Posts Tagged ‘envy or congratulate’

One Marriage For A Lifetime. Family. Descendents. Career. Reputation. Clean Past. Bank Account. Peace. Health. Physical attributes. Brain power…

What don’t you have and never will?

King Solomon said that everyone is motivated by the same thing: envy of his neighbor.

“Then I saw that all painful effort in labor and all skill in work comes from man’s rivalry with his neighbor.” Ecclesiastes 4:4a

So many would deny this tidbit, claiming that they are perfectly pure in their motivations to succeed and are only honing their skills on behalf of God and humanity. But eventually, pride seeps up. In fact, accounts like these come up at the most inappropriate times…in The Bible!

How about Jesus’ most critical night when He was betrayed? “Now there was also a dispute among them, as to which of them should be considered the greatest.” Luke 22:24 After three intense years with Jesus…now, really.

No, I doubt there is an innocent one among us when it comes to petty jealousies. It’s the ancient distraction by Satan himself: “But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts,[it] is…demonic…You lust for what you don’t have and are willing to kill to get it.” James 3:14,15, James 4:2

Kill to get it? Sound extreme? Remember that one of the greatest heroes of The Bible murdered a man to get a literal “bathing beauty.” [See one of the saddest stories in scripture at 2 Samuel 11]

I truly believe that some of us struggle more with this than others. Some are driven by envy while others seem to take no notice of others. In fact, some are so egotistical that they actually believe they have nothing to envy about others. All kidding aside, look at children. What’s the one thing they want? Whatever the kid next to them has.

I bring this up for the sake of honesty. Let us face this monster. Let’s stare him down. We’re eyeball to eyeball with him because he’s in the mirror. I’ve concluded that being happy for someone else is a learned art. Perhaps the best way to think about it is through the eyes of a parent. Moms and dads love it when children share and their kids are happy for one another. That’s the way God views it. It’s particularly insulting to God when we silently or verbally accuse Him of favoritism because it appears there are more gifts under the Christmas tree for so-and-so or so-and-so than for us. That’s quite an indictment on The Fair One.

Humility doesn’t come overnight. As slow as it seems to sink in, it is interesting that there is a pleasure in growing in this area. It’s freeing. It increases our perspective. We actually get better at it and that’s as fun as developing any good skill that gives us a lift as we master it. It also gives us a mindset that allows us to be joyful about our own gifts which are many. By the way, there are always gifts that WE have that someone else will never have.

So, let’s all work on this and prove King Solomon wrong!






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