I look forward Sunday mornings with great anticipation. I love getting up early, dressing in my best duds, traveling to church, worshipping my awesome God, and fellowshipping with my brothers and sisters. I even make an exerted effort to curl my thin, bodiless hair. While curling today, I made a perfect finger curl. WOW, IT WAS PERFECT! If you don’t have roots in the sixties, you probably have no idea what the value that a perfect finger curl entailed. As a kid growing up in that era, I knew that a perfect finger curl was the ideal pinnacle of elementary school success for a girl, a pinnacle that I, unfortunately, never, EVER achieved. When I looked at my reflection today and that perfect curl, I was immediately reminded of Emrika, an elementary classmate from long ago. Although I have sparse recollections from my childhood, I do remember Emrika’s finger curls as they perfectly framed her petite face. And regardless of humidity, rain, snow, or hurricane force winds, those curls stayed put all day. To add insult to injury, they were blonde finger curls, of course. Thus commenced one of my first battles with envy. I was so very jealous of Emrika-her perfect hair, perfect size, perfect name, perfect everything. It seems beyond ridiculous now, but oh how I desired to be her, to have those perfect curls. I didn’t want to be me, the clumsy, little girl with straight, stringy, brown hair, I wanted to be her. Surely the jealousy monster had taken control of my young heart. And that struggle with jealousy can still pop its ugly face into my life if I am not constantly on guard.
God hates envy, even when its a little girl smitten by finger curls. Envy destroys our lives because it steals our contentment. Envy is “…the rottenness of the bones,” it breeds “confusion and every evil work.” Envy robs us of our joy and thankfulness, taking our focus off of the many blessings given to us from God’s hand. Jealousy can even disrupt our relationship and our fellowships with other believers, as we see their spiritual gifts and talents and we harbor envy. But on the contrary, “Godliness with contentment is great gain.” God created us with His master design, created in His image, for His glory. He formed us by the power of His hands with a specific plan for our lives. Our contentment is a testament to our thankfulness for all that He has done through us and for us. Our worth does not come from a reflection in a mirror, but as we reflect the love of our Father to those around us.
Proverbs 14:30 A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.
Proverbs 27:4 Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?
Lord, forgive me when my heart fills with envy. Through Your power, help me replace that envy with contentment. You graciously formed me according to Your perfect will, for Your eternal purpose. I have all I need in You. When envy invades my soul, help me to counter the attack with thankfulness.<div class='sharedaddy sd-block sd-like jetpack-likes-widget-wrapper jetpack-likes-widget-unloaded' id='like-post-wrapper-164683012-78-63d7d1fc0bfff' data-src='https://widgets.wp.com/likes/#blog_id=164683012&post_id=78&origin=wp.blog.grandmasgleanings.com&obj_id=164683012-78-63d7d1fc0bfff' data-name='like-post-frame-164683012-78-63d7d1fc0bfff' data-title='Like or Reblog'><h3 class="sd-title">Like this:</h3><div class='likes-widget-placeholder post-likes-widget-placeholder' style='height: 55px;'><span class='button'><span>Like</span></span> <span class="loading">Loading...</span></div><span class='sd-text-color'></span><a class='sd-link-color'></a></div>