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2014_05_26 L2L_Envy

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
{1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV, emphasis added}

I really had to sit down and pray over this one for a while before I could admit the truth about the presence of envy in my relationship with my children. It was a very odd and very uncomfortable admission for me, but it was there nonetheless and without being truthful about it I knew I would never find healing. But before I get too far into that, let’s take a look at what we are talking about here.

What is envy?

[blockquote border_color=”#be92cf”]According to Thayer’s, the Greek word rendered as envy here means “to burn with zeal; to be heated or to boil with envy, hatred, anger.”[/blockquote] [blockquote border_color=”#be92cf”]Webster’s defines envy as “painful or resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another joined with a desire to possess the same advantage; the feeling of wanting to have what someone else has.”[/blockquote]

Those are some harsh definitions! I don’t know about you, but I don’t want my heart burning with anything negative or filled with any kind of resentment, especially towards my children. We have to be careful with these harsh definitions though, because it is very easy to look at them and say, “Oh, I’m not that bad!” But the truth is, if any degree of this is in our hearts, then the enemy has a foothold there to grow that remnant into these definitions at any given moment. Our job as believers is to minimize those footholds wherever possible.

The origins of envy

Envy typically finds itself rooted in a fear of lack. We envy what others have because on some level we think that we can’t have it for ourselves, as if they have tapped into some favor or privilege that we don’t have access to. More often than not, however, this is not the case. What we envy in others also tells a great deal about our heart’s desires. If we find ourselves lusting after the same thing over and over again, no matter what form it may manifest, that is something that seriously needs to be looked at and prayed over. By doing this we can uncover those places that the enemy is using to sneak into our relationships and wreak havoc.

How to combat envy

Take time to pause when you find yourself in an envious state of mind. Make a note of what it is and how it made you feel. Keep a small notebook handy or use an app on your phone, whatever it takes to have something handy to get these thoughts down. Then at some point in the day, set aside some time to really contemplate these things. Pray over them and seek out what the Word has to say. If it is something that is beneficial for you, then look for creative ways to add it into your life, no matter how small it may seem. It is surprising how much those small things can build up over time into big barriers in our relationships.

If you find evaluating these situations a bit difficult and aren’t sure where to start, try asking yourself the following questions:

1. What is it about this that I envy?
2. What keeps me from having this?
3. What does God say about this thing that I desire?
4. What would this thing provide in my life?
5. Is that beneficial for me and my walk with Yeshua?
6. Are there any other ways to get that same effect?
7. What can I do right now to move toward that goal?

Over time you come to realize that there are many ways the heart’s desires can be added into even the fullest of lives. We each have to find our own unique way of implementing them and making them a priority though. Then there are those things that simply must be let go of, those remnants of our old selves still clinging to us as we renew our minds daily to living out His will. Exercises like this help us to intentionally shed those layers, taking off that yoke of bondage to walk in the freedom of HaMashiach {the Christ}.

Be open, be honest, and be blessed beloved! Shalom~

Surrendered to Him~

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{Be sure to check out the entire #Learning2Love series!}

What are some of the ways that you combat envy?

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