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Articles

It really is greener

You’ve heard the expression, “The grass is greener on the other side of the fence.” Have you ever thought about why that is?

While it might be getting too late for this now, since much of our grass is starting to go dormant, it is amazing that the phenomenon is true. If you stand in the middle of your yard and look straight down at your feet, you will find that the grass does not look as nice as the grass on the other side of the fence. According to all appearances, it really is greener.

The truth is, this all comes from your perspective. When you look straight down, you see not only grass, but you will see the dirt beneath the grass. What you expect to be a full panorama of green is green mixed in with brown. If you look at grass from a distance through, and from the side, all you see is the green of the grass with no view of the brown dirt beneath. This truly makes grass look greener on the other side of the fence. It is not a true look at reality but an issue of perspective.

This is also how life works. We tend to look at life “straight down.” We see the green with the brown. Or maybe put simpler, we see the good and the bad. This is how our lives seem to us.

But when we look at someone else’s life, we see only the green. Some have said about Facebook that we should be careful not to compare our day to day with other’s “highlight reels.” We see our good: including our families, our homes, our jobs, our hobbies, our church, etc. We also see our bad. We know our families are blessings, but we see the day to day frustrations of kids misbehaving, or spouses who do not give us enough attention, or kids underperforming in school, or children who misbehave and disobey. We recognize God has blessed us with nice homes, but we also see the dishes in the sink, the laundry needing folded, the yard unmown, the windows unwashed, and the walls needing paint. We know our jobs are blessings, but we have an overbearing boss, or annoying coworkers, or too much to do in too little time. We love our hobbies, but they get too expensive or too time consuming to do them enough to truly enjoy them. We love our church family, but we get frustrated with the worship, the leadership, or the classes.

The truth is that it is all a matter of perspective. Our families are incredible blessings. That’s it! End of story. We are done. There’s no downside. There’s no dirt. There’s no comparing it with others. The truth is that all families have their own dirt to deal with. So do all jobs, all hobbies, all homes, and all churches. Everywhere you look, when you finally get to stand there are look down, you will see dirt along with the beautiful, lush, green grass.

There is no magic solution. All there is for you is water and fertilizer. If you want greener grass, take care of the grass you have been blessed with. Spend some time caring for those blessings and what God make them even better. Then you will find yourself standing in the perfect place, with all you ever wanted, without ever having moved.

25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another” (Galatians 5.25-26).