Yesterday, we introduced envy, which is wanting or craving what others have instead of getting our joy from being with God and what He provides for us. Well that is easy, but let’s dig a little deeper.
Envy is one of the traps Satan sets for us, using our pride, flesh, and our ‘satisfy-me-now’ mentality against us. Satan deceives us, actually distorts our lenses, so we believe that our fulfillment and joy in this life come from emotional, psychological, physical, or material answers. His goal is getting us to shut down our spiritual radar, turn off our spiritual antennae, and ignore spiritual or divine answers for our needs
You see, the way it’s supposed to be was in the Garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve had this fantastic set up, enjoying direct relationship with the perfect God in the perfect setting with no adversity. But they weren’t omniscient so they were gullible (like us). Satan tricked them into believing they needed something more than utopia. He duped them into thinking they needed more power and more knowledge, and could get all that through an apple (not as appealing to me as ice cream). Instead of staying in relationship with God, relying on Him and following His instructions to not eat, they were swindled by Satan, trading eternal life with God for life on their own and separation from God. Thankfully, God provided a way back into relationship with Him through Jesus.
The trap is, if you believe your happiness and contentment are dependent on your external circumstances, or from someplace or someone else other than God, then you will always be lost, unhappy, and discontent. Those things weren’t meant to bring you what you desire, nor can they. God designed us specifically to be immune to those external things. So regardless of our circumstances, or the mistakes we make with finances, marriage, parenting, sin, etc., we still have access to a peace, comfort, and joy that is independent of who we are and what is around us.
Today, look inside and identify some of your traps … apples … that you believe will satisfy your real needs. How did you get tricked into believing they could deliver what you really desire in the deepest places of your heart? Don’t mistake momentary relief for true fulfillment. That’s Satan’s trick and trap! Your decision, choose well. More on why envy seems endless tomorrow.
Dear God, You and only You are the source of my joy, peace, and comfort. I confess that my need to control life is often the apple I grab. Help me trust Your control in my life and not have the need to trust my inadequate abilities. Please help me. Grow in me eyes that see and ears that hear the traps Satan places in my path. Help me choose the Stepping Stone You have for my forward movement towards Christ-likeness. Through Your Spirit strengthen me to resist the temptations and impulses of my flesh. Teach me to always ask for Your forgiveness for my me-centered mistakes. And thanks for Your endless grace and forgiveness when I do fall. In Jesus’ all- providing death and resurrection I pray; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.