Day 9 The Covenant Exchange
There are 5 Covenant Relationships we experience as humans
- The Mother Covenant
- The Father Covenant
- Covenant with God
- Friendship Covenants
- Marriage Covenant
For some of us life has gone well…we have had positive covenant experiences in each of these relationships. However for many of us one or more of these covenants “went awry” and was broken. Let me explain. Remember every Covenant involves 5 elements of exchange. We give each of these to our Covenant partner and we receive the same back from them.
5 Elements of Covenant
When We Exchange Any of these Areas With Others We Are in Covenant With Them.
Give Careful Thought to Covenant Partners
You recall Jacob & Sarah gave careful consideration to their covenant relationship. Their Ketubah, a life long Covenant contract, was not signed solely on the basis of emotional or sexual attraction.
- They considered the exchange…did each have the skills and qualities the other needed.
- They considered faithfulness…would each be faithful to the other.
- They considered the price they would pay for this relationship…was the value the other person brought to the marriage worth the price they would each pay?
This is a concept that takes some time and thought to understand. When you go into covenant with someone you should be fully aware of who you are and fully aware of who THEY are. We may often recognize and value differences in another person; hoping areas where they are “better” will “make up for” our own weaknesses. However, if we are sacrificing who we really are – our core nature, to have something from another person, or if they are not willing to “exchange” with us, we will be unhappy in the long run.
Longing for Covenant
Wounded people long for a true Covenant relationship and naively enter into Covenant with people who are unwilling to “exchange”. They believe if they “Give” enough they will eventually “Get” enough in return. However, they often find themselves in Covenant with someone who has no intention of exchange…only of taking. So the wounded person is more deeply wounded and lost as they give and give and receive nothing in return. I often have women tell me “I’ve spent so much of my life pleasing others I have no idea what I really want.”
Often women who have been abused or abandoned will look for a Covenant partner who will take care of them. These ladies are sincere in their need, however, they often don’t want to grow up or believe they do not have the ability to take care of themselves. They unwittingly get into another controlling relationship with a man who gives them financial security but will not allow them to grow and become who they really are and as a result become resentful and bitter.
A man may exchange his time and physical, emotional and mental strength and abilities to a company or a church or organization expecting to receive financial reward and security only to be “traded in” for a newer model and left rejected, angry and abandoned. A woman who has been rejected may end up with a man who will exchange his wallet but not his heart or who will be a faithful provider but not faithful sexually.
A woman may exchange her body in Covenant but not her heart; faithful sexually but looking elsewhere for provision or companionship. Well meaning men and women will enter into jobs or churches or organizations looking for that Covenant exchange. “I give my all to you. I take care of you and you take care of me” only to be deeply disappointed and lose faith in God and others.
When we are in wrong Covenant relationships or we experience a broken Covenant we are tempted to go into Covenant with ourselves, which leaves us further broken and empty. We will discuss that at another time.
What Do You Give In “The Exchange”?
You should not only look at the other person to see if they have what you need but also check yourself. Do you have qualities that would not make a “good exchange”? Here are some examples:
- Is part of your identity being judgmental or critical? Would a Covenant partner want to take that on and become victim to your critical spirit?
- If you tend towards dishonesty with finances would a Covenant partner want to exchange authority over their finances with you, and possibly suffer the consequences of your dishonesty?
- If you are lazy or unmotivated would that be a good exchange for a hardworking covenant partner?
- Do you struggle with being sexually pure or even sexual addiction? Would a Covenant partner want to exchange their purity and faithfulness to experience rejection through your addiction and self-centered view of sexuality?
And What About The Other Person?
- Do you want to exchange your identity, for example, with someone who values unforgiveness and live with their rejection of you and others?
- Do you want to give authority over your life to someone who is abusive or narcissistic and be under their control?
- Is the financial benefit or security you would receive worth giving up your personal sense of freedom and choice?
- Do you really want to live with the knowledge that your partner is unfaithful to you in their heart or even with their body?
I’m sure your answer is No! However, people go into these types of relationships without a thought; because they don’t realize there IS an exchange and enter into Covenant relationships without considering the cost.
Good News! Exchange With Jesus Is Transformational
A wonderful part of a Covenant relationship with Jesus Christ is the ability to exchange our negative traits and ideals for His Holy character.
- You can exchange your judgmental heart with Jesus and receive His unconditional love for others.
- You can exchange your dishonesty in finances with Jesus and take on His truth, purity and trustworthiness.
- You can exchange your narcissism and taking advantage of others with Jesus and receive His servant heart.
- You can exchange your sexual sin and impurity with Jesus and receive His self-control and Holiness.
- You can exchange your laziness for diligence and Jesus’ creative power.
You see, in Covenant with Jesus Christ we always come out better. Unfortunately we may not always have such a beneficial exchange in Covenant with humans. However, because of our Covenant relationship with Christ we are made complete, even in the midst of imperfect human relationships.
Make “The Exchange” with Jesus and watch HIM, as your Covenant Partner, work in your other Covenant relationships. You are “transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2) and your entire world will be transformed as you walk in Covenant with Christ.
A Prayer of Exchange
Heavenly Father, I acknowledge that I bring some pretty unlovely things to my Covenant with you and your son Jesus Christ. I struggle with these areas of Identity and Authority found in Galatians 5:19-21 and I want to exchange them for the Fruit of your Holy Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-26. I renounce these things in my life and today I exchange them with you and receive YOUR Character and the fruit of YOUR Spirit.
- Sexual Immorality – I receive Love, Faithfulness and Self-Control
- Impurity – I receive Goodness and Faithfulness and Self-Control
- Lustful Pleasures – I receive Peace, Faithfulness and Self-Control
- Idolatry – I receive Love, Peace and Patience
- Sorcery (Manipulation) – I receive Love, Kindness and Goodness
- Hostility – I receive Peace, Kindness and Self-Control
- Quarreling – I receive Love, Patience and Gentleness
- Jealousy – I receive Love, Joy and Peace
- Outbursts Of Anger – I receive Love, Peace, Patience and Self-Control
- Selfish Ambition – I receive Kindness, Gentleness and Faithfulness
- Dissension – I receive Love, Patience and Self-Control
- Division – I receive Love, Peace and Kindness
- Envy – I receive Joy, Peace and Goodness
- Drunkenness – I receive Love, Peace and Self-Control
- Wild Parties – I receive Love, Joy and Peace
Father God, I agree with Galatians 5:26 that I am in Covenant with you. I ask your forgiveness for my sinful attitudes and actions. I am exchanging these areas where I fall short, where I am unjust towards others, where I am unfair with others, where I want to “cross the line” in spite of the consequences and where I am just flat out rebellious. I release my authority over my body, my mind and my spirit and receive your authority in these areas. I choose to know you as my Covenant partner through your Word and be transformed through your Word by the renewing of my mind. In Jesus Name.
For more information on a true marriage covenant check out http://covenantmarriage.com/what-is-a-marriage-covenant/
This post first appeared in the blog 30 Days of Honor, www.thewellnessworkshop.org/30days
About the Author: Celeste Davis, is a passionate follower of Jesus Christ with a heart to walk fully in Covenant with Him. As Founder of The Wellness Workshop, Celeste’s heart is to teach women and impact their families to “Be Nourished” as opposed to dieting or trying different life strategies. We nourish our bodies with God-Made Food, our Souls with God-Made Relationships and our Spirits with the Word of God and Prayer. More Info about Celeste