Like a tiny parasite, envy grows within you at first without you even noticing. It buries itself deep within your heart and feeds on all those things that you admire and like about those around you. As you feed it, it grows bigger and bigger. Then it is everywhere and it’s true nature becomes known to you. Envy has made it’s way into your life to bring you down.
Envy has struck my heart lately.
It’s not something I’m proud of. It’s not as though I sit and make lists of things I want or places I need to go. Envy hits when I least expect it. When I’m on Facebook and I see something neat that a friend is trying in their church. It hits when I hear of another friend’s child hitting a milestone for communication. I’m happy for these people. I truly am. But sometimes on the tough days a little envy sneaks in and I find myself asking the dreaded question of the ages, ‘why?’.
Why did I study for so long to not work? Why does my son have to struggle?
Three letters. Three small letters that grow and chain themselves around my heart leaving envy behind.
Comparison is not good for the soul. No ones life is easy. I’m sure there are some who look at mine and think that it is. We all face burdens and circumstances that are challenging to us. Avoiding comparison can help keep envy at bay. I need to break free from comparison. I need to find peace where I am.
A heart at peace gives life to the body,
but envy rots the bones. (Proverbs 14:30 NIV)
Today’s world is not one that really encourages deep satisfied peace. Our Facebook feeds feed us the good news of each others lives and rarely if ever showcase the bad. Media tells us we will be happy if we only have the right underwear, television or car. Self help books tell us how to change ourselves into something better. It’s all great but it doesn’t bring peace. Peace comes from somewhere else. Peace comes from someone else.
In my battle to beat the demon that is envy I find myself praying daily for a change in attitude, not circumstance. While I cannot change what is, I can accept it and move forward from this point with a new perspective and hope. After all I am not alone in this and there is one who knows what will be. I must lean on him, let go of envy and fear and work my way into whatever plan he has for me from this point on.
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10 NIV)