Eugene Cho

water the da*n grass on this side of the fence

water your grass

We’re all familiar with this phrase:

The grass is greener on the other side of the fence.

It may or may not be true but often times if not most of the times, it’s because we spend most of our time dreaming, coveting, envying, complaining, wishing, stop caring, and before you know it, we stop watering the grass on your side.

You may eventually get to the other side of the fence but for now:

Water the da*n grass on this side of the fence.

Here’s the sermon from this past Sunday about 10 things that Build Community. This is the sermon in response to the Things that Destroy Community. This goes about 58+ minutes long and I wished I could have gone a tad longer to flesh out a few more things but I made a pact in blood w/ our other staff to end at a responsible time. And I barely made it this Sunday.

And a short clip about ‘Watering the Grass on This Side’:

Here are the 10 contextual points I shared:

  1. Know who you are. Created in the image of God. Genesis 1.27
  2. Be a Host & Not a Guest. We’ve got way too many people playing and wanting “Guest Privileges” when it’s time to step up and Be a Host. Acts 2:42-45
  3. Learn People’s Story. We learn to love by learning people’s story and seeing them through #1 and through the eyes of Christ: Colossians 3:11
  4. Make Sundays Count. Hebrews 10:25
  5. Join a Community Group. Acts 2:42-45 
  6. Get involved & Serve. Potluck Example: First to eat, Last to volunteer, First to leave. John 13:1-20 
  7. Give – Your Treasure. Matthew 6:21
  8. Forgive. James 1:19. Colossians 3. Forgiveness = Blessing someone to flourish & prosper.
  9. Rejoice [Party with people] & Mourn with one another. Romans 12:15
  10. Worship. Loved by God. Saved by Jesus. Guided by teh Holy Spirit. Items 1-9 above are nice but must be covered by our desire to be a Worshipping Community. Colossians 3:16 // Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God

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11 Responses

  1. Nourisha says:

    great word! still meditating on it. we’re so trained to always be on the look out for the next best thing and to keep trying to move higher and higher. sometimes you just have to grow where you’re planted and focus on keeping the grass around you green! love it.

  2. Steve Rush says:

    You rock, Eugene! I will be listening at this message and using it, along with a ‘blog post of Richard Daulstrom’s (bethany community pastor – and prob. a friend?) as an inspiration for a new ‘blog i have planned.

    PS: Do you answer to “‘Gene,” by any chance? 😉

  3. […] water the da*n grass on this side of the fence « eugene cho eugenecho.wordpress.com/2009/10/07/water-the-dan-grass-on-this-side-of-the-fence – view page – cached It may or may not be true but often times if not most of the times, it’s because we spend most of our time dreaming, coveting, envying, complaining, wishing, stop caring, and before you know it, we… (Read more)It may or may not be true but often times if not most of the times, it’s because we spend most of our time dreaming, coveting, envying, complaining, wishing, stop caring, and before you know it, we stop watering the grass on your side. (Read less) — From the page […]

  4. Jennifer says:

    PE…I loved what you said, and at the same time, I know that you are someone who is entrapeurnal enough to start a new church, and a new NGO (among other things). How did you know when to stop watering the grass where you were, and go plant a brand new field?

  5. dritta says:

    I really liked your sermon this week.🙂

  6. Viju James says:

    the discovery of one’s life purpose itself is half victory. i feel, the view you have shared here is a key to this discovery🙂

  7. […] by Don Bryant on October 9, 2009 Eugene Cho has a post worth reading – and listening – […]

  8. Eugene Cho says:

    @jennifer: great question.

    and no easy answers.

    but one thing i would clarify is that the “other side” isn’t a bad thing at all. in fact, in most cases, it can be a good thing but it’s so easy to forsake the current season with the pursuit of the other side.

    as for the question of timing, when, and how we know – i guess that’s the million dollar question.

  9. Jenny says:

    Thank you for this, Eugene. I needed to read your 10 points and be reminded of the foundation of my faith walk. I want to take the time to listen to your entire sermon. Thanks for posting them online!

  10. […] to spend less time gazing at the green, green grass on the other side of the fence and more time watering the grass beneath my feet.  Because my yard is full of some pretty amazing stuff.  It’s a husband that offers hugs, […]

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One Day’s Wages

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It appears I brought a little Seattle to the NYC. Drizzle fest. 24 hour gathering with a small group of leaders from around the country. Learning. Listening. Asking hard questions. Head exploding. Heart trying to have hope. As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it.

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