This is a guest post from Marina Abdel Malak – a FrAnthony.com guest post favorite. In her previous posts, Marina spoke about her battle with ANOREXIA NERVOSA and how God helped her overcome it. Now, thanks to God, Marina is preparing for a career in helping others overcome their illnesses in medical school. If you too are interested in guest posting on my blog, please visit my Guest Post guidelines for more info.
Have you ever had one of those days – or weeks – when regardless of how hard you try, things just don’t go right???
You look at your agenda or smartphone, and see that you have a list of things to get done. You have a deadline for work or school. Your bills are due soon, or else the interest starts to accumulate. Your friends are wondering when you will get back to them about the get-together next weekend. You parents are waiting on you to cut the lawn (which you promised to two weeks ago). It is time to make that doctor’s appointment you’ve been putting off. Your sibling’s birthday is in two days and you didn’t pick out a gift yet. The lawn hasn’t been watered for weeks, and it looks dry, yellow, and almost dead.
Sound familiar? This happens all too often with our busy, crazy lives. I went through something like this a couple of weeks ago, and was tired, angry, and frustrated. I tried to get things done, but there was simply too much. While scrolling through a quotes app, desperate to find some hope to carry me through, I read ‘the grass is greener on the other side’.
I sighed. Perhaps after this tough experience, there would be some happiness and peace in my life. Maybe when I got things done and the busy week was over, things would get better. The grass might be greener on the other side – but the other side was out of sight. I couldn’t see the other side of this misery. I couldn’t ever imagine how the grass could be greener on the other side – what if there wasn’t another side? What if things would be gloomy for longer than I could handle?
It didn’t help that it was a rainy week, adding to the darkness I felt inside my heart. My mother, trying to make me feel better, commented: ‘I know you dislike the rain. But look at it this way: it will water the grass and make it greener and pretty! And then we won’t have to water the grass ourselves’.
For some reason, my mother’s words really resonated with me. The rainy day was difficult now, and I didn’t like it. But she was right: it would make the grass greener. This grass – the dry, shriveled grass that looked completely hopeless. The rain would give it life. And what’s more, I wouldn’t have to get my own water and drench the lawn: nature – God – was doing it naturally. His way. In His timing. To make the grass beautiful once more.
And then, it hit me: the grass on the ‘other side’ doesn’t really matter. What matters is MY GRASS.
This grass right here in my life, that I am dealing with – my struggles, my weaknesses, and the tough circumstances in my life. It is dry now. It is nearly at the point of doom and death, and it needs saving. It seems hopeless that it will ever be good enough, that it will recover, or that it will be well again. And when the rain starts, it makes it seem that the days are getting worse. The rain makes things seem darker, and it seems that just when things can’t get worse, they do. But the shriveled grass and the rain are blessings.
The grass in all its dryness is like our struggles. They are tough to endure. We get tired, shriveled, and we feel hopeless. We are nearly at the point of breakage. The rain adds darkness – much like other obstacles that appear in our lives. But when we think carefully, both the dry grass and the rain are God’s way of working in our lives.
God uses our struggles – the dry grass – to make us thirsty for Him. We become at our lowest points so that God can send the rain and nourish us again…. give us life and renewal. Sometimes, the rain can appear in our lives as the ‘final thing’ that make us break and makes us feel that it will never get better. But at all times, the rain gives the grass it’s new colour, its strength, and its beauty.
The grass, on this side – your side – is the way it is supposed to be. Because God made it that way, and He continues to shape it the way He knows will be the best for you. It may not seem like it during the rough moments, but He is working to make the grass greener for you.
You need not look at the grass on the other side to see if it is greener or not, because God is making the grass you have right now perfect. You just need to depend on Him. You need to trust that this yellow grass will be new again. The rough and tortuous rainfalls, although difficult to endure, are adding beauty to the grass.
And once it is all over, you will see how beautiful and alive your field of grass in. You don’t need to look far – this grass, right here, is greener. It is the way God wanted it to be. He provides the water to nourish it – at the perfect time, when it is ready to be refreshed. You don’t need to worry because you feel that you cannot persevere through your circumstances. You need not feel helpless, because “God clothes the grass of the field…so will He not clothe you? Do not worry, you are of more worth than these” (Matthew 6:20).
Psalm 23 is very applicable here…Jesus brings us to calm, green fields. He makes things whole again. He renews our lives with His grace and blessings, even when we ‘walk in the valley of the shadow of death’ (Psalm 23:4). We need to be afraid, worry, or hopeless. Because God loves you, cares for you, and wants to be well. You simply need to hope in Him. Trust that this period of difficulty will pass, and God will shower the grass with rain to make it flourish (Psalm 65:10).
So in fact, the grass on THIS side might not seem green now, but it will be soon. I didn’t need to look or search for the greener grass on the other side. God was working through that tough week – my dry field of grass – to teach me to depend on Him.
To learn to be more organized, to manage my time, to acquire new experiences. He drenched the grass with rain to make me new again, to remind me that He is always there. That He knows best. That He is making my grass green every day. This is a blessing from God, a reminder that He is working daily to shape my life the way He intends it to be. The showers of rain come along and make the grass green– what a blessing! (Ezekiel 34:6).