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Daily Reading: 1 Kings 5:1-6:38 ESV, Acts 7:1-29 ESV, Psalm 127:1-5 ESV, Proverbs 16:28-30 ESV

Daily Verse: “And the patriarchs, jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt; but God was with him” (Acts 7:9 ESV)

ZELOO (2206): “Have warmth of feeling for or against; zealously affect, move with envy, envy, covet, desire, covet earnestly.”[i]

Zealously affect.

Desiring what someone else has causes problems.  Especially if you let the situation consume you.  Joseph’s brothers, patriarchs of the Old Testament, allow their jealousy to control their actions.  At first, they wanted to kill Joseph but sold him into slavery.  God never left Joseph.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” (Genesis 50:20 ESV)

Jealousy makes us do evil things if we let it.  But God uses all things for the good of those who believe and trust in Him (Romans 8:28 ESV).  What Joseph’s brothers meant as evil, God used to save them.  Because Joseph went to Egypt, He became second in command under Pharoah.  When famine came, Joseph saved his family.

Overcome jealousy.

As a person who struggles with jealousy, I’ve found one way to combat it.  Celebrate their win. 

Playing nine holes with a couple of ladies, I had the highest score, meaning I lost.  Their experience and ability far outweighed mine.  Throughout the two-hour round, jealousy reared its ugly head often.  Cheering their wins defeats the beast.

Jealousy impacts relationships, separating them as it did the brothers.  I had jealousy issues over my college roommate’s beauty, husband, kids, and big house during my single years.  As a result, we lost touch.  When we reunited, I learned jealousy skewed my vision of her heartache-filled life.  Less than six months after reconnecting, she passed away.  I missed years of a relationship with her because my jealousy consumed me.

Don’t let jealousy get you off track.  When you feel the ugly monster rear its head, put the emotion in its place. Celebrate the win for the other person.  You’ll have your day sometime; let them have theirs.

[i] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p. 109) Thomas Nelson

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