The problem with jealousy and envy

Freshman year a friend and I both applied for a leadership council on my college campus. I was in her dorm room one day, about a week after the application process. She asked me if I had checked my email. I said no I hadn’t. We then left her dormroom. On our way to the student center, she continues to encourage me to check my email. I was not sure why she kept urging me to check my email, but I finally did…I didn’t see anything.

I informed my friend I had not received any emails. She finally admitted that she'd received an invitation into the leadership council to which we both applied.

She obtained the position I was courting even prior to entering college.
And I, well, I had not.

 I was Jealous.

Skip to 4 years later, this same friend and I are both seniors in college. We are not as close as we once were, I would say we were more associates at this point. I was casually browsing Facebook and I see that she’s the student director of a large organization on my campus among other prestigious accomplishments. The envy soared through me.  I was resentful to say the least.

Here I was with my life slowly crumbling apart, my relationship was failing, my bank account was dwindling…I was overworked, and my grades looked mediocre at best. I cried to God, why me…why am I suffering so much, but this woman continues to receive everything I want. Why me Lord, why?

That’s when God checked me, and he checked me hard.

Job was a righteous man who the Lord blessed exceedingly and abundantly, then he lost everything, and through it all, he never cursed the Lord. He didn’t even ask ‘why me’
Job 1:21
 He said,
“I came naked from my mother’s womb,
    and I will be naked when I leave.
The Lord gave me what I had,
    and the Lord has taken it away.
Praise the name of the Lord!”

Everything anyone has in life is given by God. So who was I to question the will of God. To make it worst, at that time I wasn’t living in righteous, nor was I operating under obedience to God. Who was I to be jealous, and to envy this former friend when God gives and operates how he pleases. 

Psalms 24:1
The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.
The world and all its people belong to him.

While I comforted myself with the words that ‘what God has for me is for me’ I know I didn’t truly understand or believe it at that point in my life.

Human jealousy is the feeling or showing of envy for someone’s accomplishments and things.
Envy is the discontentment and resentfulness aroused by someone else’s possessions and accomplishments.

Romans 9:21  states "Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use?"

While It’s easy to see what other people have and feel discontent with our own possessions, the ultimate reality is that at the end of the time, the will of God is what will prevail. proverbs 19:20

When we are jealous, when we envy, we say to God: where I am, and what I am is not good enough for me. I’m disregarding what you’re trying to do Lord, and what you’re trying to teach and the things you have done for me...I think I deserve more than this…or better than this.

And then the question I ask is : Who told you deserve more than you have?!

We live in a world where our selfishness has led us into a mindset that says that we are these amazing creatures and only good and great things should happen to us, but who told you this!?

Yes, God will bless and give you abundantly and exceedingly what you expect…but it will be according to His riches and for His glory, not yours. Ephesians 3:20 

Me right, Alexis left. I had just won the scholarship pageant in 2012
I am not saying be content in situations, nor with things IF God has given you a desire for more. But understand, the key words are: IF GOD has given you a desire for more…not if you have given you a desire for more.

In all my jealousy, in all my envy, I disregarded the multiple leadership positions the Lord awarded me between my freshman and senior year of college. I disregarded winning a scholarship pageant just a short while after losing the bid for that same leadership council.

The problem with jealousy and envy is that it undermines what God is doing for you. Because of these emotions, you shift your focus to what God is doing for someone else…and eventually your focus becomes someone else and not God
This breeds the perfect environment for idolatry.

Be content with what you have. Pray that you are in the perfect will of God, and know that What God has for you, is truly for need to be jealous, no need for envy.

The truth behind Suicide

There’s a lie that exists. 
It’s powerful, pervasive and penetrating. It whispers you’re worthless, it whispers you’re unnecessary. It says that no one loves you…that life is too hard and that ceasing to exist will end your suffering. 

You’ve been raped

You’ve been abused

You’ve been talked about

Talked down to

Spit on

And kicked while you were low

And you feel so alone

So what’s the point, right?
Why bother…life doesn’t love you, right?

That was me at one brief point in my life, but I had a praying mother. Who covered me continuously in the blood of Jesus, who prayed protection, provision, and vision into my future.

Suicide is such a limited conversation in the world. The quickest way to gain the label of a mental disorder is to admit that you don’t want to live anymore.
So people, even though they have the thoughts, never talk about it. You’re labeled crazy the moment you admit you’ve wanted to die…or worse want to die. 

You’re labeled crazy if you have no clue what to do with your life, if you can’t figure out how to cope with the stress…if after multiple let downs, you simply have no desire to get up in morning.... If sleeping through the day sounds better than living it.

You’re labeled crazy if you don’t have all the answers…or any of the answers,. You’re labeled crazy if you don’t know how to deal, if you self-medicate with alcohol and drugs, but still can’t escape the pain that gnaws at the inside of your brain, heart and veins.

And the worst part of it all is…because no one is talking about it, you feel so alone…you feel like you must be the only one.

I’m going to make a bold statement and say that all of us, if not the majority of us have thought about death, ending it all, killing ourselves….However you want to phrase it to avoid offending your delicate sensibilities.

Jesus is speaking and he says in John 10:10 The thief approaches with malicious intent, looking to steal, slaughter, and destroy; I came to give life with joy and abundance.

As long as you breathe, there is an adversary: the devil, the great thief. He comes to steal your purpose, the plans and directions that God has for your life…the calling that God has placed in you. Whether saved, or unsaved, the devil is your enemy and his hatred for you is so deep that he desires to steal your life, and to make you think it’s worthless.

 That’s the reason suicide seems like the logical solution when chaos shrouds you. 

Without an understanding of Christ, without an understanding of the immense love that configured for your divine birth, it’s easy to believe every single lie that the enemy throws into your ears and whispers into your heart.

But thank God that there is an answer, that Jesus is that answer. 

This is for the boy, girl, man or woman…who considered suicide when the rainbow was enough.

The father’s love, the acceptance of Christ changes you. It will fulfil you, it will make you whole and when you have no reason to smile. He will give you joy.

Jeremiah 29:11-12  For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen
That is a promise from the one who is faithful when everyome and everything fails .
Your purpose is not in the chaos of your circumstances. You are not alive by chance, or happenstance…or even by choice. You were ordained.

So if worthlessness eclipses your vision for your future.
If you can’t see what lies beyond the sorrow, if you know nothing else.
Know this:
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Trust God. Jesus died so that you may have everlasting life, so that the holes will be filled, so that you will be fulfilled, so that in the darkness you will finally see light.

Romans 8:31  So what should we say about all of this? If God is on our side, then tell me: whom should we fear?
The God of the universe is on your side. HE fights for you, no one can come against you...not the evil thoughts…not your circumstances, not the demons of your past.

Habakkuk 2:3 “For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.”
God is not late in his promises. He has plans for you that are of good, of peace, of a future. And he will fulfil them. 

Don’t run ahead of God, don’t end it all because you believe you know best. Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

The reason I love God so much is because...

I’m not the same person I was.
Me circa 2013, septum, contacts. Naive, but I thought I knew it all
  I remember being on the after school activities bus in 8th grade. Some other girls were saying mean things to a younger girl who was sitting in the back of the bus. I had just awoken from my nap, and I wasn’t too aware of what was going on, but that didn’t stop me from joining in the bullying. I teased the girl to the point where she looked like she was about to cry. That’s when one of the three original girls started telling me to calm down. And told me I was being mean. I did it to feel accepted, but deep down...I knew I was wrong. It was one of my cruelest moments to date. 

I remember joining the cheerleading squad in highschool. I had just cut off all my relaxed hair and was newly natural. Noone thought it looked good on me, and I knew people were secretly saying things about my hair behind my back. I logged on facebook one day and in a picture I posted with some other girls on the squad, a boy commented (he was friends with these girls) and said ‘eww, she looks so gross.’ The ‘She’ was me. That was a pretty low moment too. 

Imagine my surprise in college when people started calling me pretty. Everyone now loved my nappy hair, they liked how different I was. I was really different…but It was good. So I lowered my standards at the first taste of belonging. It started out fun. Smoking, and drinking was fun…getting a lot of guys who thought I was attractive was fun. Manipulating men into desiring me for my body, for what I thought I had… was fun.
  Until I started paying for it.

 I became dependent on things that were once choices.

 People liking me meant more to me than what God thought of me.

I got into an abusive relationship looking for the love that I wanted all my life. I wanted someone who thought I was the most beautiful woman in the world, who told me that daily…who knew all my secret sins and who refrained from judging. I wanted a man to finally tell me, “it’s okay to love yourself…you don’t have to put up a front all the time….I’ll be the rock, you can melt.” And I received some of that…but I also got a man who used me as a  deflection for his demons.

 The relationship got worst.
Truthfully, I was really searching for God, not man. I yearned for the acceptance my father never provided and my mother was incapable of…and I was willing to lose my life for it.

But Jesus saves, he saw me. In the middle of my brokenness, my addiction, my pain, my dark thoughts and my twisted reality.
He cleansed me and he reminded me that I was made for so much more than weed, fake smiles, and fake happiness. I was made for more than casual sex, and being hit at someone else’s whim.

 So that’s why I believe in God. Because as messed up of a person as I was…I am, my creator loves me, unconditionally loves me…he sees me when no one else is willing to, he wipes away every tear and he sees every fear.

A relationship with Christ changes you, it betters you, it fixes you.

 On solid ground I stand. I’m never going back to the person I was.

 I can’t.

 John 8:36 So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free. 

 2 Corinthians 5:17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!