One of the pastors at my church spoke today on seeing in our selves and others the promise and potential, a very encouraging word based on Christ as a child, that his promise and potential had been foretold and drove the actions of Mary, Joseph, the three kings. It reminded me of a quote by Thinch Nhat Hanh I’d read recently, which I thought was good enough to share in this context.
“ When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don’t blame the lettuce. You look for reasons it is not doing well. It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun. You never blame the lettuce. Yet if we have problems with our friends or family, we blame the other person. But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like the lettuce. Blaming has no positive effect at all, nor does trying to persuade using reason and argument. That is my experience. No blame, no reasoning, no argument, just understanding. If you understand, and you show that you understand, you can love, and the situation will change.”
I don’t normally quote Zen Buddhist monks, but we all get a base hit once in a while right? Anyways, the point is that understanding one another, and allowing their promise and potential to grow is the best way to strengthen a relationship.