Guest Post by Jan Chambers
The incessant, persistent, relentless, inexorable bleating can be heard from the house. So…..I don my gardening gloves, assemble my tools and make the trek to locate my little genius. As soon as he senses that I am close by, his bleating stops and he waits patiently and quietly. Being the genius he is Einstein chose the part of the fence with the thickest thicket.
Methodically I work to clear away dried-up thorns and bramble. It takes me a bit to create a path to this little ‘whiz-kid’, and all the while he patiently waits. Although this is an unwelcome interruption to my morning, I choose to focus on anything remotely positive about this experience. For one thing, he has learned that once I am there, I will free him from his temporary prison. When he first began getting his head stuck in the fence, he bleated relentlessly as I labored to extract him; now he simply waits good-naturedly, in silence. He has come to know me and to know that I will do whatever is necessary to set him free.
It is a quiet, foggy morning. I think as I work. I contemplate just how much humanity resembles my little genius, Einstein. How much I resemble my little genius, Einstein. How many times do we/I look over the fences in our lives and feel cheated that our little plot of land is simply not as lush and green as our neighbor’s plot of land. And, sometimes it isn’t. But, more often than not, it is! I think of how often we get ourselves in predicaments because, instead of working to improve our plot of land, or to see the beauty of what we have been given/achieved, we incessantly, persistently, relentlessly, and inexorably do any and everything we can to pursue, by whatever means necessary, a taste of the grass from the other side of the fence. It seems that, like Einstein, we can’t fathom that the other side of the fence is not for us; is not a blessing to us; that the fence is a source of protection and not imprisonment.
I am reminded of the words of David, in Ecclesiastes 6:9 (NLT):
Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless—like chasing the wind.
Or getting your head stuck in the fence, again and again.
Freed at last, Einstein trots happily away to graze (at least for a while) on the lush lawn within his fence.
I look back and realize another plus from this morning’s experience. If my little genius continues his pursuit of the grass on the other side of the fence, and if he continues to select the thickest part of the thicket next to our fence, I will have the fence line cleared by the time spring arrives!”