it will get it in your hands, Jim, say a word about that.

I've been a donor to your mission for many years and I've never regretted because of the grapefruit that comes from it with you guys bringing Jesus to people with very kind to John.

It's great to have you as part of that. I mean you're at the table giving the advice and I so appreciate our partnership.

That way you will donate.

As you can monthly or one-time gift. And as Jim said he can't afford to give right now. We understand that regardless request a copy of will by Dr. John Townsend, call 800 K word family or click the link in the episode on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team. Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family I'm John Fuller inviting you back.

As we once again help you and your family thrive in Christ. Is it possible to love your spouse without expecting anything in return.

Focus on the Family were excited about season five of the Leffingwell podcast.

I'm John Fuller and I'll be joined by my friends and colleagues, Dr. Greg Smalley and his wife Erin as we discussed practical way love and appreciation to your will find the Leffingwell podcast had Focus on the Family.com/Leffingwell that's focusonthefamily.com/Leffingwell


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