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Aug 25, 2023

On this episode of Flourish-Meant, host Tina Yeager invites Becky Harling to discuss the secret to joy in relationships. The episode covers a variety of topics such as the importance of managing expectations, the necessity of being humble in relationships, the significance of the Holy Spirit's intervention, and building personal relationships in today's society. Becky also talks about her new book, Rooted Joy, and the girlfriend gatherings she is starting. Additionally, the episode includes tips on how to listen actively and making others feel heard. Tune in to learn more about the science and theology of being a good listener, nurturing relationships, and seeking joy.

Becky Harling is a relationship expert who understands the importance of leaning on the Holy Spirit to navigate messy relationships. She believes that we were designed for community and intimacy with both God and others, and that relationships are the key to a joyful life. With loneliness on the rise, Becky's insights into building strong, healthy relationships have never been more relevant. Whether you're struggling with a difficult friendship, a challenging marriage, or simply feeling isolated, Becky's guidance will help you show up as your best self and deepen your connection with the people around you.

Topics covered in this episode:

1. Importance of Sharing Opinions
- Not everyone needs to share their opinion on everything. We've bought into the lie that we do. 
- There are times when it's better not to share our opinion because it won't help our relationship with someone we love. 
- Jesus spent time with people who were very different from him and probably didn't agree with him on everything (e.g., the woman caught in adultery, tax collectors, prostitutes). 
- Despite the differences, Jesus loved them. 
- The unity of the body of Christ was on Jesus' heart before he went to the cross.

2. Building Relationships
- The best way to stay connected with Becky Harling is through her website, where she offers free resources and a weekly devotional blog.
- She can also be found on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
- Her new book, Rooted Joy, is the first in a series of girlfriend gatherings aimed at providing more intimate settings for women to connect and grow together in faith.

3. Managing Expectations in Relationships
- Speaker emphasizes the importance of managing expectations in relationships
- Jesus is the only one who can completely fill our deepest emotional needs
- Speaker suggests holding self-management meetings and understanding why we may feel disappointed in a relationship to avoid placing unfair expectations on others
- Loving someone means giving them freedom and not constantly relying on them to fill our needs as only Jesus can do that

4. Changing the Narrative in Relationships
- The speaker suggests changing the narrative in your head to improve how you show up in relationships.
- Changing the narrative involves abandoning lies and claiming God's truth.
- Initiating contact with others is important - reach out to neighbors or church community.
- Being a good conversationalist is easy - just learn how to ask questions and keep the focus on the other person.

5. Building Deep Relationships Through Humility
- The speaker talks about a book called "Rooted Joy" which is based on the book of Philippians in the Bible.
- The book talks about humility and how it's important to show up humbly in relationships.
- Harvard conducted a study on happy people and found that those who show up humble in their relationships are the happiest.
- God designed us to find deep joy by living humbly with one another in deeply connected lives.
- Science is now proving what God has said all along.
- The ability to understand and connect with others on a deeper level requires the presence of Holy Spirit.
- Believers can ask the Holy Spirit to help them focus on the other person and understand their heart.

6. Conflict Resolution in Relationships
- The Holy Spirit loves to answer this prayer and shows insights into the other person's heart.
- Listening actively to someone's ranting or upset behavior by seeking to understand the cause can help make the person feel heard and understood.
- The speaker relies on prayer for guidance in all aspects of life.
- They admit to struggling with conflict and have had to mature in this area due to their leadership roles.
- The speaker has shifted their view of conflict from something destructive to an opportunity to strengthen relationships.
- They emphasize the importance of listening to understand the other person's perspective in conflict, rather than trying to prove their own point.
- The Holy Spirit's intervention can help to soften both parties' hearts and resolve the conflict.

7. Building Personal Relationships
- The speaker is very relational and values her relationships with her husband and adult children.
- She offers her husband and herself grace during times of disagreement.
- She has had challenges building friendships, particularly during a time living overseas as a missionary.
- She learned to love people for who they are and invest in relationships outside of her comfort zone.
- She started a Bible study that led to many women coming to know the Lord.
- The speaker discusses the difficulty of building personal relationships in today's society due to the impact of social media. They explain that spending too much time on social media can lead to feelings of loneliness, despite the perceived connection.

8. Listening Ministry
- The speaker has written a book called "How to Listen so People Will Talk".
- They acknowledge that they are a talkative person but strive to be a good listener.
- The speaker believes that listening is a forgotten ministry and a way to show love, referencing Dietrich Bonhoeffer and David Augsberger.
- Listening well translates into making others feel loved, and not just hearing them superficially.

Connect with Becky Harling at and find her new book, Rooted Joy, from Iron Stream Media

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