"The grass isnt greener on the other side. The grass is green where you water it." Thanks Justin Bieber for that line in your "as long as you love me" song, it is exactly what I needed to be reminded of today.
J Bieb isn't the only one teaching me that lesson. I recently planted a small garden. By small I mean like 6 flowers. And I think as of today they are probably all dead... Or almost dead... Because the weather has been in the hundreds... And I'm in Colorado now and forgot to ask someone to water them.
Lesson learned. If I want beautiful flowers- I need to water them. They won't just stay lovely on their own.
I'm learning that with everything in life actually. Things just don't stay lovely on their own. And often the temptation is to look around at what other people have and desire those things, instead of taking time to invest in what's already there. We resort to wanting the lovely things around us, instead of figuring out how to have loveliness right where we are at.
Last night I listened to one of my most treasured friends as she poured out her heart about the pain of being single at an age when everyone around is getting married and starting families. In her mind the struggle is that it seems that if she could only be in a relationship things would feel better.
Another friend recently opened up about how desperately she had wanted to be noticed. Her whole life she had longed to be desirable and she decided early on that her small breasts were the problem. So she decided last year to get breast implants. As we were talking about it she became really vulnerable and said,"I thought that they would fix my problem and that my insecurity would go away, but now i have them and i still feel bad... I'm learning that nothing on the outside can fix the problems on the inside."
As a wife I feel it too. I'm embarrassed to admit it but sometimes I find myself looking at other guys wondering if some of my issues would have been solved if I had chosen a different husband.
We do it with all kinds of things- we look at our situation and decide that the discontentment we feel inside is somehow a result of not having something or someone "out there". It is sometimes our bodies- wanting to lose weight, or our incomes- wanting more money, or our homes- wanting something bigger or nicer.
If we let it, discontentment has the potential to steal our lives right out from under us.
I think the chorus of the Bieber song I quoted in the beginning says, "As long as you love me, we could be starving, we could be homeless, we could be broke..." and when I heard it I immediately thought of Jesus.
Now just a helpful P.S. ... I'm not some hyper spiritual lady who gets divine revelation every time I listen to the radio. It would be nice.. I'd probably be less distracted.. But it's just not the case. For some reason though this song spoke to me and it's making for some good blogging :)
So back to part of the chorus. "As long as you love me, we could be starving, we could be homeless, we could be broke..." That so reminds me of how the love of Jesus impacts our lives. Because when we really truly get it His love is so real that our natural response is contentment in every circumstance.
It's like we could sing back to Christ, "As long as you love me, I could be single, I could be married, I could have small boobs..." Haha it doesn't make for such a catchy song, but it does make for a much better life.
There will always be things out there that appear to offer us what we don't have. Through eyes of deception we see them prancing around convincing us that our lives are incomplete until we acquire "those things"... and it's always false. No matter what we have our eyes on, if we are looking to it as our source for joy, we will always be let down.
The lovely green garden we want is right in front of us. It just needs some watering.
Jesus says to us, "What good is it if you gain the whole world but forfeit your soul?" What our hearts need isn't out there, it's actually right here. It is choosing to be content exactly where we are at. And it begins with Jesus. Because only when we are satisfied with Him, will we have the true perspective toward everything else.
So let's seek Him and as He quenches our thirst with living water, let's water the gardens we already have. Let's look for ways to be content in everything, and take time to make what we already have even better.
"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want." Phil. 4:11-12