Fighting envy with eternity

We’ve all been jealous.

We know that sense of longing for something we don’t have; the dissatisfaction with our own lives.

Maybe we want wealth. Health. Ease.

We feel that the person over there does whatever they want without consequences. We feel like we’re obeying God and struggling.

So we doubt. We wonder, what’s the point in being godly? It seems easier not to be. People not following God are having a much better time of it than I am.

Envy

Asaph felt like that.

“I envied the proud…they seem to live such painless lives." (Psalm 73:3-4, NLT).

He’s frustrated. How come the godless get everything they want?

He asks what we ask. Am I doing this for nothing? Is being obedient really worth it, God? (Psalm 73:13-14).

Here’s what’s so refreshing about Asaph. He doesn’t just bring his beef about life to God and wait for change in his circumstances. He goes to the sanctuary (Psalm 73:17).

He lets God change his perspective. And God shows him his envy through the lens of eternity.

And it disappears.

Eternity

Asaph’s heart was bitter because his focus was wrong. Turning his heart to God’s word, he sees something important.

For those who don’t know the Lord, this life is as good as it gets. But for God’s kids, this is as bad as it will ever be.

Despite Asaph’s wobble, he realises, “yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand" (Psalm 73:23). And he always will.

How should we fight envy? Like Asaph. With truth.

The truth that while this life isn’t easy, we’re held by God. And soon, he will lead us into his kingdom.

In other words, it’s our perfect eternity which defeats our earthly envy.