I had a thought this morning in the dark. The quiet hush began to flutter alive in our house. One kid was up at the computer keying commands into Robloxs. One child was resting peacefully in bed. My husband was up in the bathroom, and our pets were ready to be fed and let out.
The thought that I had…”The grass isn’t always greener on the other side.”
I often debate catch phrases or bumper stickers. I think our oldest son likes to do the same. Is this a first born characteristic? Is this what realists do? I am not sure, but I know I do these debates aloud and in my head.
“The grass is always greener on the other side.” You and I have heard that one a thousand times. But is it true?
Today, I want to debate this quote.
Our grass in our front yard is literally browning right now. Our rainy season here in Florida has given way to a dry week. My neighbors also have browning grass when I looked closely on last night’s walk. I didn’t say anything about it, but I did note it in my head. This morning it came back in my head as that little voice…”Hey Jenn…Maybe the grass is brown on the other side. Maybe we have yucky stuff going on in our lives AND our neighbors do too!”
Who is my neighbor? Another tough question. It is the heart of some author debates too. I am going to go to the Bible for some references today:
“Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other.”
Okay, so our neighbor is the “one another” in the passage above. Dang. I don’t always want to love everyone, but God calls me to love. LOVE ONE ANOTHER is even our family rule. Rightly so, because GOD loves me. I also need to love my family, my friends, and even strangers.
No lies about your neighbor.
Okay so NO rumor mills! That’s a tough one for some people (even me at times). We speculate. We overshare. We talk about others as if we KNOW what’s going on, and sometime we do not know the full story nor is it our place to share someone else’s story.
No lusting after your neighbor’s house—or wife or servant or maid or ox or donkey. Don’t set your heart on anything that is your neighbor’s.
Yes, I’m going there. Our text in church was this specific verse above recently. Exodus 20:17 goes to the thoughts of sex, adultery, and envy.
I definitely have been known to covet the homes with nicer curb appeal, wish for more square feet of living space, want the gorgeous kitchens on Houzz, and sometimes want to drive a fancy sports car instead of my mom SUV. Since we don’t use donkeys for transportation in the suburbs in 2018, we do lust after vehicles.
I don’t struggle with envy of others’ spouses because I have one of the best! I love my husband dearly. He is strong, kind, and funny. I wouldn’t trade him for anything. He has loved me with a deep forgiving and unconditional love.
Green grass is conditional on the other hand. Green grass is only green if the temperature, soil, water, and nutrients are in the right combination.
This is my list of the figurative “green grass items” we may wish for:
The kids that are polite and play neatly.
The salary that is so large there does not appear to be a budget.
The health that allows them to run a marathon or hike mountains in exotic places.
The time for lengthy vacations abroad.
The faith that seems to be moving mountains when yours remains that mustard seed.
The husband or wife that looks like an American Ninja Warrior.
The yard that looks like it is from Better Homes and Gardens magazine.
The kitchen that has an inhabitant cooks and bakes beautiful dishes daily.
Wake up friends. We have BROWN GRASS. And, our neighbors have patches of BROWN GRASS too. There are hardened hearts, hurting marriages, and stressful situations that are visible and invisible in everyone’s lives. Can we find contentment even in the rough?
Today, let’s open our hearts to Jesus. Let’s acknowledge that our grass is brown sometimes, and we need His help to revive things. If we pray, we can find strength to accept the brown grass, and perhaps pray for our neighbor’s grass too. And, if our grass is green we can give thanks too. Human T-shirt
I praise You for Your control over things that are bigger than I can fathom. I know you are working in heaven and on earth. Thank You for my life here today. Thank you for accepting some of my loved ones into heaven. Please forgive me for doubting the benefits of brown spots. Show me patience for yucky stuff in my life. Show us hope when we are trying to heal brown spots in our lives. I love how you weave events and people together. Help me to see you at work today. Help me to covet less, and love more. Give us contentment.