Relationship Banking

Relationships are the most valuable human asset.

Some may believe the most valuable asset is time. My husband constantly teaches our girls “Time is money”. Truly time should be spent well. Yet time is a fixed commodity. There is only so much time in a day, in a week, in a year, even in a lifetime. We cannot multiply time. We cannot rebuild time. Time is what it is.

Others may say the most valuable asset is money. A common phrase is, “Money makes the world go around.” Unlike time, money is not fixed. Money can grow and replenish when lost. Yet money is dependent upon relationship to expand. One must invest money into another thing or person in order to produce monetary growth.

piggy-1528505Relationships shape humanity in ways that time, money, and things cannot. Relational value outweighs other values because relationship can simultaneously be the investment and the investor. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People author Stephen Covey uses the term Emotional Bank Account to describe “the amount of trust that’s been built in a relationship.” A healthy “reserve” is built as humanity’s interactions exercise love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.

Spirit empowered living is counter-intuitive to a sin-riddled existence. Relationship with God is the life element that actively determines one’s eternity. One’s relationship with self, with others, even with things, flows from one’s relationship (or lack thereof) with God. A healthy trust reserve enables healthy ebbs and flows within a relationship. All relationships have the good times and the bad. Jesus gave us the promised Holy Spirit to empower, teach, counsel, and guide humanity toward healthy relationships.

Sow a thought, reap an action;
Sow an action, reap a habit;
Sow a habit, reap a character;
Sow a character, reap a destiny.
-Samuel Smiles

So what can be done? How can humanity intentionally build an Emotional Bank Account?

  1. Know where you are going. Too often we embark on a new life journey without knowing where we are trying to go. That is a really great way to get nowhere fast. If we want to actually go somewhere in our life, we have to think about where we want to end up.
  2. Start out small. Set yourself up for success by creating a small win. Determine to make one, or two, or three Spirit empowered deposits this week. Be specific.
  3. Do it to become it. Every great movement began with one step. Move beyond thinking and step into doing. This is where it gets real! The first step is the hardest. It is with each subsequent step that normalcy develops and character is born.
  4. Decide what your Neon Sign will be. Character is like a neon sign that hangs above a person’s head communicating if they are open or closed, safe or dangerous, to relationship. Decide what you want your neon sign to say, and remember that each time you are faced with opportunity to make a deposit or withdraw.

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