I am partial to plantation houses and also large cabins likely found in a wooded area. The plantation houses with wide, columned porches and hallways within are a reminder of another era, long past. The cabins also reflect another generation and part of our pioneering history.
It’s also interesting to consider the people inside. Are the occupants a reflection of their home? Do those inside a plantation home share the values of a Southern state a hundred years ago? Or are those who live in ranchers those who like the idea of ranching even if funds and geography doesn’t allow it? Do the surrounding landscaped grounds echo the beauty we see or does the uncut grass reverberate a person who doesn’t see the need for a neat and tidy living area or is he perhaps in need of assistance because he is no longer able to keep up with the maintenance?
There is something elegant and beautiful about tall trees gracing a yard. Yet I absolutely detest low, bushy, brush areas, especially around a house. I find it unnerving and want it cleared away. It creates tension and unease. When the brush is cleared away and a defined horizontal line in the sky is added on the horizon, the picture changes to beautiful and completely calming, giving stability and order.
What about our lives? Do we live our lives with defined structure? If someone were to define your character would it include a theoretical design? What would your shape be? Would there be straight lines going vertical and horizontal like a box or a building including windows for others to see in and a door for entry? Or would it be round implying no real set boundaries but rather going with the flow or complete passivity? Or would there be lots of jagged edges like the rough brush, denoting spurs of tension and discord?
How we live our lives can be defined by boundaries and structure, or “freely” without care of limits inferring lack of responsibility and concern for others. To live without responsibility creates jagged lines of tension that tend to annoy or even bring harm to someone else because of the sharp edges, much like the brush that makes me uneasy. It seems in this environment, the dark side of life seems to creep out and startle others.
When our lives are lived with at least a measure of boundaries, we infer trust and consistency others can depend on. Our “straight edges” give stability even when the world seems to be crumbling around us. It’s calming and reassuring, giving a picture of peace. This isn’t to say there aren’t moments of “sharp edges” when days are filled with problems we weren’t prepared for. But more often than not we exude confidence and trustworthiness, even as flexibility is required, like the tree that bends with the wind!
So I challenge you to consider how others picture your lives. Does your life reflect order, stability, trust and peace; or does it mirror discord, unhappiness and strife? If you aren’t happy with what you see, perhaps it is the time to straighten the jagged lines and create strong, sturdy ones added with a measure of flexibility!