Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Grass is Greener Syndrome

 Having spent the last month in the bay area of California, I have remembered my love of the color green. I was sent rather short-notice and packed a bit too warm for the area.  It didn't take me long to soak in the green grass, blooming lavender and other flowers around my hotel.  It was a sweet consolation for an otherwise difficult job.
Upon my return to a very snowy home back in Alaska, I quickly began to wish for a change of "home."  Why did it have to snow more this year than ever?  (I don't know the exact numbers, but we have had a LOT of snow this winter... so far.)  This means that it will take even longer to see my own lawn this year.
Oh how I miss green grass!
As if God knew this would be in this brain of mine, he set it to my Pastor to quote someone, I forget who, saying, "If the grass is greener on the other side, then it's time to water your own lawn."

I could get all negative and literal, explaining the desire to water my lawn but it's covered in 5 feet of packed snow, but I'll take the figurative intention and realize that I have ways to make my life content.  Most of this "watering" is rooted (pun intended!) in spiritual discipline.  I must admit that I am lacking in this most important way.  When I stop feeding myself with the Word, I feel distracted, flighty, discontent, and ungrateful.  I look at others and pine for whatever they have that seems to be lacking in my life.

On CBS Sunday Morning, a show I must watch every week, they had a little segment discussing the falsity of the literal "greener grass" syndrome.  Let me explain.  When one looks over a fence or what-have-you at the lawn across the way, it often appears to be greener because of the angle of the view.  Grass blades are long and slender, giving the most green color viewing from the side.  When looking upon the same blades of grass from above, the view is more of the tips and edges, and often some dirt, giving a much less green appearance.

Basically it's perspective.  When I think my life is too lowly for me to participate in it, and I feel like changing lawns, what I really need is to get down and roll around; get my eyes to the level of the blades.  This may mean getting dirty, grass-stains and all, to really see what I have.  (There are so many puns & allegorical thoughts here, but I'll restrain myself - they could get very old!)   I have to engage more deeply in the life I have been given to nurture it.  Then maybe, just maybe, someone else will ask what I'm doing to have such a healthy, green life, and I can point them to the Maker and Sustainer of it all.


  1. That is so very good, Melissa!!!!

  2. This was a very timely post for me to read...thanks for sharing :)