Meditations on Lesson 19
Godly Contentment: Head to Heart Guide
If you had siblings were you told not to be envious of your brothers or sisters or playmates? Were you ever shown how not to feel envy?
Typically we were given “the law” concerning correct and forbidden behaviors, but few of us were given the saving grace of being shown how to get free of the compelling negative emotions we were told not to express. This often leads to disguised ways of expressing the negative emotion anyway—for as Jesus said, what gets in the heart is the real source of sinful behavior (Matthew 15:19; Mark7:21).
1) So, just for grins, what have you noticed of the disguised (more socially acceptable or just plain sneaky) ways that envy and jealousy still seek to find expression in church or the workplace? What are some of the obvious ways?
2) Now, let’s take these reflections and consider what a child could have been shown or taught that would have helped their heart get free of the influence of envy/jealousy? Consider that if a wise and understanding adult had been with us any time our heart suffered hurt or loss in childhood, we could have actually grown greater trust in God and forgiving love for the people around us—rather than have learned failed ways of coping on our own.
3) What does this show us to do with our hearts now—when envy or jealousy seek to rise?