BY RICK WARREN

“Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love” (Ephesians 4:2 NLT).

Because every relationship involves two sinners, we have to learn how to show grace to each other if we want to have a love that lasts. No relationship will survive without grace. You’ve got to cut people some slack! You’ve got to let things go.

The Bible says, “Love patiently accepts all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7 NCV). In the original Greek, this literally means “covered with a roof.” Would you buy a house without a roof? Of course not. You’d have no protection from wind and rain. A roof covers and protects your home.

In the same way, biblical love covers a relationship and lets some things slide. It doesn’t haul people into account for every mistake they make. You need a roof on your relationship because people damage pretty easily, and we need the kind of love that extends grace.

Why is grace essential to relationships?

The Bible says in Romans 3:10 that no one always does what is right. Nobody gets it right 100 percent of the time. It’s never just one person’s fault. There’s always a responsibility on both sides. It takes two people to disagree!

We have to learn to extend grace to each other, because forgiveness is a two-way street. We cannot receive what we’re unwilling to give to other people.

You build strong relationships by treating other people the way God treats you. Romans 15:7 says, Accept each other just as Christ has accepted you” (NLT). When you accept others as they are, looking past their faults for the sake of love, that’s extending grace.