Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Grass is Greener…. – Part 1

Change your thoughts & you change your world. -Norman Vincent Peale

Proverbs 23:7a (KJV)  For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:
Those two thoughts focus on our topic for the day.  Remember those two questions we asked to close our last post?  “When we do things well and want to share what we’ve done, is it for the glory of God or is it to boost our own ego?  And, when we mess up, if we confess to another, is it because they deserve an apology or because it eases our conscience?”.  We said there was no right or wrong answer to these.  And that's true from the standpoint of why we asked them, which was to get us thinking about our responses.  But those responses highlight what’s right and wrong about our thinking.  And how that could affect present and future decisions.  Take a look at what I mean.

There’s an old adage that says that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.  There’s actually a scientific principle to that.  The way grass reflects light, it shows off its green more when seen from an angle than when we’re looking strait down at it.  In that sense, it’s very much a microcosm of our life.  We may not even think about it consciously, but if there’s any question in our mind that we made the right choice, that neighboring “grass patch” can look a lot more interesting than it ought to.  Think about a typical example.

We’ve been on the job for some number of years.  We may even excel at it.  But there are a few things that color our perception of the job.  We may be so used to it that a little boredom sneaks in.  Add to that the fact that our “time in grade” gives us lots of insight into all the negatives of the job.  All the warts and pimples, if you will.  Because we’re doing the equivalent of looking strait down at our own lawn.  From the angle that looks less green than our neighbor sees it.  Or than our neighbor’s lawn looks to us.

We suddenly determine that the car isn’t as classy as when we bought it, the partner isn’t as (fill in the attribute), the job isn’t fulfilling, the house isn’t big enough or fancy enough.  Have you ever heard stories of the person who decided to upgrade their housing to match their status, only to discover that glorious house was a money pit?  That’s the result of this syndrome.  But how did we get there?

Familiarity is one possible cause.  Leviticus 19:31 says, “Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.”  That speaks of diviners who supposedly raise spirits from the dead.  But think about our attitude toward anything we become familiar with.  That area of our life seems to become dead, dull, lifeless, boring.  We know so much about it that it no longer looks very “green”.  The tendency of the natural man is to try to revive life by inserting something new and exciting.

That necromancer in Leviticus 19:31 takes a spirit that wasn’t originally in that dead body, works at getting it to reside in the body, reviving it.  The warning came from the sporadic apparent successes.  But think about it.  If I were to die and someone got another spirit into my body, the results would not be me.  The intelligence and personality would come from the spirit now living in the body, not me.  Which could create a very different life than I would being in my own body.  No, I’ve never seen this happen, so I’m not sure it’s really possible.  But think about how this applies to the way we live our lives.

That familiarity makes us go looking elsewhere for the life we don’t see in our present existence.  And, perhaps, bringing in a whole different personality to our lives than was intended.  There are other factors that come into play.  And there are ways to fix all of them.  We’ll get to all of that.  But, in the meantime, are we familiar with what we have?  How did we get that way?  Do we see a solution?

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