In the last 6 months, one thing God has really been working through in my life is FRIENDSHIPS. Whether that’s watching new friendships flourish or deepening old ones. It is something I have found such gratitude and thankfulness in, that God has gifted me with such a beautiful network of friends that are all so in love with God and chasing similar things to me in life. One of the things I have found most enjoyable in these friendships is being a witness to what God is doing in them, watching them find their feet in God’s path for their lives, leaving the cocoon of secular society and flourishing into their identities in God and what He has in store for them. It is memories I will cherish forever and revisit often in years to come.
However, within this aspect of friendships, I have found one emotion particularly protruding, one that I am in constant battle with, one that I try to shove down as far as I physically can and not shed light into…one that the enemy has full understanding of its residence in my heart and uses it to it’s full potential. The devil takes it and plays with it, he takes the experiences I am experiencing in that present time and manipulates them, shifts my perspective to be taken from an angle that is not actually there. He sneakily guides my heart and mind to take past conversations, actions, looks, attitudes and shapeshift them into malicious intentions, into digs and jabs at my identity, when the original intention of those words and actions were nothing but complete love and purity, from friends that want me to succeed and press further into God. The enemy takes a situation of utter happiness in which a friend gets an incredible opportunity and makes it reflect an abundance of irrational and unweighted questions such as ‘why wasn’t I offered that opportunity?‘ ‘Am I not good enough?‘ ‘what do they have that I don’t?‘.
This emotion is jealousy. And it needs to be brought into the light.
Jealousy is such a natural and relatable emotion that we all share so deeply, yet is never spoken about and if spoken about, deems you as an awful person…yet we all battle with it daily. This can be in small, harmless things, like your sibling getting to sit in the front of the car instead of you, or your friend eating the last jam donut when you wanted it. However, if not treated it can quickly become incredibly deep rooted and cause fractures and has the opportunity to shatter every aspect of relationship and community that society has to offer. Friendships, relationships, marriages, businesses, churches and so many more.
We are each in the middle of a personal battle with jealousy, and most likely will be for the foreseeable future in one area or another in each season of our lives. It is so important for us to actively detach from our feelings and emotions at times like this. Our own minds and thoughts are our worst enemies and are where the enemy sits, hiding, awaiting the whisper of a foothold that he can greedily grab and use.
Proverbs 14:30 [NIV]
‘A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones’
It is in desperate need to be brought to the light, not in shame but in an abundance of vulnerability and desire to be better because it is NATURAL and needs to be spoken about with less disgust. It is ugly and harmful, but something every single one of us share and it must be brought to the surface so that God can guide us in overcoming it.
I challenge you guys to actively discuss jealousy with your friends, your mentors, your pastors, we must become the generation that doesn’t allow it to sit in stomachs of shame and secrecy, but bring it to the surface, bring it to God and let His beautiful breath ignite and destroy it.