The scene is a common one: a cow with her head stuck through a fence reaching as far as she can for lush mouthfuls of green grass. In fact, so common is the sight that a well-worn expression has resulted. We’ve all heard that ‘the grass is greener on the other side of the fence’. The saying is used metaphorically to describe someone who is not content where they are – always looking for something different (better as they see it) just beyond the confines of their present situation.
Unfortunately, Christians in a local church are sometimes known to seek the ‘greener pastures’. They grow discontent with the situation in their own congregation and see other churches that they imagine are better. This frequently results in them leaving ‘here’ and going ‘there’ in hopes of finding something more to their liking.
These folks typically do not stop to recognize or appreciate the good things where they are. They seem oblivious to the work and effort of their faithful brethren, and discount the efforts being made. We would encourage them to ‘stop and smell the roses’ where they are.
Furthermore, those who are inclined to ‘fly the coop’ most often do so without making any serious effort to improve the perceived issues in the initial congregation. All churches have problems – including the one where they might eventually ‘land’. Mature Christians know this and will not walk away from a local church without trying hard to help make the needed changes.
Sometimes leaving a congregation is the right decision – but it is a decision that should not be taken lightly. A sense of ‘family’ loyalty ought to exist among spiritual brothers and sisters that will make this a last option rather than a first one.
‘Greener on the other side’? Maybe. But if you look around, you might just realize that you are ‘knee deep’ in a wonderful situation. Think!
- by Greg Gwin
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