Does it seem that someone has something that you want? You look at your neighbor and they have a better house, a better car, nicer clothes, or better anything. What about a coworker, they got the promotion you wanted. Are you envious someone.
It seems that envy is just a part of life but can we live without envying anyone? 1 Corinthians 13: 4 says that love does not envy. If we are able to imitate Christ we will be able to live without envy.
Jesus did not envy those who lived in nice homes, in Matthew 8: 20 he said that he had no home. He chose not to have a home but he often stay in the homes of the disciples.
Jesus did not envy those who had a large bank account. He had to take money out of a fish’s mouth to pay his taxes. Yet he could be seen with those who did have great wealth.
Jesus did not envy those who had power. John 6: 15 tells us that when Jesus knew that the people wanted to make him king, he slipped away into the hills to be by himself.
Jesus told the disciples that the greatest among them would a servant to the others and the greatest in heaven would be like a little child – a lowly position.
Before we take this to far and say that the followers of Christ are to be homeless, poor, servant to all, remember that the disciple were to be great leaders. Jesus called his disciples from all walks of life, labor workers, government, professionals, domestics. Jesus did not call everyone to leave their employment and to follow him full time. Most of the people that accepted Jesus were to stay in the service they were in, wives were to be wives, tax collectors were to be tax collectors, priest were to be priests, soldiers were to be soldiers. What you do, do it as unto the Lord. What we do needs to be in line with the laws of God, as well as the spirit of God.
So are we to want to have a better place, more income, better job? A millionaire put it this way to a bible college group, it is not what you have that matters but what you do with what you have. God has given all of us a gift and he expects us to use that gift to glorify him. God wants us to be the best that we can be without envy of what others might have.
As we imitate Jesus we will find that it is possible not to envy others. The temptation is often with us but when it arises, ask God to help remove that temptation.
God bless you as you imitate Christ.