Here is what I read:
“Minding (having our mind set on) other people’s business, will keep us in the wilderness. Jealousy, envy, and mentally comparing ourselves and our circumstances with others is a wilderness mentality.”
Currently, in my life I am still adjusting to this season of having less. I come from a family of generous and joyful givers. Only now, my giving is much less and often feels less joyful. It often feels so small. This is one area I have felt jealous in. Not being able to give as I desire. I really prayed as I read this chapter for the Lord to show me where jealousy was showing up.
I expected only one area, but God always supplies above and beyond all I could ask are think…..hmmmmm yes, quite uncomfortable in this area of conviction, but oh so needed.
Jealousy has been showing up in my life in two areas: Money and Ministry. The Lord began to show me something very cool. He showed me that temptation always comes. My heart can only be tempted by what I desire. Here is the scripture to confirm this. James 1:14 “But every person is tempted when he is drawn away, enticed and baited by his own evil desire (lust, passions).” So, I began to ask the Lord what about the money and ministry situations are tempting me to jealousy.
Right now, money is just enough and many days quite short. Ministry potential is great but just as unclear and uncertain as the money area. Because those things are out of focus my flesh(mind will and emotions) are trying very hard to bring them into focus. My heart desire is to fix these situations. My temptation is to think, in my own power on those situations. I begin to think, the more I think about those areas that I don’t have what I so want, the more certain they will become. I do this by looking at what others have and are doing. That is a place of deception for me! The more lack oriented I become the more lack is produced in my life. Just like Joyce writes, I begin to mind other peoples business. There is no business I know that can grown on it’s own, all businesses require attention. My time is used either in growing my business for the benefit of my life or the waste of my time(the minding of others business). What jealousy does is cause what other people have or what they are doing to becomes my standard of measure for prosperity. This earthly measure can only measure according to my low ability. How do I expect my life to prosper when all my attention is Joe blow from next door?.
Yet, as I was seeking the Lord over this….specifically an incident where I was given an opportunity to rejoice with someone, and as I was doing so I recognized my heart felt heavy with stirrings of jealousy. They are getting to do things that I want and had but no longer do. At first I felt ugly over this. I began to try and correct myself but as I have been learning, I sought the Lord for His perspective on this. I always feel His correction is so loving for me, as I open my heart to hear and receive. This time was no different.
First the Lord reminded me that He is my Source. As such, nothing is too much are too little for Him. All the details of me are in His power. Here are some scriptures He gave me:
16 For God so GREATLY LOVED AND PRIZED Jenni, that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that as Jenni believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him, she shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.
God greatly loves me. He prizes me. This reminds me of my value and God’s ability all at once. He has total ability to supply my needs and grant the desires of my heart. Even the things I am jealous over. He never fails. Now, is not the moment He is going to start! Jealousy leads to the destruction of joy and loss of my contentment but as I am learning to trust in Him I am receiving His everlasting non-jealous life. Praise GOD!
24 Up to this time you have not asked a [single] thing in My Name [as presenting all that I Am]; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy (gladness, delight) may be full and complete.
Jealousy will keep me from asking God because I am too busy complaining about what I don’t have. My breath and God’s measure of faith in me will be wasted. While the devil will try and convince me I don’t deserve what I am asking for. So, I began to bring the very things I saw that I wanted to Him and asked Him to give me His heart for those things. Also to help me to trust in Him for what I need and desire.
Second the jealousy that was showing up, was a product of wrong thinking. Easily correctable and changed with repentance and the renewing of my mind. I set my heart to allow Him to reset my mindset. Also with a prayer request for Him to help me focus on Him.
Third, I ask for a “redeemed heart,” vision of my situation that doesn’t compare what I have or don’t have to others. Jealousy is a feeling and as such is subject to my thoughts. Jealousy is not who I am but rather how I feel. Yes, I desire things, for that is natural but the real truth is will I give into the temptation of using my own methods and means to try and get what I want? Will I chose the works of the flesh or the life of the Spirit? Will I allow God to be my Source for what I ask for and for what I desire? Remember I can only be tempted by what I desire. I use these scriptures to reorient my heart.
18 Where there is no vision [no redemptive revelation of God], the people perish; but he who keeps the law [of God, which includes that of man]—blessed (happy, fortunate, and enviable) is he.
3 Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed.
11 For the Lord God is a Sun and Shield; the Lord bestows [present] grace and favor and [future] glory (honor, splendor, and heavenly bliss)! No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
Jealousy cannot stand in the revelation of God being my Source. God is my Source for my finances. God is my Source for ministry. God is my Source for giving. He is causing my thoughts about these areas to become agreeable to His will…..totally in line with His heart for my life. He is showing me what to ask for and when and how much. All my needs are met in Him, so I am fully content.
Jealousy be gone! In Jesus Name! I trust the Lord to do His part and to help me to do mine.
So, I just encourage you, if jealousy is showing up in your life, take it as your cue to let God be your Source. Don’t be discouraged about it, but rather be courageous and purposeful about asking God to show you what is your real desire and the point of temptation. Then trust Him to help you set your heart to resisting the temptation and fleeing sin. Trust Him to bring you out of this “Wilderness Mentality.” Truly, God wants to bring you into the place of Promise He has for you. Yes, I am speaking specifically to you.