Rejoice with those who rejoice… Romans 12:15 (NIV)
Be happy with those who are happy…Romans 12:15 (NIV)
WARNING: That is exactly what it was. It was a “let me explain before you see it kind of message that I received from a dear friend”. She was extending a courtesy to someone that she had not extended to me. She wanted to make sure my feelings would not be hurt or that I would not be offended when I discovered it.
Ha! I loved her more for even feeling like I was worthy of an explanation.
In fact…I fired back reaffirming that I am more than convinced of her love for me and am very aware that she is Spirit-led. And then I thanked her for tipping me off so that I could celebrate our Sister-In-Christ on her great accomplishment and be able to support her new endeavors too!
Now I have to be honest and say that my heart has not always been in this place. I spent years and years on the Potter’s Wheel to get rid of this blemish called jealousy, that was etched in my soul. Finally…it is gone!
Just this morning I happened upon an article called, “Stop Hating: Five Reasons It Pays to Get Happy About Other People’s Success”. It was jam packed with so many truths. But I honed in on just a few:
- The article pointed out the Urban Dictionary’s meaning of the word “hater”: “A person who feels anger and/or jealousy for someone who has succeeded in something they have worked hard for.”
Silly me…This means I had the audacity to be angry at others for doing what it takes to make things happen in their own life. Those who put in the work are entitled to the benefit, right? And rather than being jealous of their accomplishments, I should allow them to inspire me.
- “…how we handle other people’s success, especially when things may not be going so well for us, is an indicator of our maturity and belief in ourselves.”
Hmmm…it took me a bit, but thank God I grew up. Or should I say…God straightened me out! But the bigger picture is that we get to look at the success of others and realize, “If he/she can do it…then so can I!” When you have the right attitude about other people’s accomplishments…it will ignite your belief in yourself.
- If you master generating genuine happiness for other people, not only will you find a cure for the envy, which can sabotage your success…you open the door to…more opportunities to be happy!
Envy and jealousy will imprison you if you allow such emotions to take root in your heart. Your key to freedom is letting it all go. Practice being happy for and even celebrating others. You will find that your mindset and even your heart will begin to change. You may not even know when the transformation takes place. You will just know that it has…and you will like the way it feels.
Lets take a look at what the Word of God says about how we are to feel about and entreat others:
“Teacher,” he asked, “which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and the most important commandment. The second most important commandment is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.’…” Matthew 22:36-39 (GNT)
“Hating” is the modern day term for the word “jealousy”. As such, you cannot hate someone and love them all at the same time.
Here are few take-a-ways about love:
- Love…is more than just lip service.
It is possible say over and over again, to someone, “I love you”; and not really mean it. Love is a matter of the heart. And if you allow jealousy to creep in, it will squeeze love right out. And when you say it, they will just be empty words…until you evict your unwanted guest (jealousy).
- Love…is unconditional.
Love cannot be dependent upon how I feel about you from day to day. Jealousy can sometimes plant false impressions and thoughts about those in your world, especially when good things begin to happen for them and not necessarily for you. You must be able to shake off impure thoughts and love those God placed in your path for who you know they are…right where they are.
- Love…is genuine, not manufactured.
You cannot make up love, it just is…and it will show. And just as love will show, jealousy will as well. Scripture tells us that the issues of life flow from the heart. And yep…envy will come gushing out if it is in there.
If you struggle with jealousy in any way, as I mentioned that I have in the past…NOW is a great time to release it to God. Turn the table on the enemy. When you feel something that does not feel right toward someone, make it a point to address it…immediately. As with a plant, jealousy will fester and grow if you nurture it. But so will love.
And to love for real…and be loved is a reason to CELEBRATE all by itself!
Lord, help me to rejoice those who rejoice. And help me to love like You love…FOR REAL! In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Photo Credit: www.tsgproject.com
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