What happens if you put a couple of animals together to pull a cart, and one is healthy, and one is weak? Or what if they are two totally differentkinds of animals? How far do you think the farmer will get? Not too far, I bet. To be equally yoked applies to relationships too.
How many marriages have gone on the rocks because two people who were “in love” were unequally yoked? Well, look at the divorce statistics and you can figure that one out pretty quickly. How many business partnerships have gone on the rocks because two people were unequally yoked? Look at how many new business partnerships fail and that becomes self-evident.
Principle 1. In a relationship, it may hold true that opposites attract, but your similarities and common values are what keep you together. If you are arguing during your courting stage or your pre-business negotiations, as Jeff Foxworthy would say, “Here’s your sign.”
Principle 2. Two people going in the same direction can support one another. That is what a marriage is all about. That is what a healthy business partnership is all about. If one person stumbles, the other is there to help them, lift them back up, encourage them, and cheer them on. THAT is a healthy relationship. Anything short of that is dysfunctional. Don’t be the person who has to say, “My family puts the fun in dysfunctional.”
Principle 3. Unequally yoked relationships can’t last. A house divided will not stand. Look at the marriages and partnerships that have dissolved after 20+ years. Eventually the opposing forces are going to take their toll. That is a tragedy that I hope we can change.
Principle 4. People sometimes make the mistake that they think they will “change” the other person. Forget about it. You can’t and should not try to change anyone else. You have enough problems yourself. Work on you. If you think you will change a relationship after you have said “I do,” or you signed on the bottom line, you are in for a rude awakening, and you may be paying for it the rest of your life.
Principle 5. Before going into any relationship like a marriage or a business partnership, seek counsel from God and from someone who is not emotionally or financially invested with you. There is wisdom in getting counsel before you ink the deal.
Principle 6. Trust your gut. If you see warning signs, pay attention to them. Someone who lies to you up front, someone who has an addiction problem, someone who has cheated on their previous spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend, someone who has defrauded their previous business partner or even the government….look out. It has a good chance of coming back to bite YOU. History has a way of repeating itself, and unless there has been a radical change that you can see in their current behavior from their past behavior, don’t sweep that under the rug and think it will never happen to you. By their fruits you will know them. A good tree does not bear bad fruit. Likewise, a bad tree does not bear good fruit. Pay attention to the fruit. Be a good fruit inspector. It will save you from a lot of indigestion down the road, not to mention possible financial ruin.
My hope is that if you are in a healthy relationship in your dating life, your marriage, or your business, hold on to it and celebrate it together, because that is a true gift and worthy of fighting for. If your relationship is not so hot, take a look in the mirror. What do you need to do to change the looming disaster? Marriages can be saved. Partnerships can survive, but only if you start moving forward together. I pray that you find that equal yoke. I have it in my marriage, and it is a blessing. I have had the opposite before….and that is called “Hell on earth.” I don’t know about you, but I prefer Heaven on earth. I pray you stress less, and love more.