I Corinthians 13 says that love does not envy.  Webster’s Dictionary says that envy is: discontented or resentful longing.    I can think of many instances where envy created a bad situation.  I think of Saul who envied the success of David in battle.  That resulted eventually in the downfall of Saul  who lost his kingdom to David.

David’s son, Absalom envied his father’s success.  He plotted to seize his father’s throne and almost succeeded.  But, he ended up hanging by his hair in a tree.  And, Sarah so envied Hagar that she persecuted her to the point that Hagar escaped to the desert.  The envy between Sarah and Hagar and Ishmael and Isaac resulted in consequences that are still being fought out today.  The descendants of those two sons of Abraham are still in conflict in the Middle East.

Have you watched two young children quarrelling over a popular toy?  Talk about envy!  I have noticed that if you distract one of the youngsters with a different toy; envy strikes again.  The tot who thought he wanted the first toy now covets (another word for envy) the second toy.  You know the saying about the grass being greener on the other side?  It seems to be a common trait to want what somebody else has.

However, if we have the love that only comes from God, we will do away with envy.  I have known people who genuinely rejoice in the success of somebody else. I believe this is a true trait of the Christian who is following in the footsteps of Jesus.  Romans 12: 10: “Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another.”  And Philippians 2:4:  “Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others”.

True love cannot co-exist with envy.  I intend to watch for any sign of envy in my life.  I will try to remember that God is Love and He wants me to love others as He loves me.  That means no envy!