a piece of paper with the words greed, indifference, and envy being cut up by scissors

Psalm 51:1-12; Habakkuk 3:2-13; John 12:1-11

Meanwhile a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and believing in him. (John 12:9-11)

Sometimes I read things in the Scriptures and just shake my head at folks. Kind of a, “can you believe these people?”

This morning as I read this passage in John, I am struck by the power of envy and jealousy.

I wish I could say that I was immune to such things. But, I am not. I look around at certain colleagues and their success and feel jealous.

The religious leaders of Jesus day were a jealous bunch. Jesus shows up offering grace and mercy and compassion and the people were attracted to him. When this started happening the religious leaders knew their time of power over the people was being challenged. They sure didn’t like it.

Envy was so powerful that it lead them to the place of plotting the murder of Jesus and Lazarus.

Now, I haven’t plotted to murder anyone. But, if what we know about Jesus' teachings tells us anything about the heart I may as well have.

Envy and jealousy lead us to some heartbreaking places in our hearts and minds. If we don’t get them under control they will turn into worse things. I am convinced that when we are overwhelmed with jealousy and envy we cannot love well.

This morning I’m praying that God would free me to celebrate the success of others as opposed to feeling jealous.