“The Other Man’s Grass is Always Greener”

In the early 1960s, Petula Clark sang a popular song entitled, “The Other Man’s Grass is Always Greener.” The chorus contained the following message:

The other man’s grass is always greener
The sun shines brighter on the other side
The other man’s grass is always greener
Some are lucky, some are not
Just be thankful for what you’ve got.

Now as a good Presbyterian who believes in the inerrancy of Scripture, I have no use for the fourth line (“some are lucky, some are not”) since I know that there is no such thing as luck or fate. As the Shorter Catechism states, “God’s works of providence are His most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all His creatures and all their actions.” However, it is far too common for each of us to want more than what we have.

We spend our time thinking that if only we had _____________ (you fill in the blank), then all would be right with the world. Sadly, that isn’t true. If we were to get __________, then there would be something else that we would desire. When John D. Rockefeller was asked how much was enough money, he replied, “Just a little more.”

Stop looking over the fence at the other man’s grass and focus on what God has blessed you with in Christ: “justification, adoption and sanctification, and the several benefits which in this life do either accompany or flow from them.” (WSC 32) The believer in Christ has been declared righteous with the righteousness of Christ, has been adopted into the family of God, and God is working by His Word and Spirit to sanctify him, and grow him up in His grace. So remember what the Tenth Commandment directs: “Thou Shalt Not Covet,” and bear in mind what Paul wrote to Timothy:

6 Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, 7 for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. 8 But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. 9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. (1 Timothy 6:6-10)


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