In this audio talk, Bill Smith argues that the question is not do other people influence your friendships and relationships, but how other people influence them. We are all shaped by others’ interpretations of relationships and how to relate to others. We often accept these expectations as normal – they are simply the way that all people relate to others. How does life in the 21st century impact our relationships – what pressures influence our lives? The pressures of life are real, but can be resisted – temptations abound within relationships.
This talk covers the social and cultural aspects of relationships. Smith discusses the issues of 1.) Sex/sexuality (ads that focus on promises over products), 2.) Ideal relationships (exciting and fun vs. routine and stable), 3.) Appearance (developing our appearance vs. our character), 4.) Entertainment (substituting observing for participating), 5.) Media (prizing entertainment over relationships), and 6.) Technology (affords me a great amount of control in relationships).
In sum, the effects of culture on our relationships include: We lose the sense of what it means to be truly human, we lose godly models and relationships become all about “me.”
Key Scripture: Romans 12:1