It was one of the most perfect illustrations of a proverb I have ever seen.
Sr. Catherine and I were coming home from the Motherhouse in Rhinebeck and passed a pasture for young horses, a relative newcomer to the neighborhood. Three of them were grazing there in what seemed to me like “horse heaven”. There were two fenced paddocks, with new grass just ready for nibbling and an open gate between them. If that were insufficient, a huge pile of hay in the middle of one enclosure was also available.
But as we passed, we noticed one of the horses had managed to poke his head at an odd angle through the new fencing so that he could nibble on the grass outside his corral. We instinctively said, “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence!”
Is there some common element in both human and horse nature that makes us discontented with what we actually have at hand? Is the unavailable so enticing that we have to go through contortions to obtain it?
I know that advertising plays on this lure of the almost unreachable. I also know that we are all people of desires. We can use this innate urge to stir up our spiritual journey in these glorious post-Easter days.
Jesus told us that death is not the end and that something more is ours for the stretching. Why not give a new twist to the proverb my innovative horse was exemplifying? Something so much more wonderful lies just beyond the boundaries of this life. That is the heart of the Easter story.