Relationships Take Time

When the creation of the heavens and the earth and everything in them was complete, God looked over all He had made and saw it was good! (paraphrased from Genesis)

God always says. Wow, this is good, after he creates something. So, if there is goodness and diversity in all of God’s creation, how does that call us to live?

“Don’t just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.” Romans 12:9-10

Most of us love summertime. God’s creation is in full bloom. We live in a beautiful state with abundant wildlife. Gorgeous mountains surround us. There is a plentitude of possibilities for hiking, exploring, or just sitting quietly outdoors and letting God’s presence seep in. It’s also a time to build relationships. There are many new faces to put names to and new stories to share. I’m reminded of the old front porch where neighbors would often gather for a chat on a summer’s evening. We are much more mobile and seem to be out and about. We are more likely to meet a diversity of different folks in areas that have different cultures or a very different way of looking at life. It’s a time to teach and be taught. God has given us plenty of time and space for living. The lifestyle we choose is up to us. We can choose to show others acceptance and love, as God chose to do. The good news is, in Christ, everyone can be experienced in a new way.

I ran across this the other day. I hope it speaks to you as well. From: “God Is In the Small Stuff”

“One hundred years ago, our society was influenced greatly by the farm culture. That lifestyle was slower. There was a season for planting, a season for growing, and a season for harvesting. There was a natural pattern and timetable for living which couldn’t be rushed.

Today we live in a technological society where things can’t happen fast enough. Everything is instant, from oatmeal to news. Everything is fast from food to faxes. We even get frustrated when it takes a few extra milliseconds for the computer to warm up. Our society is characterized by words like: “over-nite,” “drive-thru,” and “log-on.” We get impatient with anything that takes time.

There is one aspect of life that cannot be rushed—building a meaningful relationship with another person. You can make an acquaintance “on the spot,” but a friendship won’t happen instantaneously. And, it doesn’t develop overnight. It takes time. The most precious commodity of our “hurry up” society must be invested over the long-term if you expect to have a friendship that is dependable and fulfilling. Growing a friendship is like growing a crop. There has to be a season of planting. Time is spent in finding common interests. These initial contacts are followed by a season of growing. The friendship is nurtured beyond common interests as you begin to appreciate each other’s differences which are discovered only by spending time together. As the relationship matures, you can begin a lifelong season of harvest. This is when the friendship proves to be a source of strength and encouragement to you.

We all want meaningful friendships. We desire relationships based on trust and loyalty, those which go beyond shallow courtesy all the way to “do anything for each other” commitments. You can have this kind of friendship, but it will take time. Your time.”

Father God,
Thank you for the relationships you have blessed me with. Living Christ, may I be open to new relationships and paths, what they can teach me. Jesus friend, draw me closer to you each day.   Amen

Lois Autterson

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