To establish a strong and functional society there must be a network of relationships formed. The stronger these relationships, the stronger the society. It seems, though, that the more technically advanced any society gets, the more distant and less connected the relationships become. This may be in our business or acquaintances, our churches our clubs or our personal friends. But the most glaring of these unraveling of relationships is that of the family unit.
Probably the biggest reason for the disintegration of family relationships is the lack of communication among the family members. With all the technical advances that have been made and have become a part of everyday life in modern society we are seeing less and less communication between person and person and more and more interaction of person with cell phone or computer or some other digital entity.
Such interaction does away with any ability to actually build any kind of personal relationship with the parties involved. Because of this we see more and more people who lack any ability to communicate or interact with other real people. The communication skills of talking and listening have fallen by the wayside. A coherent explanation of the simplest situations and facts is practically nonexistent.
Even though this trend continues to grow, there is very little that is done to improve or even build strong relationships within our society. Much of this has been fostered by a promotion of self-centeredness which comes with a materialistic society. Before any real progress in relationships can begin we must encourage practices which involve people with person to person communication.
Ways to build communication
One of the best ways that I have discovered to create lines of communication and build relationships is to take walks together. My son and I have built our relationship through the regular practice of taking morning walks together. Normally I am quite busy during the day and he, though he is disabled and cannot hold down a regular job, has his own interests and projects that he likes to pursue during the day. But because we take those walks together we are able to share in the things we are interested in.
Commercials try to make it look like parents and children always get along wonderfully. But if you live in the real world, you know that there are few families that fit that mold. It would be nice if families were really like the commercials, but most are not. Sitting and watching TV is not a relationship building exercise. Relationships are built between people who interact with one another.
You may wonder why walking is good for building relationships. Studies have shown that when people walk together they share in a common exercise and goal. They are focused on a similar result. Walking together causes them to move in the same direction and gives them a bond which is taking them in the same direction. For parents and children this gives a common topic from which can spring deeper conversations into even more important topics relating to life.
Relationships in business
If you are a business owner, have you ever considered organized walks or hikes for your employees. The same benefits accrued by families walking together can to some degree be accomplished by company walks. Instead of company parties and big meals, why not have a company hike and picnic for employees and their families. Can you imagine the positive results that can come to a business when the employees sense a real interest in their families from the boss?
When employees have more than a distant relationship with their boss they consistently produce more and better products and services. Walking and hiking will build great relationships and it will improve the health of all those involved and in the long run lower your health costs. Walking together is a win-win for everyone involved.
The best walk
In the musical The Student Prince the prince sings a song entitled “I’ll Walk with God”. This is probably the best and most profitable walking that you can. In the Bible the term “walk” is used often to refer to one’s lifestyle and motivation. It constantly contrasts “walking in the flesh” to “walking in the Spirit”. It refers to someone who lives life governed by the lusts of the flesh as contrasted to those who live life governed by the Lordship of Jesus.
Let your first walking friend be your Creator Who has revealed Himself through His only-begotten Son, Jesus. As your relationship to Him grows then begin to incorporated your spouse, if you are married, and then your children. Then begin to build walking relationships with extended family members and friends and neighbors.
As you continue to walk with Jesus you will see your relationship to Him grow more and more wonderful everyday. As your relationship grows with Him you will see your relationship with your family flower into the beautiful thing that God intended it to be. As you continue your walk you will build relationships that will be rewarding to you and to those with whom you build.
God created you to walk
God created you to walk with Him. But He wants you to carry that exercise to others in both the spiritual and the physical realm. Yes, it will take discipline. But anything that is worthwhile will take discipline. If you desire to have real life here instead of just an existence where there is only digital relationships, then just keep your head glued to your cell phone or computer. You will in the end find yourself lonely and without any friends family to which to relate or be a blessing to.
We were not created to sit around and one day die and that will be the end. We were created to have relationships. The first and most important is our relationship with our Creator. Because of that relationship we desire and seek relationships with our fellow human beings. This is our Creator’s plan.
If you do not have a family member or friend to walk with, then begin walking by yourself. As you walk invite your Creator to join with you. Jesus said it this way,”He that comes to me, I will in no wise cast away.” If you invite Jesus to walk with you, He will do so joyfully and will build a relationship with you that will last for eternity.
God bless you and prosper you in your walking.
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