Defeating ENVY – LEAD, for God’s Sake!
Let’s look at a couple of verses from the Scripture on the topic of Envy:
Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?
For he knew that for envy they had delivered him.
And the patriarchs, moved with envy, sold Joseph into Egypt: but God was with him
Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another
Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will:
For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work
Some years ago, as I was studying Biblical prosperity, I heard sister Gloria Copeland preach an insightful message on ‘exposing the spirit of envy’. This is the ‘keeping up with the Jones’ mentality, that will open the door to greed, covetousness, pride, contention, strife, and every evil work.
God is a good God, and I am convinced that He wants us, His children to prosper, financially: what parent does not want good things for their children?
Here is the definition of Envy:
noun: envy; plural noun: envies.
a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.
“she felt a twinge of envy for the people on board”
a person or thing that inspires envy.
“their national health service is the envy of many in Europe”
verb: envy; 3rd person present: envies; past tense: envied; past participle: envied; gerund or present participle: envyin
g.desire to have a quality, possession, or other desirable attribute belonging to (someone else).
“he envied people who did not have to work on weekends”
||be envious of, be jealous of; More
begrudge, be resentful of
“I admired and envied her”
Obviously, Envy, and her green-eyed monster sister, jealously are from hell, and enemies to be destroyed, in our own hearts.
The question is, how?
I am comforted by this verse:
3 John 1:2
Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth
God’s way of prosperity, is an inside job. He always works from the inside out.
Money, wealth, material things are blessings for sure, but can never satisfy the depths of any human heart. Only a deep personal relationship with Jesus, receiving the depths of His love, wisdom, forgiveness, affirmation, encouragement, and comfort can ever do that…
Prosperity, without corresponding development of one’s soul, can ruin us. The very things that are blessings, that should produce humility and gratefulness in our hearts towards God, can become instruments of pride, self-exaltation, greed, haughtiness, and a host of other evils rooted in our own selfishness…
How do we defeat envy and jealousy within us?
We must grow in grace and knowledge of Jesus through the Word of God!
For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.
Money must be mastered. It makes a great servant, but a cruel Lord.
As long as we, by the Holy Spirit, rule money through the fruit of the Holy Spirit of self-control, it makes a great servant.
If we do not with great strength master it, it will quickly seek to turn the tables and make us serve it, and we will find as we journey down it’s pathway, that there is a very real task-master holding the proverbial carrot on a stick in front of the donkey, that we chase, but can never quite obtain, while we bear it’s burdens and tasks…We see the carrot, and pursue it, but cannot easily see the invisible hand holding the stick: satan, or one of his minions, quietly exercising more and more insidious control of our lives.
Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, But righteousness delivers from death
Doing right with money, will grant you favor with God to have a continually supply, but no amount of money can protect one from destruction for violation of the Word of God.
My son is ten years old, and I have worked hard on keeping the heart strings tight between us, endeavoring to not only mold him scholastically, calling out and developing the mighty man he is called to be, but pray, with God’s help, that he will pick up not only the lessons I teach him, but the very spirit of why I instruct him so strenuously.
Over the holiday, I overheard an interchange between he and his BFF (Best Friend Forever), another boy, named Jack. There were both excitedly telling each other what they got for Christmas, and suddenly, my son yelled: “Dad! Guess what? Jack got a new smart phone for Christmas, and a bike!”
He was not envious, jealous, nor competitive with his best friend, rather, a partaker of his joy, and truly excited for his friend!
Would to God that we all had friends like that!
Instead of people who compete, and play the old ‘one-upmanship’ game!
Why cannot we adopt this spirit seen in my son, recognizing that we all have a loving heavenly Father, that delights to give us good things, as we serve Him. When we see a friend or colleague receive a blessing, why cannot we shout out: in faith towards heaven:NEXT!
In leadership, we study, and we quietly make decisions, set goals, and then pursue them, with fire, intensity, and bull dogged resolve!
I read this quote today along those lines, and it seems to fit here:
To protect against envious people, as you create things:
“You have a brain and mind, use it, and reach your own decisions. If you need facts or information from other people to reach decisions as, as you probably will, in many instances, acquire these facts or secure the information you need quietly, without disclosing your purpose….
If you talk more than listen, you not only deprive yourself of many opportunities to accumulate useful knowledge, but also disclose you plans and purposes to people who take great delight in defeating you, because they ENVY you.
Genuine wisdom is usually conspicuous though modesty and silence…
TELL THE WORLD WHAT YOU INTEND TO DO, BUT FIRST, SHOW IT! DEEDS BEFORE TALK!”
Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich, p 195
Mr. Hill hit the nail on the head in this. (If you would like my thoughts on Mr. Hills 25 year study of leadership commissioned by Andrew Carnegie, from a Biblical standpoint, please read: (https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/leadership-the-fate-of-the-world-depends-upon-it/)
Unfortunately, it is a fallen world, and we cannot share our hearts, dreams, plans, or purposes, with everyone: sometimes, even those close to us, will take our designs and run with them.
I have had that happen in business a couple times, whereby we discovered and developed an innovative new product, then innocently showed it to some wealthy people, to try and solicit interest, only to have them take it from us, and produce it themselves, making the profits we should have obtained.
We forgive, and learn…
Make a commitment to growth!
Not mere academic knowledge, but education of heart, in our spirit, through the Word of God.
I believe firmly, that academic knowledge, without corresponding development of the heart in morality, will simply produce intelligent criminals.
God would develop our whole person: spirit, soul (mind and intellect) and our body. (The resistance that you fight physically in the gym and the resistance that you fight in life can only build a strong character. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Leadership, can be spelled R-E-S-P-O-N-S-B-I-L-I-T-Y!
I think of the great Biblical leaders, and the responsibility they each faced:
Abraham: Had 400 employees directly working for him.
David: Incredible enemies, and the responsibility of managing and ruling an entire nation.
Moses: Led, provided for, and governed 3 million former slaves.
Joseph: Governed the nation of Egypt, but also looked after the food distribution of Egypt food stocks to not only Egypt, but also surrounding nations, during a famine he knew would last for 7 years, with enough strength of character and will, that the food supplies did not run out until the famine ended.
Sure, we can use these, and others, as great examples of faith, courage, prayer, etc, but what about the integrity, and responsibility they exercised before God, to lead in their spheres of influence, well.
Would to God, that we too, might grow in integrity before God, to do the same, for the betterment of humanity, not merely our own selfish desires!
We must commit to grow, the world depends upon it….
‘Father, men look on the outward, You look upon the heart! Search me, cleanse me from envy, competition, pride, and my own selfish greed’s and ambitions, that I might, in purity of heart and purpose, grow, lead, and become the leader You have need of, in this, my generation. Educate my heart, Father, that my moral strength, become greater than my physical or mental abilities, that I might truly grow into becoming the person of excellence, you require. Prosper me Father, that You be glorified in my well being, as Your child. This, I ask, in Your precious name, Lord Jesus, Amen!’
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Give in faith!
1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?
1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.
Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.
I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…
As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.
Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.
I am a five-fold ministry gift and office – this is my life – I pray, I hear, I write, and wonderful things happen. You have your job description, I have mine – this is mine….
I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.
Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:
Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies
It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!
Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!