May 30, 2022

No Jealousy

 Devotion for the Week...

I'm part of a Facebook group for quilt pattern designers and every Friday we are encouraged to share whatever wins we have had that week. It is so much fun to read those stories each week! Sometimes it's a new pattern that has been released or a quilt chosen to be on a magazine cover, other times it's a new product launched or a big bump in sales. I tell my husband about some of them, especially the ones that are so beyond where I am in my business that they amaze me. One day, after I had read something out to him, he worried that reading those stories might make me feel bad, if they made me compare myself with these other designers. I assured him, though, that the stories are fun to read. First, just because it's fun to celebrate what someone else has achieved and then also because they show me what is possible in the quilting industry. In fact, I find the stories energizing!

I remembered that conversation recently when I read Proverbs 12:12, which says, "Thieves are jealous of each other’s loot, but the godly are well rooted and bear their own fruit." That brings to mind such a vivid picture of two thieves sitting across a room from each other, both with their own pile of loot, both staring jealously at what the other has, resenting that the other person has this or that. It made me remember the designer's FB group because the vibe there is so different. Instead of jealousy and resentment, the comments on those weekly posts are full of celebration and joy for the other person.

Another thing that struck me about the thieves is that it didn't matter how much, or even what, they had; they wanted more. No matter how much more they get, they still won't be satisfied with what they have. That sounds like an awful way to live, doesn't it? 

Contrast that with the godly, who 'are well rooted and bear their own fruit.' Well rooted, to me, sounds like they know who they are and are satisfied with what they have. As for bearing their own fruit, they are focused on their own work and they don't waste time feeling sorry for themselves because of what someone else has. 

This attitude may not come easily, even Jesus' disciples struggled with wanting positions of importance, but it can be learned. Paul wrote, "I have learned how to be content with whatever I have" (Philippians 4:11), followed by "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength" (v. 13). 
In Christ we know who we are |
That is the secret - in Christ we know who we are and learn to be content with what we have.

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