Faith: ‘Hey Jealousy’ my old enemy

Heath Jeffery
Slave Lake Alliance Church

I graduated high school in 1993, and around that time I made my first CD purchase. I can still remember how much it cost, and I remember how great the album sounded compared to my tapes. One of the first albums I purchased was by a band called Gin Blossoms, and one of the big hits on that album was a song called ‘Hey Jealousy.’ It is a catchy tune, and I just heard it again the other day, and I started thinking about that word jealousy.

What is jealousy and does it show up in my life? I started thinking about this question and my relationship to social media and one day I started to make the connection. I open Facebook or Instagram and notice that many of my friends are posting their winter holiday to some warm destination. It’s funny how some of them never post, but once they have a beautiful holiday or a large purchase like a truck or a house suddenly there is a post. I think many of us have what we can call Facebook envy or jealousy. Every time I see these posts, I think ‘Hey Jealousy!’ I wish I had a winter holiday or new truck or home.

What happens is the more we read and view social media the louder the megaphone for jealousy and comparison becomes. When others have something, or go somewhere something triggers inside of us, and it says hey what about me, am I not good enough?

It’s even harder when we are close to the person, such as family or friends, and I realize that this creates a fertile soil in which jealousy grows. The effects, or should I say damage, to us can be unhealthy. It can metastasize like a cancer cell in the human body, it can grow into resentment and anger towards the people who possess what we desire.

I find it interesting that only a few short years ago we didn’t see everything that people did. It was much harder to fan the flame of jealousy back when I first bought my CD. I guess I sound old when I say I miss those days sometimes. I guess I also sound old when I talk about CDs and tapes as well. But jealousy has always been in my life, Hey Jealousy!

One of the things that I am always learning is that comparison and jealousy loses its momentum when we remember that God’s opinion of me matters the most. He doesn’t look at what I look at. I see the exterior, but God sees the interior. God sees the heart; I just see the holidays and nice things people have. So, when I scroll through Facebook and see others’ good gifts, I need to learn to be happy for them, because I know God’s love for me is better than life.

God’s love is meant to protect me from jealousy. This means Hey Jealousy, you are not going to steal the experience of joy in my life that comes from the good fortune of others. Help me to desire God, and not desire the things that you have given to others.

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