This summer as we were settling into our home one of our visitors asked why do you have MYOB on our refridgerator. We have 4 pillars of parenting and within those pillars we have behaviors we are trying to shape within our daughters. It just so happened that MYOB was the character we were focusing on at the time. MYOB (and no, it is not some clever take on BYOB)…it means MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS
We know that if we do not instruct on this character trait early it will be a tough nut to crack later. I mean we all know those busy bodies who make it their business to be up in everybody’s business right? Every college I have worked in, every non-profit I have been a part of, even in the ministry there are those people who make it their business to be about every body else’s business. They show up places to just see what they can get into. They develop friendships simply to access more information. Whoever meddles in a quarrel not his own is like one who takes a passing dog by the ears (Proverbs 26:17)
Having grown up in a small town eerily similar to Harlan (but not being in a small town for over 20 years now) it has hit me like a ton of bricks just how big a challenge this can be in a rural community where everybody’s business is really easy to get into. We can easily compound the challenges by inviting all kinds of people into our lives with the constant use of social media. We live in a place and a time where it is so incredibly easy to get into other peoples business. I think this is why Jesus said, ““Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” Essentially…MYOB. The idea is that we each have enough problems and challenges in our own life that when we go looking or digging into other’s lives for it we become prone to making judgements and it’s those judgements that lead to trouble. But learning the discipline of knowing what is your business and what is not leads a person to much better outcomes for all involved.
It is a healthy habit to learn early but it is a habit that can be learned at any age. There have been many a times in my ministry where someone will come to me with Johnny’s issue and I simply have to say, “If Johnny wants to deal with that issue how about you let Johnny come talk to me”. In a marriage, in a business relationship, in ministry, and in parenting there is incredible power when we can set the boundaries of what IS my business and what IS NOT and when we do so we lessen the power of judgement and open the power of grace.