Building a swing is the easy part, the trick is in knowing where to build it:
1. Strength. Find a tree with a branch that is strong. You want to be able trust this swing, to completely relax in it, and that means it needs to be well able to bear your weight.
2. Space. Make sure there is room to move. There needs to be space to swing out ahead and space to swing back behind you while all the while you actually stay anchored in the present.
3. Perspective. Tie your swing somewhere very high up. The higher the branch and the longer the ropes, the higher you can swing. And every time you do you’ll be able to see the landscape around you from an entirely different perspective. Truth revealed.
4. Shelter. Choose a tree that will give you shelter from the sun, there will be days when you need it.
5. Joy. As well as building your swing, make sure you take time to enjoy it. Give yourself permission to play – have fun.
Strength, space, perspective, shelter, joy. All things to look for in a swing, and in a friendship.
For me this is a picture of what friendship with God could be like. It isn’t always, but it could be, if that’s how I choose to build it.
I don’t know which thing you need more of in your life today: Strength to carry you, space to breathe and move, a new perspective on your circumstances, shelter from the heat or the storm or just the exhilarating joy of freedom to play.
Whichever it is, it is in God’s hand, and he would love to share it with you.
You only need to ask.
Let’s build a swing.
P. S. I love this comment from my friend David (incidentally, the first person to tell me I should write, many years before I was ready to hear it):
“I would add – a friend to push you, to get the swing going and to keep on encouraging you to go higher”
If you find one of those friends, you have a treasure. Choose to be around them!