I love landscaping and have actually learned many life lessons from its various tasks, requirements as well as from the joy it returns.
One thing that that resonated with me today while working in the trenches of my next book is that the things that offer the longest lifespan of return on investment have the largest upfront costs. Starting and raising a fruit tree takes years of cultivation, perseverance, watering, pruning and sheltering. If I ever want to eat of its fruit, I must do the work.
But ... when the work is done, it's done. The tree will provide fruit for years and years possibly even beyond my lifetime with little to no effort on my part. However, if I thought it was too much work and or too steep of an investment, I would actually be signing myself up for much more toil later. I would have to plow, plant, water and harvest every year to survive.
Before the fall of man, God designed the best home for us which was an established garden full of delicious fruit bearing trees. It was intended for us to simply gather from what was already producing. It wasn’t until after the fall, when Adam and Eve were kicked out of the garden that mankind had to put their hand to the plow and work the soil. Growing vegetables is a result of the fall. They are bland to bitter in taste, most require constant tending to grow well and must be replanted every year. They only leave behind seeds to produce more of themselves rather than a hardy tree doing all the work.
The fruit tree not only represents return on investment financially but also legacy. By creating and nurturing our resources now, we build our legacy. In doing that, we will be able to launch generations after us further than where we started. We will gain territory in the marketplace and have the honor of being blessed to be a blessing.
Remember the lifespan of the return when you are in a season of investment and don't run from the work. Taking the shortcut now will only rob your future. Choose your investments wisely, remain diligent in their details, and they will provide a resource stream that extends far beyond you.
Proverbs 21:5 Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.