Landscaping your relationships is a lot like developing a good lawn. Growing relationships take investment and care, but it also requires allowing the uniqueness of each individual to flourish in a way that benefits and grows the community.
Daily Inspiration and Encouragement
June 4, 2020
Daily Dash of Twisted Encouragement
Thoughts on Landscaping Your Relationships
Relationships are like lawns.
Bear with me.
Lawns can have a wide variety of plants in them and remain healthy. A lawn can be edged by flowering plants and shrubs, it can have wild plants that spring up and flower, and it can be an amazing place for maintaining the health of all the creatures in and around it.
Or . . .
A lawn can be forced into one direction that requires a high degree of maintenance and investment.
Or . . .
A lawn can be neglected and then overcome by negative elements that make it impossible to use it for its intended purpose. It becomes a nuisance instead of a benefit.
The difference is in the focus.
Many years ago, the church we were attending built a new location. The elders had the lot cleared and then went back in and placed sod, much to the annoyance of my grandfather. He had told them the native grass would do better and require less investment.
They ignored him, but slowly, over the years, the native grass has infiltrated the sod that was planted, and now the lawn has the best of both worlds.
Two months ago, our house and property sat in the middle of the path of an EF1 tornado. Trees are EVERYWHERE. Where there aren’t trees, or logs, or massive limbs, you’ll find debris and glass.
Just before the tornado, I had gotten our lawn in order and ready for the growing season.
Now, I take my time walking around the house because I don’t know what I might step in or what might be hiding just to the edge of where I’m stepping.
Relationships don’t happen in a vacuum. They need to be cared for and fed. They do best when left to their unique place and purpose – where they can mesh together and work together for the benefit of all those around.
The more you force a relationship to conform to your landscape, the more you will struggle to keep the balance that so richly blesses the world.
Landscape Your Relationships
Each relationship and circumstance will be as unique as the people involved when you dare to allow the uniqueness of each one to shine.
- Look for the possibilities instead of the problems. The moss under our big shade tree kept grass from growing in that space, but it made a perfect place for sitting and enjoying a picnic or a nap in the shade. Find the possibilities of the unique design.
- Understand the true value. What looks like a weed to some may have value you don’t discover until you take the time to learn more. Dandelions are demonized on weed killer commercials, but dandelions are edible and have countless health benefits. Know more to know the value.
- Different doesn’t mean more or less – it simply means different. Allowing the different to be different helps to create the balance you need. Our front yard grew a native buckeye like there was no tomorrow, but not a single one grew in the back. Instead of trying to make the yards conform, we allowed each to be the most in their differences. Allow for the differences around you.
We are all unique in all the world, and when we embrace the uniqueness then we change the world. If you want to grow up relationships to the place where uniquenesses can thrive then dare to landscape your relationships.
How are your growing and landscaping your relationships?
More Tips for Building Sustained Relationships
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Quote of the Day
“You create a path for your success when you invest in growing relationships.” – Kathryn Lang
It will take an investment to grow up relationships that make a difference (for you and for the world)
How will you invest today?
Romans 10 – 12
Hebrews 7 – 8
Matthew 10 – 12
“Be strong and courageous and do it. Fear not, nor be dismayed. The Lord, God, is with you. He will not fail or forsake you.” – from 1 Chronicles 28:20
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