Oddly, we admire the success of someone we don’t know, but envy the success of someone we do. Like mildew in a dark, wet place, malice grows quickly in the heart that harbors jealousy, emptying the soul of joy, peace and purpose. From there it is a slippery slope from witty criticisms to skillful, malicious rumormongering and malignant dismembering of the reputations of others. To covet someone else’s life is disavowal of God’s care and intent for our own. O Lord, My Healer, eradicate from my soul all envy, jealousy and malice. May thankfulness and joy cleanse every thought and word.
John Bunyan’s “The Pilgrim's Progress from This World, to That Which Is to Come” is an allegory written while he was imprisoned for his Christian beliefs. Until we reach the Golden Gates of Heaven we must progress in our walk of faith here on earth. Each time I think I understand God’s ways and means He turns the diamond and new facets of His splendor emerge. For the true believer there is no spiking the ball in the end zone on this side of Glory; there is no settling down where we are in this life. Not only am I tolerant of this constantly changing status, I am genuinely thankful for it. I am being pulled toward eternal purpose that I cannot fathom but I instinctively know awaits me. So I’ll keep my shoes on until it’s over. Lord, though I struggle in Your arms, You never let me go. Keep me moving toward Your perfect will. Help me never miss a turn or stop unnecessarily. Keep me progressing toward Your perfect will.