ENVY: The Green Eyed Monster
To prepare for our trip to Kenya/Zanzibar, my team is going through a devotion by Craig F. Harrison about the The Seven Capital Sins (also known as the seven deadly sins). Each meeting a volunteer listens to the cd and puts together a little devotional for the rest of the group. Mine was about ENVY.
Envy is a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck. ENVY IS ROUTED IN SELF-CENTEREDNESS. We can get so caught up in other peoples blessings that we forget to count our own. When all we can think about is everything that everyone else has we forget to look at what God has blessed us with. We also need to be thankful for other peoples gifts. Instead of resenting that person and envying their gift be thankful for that person and for the fact that God has blessed them in such an amazing way. Sometimes we find ourselves saying “everybody is more blessed than me.” I struggled with this last year when I came home from my Youth With A Mission (YWAM) Outreach and then saw the experience of the next DTS. I remember thinking “Wow! Why didn’t God use me like he used them?” and feeling angry because that wasn’t the same experience I had. Instead of resenting them and envying them I should have acknowledged it and been affirming to them. That is how we become the Body of Christ, by affirming others and encouraging them to use the blessings that the Lord has given them.
Here are six ways that Craig came up with on how to change your heart to not be envious.
First, Be honest. You need to think about and acknowledge who and what you are envious of, then you need to pray for the ability to surrender to and release those feelings.
Second, you need to take it to prayer. You cannot do it alone. Prayer changes us, and through prayer your heart will change.
Third, Count your blessings. Take time each day to think about or even right down 3 things you are thankful for.
Fourth, say thank you EACH day for your most precious gifts. Sometimes we forget about the everyday things that end up being the most precious things to us. Don’t forget to thank God for your friends and your family. Don’t forget to thank Him for giving you legs to walk with, eyes to see through, and all of the other things that you are blessed with. Don’t let it take a tragedy to realize how precious those things are, thank Him for them.
Fifth, we need to be positive and up-lifting towards each other. Instead of criticizing what someone is doing wrong, affirm them in what they are doing right.
And sixth, We need to read the Word of God. The cure of envy is found in love which we find in the word of God.
Dear God, I am envious. I find myself wishing I could do the things other people can do. Remind me that you have a plan for my life, just like you have a plan for theirs. Remind me that I am FEARFULLY and WONDERFULLY made and that you knew my days before they even started. Help remind me of all of the wonderful things you have blessed me with. Thank you for my legs, my eyes, my arms, my hearing, my sense of taste. Today I want to thank you specifically for my best friend, my parents, and my roommate. God continue to change my heart, help me to be more affirming and more positive to others. Thank you for the opportunity to put this devotional together and for all you are going to do through our group. In Jesus’ name. Amen.