better grass… better grass… better grass…
Bishop K.C. Pillai taught during his lifetime about the manners and customs of the lands and times of the Bible. Being from the Orient, he understood and relayed the meaning behind many passages in the Bible that contained orientalisms or idioms that we in our Western culture don’t understand.
In teaching about sheep and shepherding, he taught that sometimes a sheep would wander from the flock and not notice they were getting too far away and approaching danger, because all they were thinking was “better grass… better grass.. better grass…”. The shepherd would have to get the sheep’s attention by slinging a stone to hit the ground near their mouth, so they would look up, pay attention, and come back.
Bishop Pillai related this to our culture, how we are always wanting “better standard of living… better standard of living… better standard of living…”. Often that is all people are concerned with in their lives, and they forget to look up and be aware of anything else. In the lands and times of the Bible, people were much more concerned with God, family, community, helping people, etc., but now our world revolves a lot more around materialism.
I like to try to remember–it’s not all about finding better grass :). Sometimes it’s better to just enjoy where you are and your current standard of living, without constantly getting sucked into the next best thing–better, faster, newer! We have so much to be thankful for with just having a nice roof over our heads, food on the table, clean water, and some luxuries here and there. I like this poster from Posters for Good:
And if you still have that constant drive to improve like me (I think it’s genetic–my mom never stops :)) then I still find it so much more satisfying to steward what you have when it still has value–fix it up, shine it up, fresh coat of paint, etc. (Of course I buy new things, but it’s fun to get the most out of what you have too).