” . . . envy never tells you the truth. It distorts your view of life, the life of others, and the character of God.”- Paul David Tripp
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”- 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 (ESV)
Paul David Tripp concludes Chapter 5 of Suffering with the final two things Psalm 73 teaches about envy.
7. Envy forgets eternity. Suffering’s so real, physical, emotional, and life-dominating. Thus, it’s hard to think of anything except the present moment of pain. In addition, you tend to expend too much of your emotional and spiritual time wishing for what once was. Also, you crave what others have that you’ve lost.
Furthermore, envy locks you into a life view with a disastrous past and a painful present. And, it’s functionally without a future. Yet, Pastor Tripp underscores, it’s vital to understand that the biblical story isn’t’ an endlessly repeating cycle. Rather, the biblical story consists of a perfect beginning, a dark and painful middle, and a glorious end. As the author exhorts, “You can’t let patterns of envy rob you of the comforts of eternity.
8. Envy never tells the truth. As Pastor Tripp asserts, envy never produces a good harvest. Most noteworthy, envy steals away hope. And when you believe in God’s presence and goodness, you find hope. The author concludes:
“When you’re tempted in your suffering to look around and calculate, you must determine to look up and celebrate. When all you feel like doing is complain, you must require yourself to find reasons to praise. . . . The battle for an envy-free heart is big and dramatic for every sufferer, but the grace of God is infinitely bigger and more than up to the task.”
Today’s question: How do you know that envy distorts your view of life? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Your God-given capacity to doubt”