• Niki Sparks

Thy Neighbor's Shower


"You shall not set your desire on your neighbor’s house or land...or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” ~Deuteronomy 5:21

I am often ungrateful; especially today, and yesterday, and probably tomorrow. In church-speak we could call me covetous. Here's my excuse: I am a problem solver by nature, which means I am continuously looking for a problem to solve. That instinct is now the problem I need to solve.

Earlier this summer, four different families we adore moved into new houses, and we finally got a chance to go visit the last of them this weekend. The home turned out to be a showplace built about ten minutes ago, overshadowing my middle-aged home with each new room I was shown on the tour I requested. The worst for me was their master bathroom, which has a shower that could easily hold six people and has three shower heads. My shower barely fits me. There are plenty of things I covet about my friends' new house, but I woke up the next morning thinking about their shower, and how much better it was, and the myriad ways my life would be transformed if only I had an enormous shower.

My house suddenly isn't good enough. It has too many drywall cracks and too many broken deck boards and too many rugs that my dog has eaten the corner of and too many scratches on the hardwood floor. I want a house that is pristine and new. I want those views and that bathroom--man, do I want that bathroom. (You'd think I do nothing but shower. Not true, as I only wash my hair every other day because it makes the blond highlights that take three long hours to apply last a few weeks longer, so if I had that shower I would have to duck two of the three shower heads.)

As I write this, I'm sitting on the balcony of the pool house a half mile from my house, views of Mount Evans in the distance, with two of the ladies in my Writing Club. As my friends were getting settled on the deck, they commented on how beautiful this place is and how lucky I am to have it so close to home, and I realized that they are right. I don't want to fail to see the beauty of my home, my neighborhood's amenities, my blessings. I want to stop seeing my house as a list of problems that need solved, and remember why we bought it twelve years ago and all the memories that have been made inside its walls.

Oh, and we have miles of hiking trails in the neighborhood. This is the view from one of my favorites. I'm okay if you covet it a little:



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