It's Not Easy Being Green

But when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, they hated him and could not speak peaceably to him. (Genesis 37:4)

Jealousy kills. Jealousy caused Jacob's sons to plot to kill their brother Joseph. Jealousy was behind Saul's vicious pursuit of David. Jealousy spurred Cain to take Abel's life. And jealousy even motivated the religious leaders of Jerusalem to insist that Jesus be crucified.

There is nothing good about jealousy. And there's nothing sweet or innocent about it either. It's not a harmless little sin with no consequences. Jealousy kills.

Jealousy kills careers, church fellowships, marriages, friendships, families, partnerships, reputations.

I've been jealous, and I bet you have, too. And even when I feel myself turning green with envy, I know it's not good. But sometimes it's hard to control our jealousies, right?

How can we keep from turning green with envy when someone else succeeds, someone else gets what we aimed for and worked so hard for, someone else is chosen while we are not, someone else is noticed while we are ignored, someone else seems to have all the fun? That's a tall order, to stay joyful and peaceful and content when someone else seemingly "has it all."

But by the power of the Holy Spirit in us, we can overcome jealousy. And if we spot jealousy for what it is and what it does, we can ward it off before it plants insidious seeds of bitterness and hate in our hearts.

Jealousy sneaks up on the best of us at the craziest moments. But we don't have to fall victim to its insidious poison. Instead, we can recognize it for what it is and deal with it before it kills...because jealousy always kills.

Ask God to search your heart today and expose any jealous feelings you may have excused or ignored up until now. Confess that jealousy and begin replacing those sinful attitudes with love and grace today. Remember, God can redeem the damage we've done, but only if we own it first.

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