“Don’t throw your junk in my backyard, my backyard, my backyard;
Don’t throw your junk in my backyard, my backyard’s full!”
In the car, on the way home from school a number of years ago, my third grader was singing this song. She had learned it in choir as part of an exercise to teach harmony. A catchy tune, I find myself humming it or singing it on a regular basis as I go throughout my day. One day, as I encountered yet another person sharing the latest complaints and “concerns” with me, I found this song going through my mind. As I paused to reflect on it, I realized what a wonderful motto it makes.
As a pastor’s wife, I hear my fair share of grumbling and “I can’t believe they did that!” type conversations. I think ladies are more vulnerable than men are to these well-meaning people, mostly other ladies. Maybe it’s because we are good listeners; maybe it’s because we haven’t mastered the male far away look in the eye along with the distracted “I’m sorry, what did you say?” Maybe it’s because we girls feel a certain responsibility to share our feelings with our friends. Whatever the reason, I have come to the conclusion that I have enough of my own “junk;” I don’t need yours cluttering up my mind, too. See, as a woman, I have plenty of my own opinions. I come by it honestly – just don’t tell my mother I said as much! Everyday, I have to diligently work to keep my attitude in check and the “backyard” of my mind free from clutter and distractions. I cannot hear the Lord speaking to me if I am too busy shutting out the preacher’s voice because I do not agree with something he did or said. I cannot receive loving correction from the authority in my life when my attitude is not right or I am mortified that my faults have been exposed.
I can’t let a day go by without cleaning up my “junk;” because if I do, it will multiply; and before long, I will not be able to contain it all in the limited storage space of my own mind. Then, I will find myself throwing my junk in your backyard, and if you are at all like me, you don’t need any extra junk. So please, “Don’t throw your junk in my backyard; my backyard’s full!”