Envy… jealously… the thought that shiny objects or the lifestyles of the rich and famous will make you happy… “If I only had such and such”.
It’s not about begrudging anyone else. I don’t believe this world is a zero-sum game; God is unlimited and provides for all of us and can give every single person abundance without taking from anyone else.
I have asked many friends if they believe similarly that materialistic rewards will bring them happiness. From those that are struggling financially to those that are wealthy. Every single one of them says that, at times, they do suffer from this malady.
The most common answer for how to combat these feelings is gratitude– focusing on the positives we have in our lives, the gifts that we have that are non-materialistic such as our children, our health, the people we help, and our good deeds. These are the qualities that make us unique and special.
I’m curious to hear what you think, do you have any other suggestions?
I have another question that I’ve been thinking about: Is it my responsibility to act more modestly so as to not create jealousy amongst my fellows? How do my actions affect others? If I drive a fancy car, am I creating jealousy? If I live in a large home, take fancy vacations, etc., am I doing something wrong if it makes others feel less than?
I think the answer is, it depends. I don’t think there is anything wrong with living well. Wealth is a blessing, yet when I show it off, when I think it makes me better than, it’s a problem. When I’m creating jealousy with those that are close and important to me, maybe I need to offer to share more, to welcome them to participate.
This week, let’s remember that our actions affect others– not just ourselves. Let’s consider what, if anything, we need to change.
Accountability, Community, Unconditional Love
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