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Wednesday, 2 September 2015


I may look like I am doing nothing, but actually I am building a very special relationship. My wee granddaughter is napping upstairs (phew!) so I am doing very little in the intervening period except drink coffee, check emails etc, and breathe. An eleven month old is always on the move.

My mother used to remark about a neighbour who seemed to sit out on the lawn fairly regularly I guess, with a cup of coffee and a friend...Mom would wonder how she had the time to sit and drink coffee. And look like she was doing nothing. But in fact she may have been building a very important relationship.  That lady died young, and maybe one of the key successes in her life was that she honoured others by taking the time to sit with them and just be.

This is my third day in a row child minding, an anomaly which won't happen very often I don't think. As I drove here I thought about how much closer I feel to my wee granddaughter than I did last week. Building relationships need an investment in time. None of us know how much time we have on this earth, and I want my life to be characterised by the relationships I have built rather than by the books I have written. (Really? I have always dreamed of having my books published and read... Which only shows how much importance I give to relationship building. It wouldn't be a sacrifice if it cost me nothing.)

Which is exactly what the Bible says. God longs for us to have a close relationship with him, our loving Father, through Jesus, in the Spirit, but developing a relationship needs time. A morning nod before running out for the day's activities, a cursory thanks before a meal, may all be polite expressions and acknowledgements of God's presence, but they hardly build a relationship. I nod and even speak with the postman and the lady at the check out in Tesco, but I don't have a real relationship with them.

So today, once the nap is over and we are full on again, I am going to revel in the gift of building a precious relationship. Like Mom's neighbour, none of us knows how long we have. Every moment is precious, too valuable to squander on doing things rather than building bonds of love.

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