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At times we all face things that seem to be unfair. If we are not careful, this can give way to envy, which becomes our problem then. I wrote some about envy when I wrote about keeping our green-eyed monster in check, but what are some things we can do to rid our lives of envy when it creeps in?
- First and foremost, let’s remember that we all have so much to be thankful for. No matter our circumstances, we all have so much more than we deserve. Do others have more? Sure, there will always be others who have more, but, there are also plenty of people across the world who have less. Much less. I would love to go on a missions trip someday. I was just talking with someone last week who was leaving for her fifth mission trip. Everyone I have ever talked with who has done this has said that there is no better way to really grasp what we have than seeing what most do not. This remembering what we have to be thankful is so much more than counting our gifts, it is remembering that our “bad” is almost always way better than someone else’s “good.” As a person of faith, ultimately, we all deserve death and eternal life in hell. We have done nothing to deserve the grace and mercy that we are given on a daily basis, yet we are given it anyway. If you are reading this post and therefore have access to the Internet, I’m guessing you live a fairly blessed life just as I do.
- Second, stop comparing. This is what was on my heart when I wrote about the green-eyed monster, and we so easily fall victim to this. We don’t even necessarily have to compare ourselves to someone we know firsthand, we can compare ourselves to those in the public eye somehow, we can compare ourselves to someone we know of secondhand, and we can even compare our life now to the life we have had in the past. This is the whole idea of thinking like, “life was so much easier back when…” As I have said before, it is so easy to compare ourselves and our lives to the pretty picture we see in regards to the lives of others. We really have no idea about the lives of others, so we shouldn’t assume that we do. These assumptions almost always gets us into trouble.
- If you have faith, you can rest easy in knowing that God knows what He is doing. Always. Nothing that happens in your life is a surprise to Him, and He’s got it all figured out. That’s the beauty of being a follower of Jesus: we don’t have to know the plan and to a great degree, we can’t change much of the plan. Are we always going to like the plan? No, but we can rest assured that as life carries us places, we are right where we belong whether you are on the top of a mountain or deep in a valley. I did write about some amazing lessons I learned in a financial valley over here.
Life is not always easy, and it most certainly is not always fair, but when you start feeling envy appear, take these three basic, yet not simple steps in getting your envy back in check. We all have much to be thankful for, we need to avoid comparing ourselves to others, and we need to trust that the life we live is the perfect life for us. Simple, straightforward, to the point, and never easy, but totally doable when you have a plan in place.