Why is the grass always greener?

Posted by David
Olympic Mountains in summer evening (Mt. Olympus)

Olympic Mountains in summer evening (Mt. Olympus)

My son Peter and I went up to Klalanhe Ridge last night. It felt like the first day of summer here in Port Angeles. We have had a long, wet and cool springtime. I longed to get up in the mountains just for the evening and camp on some rocky alpine ridge. So we went and got there just about dinner time with our bagels and snacky foods. The pale blue and orange evening light lit up the north-facing snowfields to our south and the green mountain ridges to our east. To our north, we could look across the smooth waters of the Strait to Canada. At our elevation, it almost felt as if we could see the permanent summer light of the 67th parallel.

There’s wasn’t a cloud in the sky, so we could sleep under the stars and look upwards into near-infinite space. It was the first time Peter had slept under the stars and certainly not the first nor hopefully the last time for me. The wind in the stunted firs kept us company as well as the summer constellations, a thin crescent moon rising around midnight, and a shooting start or two.

My body isn’t accustom to sleeping on the ground, so it wasn’t the most comfortable night’s sleep, but what better place to toss and turn a bit. When I have a starry sky, sometimes I try to get a 3-D perspective of the nearby stars. To do so, you must make your mind think that the brighter stars are closer and the fainter are more distant. Although this method isn’t entirely accurate, if you can convince your mind of it, the 3-D nature of space can pop into your view of the heavens if only for a brief moment. It’s a very humbling experience and illuminates Psalm 19 when David says that the “Heavens declar the glory of God.”

The heavens declare the glory of God;
       the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
       night after night they display knowledge.
There is no speech or language
       where their voice is not heard.

Psalm 19:1-3

Although the experience of sleeping under the stars is delightful. There always seemes to be something missing. In this case, I was thinking, “I sure wish my wife could experience this with us.” But if she was with me, it would be something else. This is the experience that all of us have all of the time. No matter what we’re doing, something is always missing. This is why the grass is always greener.  This is why marriages fail. This is why revolutions occur. This is why people have eating disorders or fall into the attraction of drugs.

But what is missing? There is always something missing for man in this world and I am convinced that this is because we were expulsed from the Garden of Eden and no longer does our  Maker walk physically among us. What we are missing is our God.

Two thousand years ago, this was the big excitement for those who understood who Jesus was. They realized and were filled completely by the knowledge and presence of Emanuel (God with us). This is why we Christians long achingly for the return of Jesus and we know that he is true to his promise. John declares this boldly for us at the end of his Revelation.

Although there may be something missing right now, there will be the day in which we are filled at last.

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be fear or pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat on the throne of heaven and earth said, “Behold, I make all things new.”

Revelations 21:4

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