Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy?
Jealousy is a word that makes us all cringe, isn’t it? We really don’t want to feel jealous of someone else. And when someone is jealous of us, they treat us rather coldly it seems. So there is a no win situation when jealousy rears its green, ugly head.
And yet, jealousy can fly like the wind over our hearts, hurting relationships and causing internal stress.
Years ago a pretty blond woman kept snubbing me while at a week-long training seminar before we went out in the field to serve the Lord. I wasn’t bold or mature enough to ask why she was treating me with such contempt, so tried to ignore my hurt feelings and focus on my training.
However, God wasn’t about to ignore it because He wanted the best for us both. He took a hold of her heart on the last day, and she came to me asking me to forgive her. She told me, with tears running down her cheeks, that she was jealous of my outgoing nature. I was completely shocked.
She was incredibly beautiful, and while reserved, she had an amazing voice when she spoke and sang. We spent an hour talking and agreed that our week could have been so much better had jealousy not been an issue.
I can’t remember her name, but I can picture her, and will never forget the lesson I learned. I should have gone to her and asked her if I had done something to bother her. It hopefully would have opened the door to thoughtful communication.
*Jealousy can rot your heart if you allow it to live there. It comes from being selfish and self centered, wanting what you do not have. God has created each of us so unique, and we need to embrace that uniqueness, not wanting what traits others have.
*Jealousy can also hurt your relationship with the Lord. The enemy of God wants you to feel jealous of other people so you are focused on them, and not His love for you and all He has given you.
*Jealousy has absolutely no place in the life of a believer: it must be spotlighted and then destroyed in order for us to walk peacefully with Jesus and serve Him with a clean heart.
So what I do when jealousy creeps into my life is this: I go to the Lord, confess my jealousy, and listen for His guidance in how I need to address it.
Sometimes all I need to do is stop comparing myself with someone else. Other times, like the blond woman I mentioned above, I need to go to the person I’ve been jealous of because I may have been treating them in a way that doesn’t glorify God and hurt them with my attitude.
The Spirit of God will show us what to do; we just need to trust Him . . . and then obey.
Adapted from: Seeking Jesus